Meet the latest victims of the nation's economic crisis.
45-year-old financial manager Karthik Rajaram lost his job and watched as his portfolio was wiped out by the stock market collapse. Police say the stress apparently led him to kill his wife, mother-in-law and three sons (age 19, 12, and 7) and then take his own life.
"This is a perfect American family behind me that has absolutely been destroyed, apparently because of a man who just got stuck in a rabbit hole, if you will, of absolute despair, somehow working his way into believing this to be an acceptable exit," said LAPD Deputy Chief Michel Moore. "It is critical to step up and recognize we are in some pretty troubled times."
Momlogic contributor Rabbi Sherre Hirsch, author of "We Plan, God Laughs: Ten Steps to Finding Your Divine Path When Life is Not Turning Out Like You Wanted," says that sort of financial pressure and strain can sometimes feel like too much to bear.
"This is a wakeup call to how important it is to have those difficult conversations about finances," she says. "A lot of people have come to me for counseling who are greatly stressed by money. After all, money problems are the leading cause of divorce in this country. In an economic strain, people often lose perspective. They think something like foreclosure or losing a job is a life-or-death situation, when it doesn't have to be. That's why talking to someone else is crucial, to help you regain perspective."
If you can't bring yourself to talk to your spouse, Hirsch recommends starting out by talking to a counselor or clergy member, friend, or financial advisor. "This will help remind you that you're not alone," she says. "Millions of Americans are in the same boat you are. Even if you lose your house, you still have your family. Your husband and your kids -- that's home. In the end, that's all that really matters."