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    early retirement and not working

    So I'm going to put aside that my mom insulted me and ask since many on here are contemplating early retirement what do you say when people say you need a career and job? My mom insulted me (i'm going to give her a pass because well she's old and a very different mindset) that I need to get off my behind and get a job and not be a lady of leisure. Maybe not right now with covid but soon I need to get back to working full time. For sure when the kids are in middle and high school I need to be working full time. I need a career and stop depending on my DH for income. I am certainly cannot be doing nothing when they go to college.

    I said nothing to not start a fight not worth fighting. But the truth is I don't plan on really going back to work full time now, I don't see myself having a "career", and I don't think we need to work that much longer. We've been hitting a lot of numbers that point to retiring before the kids go to college, but DH wants to work until they are done. He's not ready and i'm not fighting.

    But how do you tell people (mostly family) that you don't need to work and are done? My mom and that generation (my aunts and uncles are like 65-75 and still working and my dad is working at 90) because it is their identity. They have no identity except working. And they view people who retire as lazy and unmotivated and I was also told I wasted my education. She can't wrap her head around me not being career driven, climbing the ladder and I really need to be going back and getting on the ladder. What is my problem? That's another argument not worth having.

    But seriously I don't want to do it and I like what I do. Plus if we never saved another penny we'd still retire at 65 with a lot. A little effort and we will retire at 54 and 55 with more than enough. So I'm not sure how to frame that I don't know how to tell her I don't plan on working full time again and certainly not a career. Work maybe I won't say no. But career?
    LivingAlmostLarge Blog

    #2
    What it comes down to is you're not obligated to have a career/job. Those may be others' expectations, but they are not your own. It sounds like your mother is free to change her views but is unwilling to do so.

    To be 100% about a career and working hard, is great. However, there are many other purposes and ways to find personal fulfillment in life, some which are arguably more important and notable than working for a paycheck.

    Comment


      #3
      Obviously, it's none of anybody's business, including your mother's, how you and DH choose to live your lives. But I realize it's not that simple. You can't just tell your mom to mind her own business.

      The "identity" thing is a big issue. Many people truly are their job and their title. Me, not in the least. Ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you that I never go by Dr. G outside of work, and even at work, I tell all of my coworkers to call me Steve unless it's in front of a patient. I've had a couple of people who I was friends with for quite some time before they even learned that I was a doctor. They had no idea. They never asked and it isn't something that I go bragging about.

      I don't know how much of your financial lives you share with your mother, but you can at least tell her, "Listen mom, we've actually been very fortunate and have done well enough financially that I don't need to go back to work. We're really happy with the set up we have now. It works for us."

      As for climbing the ladder, tell her you hurt your knee and your doctor told you no more climbing.
      Steve

      * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
      * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
      * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

      Comment


        #4
        I plan to retire on 1 June 2028, 20 years + 3 days since I commissioned into the military. At that point, I fully expect that we'll be FIRE ready, and we'll be 42/43 y/o. Of course, DW is working toward becoming a physical therapist (GRE in the next couple days!), so she'll likely continue to work in the field she's wanted since high school -- let her be the sugar mama . But I'm quite blunt about my intentions to be a SAHD. By June 2028, my kids will be about 13, 11, and 7 years old. DW is great with young kids, and is generally enjoying the freedom of being a SAHM with them while they're young like this (while it lasts). But I'm looking forward more to when they're older, because I simply interact with older kids alot better. I love the idea of being able to help them with homework (I'm better for that than DW anyway), cook meals for everyone daily, being truly available to my family, and in the meantime occupy myself with reading, auditing college classes, traveling, volunteering, and overall taking care of my family after having spent a large portion of my time away from home on deployments, training, temporary duty assignments, and generally just working way too many hours & being on call 24/7. While I've mostly enjoyed my time in the military, it has demanded alot from me and my family. I have zero guilt or hesitation in happily planning to be a SAHD, and I'm not shy about saying so when someone asks about my plans. Some folks love my plans (in the military, it sounds like a dream to many), others look at me like I'm crazy, others ask how I could afford to not work. Answer: preparation & intentionality.

        Once the kids go to college or wherever their adult lives take them (we'd be ~53-ish by then), plan is likely to transition to full-time traveling (or living abroad). The wanderlust is strong for us, so we're really planning to figure out a way to make frequent trips even while the kids are still living at home. I might eventually go back to work in some capacity, but it would likely only be part time, and something I truly enjoy doing.... Helping people succeed (that's my self-proclaimed mission in life). Maybe that would be as a financial advisor, or working for my church or a charity, or I don't know what. But it won't be for money or status or career -- simply because it's something I enjoy.

        My best advice is to figure out your WHY (Simon Sinek's "Start With Why" was a game-changer for my mindset here, as well as in my work). For me, if it's not clear from the above, it's about family, and relationships, and helping people succeed. If you firmly believe in WHY you're shooting for a particular goal (whatever it may be), there's nobody in the world that will talk you down. Anyone telling you that it's a mistake is simply wrong, and their opinion is meaningless. Who cares what your overbearing mother thinks (or father, aunts/uncles, friends, co-workers, etc.)? (apologies for my bluntness -- I'm sure she's a well-meaning gal) The point is that only you know what you're really meant to do, and what will really make you happy with your life. Do the soul-searching to really figure yourself out, stick with that, and you won't go astray.
        "Praestantia per minutus" ... "Acta non verba"

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by disneysteve View Post
          Obviously, it's none of anybody's business, including your mother's, how you and DH choose to live your lives. But I realize it's not that simple. You can't just tell your mom to mind her own business.
          I beg to differ.... But then, I have a strong blunt streak, and I'm not good at sparing someone's feelings when they're in the wrong. Gratefully, my side of the family that remains (father, 2 brothers & a SIL) are all pretty supportive of us regardless, albeit in our own unique (often sarcastic) way that kinda stresses out DW. But DW's family.... well.... let's say that my MIL & I have a stereotypical relationship. I don't tolerate her attempts to inject herself into our personal affairs, or dragging us into her own (significant) unresolved personal issues & insecurities that she refuses to address. Since a few years ago, I've refused to stay in their home when we visit, preferring a hotel or AirBnB to her hoarder home. I don't let her make plans/demands for my family, and we refuse to live within short driving distance, because they aren't welcome to just drop in unannounced -- DW's poor sister lives 5 minutes away... watching that relationship sour was like a train crash in slow motion.

          All of that to say that I reiterate the point from my first post -- if you know why you're following a given path, other people's opinions don't matter...even if it's mom, or sibling, or boss. They can shove off.
          "Praestantia per minutus" ... "Acta non verba"

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by LivingAlmostLarge View Post
            So I'm going to put aside that my mom insulted me and ask since many on here are contemplating early retirement what do you say when people say you need a career and job? My mom insulted me (i'm going to give her a pass because well she's old and a very different mindset) that I need to get off my behind and get a job and not be a lady of leisure. Maybe not right now with covid but soon I need to get back to working full time. For sure when the kids are in middle and high school I need to be working full time. I need a career and stop depending on my DH for income. I am certainly cannot be doing nothing when they go to college.

            I said nothing to not start a fight not worth fighting. But the truth is I don't plan on really going back to work full time now, I don't see myself having a "career", and I don't think we need to work that much longer. We've been hitting a lot of numbers that point to retiring before the kids go to college, but DH wants to work until they are done. He's not ready and i'm not fighting.

            But how do you tell people (mostly family) that you don't need to work and are done? My mom and that generation (my aunts and uncles are like 65-75 and still working and my dad is working at 90) because it is their identity. They have no identity except working. And they view people who retire as lazy and unmotivated and I was also told I wasted my education. She can't wrap her head around me not being career driven, climbing the ladder and I really need to be going back and getting on the ladder. What is my problem? That's another argument not worth having.

            But seriously I don't want to do it and I like what I do. Plus if we never saved another penny we'd still retire at 65 with a lot. A little effort and we will retire at 54 and 55 with more than enough. So I'm not sure how to frame that I don't know how to tell her I don't plan on working full time again and certainly not a career. Work maybe I won't say no. But career?
            I don't think you have to tell them anything. Just smile and thank them for their advice, then go on about your business.

            Comment


              #7
              Just tell them you are retired.

              Comment


                #8
                I dont understand why you feel you need to EXPLAIN your approach to life to anyone? DH and I live our live and do what works for our family and it really isn't anyone else's business. I can understand wanting to talk to your mom but anyone else bringing that up needs to butt out. For your mom, you just tell her she has your way of life and you have hers, and give her a hug and change the subject and stop explaining it to her.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I catch considerable flack from friends and family concerning their perceived views on how I handle my finances, so I feel your pain.
                  It is hard, but at the end of the day you have to do what is best for you and your family.
                  Brian

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by bjl584 View Post
                    I catch considerable flack from friends and family concerning their perceived views on how I handle my finances, so I feel your pain.
                    It is hard, but at the end of the day you have to do what is best for you and your family.
                    Who is giving you flack? I don't understand that?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Snicks View Post

                      Who is giving you flack? I don't understand that?
                      My dad from the family side.
                      He isn't particularly good with money.
                      He can't understand me driving a car for an extended period of time, saving and investing as much as I do, or saving up cash for things before making a purchase.
                      In the words of Dave Ramsey, my dad is quite "normal."
                      I catch a lot of hell from him. Constantly criticizing and complaining about how I live my life.
                      It gets hard to tune out after hearing it for years and years.

                      From the peer side, it's mostly coworkers.
                      I keep very quiet about money at work, but some people sort of figure out that I might be better than average.
                      Probably just from observation.
                      I don't care so much about payday.
                      When I'm asked about how much my truck payment is I say 0.
                      I get the "must be nice" comment a lot.



                      Brian

                      Comment


                        #12
                        I never hear anything from friends because i don't share. I do not tell my mom either what we have. Because I've been called greedy for investing and telling her that she should invest wisely and that it would be nice to not have money stolen. It was stolen but that's a long story. My parents lost money to basically a grifter but they can't bear the thought that the person came from a "Good" family in a small town. That's why they literally voted for trump for $$$ but then made nothing on their investments. They watched the stock market and didn't take any gains. Yep my dad's roth IRA is sitting in cash "not losing money...except when I point out inflation." But the investment advisor with Raymond James is from a "good" family and she manages her family's money. And they are loaded because her brother owns a trucking business and her parents own a flower nursery so obviously they know what they are doing. I suggested just buying t bills or CDs and was called greedy for pointing out that it wouldn't be hard to "invest' a little.

                        That being said nope I don't tell her what I have or what I invest in. She just decides to tell me I need to work and get a job. My mom would never suggest I am a spendthrift or stupid with money. Just that I need to go out and have a career. I think it's because everyone else is bothering her about why I don't work. Why am I not "accomplished?" That I haven't climbed the ladder and been successful. I do nothing. She can't stand it I think that other people are like "why did LAL go to school and become educated to do nothing? She's non contributing member of society (no i don't feel non-contributing)."

                        I think family can say more than friends. I wouldn't ever judge a friend not working because i'm more likely to guess family money. But your own family? They know you have no family money and here I am just coasting through life without working hard.
                        LivingAlmostLarge Blog

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by LivingAlmostLarge View Post
                          I think family can say more than friends. I wouldn't ever judge a friend not working because i'm more likely to guess family money. But your own family? They know you have no family money and here I am just coasting through life without working hard.
                          I agree family can have a bigger impact with what they say. Not only is it harder to get them to stop dispensing unwanted criticism and advice, sometimes, but what they say can have greater weight than a friend or colleague.

                          Sometimes family is wrong. They can be wrong about politics, about finances, about the very kids they raised! If there was an easy solution as to how to bridge those differences I think it would sell billions of copies.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Your mom is a lot different than my mom then, (she's passed) but she never wanted me to work. My job was to stay home and take care of my house and kids. If we didn't have enough money then DH should go get a 2nd job, after all that's what my dad did.

                            I went to college, but never had a career, only a job and when I had our 3rd kid I went part time(been 21 years). I never felt comfortable not being able to take care of myself and relying on DH $$ wise, just in case anything happened. But we'll be married 30 years in Sept so I could've just relied on him.

                            Now I'm 54 and been working from home for the past year and we were told we need to go back in the office on June 1st. Ugh, I don't want to go! Yesterday I spent all day going over all our finances and I could just quit. Mainly because DH will keep working another 5 years and has a pension that will take care of all our expenses in retirement, plus I have a 401k and he has Deferred Comp and we have $$ in Roths. If anything we will have more money in retirement than we live on now, but dang I just can't pull the trigger on not working. I'm just afraid, but I know it's an irrational fear because even if DH died I'd have his life insurance that would take care of me and his pension payout, but I still don't feel comfortable not working.

                            My company pays out profit sharing in September so I'm going to stay till then (if I leave at all) but in the meantime I'm keeping my eyes open for something closer to home. Only thing, and this is kinda bad, but I've become lazy, I only want to work on my terms, i have that flexibility where I am now so it's hard to give that up, plus the 5 weeks vacation!! I'm just hung up on the whole having to commute into the office when I've been doing everything fine from home for a year.

                            Try to tune the people out that say you should be working or having a career, there is nothing wrong with being there for your kids! Too bad more mom's couldn't stay home, I do believe the breakdown of the family is a big part of what is wrong with today's society!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Contemplating retiring early is kinda scary to me because it's so unknown. I've always done my own money quietly mostly due to years of being a single parent saving as much as I could due to "what if..." fears. Then there was an inheritance/lawsuit due to a death, yuck blood money put it away, out of sight and out of my mind. Looking at a phased retirement starting around 55 has me thinking that family and friends will start to view us differently. Money can get in the way of some relationships, I've never been this age before but I would imagine as peers start to retire there may be unspoken stuff and I'm one of the younger ones of our friend group. I do have a sister who has a tendency to be snotty and I expect her to behave poorly when we make the jump. I'm grateful that my family doesn't have the "you must be productive" thought process. My Dad died at 68 and my mom loves to be productive and she might have some thoughts about our early retirement but she has done some more growing in her old age. She might realize how much joy my spouse and I have together and support whatever we do.

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