Therapist calls "affluenza" a real condition more common than so - New York News

Therapist calls "affluenza" a real condition more common than some may think

Posted: Updated:

The trial of a 16-year-old who killed four people while driving drunk introduced many to the term "affluenza."

Ethan Couch's defense was that he was the product of a broken home, and money could make problems go away.

Many people are angry that he was sentenced to 10 years' probation based off of that defense, but many psychologists say it's a real problem.

Affluenza means children of richer families feel as though they've got a sense of entitlement, which can ultimately lead to their destruction.

For most, it's a fancy word that means spoiled brat.  For those in law and therapy, it's a very real condition.

"Every now and then, I'll get a really smart kid who knows how to play the system," said Carol Doss, a licensed family therapist. "He'll tell me, ‘Yeah, I know how to work it.'"

Doss has counseled teens who have a lives of excess, along with their parents, who can't seem to stop giving their children anything and everything they want.

"It feels bad to not give your kid something, even though sometimes that's the best thing for the kid," said Doss.

Doss says the term affluenza is more common than most people think.

"It's really amazing that it's not always wealthy people…it's people who are doing pretty good, doing alright, and they're giving their kids everything," she said.

Couch killed four people back on Father's Day weekend when he was driving drunk and slammed into them near Burleson.

But his sentence of probation in a rehab facility has been very unpopular in the court of public opinion.

"If he's on probation, they've got him for 10 years, so that's almost, in some ways, more harsh," said Doss.

The term affluenza might come up again in court, because there are five civil cases pending against the Couch family.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Memo urges cops to use discretion for jaywalking summonses

    Memo urges cops to use discretion for jaywalking summonses

    Thursday, April 17 2014 1:57 PM EDT2014-04-17 17:57:48 GMT
    A memo from NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton instructs police officers to use discretion when ticketing elderly and disabled pedestrians for jaywalking. This comes after an 84-year-old jaywalker was injured during his arrest on the Upper West Side in January. The memo which was was dated April 15 reads:  "Use discretion when elderly or handicapped persons are observed jaywalking.... If pedestrian actions are not causing a safety risk... warn and admonish the violator instead."
    A memo from NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton instructs police officers to use discretion when ticketing elderly and disabled pedestrians for jaywalking. This comes after an 84-year-old jaywalker was injured during his arrest on the Upper West Side in January. The memo which was was dated April 15 reads in part:  "Use discretion when elderly or handicapped persons are observed jaywalking.... If pedestrian actions are not causing a safety risk... warn and admonish the violator instead."
  • Man with samurai sword arrested at New Jersey deli

    Man with samurai sword arrested at New Jersey deli

    Thursday, April 17 2014 9:27 AM EDT2014-04-17 13:27:28 GMT
    New Jersey NewsNew Jersey News
    Employees at a southern New Jersey deli say they feared for their lives when a man walked in and brandished a samurai sword. It happened at American Deli in Lower Township.
    Employees at a southern New Jersey deli say they feared for their lives when a man walked in and brandished a samurai sword. It happened at American Deli in Lower Township.
  • Rifle seized after squirrel shooting in Milford

    Rifle seized after squirrel shooting in Milford

    Thursday, April 17 2014 8:48 AM EDT2014-04-17 12:48:12 GMT
    Connecticut State NewsConnecticut State News
    Police say they found an unregistered assault rifle and three large-capacity magazines in the home of a Milford man accused of shooting a squirrel.  James Toigo has been charged with unlawful discharge of a firearm, cruelty to an animal, reckless endangerment, breach of peace, failure to register an assault rifle and possessing large-capacity magazines.
    Police say they found an unregistered assault rifle and three large-capacity magazines in the home of a Milford man accused of shooting a squirrel.  James Toigo has been charged with unlawful discharge of a firearm, cruelty to an animal, reckless endangerment, breach of peace, failure to register an assault rifle and possessing large-capacity magazines.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices