Women Tower in Buffett's Biography

Oracle of Omaha needed 'to be loved and never criticized'
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 24, 2008 3:00 PM CDT
In this May 20, 2008 file photo, billionaire investor Warren Buffett gestures during a press conference.   (AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus, File)
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(Newser) – Warren Buffett’s personal life is a lot messier than his balance sheet, according to a biography. In The Snowball: Warren Buffet and the Business of Life, which hits stores Monday, the Oracle of Omaha for the first time cooperates with a biographer, producing a revealing look at the folksy billionaire, Time reports. Buffett had a terrible relationship with his mother, the book reveals, and has since relied on powerful women to guide him as he focuses exclusively on business.

Chief among these was his wife of 52 years, Susan, who understood that Buffett needed “to feel loved and never criticized.” But eventually his obsession with work drove Susan to move out, leaving a desolate Buffett “barely able to feed and clothe himself.” Susan asked a restaurant hostess she knew to check up on her estranged husband; the woman, Astrid, moved in, and married him when Susan died in 2004. “Susie put me together,” says Buffett, “and Astrid keeps me together.”