Over the years, I have had the good fortune to practice as a psychologist. As such, I’ve developed the skills to recognize when individuals are in the early stages of breakdown. I, then, dive deeper by asking myself what the root cause may be. Mental breakdowns are usually triggered by discernable events in a person’s private life.
President Trump, in my opinion, is falling apart. In psychology, we call this mental process ‘decompensating’.
Breakdown—‘decompensating’—-is frequently triggered by the inability to cope with stressors. Failure to cope is evidenced by behaviors such as angry flair ups, inability to tell truth from falsity, failure to track cognitive process accurately, or respond precisely to verbal exchanges or cues. It’s as if the person is preoccupied with his or her own concerns. This leaves the person on the other end of communication wondering if something is wrong, that’s when confusion sets in.
Often, bouts of self-aggrandizement—touting greatness—- are used to compensate for feelings of inadequacy to cope with matters at hand. The more ‘tremendous’ the pitch, and overarching the message is, the more fragile and insecure the person.
In my previous blog on President Trump’s financial condition, I noted COVID-19 was blocking his ability to generate income from his properties. If his degree of ownership were significant, this wouldn’t be a problem or major stressor. This is not the case with Trump, however, because his properties are highly leveraged with debt.
Mr. Trump’s debts, as reported by Bloomberg News and others, to offer a quick review, are roughly $950 million owed to the Bank of China; $350 million owed (that we know of) to Deutsche Bank, which doesn’t include the costs of his prior defaults on loans to them. Roughly $600 million is owed to undisclosed sources and debts to businessmen in Israel, Russia, and the US, which I estimate to be nearing $300 million.
I further point out, that at a moderate interest rate of 6% he needs approximately $130 million—or more than $10 million per month to cover interest payments alone. For a President who is compelled to tell us how rich he is, this is more than problematic, it goes to the core of his personality and self-worth.
What I failed to point out that has only recently come to light, is additional information regarding the president’s financial prospects. First, as reported in the press, his son-in-law, who has been out trying to hustle more cash for Trump, has failed to return with acceptable deals. Who wants to loan money on leveraged properties with zero income?
But here’s the real crux of the matter: if Mr. Trump loses the upcoming presidential election, he will be unable to grant favors to his debtors and their cronies, causing foreclosures or terms on debt that will leave him struggling for financial survival. In the scheme of things, his so-called empire stands a high chance of collapse.
Mr. Trump is in a rough place. He is emotionally ill-prepared to deal with his evident current financial troubles. After all, he was born not with a ‘silver-spoon’, but a ‘gold one’. His internal strengths are connected to people who choose to make life easy financially, and bailed him out of trouble, historically his father.
In my opinion as a psychologist, he is psychologically unfit to lead the nation. His behavior, given significant indications of a breakdown, will become more bizarre over the coming weeks and months as solutions to his financial problems evade him. We can expect to see a desperate man grasping at straws to keep his sanity intact.
While it’s tempting to want to send him a condolence card, it won’t do any good; self-proclaimed great men are immune to well-wishing, it’s a sign of weakness. The sadness is that unless he’s removed from office, he’ll try to take down the whole country with him.
Because misery loves company.