"I'll go with what my parents said, which is, 'College will be paid for, and then you gotta get on it,'" Cooper shared.
Anderson Cooper made the surprising decision to not leave an inheritance to his children, despite his multi-million fortune. Wyatt Morgan Cooper was born via surrogate on April 27, 2020, and Cooper welcomed his second child, son Sebastian Luke in February 2022.
The award-winning broadcast journalist and commentator is the son of socialite and artist Gloria Vanderbilt and writer Wyatt Cooper. The 60 Minutes anchor is grateful his late mom didn't leave him an inheritance and he was able to pave his own way. "My mom's made clear to me that there's no trust fund, there's none of that," Cooper said on The Howard Stern Show in 2014 of his mother. She died at age 95 in June 2019. "I don't believe in inheriting money," he added. Cooper's decision not to leave an inheritance for his kids doesn't mean he loves his children any less. It runs on the desire to break the “curse” of money that destroyed his family in the past.
During an interview on Air Mail's podcast, Morning Meeting, in 2021 the 55-year-old shared, "I don't believe in passing on huge amounts of money. I don't know what I'll have. I'm not that interested in money, but I don't intend to have some sort of pot of gold for my son," he said of his firstborn. "I'll go with what my parents said, which is, 'college will be paid for, and then you gotta get on it.'"
This stems from how his famous family dealt with money. He believes that an inheritance could bring more harm than good to a person. "I grew up watching money being lost and knowing it was being lost," he said. "From a very young age, I was very aware of, 'This is not me. This is something my mom has' or 'This is money my mom has, but it's not money I'm going to have and I need to forge my own way." What drives him is the need to survive not chasing after money or success, he confessed. "I set about a course of studying survival from the time I was a little kid," he said. "When your dad dies when you're 10 years old, the world becomes a very different place and a very scary place and I wanted to know that I could survive in that scary world on my own."
According to PEOPLE, Cooper wrote about his family's notorious wealth in his book Vanderbilt: The Rise and Fall of an American Dynasty, which details how his ancestors fell from being the richest people in the world to losing it all. "I knew my mom didn't have a plan," he shared. "I felt like the ship was sinking and I wanted to know that I would be able to survive." The journalist hopes to inspire his children to make their own way in the world and find financial freedom themselves.
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Cindy Ord