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Lottery winner who became millionaire says some people see him as a 'walking ATM machine'

Lottery winner who became millionaire says some people see him as a 'walking ATM machine'

Believe it or not, there's a down side.

A lottery winner is here to tell you that becoming an overnight millionaire isn't all its cracked up to be - no, really.

Timothy Schultz won the Powerball when he was just 21 years old, and it absolutely destroyed some of his closest relationships:

In 1999, Timothy won an eye-watering $29 million in the lottery, and although the 'euphoria is real' for a while, it 'eventually subsides', but your world is 'turned on its head' forever.

"It’s one of the most potentially life-altering things that can happen," he told Fox News, but winning the jackpot can't change everything.

"There are some very wealthy people in the world who are extremely unhappy. Money can be positive, but it doesn’t necessarily fix all problems."

One of the most draining things for Timothy after he won the lottery was the number of people turning to him for financial support.

"Most people were supportive and happy for me, but I did receive stacks of letters from people asking for money."

He added: "It was difficult to trust new people - that they didn’t want me for the wrong reasons. It felt like some people viewed me as walking, talking ATM machine."

Decades on from his win, Timothy runs a popular YouTube channel where he interviews other lottery winners and discusses his own win.

In one of his 'Ask Me Anything' sessions with subscribers, he opened up about how certain loved ones took advantage after his big win.

Timothy won the lottery in 1999.
YouTube/ Timothy Schultz

"Whether you have one million, five million, 20 million, or 100 million, you can go broke if you don't spend within your means," he said.

"I had that in mind a long time ago. I knew I couldn't just give and give and give.

"I helped some people financially, that I loved and cared about and some of the closest relationships to me were ruined.

"I had a couple of relatives that basically did ask me for money, and I helped them out initially without them asking, and then they just kept asking and asking and asking and I had to eventually put my foot down.

"What I learned from that is that I should have put a line in the sand initially instead of just giving and leaving it open-ended. If they were terrible with money before I won the lottery, they're still going to be terrible with money.

These days, US punters winning outrageous jackpots, with Mega Millions and Powerball prizes regularly hitting the one billion mark.

Mega Millions and Powerball prizes regularly hit the one billion mark.
Richard Levine / Alamy Stock Photo

Just last Friday (13 January), the Mega Millions jackpot climbed to $1.35 billion after no one won the $1.1 billion prize.

Unfortunately, though, the chances of winning the jackpot are incredibly slim, with odds of 1 in 302.6 million.

So, if Timothy's story made you nervous, you can rest easy knowing that you're still highly unlikely to become an overnight millionaire (or billionaire).

Thank goodness!

Featured Image Credit: @TimothySchultz/YouTube

Topics: Money, US News