I’m Rich But Lonely and Have No Friends

After extensive research of wealthy people, I’ve found a segment of them fascinating: People with tons of money who can’t get a girlfriend or are depressed since they have no friends and are lonely. They are rich just not successful in life.

To those in this boat, I can understand why this result is perplexing. You thought money would solve everything. But the truth is that it doesn’t. Women and potential friends care about more factors in someone they want to hang out with than a number in your bank account or how many things you can give them. In fact, throwing money at people can attract the worst type of gold diggers, make you paranoid, and make it worse.

I’ve noticed a lot of dating experts on social media who charge a lot of money have clientele made up of mostly Asian or Indian men who fit this mold. I’m not surprised either. Having grown up with Asian American immigrant parents and that culture, I can see how the parents often over-emphasize academics and career/wealth beyond all else. In that arena of education, their children usually do well and go on to make a great living. Yet along the way, they are told to neglect “distractions” like socializing, going to parties, making friends, and practicing social skills. What ends up happening is they end up playing catch-up in that skill set because they’re socially undeveloped and painfully awkward or socially unaware. (I’m not going to elaborate further since this story has been beaten to death and told by many people, so you’re already familiar with it likely. The point is that Asians often aim to get an A+ in career/education yet they should aim to get an A+ in life. Also, yes, it is a generalization to illustrate a point; there are exceptions and Asians we all know who are pretty social or aren’t financially successful.)

Friendships are born when people care about each other, have similar values, and similar interests. They genuinely like each other. Money isn’t involved much in the equation except for maybe the commute to meet each other in communities or share activities. If you haven’t developed the skills to go out and make friends, it can be difficult in the adult world. Because unlike college, you aren’t naturally put into social environments to meet.

Women care about many things beyond just money. To name a few, there’s hygiene, humor, kindness, intelligence, fashion, confidence, having an interesting life, physique, being a good father, and assertiveness. Money is just part of the equation and not that big a part as you think once you make a certain amount. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that if you neglect and fail at a lot of other areas like general social skills or hygiene, women are going to be put off even if you have a lot of money.

Biologically, they only care about what that money represents — that you have resources to care for her. Emotionally, a woman won’t be triggered as much by a bank account balance compared to showing that you can provide for her with food. That’s one of a few reasons why poorly dressed, socially intelligence men with Ferrari’s aren’t the symbol for attractiveness. Having a bunch of paper isn’t the same as showing it.

I was reading a book called Mate by Tucker Max and Geoffrey Miller. It recounted a story of a man one of the authors knew who was a filthy rich computer programmer; this guy was making multiple six-figures. But he slept in a crappy apartment with a mattress on the floor, dressed like crap, never showered, and showed no sign that he had money. Of course, his dating life was terrible and he was always complaining. He wasn’t marketing himself well at all.

Here are some clips about how money and success don’t solve everything.

The good news is that with money, you can afford to improve your fashion, social skills, kindness, caring, and so forth. You can buy the time to improve yourself and meet people and make friends. You can afford the personal trainers, yoga instructors, therapists, psychiatrists, doctors, style consultants, and so forth to fix your mental and physical world.

There’s a ton of TED Talks and scientific research on money’s relationship with happiness.

You don’t need much to find proof of happy people who are poor. Just look at some people in the poorest parts of your town that are smiling and happy. Wealth helps, and there are more happy people who are wealthy, but wealth doesn’t guarantee anything.

Science shows that happiness does help with more money, to a threshold. Once you hit about $75,000 (slightly above median income at the time of the study), the average increase of happiness on more money is almost nothing.

It makes sense since once basic necessities that cause unhappiness, like paying for rent, are taken care of, we move up in Maslow’s pyramid of needs.

Eventually, once you hit enough, people start looking for a job that they are passionate about and/or a greater purpose. That’s why a lot of billionaires look to non-profit.

It’s important to add that this correlation between income and happiness is an average. So that means that there are still going to be rich people who are angry or unhappy, there will be poor people who are unhappy and jealous, and there will be rich people who are still materialistic and don’t care about a higher purpose.

The Happiness Advantage is a great book that shows that the happier you are, the more successful you will be.

The equation is actually flipped. Most people think it’s the other way around! Only when I get rich… will I be happy!

You just need to point them to the poor people in your area who are laughing and joyous to show that this isn’t the case.

It’s a strange thing called hedonic adaptation that causes our children to take for granted all the luxuries they were born into. It’s what causes us to easily get used to fancy cars and mansions. The impact on happiness quickly diminishes and we get used to it.

I highly recommend the book The How of Happiness on ways you can increase long-term happiness. It isn’t buying new cars, it’s stuff like savoring the moment, having a gratitude journal, giving back, volunteering, religion, and more. You don’t have to do all of these listed, just the ones that suit your personality and preferences.

Leading with Money

I was watching a podcast interview on the Michael Sartain Show with Dan Bilzerian. He discussed how he saw a lot of rich men fail with dating even though they had money at the Las Vegas nightclubs because they only knew how to lead with money. You get seen as the money guy, and everyone else there, the managers and bottle girls, become only interested in extracting as much out of you. So, they get duped into spending too much money on bottle service and sparklers because they don’t want to look cheap, only to leave empty-handed.

So, how does one use money effectively? I believe it starts with improving the traits that matter that you lack and finding ways of better marketing your strengths that women care about. If you’re out of shape with a gut, get a trainer and nutritionist. If you’re lacking severely in social skills, get a coach, start going to local events/activities to make friends and practice socializing and bonding. If you’re getting no matches on dating apps, it’s probably because your photos suck. Invest in a photoshoot and thoughtfully plan each photo to accentuate traits you offer, like intelligence, willpower, athleticism, kindness, friends, etc.

What doesn’t work is just remaining terrible at many areas of life that women care about and assuming mentioning you have money or spending a lot of money in front of a woman will make up for it all.

If you’re a woman struggling with the same issue, same thing. Start investing in things the right way.

A Case Study

The millionaire YouTuber TechLead is the epitome of this dilemma. In his videos, he’s vulnerable and honest about his failures, which helps viewers learn and avoid those mistakes. When you watch his videos, you get the sense that he made the mistake of believing that getting rich would allow him to solve all his issues and relationships by throwing money at them. In the video below, I react to one of his videos and point out some of his limiting beliefs (which includes blaming New York City for being a bad place to make friends when it’s one of the most populated, activity-filled cities in the world).

TechLead is a good example of someone who has fit the traditional mold of an Asian who the money, but struggles with making friends or having a girlfriend. In this video, he touches on just this as he spends Valentine’s Day alone.

I personally don’t try to watch his content to avoid getting sucked into similar results. I try to hang out with or surround myself with people who are successful in all the areas I want to be. And yes, there are Asians who buck this mold and are in happy, amazing relationships. I’ve found them in my local community, and you probably can too.


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Moving Forward

In this episode of the Mating Grounds podcast, one of the hosts tells a chilling story of an engineer he knew in the 80’s who had half a million in the bank, making $120,000 a year (not inflation-adjusted). Yet he dressed like he was broke, had no fashion sense, slept on a futon, rented a $4,000 a year place, and complained he didn’t have a girlfriend. Money is just a number in the bank that most people don’t know about if you don’t use it.

That doesn’t mean you have to go to an extreme and blow all your cash, attracting gold diggers. But at least live an average lifestyle, if not above-average. Perception is everything, and if people see you looking broke or homeless, they’ll assume you are and be repulsed regardless of how many zeroes are in your Capital One bank account. This guy was saving money to make more, but he was losing in one big area of his life by sacrificing too much.

Another concern these people have is about how “no one likes them because they only want me for my money, and I won’t give them any.” As mentioned, no one knows how much you make. You don’t have a sign on your forehead with your bank account on it. Even if you dress better than average, with a J. Crew dress shirt and Brooks Brother suit, people may just assume you make $100,000 instead of $50,000. They’re not going to assume you’re making millions unless you’re head to toe in Gucci with a lambo.

The point being stop obsessing over money, most strangers will assume you’re average unless you make it painfully obvious to them you’re rich. I’ve been to plenty of meetup.com groups with strangers — from book clubs to board games meet ups to laser tag outtings — and the subject of money never came up, everyone was equal. We just did activities we all enjoyed, had fun, and said goodbye. Find stuff you like to do, care about others, observe why some people make friends better than you and learn, learn dating tips, decide on your values, and go to groups with similar values.

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By Will Chou

I am the the founder of this site and I am grateful you are here to be part of this awesome community. I help hard-working Asian American Millennials get rich doing work they love.


  1. looking for a friend. preferably woman. i love talking with older people and hearing their stories and views on life.

  2. Rich people have lower empathetic accuracy because they don’t have to engage socially or be dependent. They become isolated and deluded by their own ego, as much as I respect what you’re trying to say here, the brain damage rich people have done to their prefrontal cortex doesn’t leave them with a choice in how bad their social skills and communication are. Have you ever tried telling one they need help with their social skills? I have. Hundreds of times because I live in Silicon Valley, they’ll just railroad you and use neoliberal ideology to claim you’re not “good enough” to be giving them any criticism.

    They think they’re alone because it’s all your fault and societies shortcomings, not theirs. In their mind they’ve beat the game, they’re too successful to listen to your blog. Narcissists don’t take responsibility for their own behaviors being the problem. Don’t encourage these rich people to abuse others by testing out relationships as a fix. Rich people don’t deserve friends or romance until they repair their prefrontal cortex. Don’t expect people to feel sorry for them. If you knew the science behind why they lack social skills, perhaps you would not either. Try researching some neuroscience before you tell the sociopathic to go create more victims.

  3. I’m autistic and was raised on benefits, and it’s all I seem to know. I have no friends. I’d be happy to be alone, live with a rich man, which for some reason I’ve always wanted, and have money. I have no family who cares. I’ve been extremely close to attempting suicide, multiple times. I have nothing and no-one. Maybe that makes you feel better. For some reason people compare money and relationships, but not people who have nothing. I’d rather have money than no love.

    1. I’m hanging on, financially, and I face Many challenges and have “Overcome” Soooo Much. I appreciate my struggles because it has made me a better and stronger person. Money is a means, but true Happiness is what is cultivated between two. I have yet to find my special someone that I can laugh with, have fun doing nothing with, just being together. I’m optimistic that I will find my Best friend, Lover , etc. some day, and share each day as if it was our last. No expectations and wake up to new beginnings as if a grab bag of life can offer . I am and have always been independent, I will not change that about me because that is my strength and security, but that does not mean that I cannot compromise. I just will not compromise my dignity. Therefore, I seek that special one that can understand me and seeks the same that will not give to, but add to, my life. I look forward to finding him, as he is me.

    2. You are beautiful, you are strong,you must learn to love and live for yourself,go out in the morning,take in a deep breath of fresh air,and tell yourself how amazing you are.

  4. I think it has to be one of the toughest things to have everything but still feel so lonely. You never know who to trust on any level or what they would want in return I think it’s horrible, I may not know a lot of extremely wealthy people but no matter I would always welcome friends and do not ask anything in return. I believe family, friends, loyalty and trust are the rarest because money will always be there. If anyone ever needs a chat please feel free to email me…. you do not need to be rich either I’ve just been running into this dilemma more and more and it seems if one person would of opened their heart and truly listened we would have a lot more loved ones on this earth. Please reach out again :) beautifulmoon00@ya

    1. Hey friend, i don’t know your name. I’m a guy who earns a loan but has parents who are richer than most of people in my country, belgium. I live in the richest part in the richest area. I got a very nice house from them but me myself i don’t have a lot of money. I met a girl last year. She was beautiful and wear very classy clothes. But didn’t had a very kind character. She left me after 4 weeks broken hearted. I never had such a beautiful girlfriend like her. And she’s still in my head because i want to have something back like her. I met another girl and she said that if i want to have a classy attractive girl. I have to take good care of myself and dress desent. I wear blazers now in the day when its good wheather. I’m also on a dier. I’m not really fat but want to lose weight to have a nice body. It helps too. For now i don’t have really much success with girls i want to attract. Like the beautiful ones. I look good. But i’m not still there. I have male friends and female friends. I do my best to achieve my goal. But stay lonely a bit and very hopeless. I’ve always bern that from my 18 and now i’m 38. I had a lot of dates. But my last girlfriend, the woman i talked about damaged me. Are you in quiet the ssme situation? Do you want to have also a desent goodlooking girlfriend and is it hard to find one with consequence that you are hopeless? I’d like you to sent me an email back mate. Kind regards sebastien latruwe

      1. Hello Sebastein, my name is Ashley and I am interested in getting to know you better if your interested. I am very lonely n have no friends. I don’t think you are from where I am but if you are ever near Ohio we should meet up or something. If anything I’d love to make a friend and have someone to talk to atleast. I hope to hear back from you. Hope all is well with you. Thanks for your time, Ashley

      2. Hello Sabastein,you should learn to love yourself first and look very closely, someone who actually likes you for who you are might be beside you but you haven’t noticed yet,put your eyes down.

  5. Thanks for sharing Sammy. If and when given the choice, just have sex because it feels good. Don’t allow yourself to be alone if you don’t have to be. Great post here as it reminds all of us to not get so caught up in having money rather than happiness, and make sure we’re consuming stuff of a higher quality after we’ve worked so hard for the money we make.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Brian. Glad you found the post useful.

      I’d respectfully disagree with your suggestion to have sex just because it feels good. There’s lots of stuff that are detrimental if we just do it because it feels good (drugs, fast food,…) Plus, it would work contrary to her dating goals as a woman. She’s looking to settle down and find a long-term partner. Giving away sex too easily and frequently has been known to classically encourage and attract males looking for only short-term mating goals, which would lead to tragedy and hurt for her, as many love songs have warned of since the dawn of time.

    2. I’m so sad today & so alone even crying from couple days I turn back to whole world for my wife but now she’s only need me if I giving money and do what she wants. I’m so emotional if someone ask me to do for them i do anything to make them happy but my wife wants you have to change if I’m doing for her & her real family it’s fine if I do anything for anyone then she start argument and it goes so bad if I leave the space she came after me and so on & on & on what I do pls help me I not want to leave her & I love my kids and I not live without my 3 year old daughter pls help pls 🥲🙏

      1. I know this post was a while ago but i feel drawn to it its a terrible feeling when someone u care about moves on people change and when they do u cant stay around someone if there hurting u no one deserves to be not cared for there is so many people in the world makes friends u need to be happy and demand to have your time with your daughter good luck

  6. Hello! Dear you are not alone, please don’t be sad the whole life is in front of you and if you need a friend for a talk let me know. I am a girl so I cannot help u in the love life but I can offer you a friendship. I am also in my 30s and I think life is beautiful and no one should feel alone.

    Kind Regards,


  7. I’m the female version. When I was poor, I was too awkward, nerdy and ugly for most men to want to date me. I focused entirely on working, saving, investing and now have a good amount of money in my mid 30s. I’ve paid to correct some of the things that made me less attractive. However, now I’m finding most guys who wanted to settle down are already taken due to my age. It feels like unless you happen to be attractive when you are young, you are pretty much screwed. If I tell men I have money, yeah they are interested. Because of the money. I’ve had several married men chase me after finding out I was rich. I was naive and no longer tell anyone how much money I have. But that means almost no one chases me, not even the gold-diggers. The odd married guy looking to cheat occasionally, but I have zero interest in affairs. I want a committed, loyal, monogamous marriage based on love and mutual respect and shared values, interests, etc. But the men that wanted the same thing were snapped up early on by women that were just lucky enough to be born with the right genetics. I feel like I can’t win. I’ve worked incredibly hard to improve myself to the standards society says I have to reach and it’s still not good enough because I wasn’t able to do it when I was younger. I don’t know what the answer is. I’ve never cared about having lots of nice stuff or a big house. I wanted to fall in love, get married, have a family, a happy home, maybe a cat. That was it. That’s still all I really want. Everyone else seems to chase money, whereas I have money but can’t buy the things that would make me happy. I feel like giving up, as I only worked this hard so I could improve myself and get a partner and that hasn’t happened. I feel completely hopeless. I’m really tempted to just end my life and leave all my money to my young niece and nephews so at least they can have a chance at the happiness I never got to have.

    1. Thanks for sharing.

      You’re not alone. A lot of men and women face similar issues.

      I know if feels like mid-30’s is the end of your dating chances, but it’s not. You have a long life ahead of you and your happiness shouldn’t and isn’t solely defined on hitting or missing dating objectives. I can relate to that, but I’ve learned that a lot of it is my own beliefs and habits that cause me to dwell and get negative. With consistent work, you can rewire your thinking into something positive.

      As far as the gold digger thing, it does happen to women, but there are plenty of studies (I’m going to post about some in a future post, already have, but you can find them yourself on Google Scholar) that show that women care to a degree of 1000 times more about money than men. To many men, it’s a non-issue. So while it’s still worth being careful about, you’re at much less of a threat as a woman.

      As far as happiness concerns, I’ve written extensively about this. Happiness should be found in the journey – small things, friendships, meditation, perspective, mindfulness, strength of relationships rather than suffering until this end goal. That said, your thinking is common among many people, especially Americans and Asians. You have the opportunity to use your resources to improve yourself, your health, style, looks, the dating apps you go on, travel, join clubs to meet the men in the right space/goals as you (looking to settle down), do that. Men are out there in abundance, you just have to find them and attract them. Easier said than done but I’m sure there’s stuff you can do to improve that you’re not doing – there’s so much dating advice out there (I’ve written on it).

      But don’t think that what you think will make you ‘enough’ or ‘happy’ will do the trick. Happiness and enough is available right now, not in the future. You may be disappointed when you get that and still don’t feel fully fulfilled. The best part? Being happy now has scientifically shown to improve your results in every other area of your life, you look/feel more attractive, are more pleasant, perform better, earn more, etc.

      Do you think being too old is really the reason? What if that wasn’t the reason? What is the cause then? I wonder if other elements of dating (girl-guy ratio, geography, personality, meeting enough people, using dating apps effectively, developing and demonstrating traits of your personality, being approachable, and so forth) play a role. There are dating coaches on youtube that may help.

    2. Please don’t, you are young. Focus on enjoying yourself, growing and contributing. Look for a guy who is a bit older, maybe. And keep the faith.

    3. You have no reason to give up. Plan how you will move into a happier state. Take time out – seek help from life coaches and explore what it is that will put you in a better state. You have done one thing successfully – planned and worked and invested and got yourself in a position of freedom. Ask yourself what is your dreams at night, your day dreams telling you – follow your heart and seek some purpose that will make you passionate about getting involved in it. I know people like me can dish out do this and do that! Take the time to understand what you love to do and want to do more of… for example. There are so many ladies out there that would benefit from your strategic approach to get to where you go to… you have so much to give us ladies… please stay and think about it?

    4. Hi there ,, I can understand your story as i am going through the same but let me tell you one thing if you are not happy now you will not be happy after marriage/ relationships .I guess its not the loneliness which is making us unhappy its something else and I am still searching for it .

    5. Don’t give up. Money is not everything, but don’t end your life. Take a vacation,
      close your eye and look at the map wherever you point to go there for a week,
      take care of yourself, stay in an expensive hotel, don’t be hasty to make new friends, and just enjoy yourself . Whatever happens, ok, don’t engage in any sexual behavior. Just enjoy the environment and have an open mind. good luck

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