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Being a millionaire / billionaire.. blessing or despair?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Thomas Kievit, Mar 29, 2014.

  1. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Guest

    May 19, 2012
    I've been watching a few episodes of ''Lottery Changed My Life'' and I haven't seen so many people who were actually happy being a millionaire.

    Most of the people in those episodes felt miserable cause they lost their friends and family cause of fights they had about the money. Most of the time, the people around them only were interested in the money and if they got something (some got even a million from the lottory winner) and it still wasn't enough for them.

    I sometimes wonder : it can be nice to have a lot of money that you can basicly do whatever you want, but on the other side : is it really worth it being rich and losing everybody around you, only because of money?

    I'm not sure how my life would be if I would win the lottory, but I don't think it will be any better.. well, only on the financial part it will be ;)
  2. Milk


    Sep 16, 2013
    Montreal, Canada
    There was this family here in quebec, they won several millions in the 80's, less than ten years later they had nothing..... they made a tv series about them. They ended up poor, again, and most of them dead within 15 years. One by suicide:


    The only one to not have squandered his fortune I believe is the good samaritan in the story (the wallet with the ticket had been lost an he brought it back to the family...)
  3. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    I think its a mixed bag. It would be wonderful to have no financial concernes, and if you used your money in a charitable way, it would feel good to help those less fortunate. On the other hand, if you have the means to afford basically anything you want, I dont think you could appreciate anything as much if you dont have to work for it.

    I think that is why rich people collect rare items, price not being a concern, they find reward in owning things that are very rare and hard to find. The reward comes from doing the work to track stuff down.
  4. Boom762

    Boom762 I AM the one who Booms! Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2013
    Lubbock, TX
    I think if you could be a billionaire without anyone else being aware that you have that money it wqould be perfect.

    I would want enough money to go anywhere at anytime. I'd like to wake up and go catch my favorite band playing in Sweden and then hop on my plain to go to Japan for sushi. I wouldnt buy giant houses and all that. Id buy a bunch of firearms, band gear, a recording studio for future income/fun, and the jet. I just want to travel, eat, and whatnot. I also try to start like a "Make a Wish" program but have it not exclude the terminal. Just make random peoples wishes come true.
  5. You'll find out who your real friends are when you win the lottery! :atoz:
  6. i am not sure, not having been one...but i HAVE been on the other side

    let's do a scientific experiment...all TB'ers send me 100.00 and go around and encourage other people to do the same...

    after i get, say, 2 or 3 mill, i will live for a couple of years and get back to you....my bet is....it's not going to be as hard as you think...but we won't know until all the data is in

  7. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    The way I see it, there are two things you have to get right when you win the lottery:
    1. How you handle the money in general--in other words, saving/investing some in a responsible fashion rather than blowing it all right away on a bunch of homes/cars/vacations or someone's harebrained idea for a business.
    2. How you handle relationships with family members after winning.

    For both, you've got to sit down and make a plan. I'd figure out how much I'm going to give each family member and make sure they knew they weren't getting any extra, so they'd better use it wisely. I'd also set some aside to spend on celebrations around holidays or birthdays with the family, hopefully that would make relationships easier to manage.

    Of course, this is all easier said than done!
  8. Unrepresented

    Unrepresented Something Borderline Offensive

    Jul 1, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    At the risk of generalizing, the people who I see buying lottery tickets don't strike me as people who would do well under any circumstances.
  9. Gaolee

    Gaolee Outta my way! I'm caffeinated! Supporting Member

    I don't know if having a whole lot of money is good or bad. Having no money isn't great. I wouldn't mind trying out being a gazillionaire to see what it's like. It might be OK. I would probably blow even more money on music stuff and motorcycles.
  10. I saw a really interesting doc about pro athletes who essentially hit the lottery when signed by a team then and now. The vast majority had nothing to show, in a lot of cases demands from family and "friends" were so incessant that the bulk of what they made were ultimately paid out to them for mortgages, gambling debts, cars, etc. The case of Bernie Kosar (Browns QB) was particularly poignant. Fame and wealth can really seem to be a curse - so many examples in the entertainment business where this has turned out to be the case.
  11. Milk


    Sep 16, 2013
    Montreal, Canada
    That kinda was the thing with the family i linked.... not PC to say, but true...
  12. Stewie26

    Stewie26 Supporting Member

    I kind of agree with your generalization.
    On the upside, it does give some people a small "speck of hope" of becoming rich when they have no other means or skills to make large sums of money. If one should beat the long odds and win millions the smartest thing they could do is hire a financial person who is skilled and experienced managing wealth. Seems like this is where a lot of winners fall down and lose their winnings in less than a decade.
  13. One Drop

    One Drop

    Oct 10, 2004
    Swiss Alps
    I know a lot if very rich people, some old and some new money, and as a rule they are no happier or less happy than any other group of people I know. The ones who seem the least happy are the children of the new rich who have been spoiled rotten and get no joy from their things and who have no interests and equally shallow friends.

    As to lottery winners, I think it's almost criminal to give people totally unprepared for the demands and responsibility that accompany great wealth without at least the offer of guidance. It is a recipe for disaster and family tragedy.

    The happiest rich people I know are ones who grew up and developed themselves without much money and only hit it big later in life, and who already have a strong circle of friends, a lifestyle rich in non monetary ways, and are well grounded and who didn't waste twenty or thirty years if their life in making money alone.
  14. Papersen

    Papersen Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2002
    Being in a better financial situation can help you achieve some material goals, but those are superficial, non lasting things.

    Most important things in life can´t be bought with money.
  15. duff beer

    duff beer

    Dec 2, 2007
    For the most part, the people who win a lottery and end up having friends and family try to mooch from them had losers for friends and family in the first place. The money just brings out their true character.

    One of my friends is very rich...I don't know how rich, but I expect he has millions due to family money. He lives in a nice, but not extravagant house and is very low key regarding finances. He even works a "regular" job even though he doesn't have to work at all. I treat him exactly the same as I treat my other friends. Those who don't know him well have no idea how much he has, and probably never will. When a few of us are out for a drink, he takes his turn buying a round, but none of us expect him to pick up the tab at the end of the night. He's just one of the guys to us.

    The lady who sits next to me at work has a lotto winner in the family. Her husband's brother won about $15 million a couple years ago. They guy is a cheapskate and gave nothing at all to his family...nothing, as in absolutely nothing. That's his right, but you would think that a winner of $15 million might want to give something to his only brother. He owned a small business and as soon as word got out, everyone and their dog came into his store looking for a handout. He sold the business, changed his phone number, and cut ties with almost everyone.

    Another lady I work with won just under a million about 10 years ago. Her husband of 20 years asked for a divorce before the week was out and left with half the money. She used her half to buy out his share of the house, pay off her kids homes, and to bump up her retirement savings. She still works and is always asked why she continues to work, and still gets the occasional person asking for "help".

    Money doesn't change people, but it does bring out their true character, and the character of those who know them.
  16. Not meaning to change gears, but one big problem with lotteries is the size of the jackpots. It wasn't that long ago that lotteries had fewer states included, so the odds would be better and $50 mil was a HUGE jackpot. Now, the jackpots get to $500 mil before someone wins.

    I would feel awful if I felt I needed to win $500 mil to be happy, and it would feel weird to win that much. Kind of dirty. That's why I'd figure out how much my son needs to live comfortably off of forever and give the rest to homeless people.
  17. Stewie26

    Stewie26 Supporting Member

    One of the complications with giving away money is that it is subject to be taxed again. In the US, you can only gift $13,000
    a year tax free to any individual. Sounds to me like he made a wise choice as far as selling his business and changing his phone number. Nothing worse than people, some that you barely know, hitting on you all the time for money and then making you feel very uncomfortable about saying no.
  18. duff beer

    duff beer

    Dec 2, 2007
    In Canada you can gift as much as you want tax free. Lotto winnings are also tax free. If you win $15 million, you get a cheque for $15 million.

    I've read that 90% of people who win a lottery change their phone number within 2 weeks. That doesn't surprise me at all.
  19. duff beer

    duff beer

    Dec 2, 2007
    I saw that documentary, or one similar. One athlete (I forget who) signed a big NFL contract and immediately people in his family started begging for money, some of them he hadn't seen in years. I remember him saying about a cousin "He never came to watch me play a single game in college. He never visited me in the hospital when I broke my leg in a game. But, as soon as I signed that contract he was there with his hand out."
  20. nukes_da_bass

    nukes_da_bass Banned

    Feb 19, 2006
    west suburban boston
    Money can't buy you love.

    But it sure can rent you a whole lotta affection!