I've worked hard for 32 years since college to build a good career and save money.
I'm in my 50s. I want to retire because I do not enjoy working and stress is affecting my health.
I have no debts, three houses, and a net worth of $ 5 million, but my wife does not agree to retire before the age of sixty. I think she fears what other people will think. Any suggestions?
Everyone you know has far too much to do in your own life to think about the circumstances of your retirement.
In the very unlikely event that they have thought about it only temporarily, they would most likely conclude that you were successful, thereby gaining an early advantage over the good life.
If your wife has really said that she does not want you to retire because she's worried about what others think, I offer her my comforting words.
But wait! Did your wife actually say that?
You say you think She fears what other people will think. That sounds like your hypothesis. Have you tried to have an actual conversation about what she actually thinks?
Let me acknowledge the obvious, before we consider what might give your wife a break: this is a really good problem. I get so many letters from people who are in their 50s and 60s nothing saved for retirement, Often the problem is composite by Debt crush,
However, they have a seven-place nest egg, three houses and no debts. You have a comfortable retirement ahead of you – your only dilemma is when this comfortable retirement begins.
But here is a bigger problem.
Retirement is a big lifestyle change. Planning for retirement ideally involves much more than planning for a life beyond a paycheck.
Often, however, the focus of old-age provision is solely on financial aspects, as most people are very short on savings. Retiring only in this life is the goal.
Money is only part of the picture. Retirement gives you a wealth of free time. It is more likely that you will be isolated. There's no way your spouse is not affected – and that's something you may have lost sight of.
They say: They worked hard. They want to retire. You are financially prepared. There is no "we". No indication of the life you both built together. Your wife only enters your story as a force that gets in the way of what you want.
Talk to your wife about what you envision for your retirement. Ask her how she thinks your life will look like. Maybe you both have very different ideas that are at the root of this conflict.
You may envisage a part-time retirement that you love, volunteering, hobbies, and family time. But maybe she'll have flashes of you frolicking in the house around the clock, while the humming of televised golf drones is forever in the background.
Instead of focusing the discussion on what you hate at work, try to talk about what you love about life. How can you get more out of it now when you retire? And how does your wife fear that your retirement could turn your life around for the worse?
And when you does Tell her she's worried about what other people will think? Press on it. Ask them: who are these people and what will they think?
It's easy to hide your own thoughts under the guise of what "other people" will think. If you find out this part, you can gain valuable insights.
The most important thing you can do here is listen openly and listen to your wife. Ask questions if you do not understand their perspective. They can only address their concerns if they know what they are.
If you can not agree for now, there is always a trade-off: you could step out of the workforce by doing less stressful work with fewer hours.
Just make sure you're not retired with pink glasses on. Retirement does not magically give you health and happiness. What gives you is much more time – time that will be much happier with your wife on your side.
Robin Hartill is the editor-in-chief of The Penny Hoarder and the voice behind Dear Penny. Submit your retirement questions [email protected]
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