When You Have Money, Coping and Recovery Change


When You Have Money, Coping and Recovery Change

matterhorn-918442_640Last week, I saw a headline about Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook, and the possibility she's dating. Sandberg's husband died suddenly in May of 2015.

The headline, of course, focused on whether or not it's too soon for Sandberg, the mother of two children, to begin dating.

I think the press missed the mark on this one.

Sandberg is enjoying life again after losing love. That is fantastic. I don't think anyone of us would begrudge her that.

The real story, I believe, is how the resources from wealth and affluence change the recovery and coping process.

I also do not begrudge Sandberg's wealth -- she works hard. But her wealth and her connections make grieving and recovery different. She had a team of grief counselors available to help her and her children. She can hire more help easily and quickly which frees up her time to be more available to her children. I imagine her accountant and her attorney closed out her husband's estate, with regular updates to her on their progress. I can't imagine she contacted the funeral home to request copies of her husband's death certificate. We return to work after a three-day bereavement leave, making those awful phone calls from that public place also known as our office cube. We're also worrying and stressing about money, especially when a spouse dies.

A loss not only sends us into a state of grieving but also into the state of scrambling. The grieving leaves us longing. The scrambling leaves us exhausted. Wealth insulates from the awful tasks and challenges that can go hand-in-hand with loss and which add to the already difficult process of grieving.

While the emotions Sandberg experiences as she grieves are similar to ours, her ability to transition back into enjoying life is different than ours. Let's make sure we keep that perspective when we share the story of how someone recovers after a loss. Wealth changes the real story.

Rebuilding your life gets easier when you have the money to buy the tools and, ever better, know the tool makers.

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I believe you are SOOOO right Denise. Yes, money can't buy happiness or love, but a lack of financial resources can add to the stress and a lack of time to accomplish all that is needed, just spreads one too thin... add grief to the mix after some long months or years of caregiving.... potential health risks both physical and mental could easily arise too.


Its true. Money- or the lack of it- can change very many things. Whether those changes are for the better, I think depends alot on the individual. A person with great wealth, but a lack of internal resources ( such as a strong moral center, patience, compassion, and fortitude) may find that all that money, while helpful, can only help just so much. I wonder sometimes if it's really worth it.