Who is the richest person you know IRL and are they happy?

I want to see if the money buys happiness thing is true but I don’t know any rich people…but perhaps some people on here do. What are they like? Are they super happy or depressed or just average? Do they brag about their money and show it off or keep it on the dl?

I know one person that I can guarantee has over a million dollars in his bank account. He appears to be quite happy to me. I know a few others that I would guess have about that much and at least one person that I would guess has at least 5-10million on hand. They all appear to be very happy people.

However, just because they have money and are happy doesn’t imply that money buys happiness. It only implies that they have money and are happy.

As for your other question. Most of them spend their money like anyone else. They just spend more. More vacations, more toys, more houses, more guns (oddly, all but one are big hunters and competition shooters). They’re also some of the hardest working people I’ve ever met in my life.

They’re also very generous people. One of them handed me a Glock last week…just cuz. Another one took my uncle out shooting a few years back and my uncle commented on how much he liked the gun so he gave it to him…it’s a $16,000 shotgun.

See below.

My uncle. He owns a prominent regional business which has grown around 300% in the last decade. He has more money than he knows what to do with.

I’m pretty sure he’s happy, though our relationship, once almost a father/son relationship (my parents were divorced when I was young) is long since gone and inexplicably seems strained. His relationship with the family seems to be up and down as well. Nobody is envious of his money, his big house, his expensive cars or any of the other trappings of success, yet he seems absorbed by it. These things happen sometimes.

Money does not buy happiness.

But financial security does alleviate a lot of stress.

Exactly this. Happiness is not simply the absence of problems, but that’s not a bad state to be in.

The most well-off person I know has built up several businesses, cashed out of largest one but stayed on to continue running it, and seems one of the happier people I’ve ever met. He’s down-to-earth, and has a likewise down-to-earth and loving family.

While I wouldn’t say that money has bought his happiness, he dotes on a large collection of factory hot-rodded cars that he couldn’t have afforded otherwise, so it’s certainly helped a bit.

The person I know who is the most well off is extremely happy. He travels a lot and enjoys that, but also enjoys coming over and fixing my lamps or changing light fixtures and stuff to help me.

I’ve noticed a more positive correlation between intelligence/happiness (or lack thereof) then wealth.

And there isn’t much of a correlation in either situation.

I’ve never met a generally unhappy person who could be called rich or wealthy. They weren’t always leaping with joy, but significant wealth makes almost all of life easier to deal with.

I know a number of wealthy people, most are lawyers. They tend to be more driven than happy. They work too hard and have too much of a sense of always having to achieve to be able to relax. I think it is very hard to generalise. I suspect also that there would be a great deal of difference depending on where the money comes from. I suspect there would be a vast difference in personality type and life experience between someone who falls into wealth and someone who works hard for it.

I know two fairly wealthy people (multi-millionaires). Both are very happy and friendly people.

One owns an oil company that he inherited from his father. He continued to build up the business and it is now considerably more than he inherited. He’s having some health problems that come with advanced age, but other than that is a really enjoyable person to be around.

The other is a relative who turned his small farm into a very large farm, and then began sinking gas wells on his land. At last count, I believe he has 20 producing wells. These aren’t royalty setups, he invested and manages them himself. He’s a jovial and friendly type, and is one of the happiest people I know. He also has a great sense of humor and is known for some hilarious practical jokes*.

As near as I can tell, money *can *buy happiness, for the most part.

*One of his workers accidentally crushed a brand-new pickup with some huge piece of farming equipment (combine, I think). Seizing this opportunity, he had the truck’s remains lifted onto a flatbed and hauled it back to the dealer, where he insisted it should be covered under warranty. The other workers said he managed to keep a straight face for several minutes talking to the horrified salesman, and finally busted out laughing. He slapped the poor salesman on the back, bought another pickup, and went back to work. He’s known for this kind of stuff.

I used to have a passing acquaintance with a self-made billionaire. He was a very strange person and it’s hard to objectively evaluate whether he was “happy” or even a person capable of being so. His third wife was a professional model, he lived in a huge SoHo loft full of art, and he had a maid/housekeeper who was his main companion. His last couple of years were marred by family tragedy, then he died of cancer in his 50s. He seemed pretty mirthless, but he was surrounded by things he, I assume, enjoyed.

My SO’s cousin and her husband are very wealthy. Like part owners of a MLB team wealthy. They seem pretty happy.

Although last time I saw them, they were complaining about that MTV My Super Sweet 16 show and how their daughters are NOT getting Jay-Z to sing at their 16th birthday. But they were saying it as if it might actually be an issue.

My best friend and her husband are both very high up in an international company. They seem very happy. They are both corporate types and live the company lifestyle. They enjoy very nice “business” trips several times a year and live in a lovely, exclusive neighborhood. Their children never knew what it was like to go without (their parents were from poor, quite broken homes) and have grown up to be fine upstanding citizens.

The only time my friend seems sad is when she remembers the past, mostly our childhood and teen years when things were rough for all of us and we made mistakes. She doesn’t know how to forgive herself for mostly mild “sins” because according to her church, they aren’t mild at all.

Last two serious girlfriends were millionaires. I was acquainted with other members of their family who had more money, but I didn’t know them well enough to be able to judge their level of happiness.

The first of the above ex-girlfriends had a few million in savings, expected more through inheritances, and was in a lucrative field, earning low to mid six figures annually, so she never needed to touch the family money, which just stayed in investments and kept growing. Her family was fairly high up in genteel society in her home state, and she grew up poised and polished, not flaunting her wealth. She did seem to enjoy what wealth could do, and enjoyed season tickets to favorite teams, frequent vacations, and planned to retire early to a beachfront home. However, she was convinced that, among her other seemingly positive qualities, her money and ambition was chasing men away, and she was convinced that she’d be an old maid. This despite the fact that we were dating and talking marriage. It became something of an obsession, and ended up driving us apart. She seemed to be happy with her own life, and her money was certainly a big part of it, but she was convinced that no one else could love her. So, not sure how to quantify whether money helped or hurt her happiness.

The more recent ex was a trust-fund baby, granddaughter of a wealthy businessman in a niche importing business. She also had serious mental health issues, problems with manic depression, etc., and her access to money was a very bad thing. In her down moments, she felt incredible guilt over having money without earning it, surrounded herself with “friends” who used her and dumped her, was continually suckered into charity scams. In her manic phases, she definitely flaunted her wealth, in a very trashy nouveau riche kind of way, bragging about how much stuff had cost. She would shop the way an alcoholic on a bender would drink, and her homes were hoarder homes… just filled with mountains of unworn $1000 dresses rather than newspapers and food containers. While we were together, she spent more time in hospitals than out, after suicide attempts gone awry. She was profoundly unhappy, and her money served to exacerbate her problems rather than ease them.

The richest person I know (A few million is available cash plus some nightmarish investments.) has Alzheimer’s and hasn’t a clue as to her current condition. She bitches endlessly about things from the 1960s but she did that before she lost it and when she was apparently happy.

The people I know who are the happiest are pretty wealthy but don’t spend it lavishly. They drive Toyotas and shop at Target, but they just don’t have to worry about paying the bills on-time or what happens if the heater breaks.

Those who are into spending to ‘keep up with the Joneses’ are generally pretty miserable.

The family of a Syrio-Croat friend of mine who owned five houses (well in 2009 haven’t asked since then). They were fairly happy.

The guy I’m thinking of is pretty much like this. He started an online retailer that became successful. I would never ask, of course, but I imagine he is a multimillionaire. We were good friends in high school and have stayed relatively close. He seemed happy back then and he seems happy now. He’s a great guy. He lives in a comfortable condo and drives a Honda, I think.