They had reasons to leave town. Why are your friends angry?


“It felt like they felt betrayed,” said Dr. Frey, who is now a staff member at Erie County Medical Center and who recently started doing it The prudent plastic surgeon, an investment advisory website aimed at his medical colleagues. “We got a lot of ‘How can you go? New York is in trouble and you need to be supportive. And it made me realize that I don’t. Our way of dealing with this was to emphasize to our friends that we love New York City and that we would not give it up in times of need. But we still felt judged. “

Of course, moving is always a big deal, and not just for the people packing their belongings. The ground also shakes under the feet of the friends who have stayed behind, who might be forgiven for the feeling that U-Haul is breaking up the old bonds.

But when the city that is being abandoned is New York, the annoyance involved seems particularly high; it feels like a personal insult to friends of the soon-to-be ex-resident. Now consider the pandemic and the hardship is moving into the red – outrage.

“The people who moved out of New York during Covids decided that the city wasn’t safe enough, not attractive enough, not good enough, and too expensive,” said Gail Saltz, a clinical adjunct professor of psychiatry at New York City Presbyterian Hospital / Weill Cornell Medical Center. “And your friends can see this as an indictment of their own choice, especially if they are ambivalent about their choice. One defense could be, ‘I am a loyal person and I am loyal to my city and all of you are giving it up.’ “

For Joel Schnell, 72, a lifelong New Yorker, the tax allegations were particularly painful until last year when he lost his income and became increasingly concerned about his 97-year-old mother, who lived alone in Florida.

“So: pandemic, no income, my mother … we thought it was time to go to the beach and hide,” said Schell, who works in women’s fashion. “The truth is, we were scared to be in New York.”

The pandemic raged – and so were some of Mr Schnell’s friends – in November 2020 when he and his wife, Lynne White, a former news anchor, sold their cooperative in the Lower East Side and lit them for a two-bedroom apartment in Lauderdale- by-the-Sea.


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