Would More Money Change You?

New Book Looks at a Mother-Daughter Relationship and Wealth

This month, my first adult novel will be published. Called “The Lucky Sperm Club,” it features the relationship between a single mother and her only daughter, after money comes into the picture.

And by money, I mean A LOT of money. The mother, Amanda, learns that her daughter, Clover, will inherit $50 million dollars, when her paternal grandmother dies. And she does die. And Clover becomes a very wealthy little girl.

This is very worrisome to Amanda, who basically lives hand-to-month, unlike her baby daddy, who grew up very wealthy, and dumped her when he found out she was pregnant. At the same time Amanda learns this news, Clover’s father comes back into the picture and asks that Clover start attending an exclusive private school. Amanda, too, gets caught up in the world of wealth, where her new friends have private planes, personal shoppers, and screw the yoga teachers.

Clover attends school with children who wear Prada boots, are served fancier meals than Amanda has ever eaten, and have their own personal chauffeurs to school.

While both Amanda and Clover change over the course of a decade, so does their relationship, once Clover realizes what it means for her to not ever have to worry about money. Will this inheritance ruin their relationship? How do you raise a multi-millionaire? Where did Amanda lose herself? These are the questions that the book looks into. There is no book, after all, called, “How to Raise a Future Multi-Millionaire.”

I’ve been interviewed a couple of times about this book. I can’t help but laugh when people ask, “Is it easier to live with money?” And, “What do you hope readers walk away with after reading this book?”

First, I just hope readers enjoy this breezy book! And the question, “Is it easier to have money?” is like asking if you’d like to win the lottery. OF COURSE!

That doesn’t mean that money, as you’ll see in the book, brings happiness. In fact, wealthy people can choose their own form of misery – which is getting over a divorce in Maui (while, in real life, most of us do it in front of the television with ice cream.) But I’ve been thinking a lot about The Lucky Sperm Club and what it means, ever since I’ve been asked that question. I think, at any income level, when it comes to raising children, it comes down to teaching them “appreciation.”

Over all, we are very lucky people. Our kids have roofs over their heads, get educations, and probably will never go without a birthday present. I wonder how my life would have changed if I knew I’d be worth $50 million when I was a teenager? I’m sure it would be different. But I’m not sure I’d give up working so hard to pay for rent, living in crappy apartments, learning to save money to go on vacations. Isn’t that all a part of growing up? I can honestly say that one of the happiest times in my life was when I was making $30k a year, living in an attic apartment and sleeping on a futon.

I think the better question would be, “What would you do if you won a $50 million lottery? Would you change? How would you change? Would you still work? And how would you explain money to your children then? Would you still make them work and go to school to get an education?”

Great wealth, I’m sure, does make life easier (Not that I’d really know.) But, as a parent, I think the lessons we instill in our children, or should instill – kindness, generosity, appreciation - would remain the same. Don’t you?

By the way, the title of the book is from a phrase used by Warren Buffet, one of the richest men in the world, who makes his children work for their money!

Rebecca Eckler's most recent books are The Lucky Sperm Club and How to Raise a Boyfriend. She is also the author of the international bestsellers on motherhood, Knocked Up, Wiped!, and Toddlers Gone Wild. She also co-wrote the children's book, The Mischievoious Mom at the Art Gallery with Erica Ehm.