Re: What stops you from retiring today?

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porcupine
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by porcupine » Thu May 03, 2012 4:05 pm

This (the subject of this post) question is for those who are not yet retired. Obviously, at a high level, either a) you have all the money you need but really love your work, b) you have all the money but love your company and/or colleagues, or c) you don't have all the money you need. What else ...?

For those who are retired, I have a different question - do you love retirement so much that you wish you had retired earlier? And are repenting that you did not when you could have? Or would you change nothing?

This question is based on a post by someone - in another bulletin board - who was out of work for almost two years, and is now back in the workplace but looking forward to retiring as soon as possible (i.e., he had a lot of fun when he was unemployed).

- Porcupine

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mhc
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by mhc » Thu May 03, 2012 4:11 pm

I am not retired. I enjoy my work. I enjoy my co-workers. If I could retire today, I would.

I would enjoy a lower stress life and I'm sure my family would appreciate it also. I just don't have enough saved yet.

If I still needed to work to fill my time, I would want to be the city worker who drives the little cart around in the morning and water the flowers downtown.

MattE
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by MattE » Thu May 03, 2012 4:31 pm

I'm 23, and hence don't have anywhere even remotely close to the level of funds I'd need to not\barely work for the next 6-7 decades and not live like a pauper. If I suddenly came into a huge windfall, I'd retire tomorrow without thinking about it twice. I've got enough widely varied interests that there is not a single item I'd enjoy spending 40ish hours a week on, week-in, week-out, for years on end given the opportunity to do otherwise.

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cheese_breath
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by cheese_breath » Thu May 03, 2012 4:31 pm

porcupine wrote: For those who are retired, I have a different question - do you love retirement so much that you wish you had retired earlier? And are repenting that you did not when you could have? Or would you change nothing?
Retired as soon as I could (age 56) and not regretting it one bit. The only thing I would change is to undo some stupid investing mistakes so I could have retired even sooner.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

xerty24
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by xerty24 » Thu May 03, 2012 4:41 pm

Option 4: Some people can't stand spending time with their family and would rather stay at work.
No excuses, no regrets.

Random Poster
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Random Poster » Thu May 03, 2012 4:46 pm

Not enough money. Hope to have enough by 40 to either fully disengage or work in a more semi-retired capacity where the renumeration really doesn't matter.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by mcblum » Thu May 03, 2012 4:52 pm

Well. Interesting question. My entire career has been in the Federal Government and, while I have a good pension, it was not enough to support my second marriage. I also got started late (age 49) in investing and even later (age 66) in Boglehead philosophy. I retired once with 42 years of service and went back:
same job, same place (NIH). That was three years ago. I am now 68 and have 45 years on the job and am aiming for 50. I am lucky that work and co-workers are pleasant. By 74, I hope to have the amount I need to comfortably retire.
Marty





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awval999
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by awval999 » Thu May 03, 2012 4:56 pm

MattE wrote:I'm 26, and hence don't have anywhere even remotely close to the level of funds I'd need to not\barely work for the next 6-7 decades and not live like a pauper. If I suddenly came into a huge windfall, I'd retire tomorrow without thinking about it twice. I've got enough widely varied interests that there is not a single item I'd enjoy spending 40ish hours a week on, week-in, week-out, for years on end given the opportunity to do otherwise.

xerty24
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by xerty24 » Thu May 03, 2012 4:57 pm

Option 5: you have health issues and can't retire early because you can't buy insurance at any price if you stop working.

I suppose maybe this falls under "not enough money", but if you need six figures worth of health care annually forever, you're looking at an extra $10M or something on top of what anyone else would need, so it's really a separate problem (at least for those who can't earn an extra $10M).
No excuses, no regrets.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by scrabbler1 » Thu May 03, 2012 5:04 pm

porcupine wrote:For those who are retired, I have a different question - do you love retirement so much that you wish you had retired earlier? And are repenting that you did not when you could have? Or would you change nothing?
I retired in late 2008 at age 45. Although I made a few minor mistakes in my investing (nothing big), the enormous good fortune of retiring just as the market was crashing more than offset any small investing mistakes I made over the years. Retiring earlier would have left me somewhat poorer but still okay, while working another year or two (part-time), even after the markets recovered, would have kept me feeling miserable as I was in the few years leading up to my early retirement.

Muchtolearn
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Muchtolearn » Thu May 03, 2012 5:34 pm

I don't know. I hate my current situation and don't need the money. Inertia and since its only half time now I guess I just don't even view it as working. I have ceased caring so its almost not like working. I am looking forward to posting a retirement when it happens. For some god-foresaken reason old employers and headhunters are still after me.

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FelixTheCat
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by FelixTheCat » Thu May 03, 2012 5:48 pm

My ex-wife. Divorce is a killer on the finances.
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steve roy
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by steve roy » Thu May 03, 2012 6:05 pm

What stops me from retiring today is a kid in his third year of college and looking like he'll take two or three more years to get to a Bachelor of Arts. Statistics class turns out to be a hard stone wall for him.

So I grind my teeth and soldier on.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by livesoft » Thu May 03, 2012 6:10 pm

Work is a rewarding hobby right now.
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stoptothink
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by stoptothink » Thu May 03, 2012 6:10 pm

imgritz wrote:My ex-wife. Divorce is a killer on the finances.
This and at the ripe old age of 30 I had a ways to go regardless.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Muchtolearn » Thu May 03, 2012 6:13 pm

imgritz wrote:My ex-wife. Divorce is a killer on the finances.
It hurts. I did it twice. The second was short and I just did a lump sum. If you have kids with the ex you can make it gentler on yourself if you view child support as money you would have spend anyway. If there are any continuing obligations to the ex, if you can get it done in a lump sum (as I did with the second) it is mentally easier. Don't get married again (unlike me the moron :oops:

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by reggiesimpson » Thu May 03, 2012 6:28 pm

Retired at 62 a few years ago. By far the best thing i ever did. It was time to go. I have always looked at work (even though it was very rewarding emotionally, financially etc) as something that had to be done. Parents, family, college bills, retirement fund etc,etc. So no, even if i get occasionally bored, it has a just reward unto itself. I just love having my own time for the first time since i was a teenager.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by FrugalInvestor » Thu May 03, 2012 6:40 pm

I retired early and haven't regretted it for one moment. That said, I know others who have retired and gone back to work within a few months because they're bored to tears.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu May 03, 2012 7:35 pm

imgritz wrote:My ex-wife. Divorce is a killer on the finances.
I have noticed that men who marry much younger women tend to work longer than those who stay in their first marriage or get divorced for good.

Victoria
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Atilla » Thu May 03, 2012 7:45 pm

I'm 45. If I retired today it would be in a van down by the river. Not that it doesn't have a certain appeal.

As far as divorce - been there and done that. Luckily my first wife made a lot more than me at the time. I rejected spousal support payments the judge offered me (a man doesn't take money like that from a woman in my opinion). And the child support settlement, while it bugs me to write the check every month, amounts to less than 10% of gross pay.

Could have been a LOT worse.
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Littlefinger
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Littlefinger » Thu May 03, 2012 8:08 pm

Teaching is like being 1/4 retired while filling up tax deferred space until the other 3/4 is financially possible or desirable.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by hicabob » Thu May 03, 2012 8:39 pm

1.85 year contract left - gives one time to ponder - Enough $$, but I think I need a project after the fact.

Muchtolearn
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Muchtolearn » Thu May 03, 2012 8:47 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
imgritz wrote:My ex-wife. Divorce is a killer on the finances.
I have noticed that men who marry much younger women tend to work longer than those who stay in their first marriage or get divorced for good.

Victoria
A few possible reasons for this. They may have children again with the younger woman. Or more likely the man is afraid to be home with the young one all day and run out of energy. :oops:

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Sheepdog
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Sheepdog » Thu May 03, 2012 8:52 pm

I retired at 65 because it was my goal. I never considered or wanted to retire earlier. I didn't want to work past 65 either. I am happy with that decision.
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GregLee
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by GregLee » Thu May 03, 2012 8:56 pm

porcupine wrote:For those who are retired, I have a different question - do you love retirement so much that you wish you had retired earlier? And are repenting that you did not when you could have? Or would you change nothing?
I would change nothing. Being retired is great, but before I retired, it wouldn't have been so nice. (I just hate not having anything to complain about.)
Greg, retired 8/10.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by lawman3966 » Thu May 03, 2012 9:04 pm

Depending on one's economic assumptions and on the investing theories employed, my wealth level is at the low/risky end of retirement readiness. (Some more demanding retirement models might say that I'm off the spectrum entirely).

I'm working in part to bolster my savings so that worry is not part of my daily routine in retirement, and in part because, at this point, I still can't completely grasp the idea of leaving the work force, never to return.

A combination of fear and greed, I guess.

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daytona084
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by daytona084 » Thu May 03, 2012 9:05 pm

Retired one year ago at age 58. One of the best decisions I ever made. Probably could have done it earlier as our withdrawal rate last year was about 2.2%.

letsgobobby
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by letsgobobby » Fri May 04, 2012 12:50 am

Health insurance. And not enough money.

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market timer
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by market timer » Fri May 04, 2012 1:03 am

Not enough money yet, but once I have enough to pay cash for my primary residence and two rental properties, I'll probably switch to a 25-hr workweek and see how that goes. Permanent retirement will probably only be brought on by disability, as I enjoy being useful.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by onesunca » Fri May 04, 2012 1:47 am

steve roy wrote:What stops me from retiring today is a kid in his third year of college and looking like he'll take two or three more years to get to a Bachelor of Arts. Statistics class turns out to be a hard stone wall for him.

So I grind my teeth and soldier on.
Ahh, statistics. Somehow got a "B" on my third try. The degree was worth it!

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VictoriaF
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by VictoriaF » Fri May 04, 2012 5:52 am

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by deerhunter » Fri May 04, 2012 6:41 am

Two percent interest rate and $4 a gallon gasoline makes me still work part time so I can do the things I want in retirement.
Living off the land is a family tradition.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by traineeinvestor » Fri May 04, 2012 7:15 am

I will retire either end of 2012 or first half of 2013 at age 46 or 47.

While I did like what I do for many years, I got bored with it. A few years ago I decided that there is more for me outside the work force than in it. I hit my number but decided to carry on for a year or two to give me a bigger margin for safety. I guess you could say it is fear that is holding me back.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Mitchell777 » Fri May 04, 2012 7:25 am

Health insurance. Nothing else

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by gkaplan » Fri May 04, 2012 7:29 am

Inertia.

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prudent
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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by prudent » Fri May 04, 2012 7:42 am

Not enough saved, but I will retire as soon as I do. Hoping to get there in 6 years, when I will be 60.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by sscritic » Fri May 04, 2012 7:50 am

VictoriaF wrote:
imgritz wrote:My ex-wife. Divorce is a killer on the finances.
I have noticed that men who marry much younger women tend to work longer than those who stay in their first marriage or get divorced for good.
The combo solution: retire first, then divorce for good. The age of the wife is irrelevant.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Old Guy » Fri May 04, 2012 8:02 am

I'll be 70 at the end of the year. I retired once, when I was 62, from the Federal Government, and the next week began another full time, sometimes stressful, job at a University. Frankly, I do not know what I would do if I didn't work. I have no hobbies and no friends. Our only child lives a 1,000 miles away. Other than working out and occasional bike riding, I don't do much outside of work. Much of my self-identity is tied up with my job. I'm afraid that I'll be one of these men who retires and then dies a week later.

My wife, who also retired from the Federal Government and then began a second career with a state government, and I are planning to finally retire in 2.5 years. I do like to travel, and that would be one thing we would do. My wife is very skilled at filling up her days puttering about. I do not have that skill.

I'm getting depressed just writing this.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by midareff » Fri May 04, 2012 8:10 am

I am responding from the perspective of a very recently (April 12th, ths year) retired guy at age 64. I had worked since 18, from my Sophmore year of college on, 46 years or so. If we knew how long we were going to live the decision would become pretty simple ... but not having a crystal ball it semed that being in my 40's and 50's and staying broke due to a high savings rate would be far better than being 70 or 80 and being broke with no way to fix that and those needs . .. .. you hope for the best and plan for the worst. My role models were my parents who retired at 62, enjoyed life for 25 years afterwards and then struggled through the next 4 or 5 with end of life medical issues. Dad almost made 94 and mom was just short of 90.

Work for me was challenging and rewarding for many years and I felt like I was able to, and did make a difference. Many agencies I worked with said so, unsolicited, at my retirement party. I was/am fortunate to have a COLA'd pension from a very well funded state pension plan, and as things started to deteriorate at the municipal level after 2007, work becme progressively less rewarding, then progressively unpleasant post 2009. There were cuts in pay, cuts in benefits, a change from employer paid single medical coverage to a 10% of salary contribution for medical insurance and many other cuts in employee renumerate, taking morale with it. In essence, besides the workplace becoming progressively unpleasant, 18-20% pay cuts truly stressed most to the max effecting all wokplace attitudes. As expected, the best and the brightest began migrating to other jobs outside the municipality (Duh, what a surrise). My frugal value oriented nature, and some good old fashioned luck had me much better prepared to deal with that than others. I would guess the cuts imposed reduced my comensation roughly $40K in the last 18-20 months. Despite being (in a relatively) good situation comparatively, the overall destruction of morale and horrible management/political grandstanding by a mayor and board of commissioners continued the operational descent of the organization. The leave early decision became easy as I had already exceeded my first projected minimum target investment goals.

Retired about a month now, I am loving it. I have great confidence in my investment portfolio (thank you to Jack Bogle, Richard Ferri, Larry Swedroe, William Bernstein and others, including many of the Bogleheads), which lets me enjoy every day free of worry, able to do the things I want to do, when I want to, how I want to. I already fel better than I have in years, physically and mentally. I am no longer tired and don't feel mentally and emotionally drained on a daily basis. It would have been great to go earlier, but then again, with parental longevity on my side I have to realize my retirement planning may have to support me for quite awhile, and then my younger wife after I'm gone. I think my timing was about "right on", as more cuts to employee compensation have come around after I retired and I can see even more coming forthose remainng in the future. What sells politically to a city with an unemployment problem, and a basically hard to afford nature (Miami) may get you elected and re-elected but kills an organization ... which goes unseen to voters until much later when services don't happen.

I am thrilled to be retired and if I could have gone earlier and had the same financial security I would have.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by pkh01l » Fri May 04, 2012 8:27 am

xerty24 wrote:Option 4: Some people can't stand spending time with their family and would rather stay at work.
I work at a MegaCorp and we have a manager who is 84 and still working. He has 64 years with the company!!! Due to stock options and how generous our pensions and 401k plans have been over this time. Financially he could have retired 30 years ago. He keeps coming to work because he doesn't want to be stuck at home with his wife all day (his words).

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by pkh01l » Fri May 04, 2012 8:32 am

Not retired because I haven't saved enough money yet (age 44). The minute I have $1.25 million in investable assets (not including home) I am quitting my job. Looks like about 5-6 more years but heavily influenced by the performance of the markets.

I was married for 3 years from 27-30. If I had never got married I probably would have retired by 40. I can't say that I regret that decision though because I have a beautiful 16 year old daughter that I love.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by RenoJay » Fri May 04, 2012 8:40 am

My retirement goal is to do lots of travel. Currently, my kids are young and in school, so that keep me pretty tethered to the old homestead, so I'll retire the day I drop Jr. off at college.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by cheese_breath » Fri May 04, 2012 9:01 am

Old Guy wrote:I'll be 70 at the end of the year. I retired once, when I was 62, from the Federal Government, and the next week began another full time, sometimes stressful, job at a University. Frankly, I do not know what I would do if I didn't work. I have no hobbies and no friends. Our only child lives a 1,000 miles away. Other than working out and occasional bike riding, I don't do much outside of work. Much of my self-identity is tied up with my job. I'm afraid that I'll be one of these men who retires and then dies a week later.

My wife, who also retired from the Federal Government and then began a second career with a state government, and I are planning to finally retire in 2.5 years. I do like to travel, and that would be one thing we would do. My wife is very skilled at filling up her days puttering about. I do not have that skill.

I'm getting depressed just writing this.
Don't get depressed. There's an old saying... Some people live to work, some work to live. And there's nothing wrong with either one. If you find work fulfilling, then you might consider a part time job during retirement. But if can't think of what to do in retirement, why not join your wife in her puttering around? You might enjoy it, especially since you will be doing it together.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by reggiesimpson » Fri May 04, 2012 9:11 am

Old Guy wrote:I'll be 70 at the end of the year. I retired once, when I was 62, from the Federal Government, and the next week began another full time, sometimes stressful, job at a University. Frankly, I do not know what I would do if I didn't work. I have no hobbies and no friends. Our only child lives a 1,000 miles away. Other than working out and occasional bike riding, I don't do much outside of work. Much of my self-identity is tied up with my job. I'm afraid that I'll be one of these men who retires and then dies a week later.

My wife, who also retired from the Federal Government and then began a second career with a state government, and I are planning to finally retire in 2.5 years. I do like to travel, and that would be one thing we would do. My wife is very skilled at filling up her days puttering about. I do not have that skill.

I'm getting depressed just writing this.
But you have a terrific skill...............your last sentence made me laugh out loud! That skill?......a sense of humor. Thanks!

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by RadAudit » Fri May 04, 2012 9:26 am

steve roy wrote:What stops me from retiring today is a kid in his third year of college and looking like he'll take two or three more years to get to a Bachelor of Arts. Statistics class turns out to be a hard stone wall for him.

So I grind my teeth and soldier on.
There's a lot of that going on. Mine took an extra semester in college because of girl problems. Then took a year long detour before he found the right grad school and the right course of study.

The long slog is worth it. Keep fighting.
FI is the best revenge. LBYM. Invest the rest. Stay the course. - PS: The cavalry isn't coming, kids. You are on your own.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by 6miths » Fri May 04, 2012 9:33 am

I would agree with inertia as a big reason. The other is our children. We have much more than enough to retire on but it is hard not to hang in to stash just a bit more away should they need it for legitimate reasons. Also, my job is pretty fulfilling on the good days and I have been able to reduce hours to a reasonable level at this point.
'It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so!' Mark Twain

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by cheese_breath » Fri May 04, 2012 10:02 am

Old Guy wrote:I'll be 70 at the end of the year. I retired once, when I was 62, from the Federal Government, and the next week began another full time, sometimes stressful, job at a University. Frankly, I do not know what I would do if I didn't work. I have no hobbies and no friends. Our only child lives a 1,000 miles away. Other than working out and occasional bike riding, I don't do much outside of work. Much of my self-identity is tied up with my job. I'm afraid that I'll be one of these men who retires and then dies a week later.

My wife, who also retired from the Federal Government and then began a second career with a state government, and I are planning to finally retire in 2.5 years. I do like to travel, and that would be one thing we would do. My wife is very skilled at filling up her days puttering about. I do not have that skill.

I'm getting depressed just writing this.
Something I forgot to add in my previous post. You could volunteer your time to charity or community organizations. I imagine there are many who would love to have someone with your skills.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by Old Guy » Fri May 04, 2012 10:30 am

Thank you cheese and reggie for your kind statements. When my wife isn't working she knits, cooks, shops (doesn't buy much but likes the thrill of the hunt), does Sudoko and watches Nancy Grace. I have no interest in the first four and the last one fills me with fear and loathing.

As to volunteering; good idea, but I wouldn't want to do in retirement what I do now--discrimination complaint investigations; too much stress; too many sleepless nights while I fret over my cases. Maybe I'll shelve books in a library in town or go to the lectures on campus. Living in a university town provides absolutely no excuse for being bored.

I'm not so depressed now. This could work out.

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Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by GregLee » Fri May 04, 2012 10:53 am

Old Guy wrote:I'm not so depressed now. This could work out.
Great. If you stay at the university, maybe you can find ways to make it more fun. Here's a suggestion: stop going to meetings. Just cancel -- tell them you had a medical emergency. It's an advantage of being old that you can get away with stuff like this. Once people get the idea that you can't be counted on to come to meetings, they'll stop expecting you. That's good.
Greg, retired 8/10.

mptfan
Posts: 5631
Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:58 am

Re: What stops you from retiring today?

Post by mptfan » Fri May 04, 2012 10:59 am

VictoriaF wrote:
imgritz wrote:My ex-wife. Divorce is a killer on the finances.
I have noticed that men who marry much younger women tend to work longer than those who stay in their first marriage or get divorced for good.

Victoria
Some things are worth paying for. ;-)

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