(NOTE: Some unscrupulous political journalists decided to make this all about health care, and put out false stories that the couple killed themselves over medical bills. Again, in the age of Obamacare, it is hard to fathom how this could even be the case. But as it turned out, it was not true at all. Some folks thought they would use a tragic suicide to advance their political narrative).
You see, even if I lost everything tomorrow, there would still be life worth living, even if I had to live in a tent. There are still things to do, places to see, people to meet, even if you can't buy everything you think you're entitled to.
I have discussed this before, in fact, twice. And I think there is a pattern here. The more you obsess about making money, and the more you make money the centerpiece of your life, the more vulnerable you make yourself. When the money train stops - and it always does - you may think your life is ending.
But when you slim down your lifestyle and learn to live with less, you become empowered because you no longer "need" money so much and realize you can live on not a lot, if you had to.
It is funny, but I am only a little older than the couple in the story, and yet in my life at this stage, I find I want less not more. I don't want a fancy car, they just break and break expensive. I want less house than I have now, although I am content to stay where I am - for the time being. As I get older, "things" and status mean less and less to me, and security means more.
And there are two ways to have security - one is to have a lot of money, and the other is to not need a lot of money. Most folks try the former, and it never seems to work - the more money you make or have, the more you spend, and it becomes an endless treadmill and the money train can never, ever stop for even a moment, or your whole life turns upside down and jumping out of windows seems like a rational alternative.
I feel sad for this couple, not because they killed themselves (for nothing) but because they could not envision a happy lifestyle living in Jersey in a tract home and maybe having less, but at least having.