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"Wealth Therapy" Provides Counseling for the Rich

(Photo: Steve Hockstein/Harvard Studio/Clay Cockrell)

This is Clay Cockrell. He used to work on Wall Street. Now he's a therapist in New York City. He's found a unique specialty: the needs of the very wealthy. The Guardian quotes him:

“We are trained to have empathy, no judgment and so many of the uber wealthy – the 1% of the 1% – they feel that their problems are really not problems. But they are. A lot of therapists do not give enough weight to their issues.”

This is because, in part, American popular culture teaches that it's okay to hate people--so as long as they're rich:

Traeger-Muney, who moved to Israel six years ago, runs a global firm and specializes in working with inheritors, who often get a bad reputation in the press. […]

“Sometimes I am shocked by things that people say. If you substitute in the word Jewish or black, you would never say something like that. You’d never say – spoiled rotten or you would never refer to another group of people in the way that it seems perfectly normal to refer to wealth holders.”

Wealthy people are often very isolated. They have trouble forming close relationships. This sometimes happens because wealthy people go through the same problems as non-wealthy people, such as grief over the loss of a loved one or a failed relationship. But non-wealthy people are often dismissive of those struggles if the person going through them is loaded:

“I don’t think it’s healthy to discount your problems. If you are part of the 1%, you still have problems and they are legitimate to you. Even when you say: ‘I don’t have to struggle for money’, there are other parts of your life. Money is not the only thing that defines you,” he said. “Your problems are legitimate.”

-via Marginal Revolution


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Except for the first one, those are things poor people worry about, too. No, the first one, too. If you have one dollar, the person with no dollar at all "might" be with you for your money.
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I suppose there are stresses to being wealthy, eg
-being scared your friends/partner are only with you for your money
-feeling isolated from other people cause you think you will get judged or exploited
-fear that you might lose it all
-feelings of worthlessness as you have never had to build your life
-feelings if guilt cause you know you could help some people, but not everyone, so how to choose?
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Geez, you people have no sympathy at all. Do you have any idea the stress involved with trying to decide between a black Ferrari and a red one? Or the sleepless nights because that toilet seat is gold and you SPECIFIED that you wanted platinum?!?
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Having wealthy clients, this can be a real problem. Not that they get too much sympathy from me. They created their life and therefore have the responsibility to handle it.
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