Author Topic: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?  (Read 11399 times)

pdxbator

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Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« on: March 08, 2019, 01:09:21 PM »
I'm wondering if anyone here flat out lies to friends, neighbors or family about holding down a steady job?

I have gone semi retired with working two 10 hour days. I could retire completely and may in the next few years.

What I'm finding with friends is they always ask how my five days off in a row is going. Sometimes it seems to be in a not so pleasant way, and I don't like to be too braggarty about how awesome it is to go skiing during the weekdays so I clam up and dance around what I do with my free time.

With my parents I have found my mom joking about how easy I have it and am not a hard worker. She isn't a mean person but I think in her mind a job is equal to completeness. I also don't want to make them feel like I am lame with no job because part of my fire has been due to inheritance and trust fund gifted.

Sometimes I feel like it would be just easier to explain it all away that I go to a 40 hour a week job Monday through Friday and when asked how work is going I just get to say "really busy".

How do all you early fire-ees handle it?

bacchi

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2019, 02:00:50 PM »
My parents go deaf when I've told them that I'm done working. Dad is always asking, "So, bacchi, how's the job search going?"

Generally, I just tell people that I'm on a long sabbatical. Sometimes, people doubt that based on appearance and assume that I'm just unemployed.

Mr. Green

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2019, 04:41:27 PM »
Unless I've already established a relationship with someone, I tell them I'm employed, or simply between gigs, which works with my former profession of software engineering. Most people just shutdown when you're 35 and say "retired." It's not worth it to have someone prematurely judge me and end a conversation early, when I can simply say something different and maybe it leads to a friendship.

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2019, 06:10:50 PM »
I feel no need to lie to anyone.  I'm proud of my achievement.  I'm honest about how I spend my time (however the hell I want to).  I figure if anyone takes a tone about it, they're just jealous.

But I'm a bit older than some of you (I was 49 when I retired), my kid is out of college, and I have a receding hairline and a good bit of gray in my beard.  So I guess it's a bit easier for people to fathom a retired 50-year-old than a retired 35-year-old.

Frankies Girl

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2019, 10:50:46 PM »
I am an artist/designer, so I just tell people I work on commission or freelancing at the moment and very much enjoy the flexibility to work any hours and from home or remote locations.

The arts/creative field is particularly well-suited for fibbing about job status. No one questions any gigs I am working on or upcoming.

I honestly don't plan to ever really say I'm retired, since I'm not really. I still do loads of work, just mostly me or good friends as clients.

But mostly have been moving over to the "taking a break for an extended period from any work/gigs unless something truly awesomely fun comes my way" which just means I get to be super picky now, so it's great. No one so far questions how I can afford not to have steady work. Not that I'd really answer that one for any but close friends.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2019, 05:37:03 AM »
I wouldn't lie to have a fulltime job. But I would mention doing some consultancy business.

I have told FIL about our FIRE plans, as he has a FIREe himself for some decades. He responded very understanding to it and thinks it will be good for us. I am not sure what my mother will think. So I think I will mumble about the consultancy thing, and about sabbaticals.

Malkynn

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2019, 08:00:04 AM »
I honestly don't give it much thought anymore.

I work two 10 hr days as well and people sometimes snidely ask me what I do with allllllllll of my free time, and I say "whatever I want" or "normal day to day stuff" or "you know that long to do list of things you should get around to but don't have time for? Yeah, I don't have that list".

It's not bragging, and I just don't care if they have a reaction to it. People often ask "how do you manage that?" And I reply matter of factly "by taking a huge pay cut"
Simple, self explanatory, and unless they want to talk about personal finance, it ends the conversation.

There's no value judgement in just stating facts. It's no different than any other facts of my reality that I talk about without worrying what people will think, such as: I have two dogs, I just bought a new condo, I eat mostly vegetarian and I work part time. These are all life choices I make because I just plain want to. Nothing to see here people.

I welcome open discussion about it, but if you get bent out of shape about my work schedule that's a you problem, not a me problem.

In the beginning I used to be self conscious about it and more people reacted weird, but now I'm just direct about it and most people are pretty positive and not as nosy as they used to be. If I act like it's normal, they react like it's normal.

Because of the nature of my work I regularly have to talk to relative strangers about my limited work hours, so I was forced pretty quickly to get comfortable with talking about it in a benign way.

The less attention I draw to it as something significant, the more people treat it as a neutral factoid about me.

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2019, 08:44:35 AM »
Not sure this will be an issue for me, but maybe I just don't have a lot of friends ;-)

Given I work from home, and everyone knows my hours are not standard, and no one else would see me out and about on workdays (given they are at work) and that we don't talk about our jobs much anyway...I'm not sure anyone would really notice.  The one friend I do talk business and money with does tech start-ups, and one of them just paid off, so he might not be that far behind anyway (he occasionally talks about retiring by 50 which would be about 5 years away for him, I think he kinda views 50 as the ridiculously earliest time one could consider retiring and given the norm he's not far off).

I mention it to my parents as a possibility in the near future and I'm sure they would support it just so I and the family would have more time to spend with them now that my mom is pretty much house bound.  I think me owning a business previously helps them not worry about/question our finances as they just assume I must have gotten rich enough off of it and yet see that we don't spend ridiculously (and the fact my dad comes to me for tax/financial advice anyway he knows I do have a clue on those things)

Roothy

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2019, 03:22:15 PM »
I plan to tell people I am a private wealth asset manager.  Which will be true.

Cassie

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2019, 05:40:57 PM »
Since we are older no one questions it. When we first retired at 58 we had lots of people making negative comments.

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2019, 05:49:57 PM »
I feel no need to lie to anyone.  I'm proud of my achievement.  I'm honest about how I spend my time (however the hell I want to).  I figure if anyone takes a tone about it, they're just jealous.

But I'm a bit older than some of you (I was 49 when I retired), my kid is out of college, and I have a receding hairline and a good bit of gray in my beard.  So I guess it's a bit easier for people to fathom a retired 50-year-old than a retired 35-year-old.

I lie.

Here's the thing that took me way too long to realize. People are generally self interested, think they're smarter than average, give themselves way too much credit for their various wins, and pawn off all responsibility for their various failures on other people, and are invested beyond any rational degree in their own ego mindset.

In line with your point, To say that you retired at 32, regardless of the circumstances will invoke a good deal of jealousy and vitriol in a good majority of people. Look at the comments section on *every single* FIRE article. They simply don't care that you rented a room in a home until you were 31, hadn't eaten out in 2 years, and forewent a car, cable, smart phone etc.

If you did it, and they didn't, then unless you had some sort of fortuitous luck you are head and shoulders doing better than them, more long sighted, and to put it bluntly smarter. So therefore you must have had some fortuitous luck in their mind. Since they've already decided that, that is the angle I play. To not do so will merely anger them, and not change their mind. And in my experience (what took me to the 'too long to learn' point...) agreeing with people's mindset is far more valuable in making them useful to you than trumpeting from every roof top that "I retired at 32 and you can too!".

No no. When I'm going through customs to the US with no job, I say I have money, and was lucky/fortunate to land a great job, and then was unfortunate to get laid off, which put me in a really fortunate position to take things slow.

No sir I was not smart. I was lucky. That's the end of it. The only difference between me and you is the musings of the great goddess fortuna.

Now, if I don't need something from someone, and they annoy me, then the "you're stupid and I'm not, that's why you get up at 7am to work, while I'm still getting drunk till 7am" scythe comes out.  You may be proud of what you've accomplished. A good many people hate you for it and believe to the depths of their hearts it should have been them.

the barefoot badger

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2019, 09:34:52 AM »
I FIREd at age 35.  Yes, I lied.  My parents are old school and the thinking was: I was in college, and then in the workforce, to look for a husband, I just did a bad job of it.  Lol.  Adding 'No Job' to 'No Husband' would probably have resulted in some sort of horrifying intervention and a butt-load of shame and anger dumped in my lap. 

When I moved across the country I did tell people I was retired, and I got a true ration of shit about it.  Disbelief, I must be getting a disability check I'm not mentioning, I'm a trust fund baby, or "you have millions and millions of dollars" (I didn't at the time, I did an Extreme Early), "so we can take advantage of you, you deserve to pay more because you have so much extra to give away."

I'm 56 now and I have since married (long after I FIREd).  Which totally negates my achievement in the eyes of 'average' people who just assume (even if told otherwise they go on holding onto their belief) that I can sit back and relax because my poor husband provides all the income.    He provides his half, only, but that's apparently unfathomable. 

So ... ok, this wasn't the question, was it.  Nevertheless:  Don't expect true kudos from other people for your FIRE achievement.  At best masked hostility or polite disbelief, at worst, unmasked hostility.  I just remind myself:  the best revenge is a life well lived.  If you can't be comfortable with that, consider lying. 

 
« Last Edit: March 11, 2019, 09:41:33 AM by the barefoot badger »

happy

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2019, 05:53:13 PM »
I've just retired at 60, and no-one questions it. Most say congratulations, since its slightly earlier than the norm for my associates. My parents, had they been alive would have been not very happy, since my father "worked" until he was in his 80s. I didn't tell my mother I was going on 6 months long service leave. I might have disguised the fact that I was retiring if they had still been alive.

Don't expect true kudos from other people for your FIRE achievement.  At best masked hostility or polite disbelief, at worst, unmasked hostility.  I just remind myself:  the best revenge is a life well lived.  If you can't be comfortable with that, consider lying. 
This.
People look at what I've managed to achieve as a single parent raising the kids on my own and assume either: I was heavily supported by a rich Ex (not true, I got nothing) OR I'm a rich doctor and thats how I've done it (only partly true...I was paid at the lowest end of medical salaries and worked part-time for 23 years...still a good wage, bu  not the 300 or 400k PA folk are imagining).

In life I prefer not to lie. But I suspect if I retired younger I might be tempted to disguise/deflect the truth if I thought I was facing too much judgement.

jim555

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2019, 06:09:45 PM »
If I have to deal with someone I don't know too well and I don't want them knowing my financial situation I just tell them I work from home on software projects.  Saves a lot of explaining.

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2019, 06:41:37 PM »
I feel no need to lie to anyone.  I'm proud of my achievement.  I'm honest about how I spend my time (however the hell I want to).  I figure if anyone takes a tone about it, they're just jealous.

But I'm a bit older than some of you (I was 49 when I retired), my kid is out of college, and I have a receding hairline and a good bit of gray in my beard.  So I guess it's a bit easier for people to fathom a retired 50-year-old than a retired 35-year-old.

I lie.

Here's the thing that took me way too long to realize. People are generally self interested, think they're smarter than average, give themselves way too much credit for their various wins, and pawn off all responsibility for their various failures on other people, and are invested beyond any rational degree in their own ego mindset.

In line with your point, To say that you retired at 32, regardless of the circumstances will invoke a good deal of jealousy and vitriol in a good majority of people. Look at the comments section on *every single* FIRE article. They simply don't care that you rented a room in a home until you were 31, hadn't eaten out in 2 years, and forewent a car, cable, smart phone etc.

If you did it, and they didn't, then unless you had some sort of fortuitous luck you are head and shoulders doing better than them, more long sighted, and to put it bluntly smarter. So therefore you must have had some fortuitous luck in their mind. Since they've already decided that, that is the angle I play. To not do so will merely anger them, and not change their mind. And in my experience (what took me to the 'too long to learn' point...) agreeing with people's mindset is far more valuable in making them useful to you than trumpeting from every roof top that "I retired at 32 and you can too!".

No no. When I'm going through customs to the US with no job, I say I have money, and was lucky/fortunate to land a great job, and then was unfortunate to get laid off, which put me in a really fortunate position to take things slow.

No sir I was not smart. I was lucky. That's the end of it. The only difference between me and you is the musings of the great goddess fortuna.

Now, if I don't need something from someone, and they annoy me, then the "you're stupid and I'm not, that's why you get up at 7am to work, while I'm still getting drunk till 7am" scythe comes out.  You may be proud of what you've accomplished. A good many people hate you for it and believe to the depths of their hearts it should have been them.

Although I'm proud of my achievement, I'm not rubbing anyone's nose in it.  But if people ask, I'm not going to fudge the truth just to avoid making someone uncomfortable.  If they have a problem with it, it's their problem, not mine.  I have yet to experience a truly negative reaction, though.  Most people just seem a bit dumbfounded, then they ask how I did it, then they ask how they can do it, too. (I'm talking about strangers or casual acquaintances.  My parents and siblings know I've been good at managing my money since I was old enough to know what money is, so they never even batted an eye when I told them I was retiring.)

True story: My wife and I went to Costco today for the first time.  When we were signing up for a membership, we also signed up for the Costco rewards Visa.  That required the customer service person to ask us for some personal information, including date of birth, income, and occupation.  When we said we're retired, she said something to the effect of "you're not old enough to be retired, how did you do it?"  We said something to the effect of "frugal living and careful money management."  Then she asked what we used to do for a living.  I said I worked for Uncle Sam, and my wife said she hasn't worked for pay since our son was born 26 years ago.  You should have seen the mouth-agape look when she realized we had retired early after living on one income for most of our married lives.  My wife tells her she should check out the MMM blog and forum.  The what?  We write it down for her.  So maybe we'll have a Costco customer service person showing up on the forum soon. ;)

Versatile

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #15 on: March 12, 2019, 06:00:40 PM »
I feel no need to lie to anyone.  I'm proud of my achievement.  I'm honest about how I spend my time (however the hell I want to).  I figure if anyone takes a tone about it, they're just jealous.

But I'm a bit older than some of you (I was 49 when I retired), my kid is out of college, and I have a receding hairline and a good bit of gray in my beard.  So I guess it's a bit easier for people to fathom a retired 50-year-old than a retired 35-year-old.

I lie.


Here's the thing that took me way too long to realize. People are generally self interested, think they're smarter than average, give themselves way too much credit for their various wins, and pawn off all responsibility for their various failures on other people, and are invested beyond any rational degree in their own ego mindset.

In line with your point, To say that you retired at 32, regardless of the circumstances will invoke a good deal of jealousy and vitriol in a good majority of people. Look at the comments section on *every single* FIRE article. They simply don't care that you rented a room in a home until you were 31, hadn't eaten out in 2 years, and forewent a car, cable, smart phone etc.

If you did it, and they didn't, then unless you had some sort of fortuitous luck you are head and shoulders doing better than them, more long sighted, and to put it bluntly smarter. So therefore you must have had some fortuitous luck in their mind. Since they've already decided that, that is the angle I play. To not do so will merely anger them, and not change their mind. And in my experience (what took me to the 'too long to learn' point...) agreeing with people's mindset is far more valuable in making them useful to you than trumpeting from every roof top that "I retired at 32 and you can too!".

No no. When I'm going through customs to the US with no job, I say I have money, and was lucky/fortunate to land a great job, and then was unfortunate to get laid off, which put me in a really fortunate position to take things slow.

No sir I was not smart. I was lucky. That's the end of it. The only difference between me and you is the musings of the great goddess fortuna.

Now, if I don't need something from someone, and they annoy me, then the "you're stupid and I'm not, that's why you get up at 7am to work, while I'm still getting drunk till 7am" scythe comes out.  You may be proud of what you've accomplished. A good many people hate you for it and believe to the depths of their hearts it should have been them.

I do too because if you try to spread the good news that they can do it too, then the defensiveness on their part starts to come out. Most often they will just challenge you about your retirement status as I do the occasional job still and volunteer. I want to explain that I don't have to do the occasional job but that I enjoy it, but if they aren't open to my retirement status then there really is no point.

My last experience was with a new neighbor and who's just a bit younger than me and he was complaining how he would have to work until his seventies. I was like, no, no, no, and explained my situation. I think he thought I was bragging when I just wanted to share the possibilities and he kind of backed away from the conversation. I even mentioned this site to check out but I doubt he did as there are now 8 vehicles in his driveway. ha

So I just lie and tell them about the last job I did if they ask. What I don't tell them is how much/little I actually do work.

tralfamadorian

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #16 on: March 12, 2019, 06:11:23 PM »
I'm not there yet but I think I will go with the old money way of discussing what you do- talk about your interests and hobbies particularly those involving volunteering or easy to discuss topics.

frugalecon

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #17 on: March 12, 2019, 06:34:28 PM »
I plan to tell people I am a private wealth asset manager.  Which will be true.

This is exactly what I would say. I have a very limited client list. (Sotto voce) Me.

Roothy

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #18 on: March 13, 2019, 03:43:42 PM »
I plan to tell people I am a private wealth asset manager.  Which will be true.

This is exactly what I would say. I have a very limited client list. (Sotto voce) Me.

"How do I generate business?  Strictly word of mouth referrals.  (Sotto voice) My husband said he was okay with me handling all the money."

Mr. Green

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #19 on: March 13, 2019, 04:48:19 PM »
I feel no need to lie to anyone.  I'm proud of my achievement.  I'm honest about how I spend my time (however the hell I want to).  I figure if anyone takes a tone about it, they're just jealous.

But I'm a bit older than some of you (I was 49 when I retired), my kid is out of college, and I have a receding hairline and a good bit of gray in my beard.  So I guess it's a bit easier for people to fathom a retired 50-year-old than a retired 35-year-old.

I lie.

Here's the thing that took me way too long to realize. People are generally self interested, think they're smarter than average, give themselves way too much credit for their various wins, and pawn off all responsibility for their various failures on other people, and are invested beyond any rational degree in their own ego mindset.

In line with your point, To say that you retired at 32, regardless of the circumstances will invoke a good deal of jealousy and vitriol in a good majority of people. Look at the comments section on *every single* FIRE article. They simply don't care that you rented a room in a home until you were 31, hadn't eaten out in 2 years, and forewent a car, cable, smart phone etc.

If you did it, and they didn't, then unless you had some sort of fortuitous luck you are head and shoulders doing better than them, more long sighted, and to put it bluntly smarter. So therefore you must have had some fortuitous luck in their mind. Since they've already decided that, that is the angle I play. To not do so will merely anger them, and not change their mind. And in my experience (what took me to the 'too long to learn' point...) agreeing with people's mindset is far more valuable in making them useful to you than trumpeting from every roof top that "I retired at 32 and you can too!".

No no. When I'm going through customs to the US with no job, I say I have money, and was lucky/fortunate to land a great job, and then was unfortunate to get laid off, which put me in a really fortunate position to take things slow.

No sir I was not smart. I was lucky. That's the end of it. The only difference between me and you is the musings of the great goddess fortuna.

Now, if I don't need something from someone, and they annoy me, then the "you're stupid and I'm not, that's why you get up at 7am to work, while I'm still getting drunk till 7am" scythe comes out.  You may be proud of what you've accomplished. A good many people hate you for it and believe to the depths of their hearts it should have been them.
This is why I now lie. The disbelief from people is almost always accompanied by defensiveness. If you're meeting new people and trying to make friends about the only way to shut the conversation down faster would be to insult someone. Why do that to yourself? Being early retired already creates enough distance between you an the rest of the world.

ysette9

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #20 on: March 13, 2019, 05:03:07 PM »
I’m curious about whether there are general trends to how people react in different countries/parts of the US/industries/etc.? For example, I haven’t reached FI yet to know for sure, but I wonder if it would raise fewer eyebrows in Silicon Valley where being a stock prior millionaire is in the social conscience than, say, a disadvantaged rust-belt city?

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #21 on: March 13, 2019, 06:21:33 PM »
Im curious about whether there are general trends to how people react in different countries/parts of the US/industries/etc.? For example, I havent reached FI yet to know for sure, but I wonder if it would raise fewer eyebrows in Silicon Valley where being a stock prior millionaire is in the social conscience than, say, a disadvantaged rust-belt city?

I'm guessing the reaction would be the exact opposite.  I don't live in a rust belt city, but I do live in a rural town that doesn't have a great many high-powered career opportunities.  A relatively large proportion of the population is retired, unemployed, between jobs, on disability, working odd jobs, living off the grid, or "engaged in non-W-2 employment activities,"** if you get my drift.  Basically, there are a lot of folks who don't work a regular job.  So it's really not a surprise to run into someone who doesn't have his nose to the career grindstone.  People kind of take it in stride.

**Selling drugs.

ysette9

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #22 on: March 13, 2019, 06:37:39 PM »
Interesting. I hadn’t considered it from that perspective.

frugalecon

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #23 on: March 13, 2019, 07:45:47 PM »
I plan to tell people I am a private wealth asset manager.  Which will be true.

This is exactly what I would say. I have a very limited client list. (Sotto voce) Me.

"How do I generate business?  Strictly word of mouth referrals.  (Sotto voice) My husband said he was okay with me handling all the money."

Love it!

BicycleB

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #24 on: March 13, 2019, 10:48:45 PM »
I don't lie. But I haven't gotten the negative reaction from people I know that the OP is worried about. 50something, fwiw.

Such reactions surely exist somewhere. Reading all the other answers for wisdom, just in case!

Threshkin

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #25 on: March 15, 2019, 06:17:01 PM »
I plan to tell people I am a private wealth asset manager.  Which will be true.

This is exactly what I would say. I have a very limited client list. (Sotto voce) Me.

"How do I generate business?  Strictly word of mouth referrals.  (Sotto voice) My husband said he was okay with me handling all the money."

Love it!

I am 2 years FIREd and use this exact title with strangers in more business like events.  Work fine until you meet people in the financial industry who start asking about licensing.  They figure it out really fast.  Not that it matters much.  With friends and in more social situations I just say I'm retired.  Simpler.

frugalecon

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #26 on: March 15, 2019, 07:09:08 PM »
I plan to tell people I am a private wealth asset manager.  Which will be true.

This is exactly what I would say. I have a very limited client list. (Sotto voce) Me.

"How do I generate business?  Strictly word of mouth referrals.  (Sotto voice) My husband said he was okay with me handling all the money."

Love it!

I am 2 years FIREd and use this exact title with strangers in more business like events.  Work fine until you meet people in the financial industry who start asking about licensing.  They figure it out really fast.  Not that it matters much.  With friends and in more social situations I just say I'm retired.  Simpler.

I guess you could say that you advise a family office. I am an economist by training, so I might be able to get away with it.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 09:17:08 AM by frugalecon »

soccerluvof4

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #27 on: March 17, 2019, 05:43:04 AM »
This seems to come up a lot with folks and first off I would say you really cant care what other people think and I know that is easier said than done. Because I'd be lying if when I fired 4 years ago I didn't feel a little bit like having to justify it. But I don't know if it is how I answered it or just my group of friends but no one at least to my face ever gave me shit or mocked me. When people asked me what I am doing I also didn't lie. I just basically told them I was burnt out and am basically going to try retirement and do some financial stuff on the side. If things don't workout I will address it then.  4 years later the only ones that ask me anything are new people I meet occasionally like and what do you do for a living. I'm retired. End of it. And now that I am closer to 55 than 54 it gets less and less of an issue.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #28 on: March 18, 2019, 07:11:15 AM »
This seems to come up a lot with folks and first off I would say you really cant care what other people think and I know that is easier said than done. Because I'd be lying if when I fired 4 years ago I didn't feel a little bit like having to justify it. But I don't know if it is how I answered it or just my group of friends but no one at least to my face ever gave me shit or mocked me. When people asked me what I am doing I also didn't lie. I just basically told them I was burnt out and am basically going to try retirement and do some financial stuff on the side. If things don't workout I will address it then.  4 years later the only ones that ask me anything are new people I meet occasionally like and what do you do for a living. I'm retired. End of it. And now that I am closer to 55 than 54 it gets less and less of an issue.

Yes, saying you are retired when you are in your fifties is probably easier than when you are in your thirties.
Good idea to tell about being burned out. It should be totally socially acceptable and understandable to take a break after being burned out.

cdnstache

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #29 on: March 18, 2019, 10:13:56 AM »
I don't know if I lie but I certainly don't come out and say I retired 4 years ago when I was 32. Actually, I NEVER say the "R" word. I think it make people way too uncomfortable and I just don't want to answer their questions or make them think I won the lottery when it was just through hard work. My retirement coincided with the birth of our second child so I've been telling everyone that I'm a stay at a home dad (which is technically true). People ask me if I plan on going back to work and I usually say "maybe, depends on the opportunity and if they have flexible hours that would allow me to drop off and pick up my kids from school." But, in reality, I have zero plans in finding a job.

I think it just makes situations more awkward than they need to be. I usually overhear people complaining about high cost of living, working long hours, low pay, lots of expenses....I just don't want to sound like I'm bragging by bringing up the "R" word.

I'm grateful for this community as a place to share experiences that we can all appreciate and understand.

ysette9

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #30 on: March 18, 2019, 10:19:08 AM »
I don't know if I lie but I certainly don't come out and say I retired 4 years ago when I was 32. Actually, I NEVER say the "R" word. I think it make people way too uncomfortable and I just don't want to answer their questions or make them think I won the lottery when it was just through hard work. My retirement coincided with the birth of our second child so I've been telling everyone that I'm a stay at a home dad (which is technically true). People ask me if I plan on going back to work and I usually say "maybe, depends on the opportunity and if they have flexible hours that would allow me to drop off and pick up my kids from school." But, in reality, I have zero plans in finding a job.

I think it just makes situations more awkward than they need to be. I usually overhear people complaining about high cost of living, working long hours, low pay, lots of expenses....I just don't want to sound like I'm bragging by bringing up the "R" word.

I'm grateful for this community as a place to share experiences that we can all appreciate and understand.
Congratulations on your FIRE status and being able to be home with your family!

MustacheAnxiety

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #31 on: March 18, 2019, 02:48:48 PM »
Not quite retired yet, but I like saying "independently poor" instead of early retirement. I don't think of my lifestyle as particularly lean but people seem to come around pretty quickly to independently poor without too much judgment.  It is probably not the greatest way to recruit folks to the lifestyle, but for folks I know well enough but are not in the inner circle it works.  I think of it as a cheat more than a lie.  People seem to be more accepting and happy for me if they think I am suffering for early retirement. 

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #32 on: March 18, 2019, 05:55:47 PM »
Not quite retired yet, but I like saying "independently poor" instead of early retirement. I don't think of my lifestyle as particularly lean but people seem to come around pretty quickly to independently poor without too much judgment.  It is probably not the greatest way to recruit folks to the lifestyle, but for folks I know well enough but are not in the inner circle it works.  I think of it as a cheat more than a lie.  People seem to be more accepting and happy for me if they think I am suffering for early retirement.

I guess something like this is as close as I've ever come to lying about my FIRE status.  A couple of times when people have asked how I did it, I've said that my wife and I got so good at living like poor people back when we actually were poor people, now we can afford to keep living like poor people without having to work too hard at it.

Hikester

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #33 on: March 18, 2019, 06:43:58 PM »
I didnt realize how being FIREd or soon to be could be such a source of anxiety for so many people. I wonder how others could perceive this as the very positive thing it is if we keep walking on eggshells and pretending to not be retired. Why is this such a source of anxiety? FIRE in the closet is a real thing.

BicycleB

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #34 on: March 18, 2019, 09:05:58 PM »
Not quite retired yet, but I like saying "independently poor" instead of early retirement. I don't think of my lifestyle as particularly lean but people seem to come around pretty quickly to independently poor without too much judgment.  It is probably not the greatest way to recruit folks to the lifestyle, but for folks I know well enough but are not in the inner circle it works.  I think of it as a cheat more than a lie.  People seem to be more accepting and happy for me if they think I am suffering for early retirement.

I guess something like this is as close as I've ever come to lying about my FIRE status.  A couple of times when people have asked how I did it, I've said that my wife and I got so good at living like poor people back when we actually were poor people, now we can afford to keep living like poor people without having to work too hard at it.

Two great ways to say it! Love these.

AccidentalMiser

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #35 on: March 18, 2019, 09:10:13 PM »
Piss on them.  The only luxury I ever wanted was my time.  Now I have it.

That's what I plan to say.

davisgang90

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #36 on: March 19, 2019, 05:04:20 AM »
I just tell them I retired from the Navy.  Most just accept this.  If they ask what I do now, I reply "Whatever I want" or "As little as possible". 

There aren't a lot of retired military in my neck of the woods, so most don't understand how rare it is not to have a bridge or second career after retiring from the military. 

All that being said, I'm applying to be a 911 operator because I want to give back to my community and I miss some of the camaraderie/good stress of the military.  We shall see. 

Don't report me to the IRP.

Malkynn

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #37 on: March 19, 2019, 05:42:42 AM »
I'm curious.
Beyond the initial reaction, do any of you find that there's any consequence to being open about being retired?

Is it just the initial awkward conversation you want to avoid, or are you finding that people treat you differently on an ongoing basis?

I find people where I live just don't care all that much once they get past their initial reactions to things.

Like back when everyone found out that the receptionist, our lowest paid staff member, was actually independently wealthy and owned 18 properties at 40 and only worked to get out of the house.
Everyone reacted at first, but then shrugged and never treated her any differently.

That could be a cultural thing here though. The pressure here to conform is pretty mild. It's there, but if you go through the initial awkwardness of establishing that it's not your thing, everyone adjusts and moves on pretty quick.

For those of you who don't feel comfortable being open, are there more ongoing consequences where you are for being different? Is the pressure more systematic?

Linea_Norway

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #38 on: March 19, 2019, 06:50:23 AM »
Like back when everyone found out that the receptionist, our lowest paid staff member, was actually independently wealthy and owned 18 properties at 40 and only worked to get out of the house.
Everyone reacted at first, but then shrugged and never treated her any differently.

I once found out that the receptionist of one of my previous employers (where I then worked) was quite rich. (In Norway everyone's yearly tax information is public and at that time you could look up anyone you wanted anonymously. Today it is still public, but you can't do the anonymous check anymore. I checked her as a random colleague, just for fun, together with one colleague on the same level, and a manager. The receptionist had over a mil $ in taxable stash.) I didn't share the information with others.
After that, I didn't treat her differently, but I noticed more often that she could often just smile at situations that might have made other people stressed. You could interpret that smile as a bit mocking. I imagined that she at such moments was just thinking of all her FU money.

trollwithamustache

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #39 on: March 19, 2019, 07:56:55 AM »
just say you have a really flexible schedule?

Mr. Green

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #40 on: March 19, 2019, 10:51:09 AM »
I didnt realize how being FIREd or soon to be could be such a source of anxiety for so many people. I wonder how others could perceive this as the very positive thing it is if we keep walking on eggshells and pretending to not be retired. Why is this such a source of anxiety? FIRE in the closet is a real thing.
I don't have any anxiety over it. Having recently moved to a new neighborhood, I've simply observed that being honest with people I'm just meeting about being an early retiree in my 30s frequently shuts the conversation down. The person's body language changes and they become more reserved. Could I simply choose to say fuck them if that's how they want to be? Sure. Or I could recognize the social aspect of what's going on, and simply adjust my response to something that allows me to get to know them better before the full truth comes out. Once they know you it's no big deal, but when you're in that early stage, evaluating whether this person is someone you want to talk to again, I've found it simply closes doors prematurely. I think this is large due to my age, and it's typically happened with people in my age range.

Dicey

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #41 on: March 19, 2019, 10:56:31 AM »
My answer: Nope, never.

I deliver my "I'm retired!" response with such glee and pride that I think it throws people. I actually look forward to the question.

Cassie

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #42 on: March 19, 2019, 11:01:43 AM »
If you are young people are jealous and why ruin relationships.  At our ages Dicey people expect us to be retired.

Malkynn

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #43 on: March 19, 2019, 12:23:07 PM »
If you are young people are jealous and why ruin relationships.  At our ages Dicey people expect us to be retired.

I started referring to myself as "semi-retired" when I still looked young enough to get carded at the liquor store.
People reacted, but then quickly moved on.

John Galt incarnate!

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #44 on: March 19, 2019, 12:30:49 PM »
If I have to deal with someone I don't know too well and I don't want them knowing my financial situation I just tell them I work from home on software projects.  Saves a lot of explaining.


I used to live a small town in which I used a  local bank for most of my financial transactions.

Eventually all the tellers came to know  that I was FIREd.

One day I was in the local supermarket in an aisle by myself when J., one of the  tellers, entered the aisle at the other end.

As soon as she saw me her mien changed.

 No longer was she a nonchalant shopper; she was furious and viscerally resentful.

She said to me  "Oh, you have to eat too."

Ever since, when I meet people,  I  am very guarded about my financial/FIREd status.

« Last Edit: March 19, 2019, 12:37:45 PM by John Galt incarnate! »

sol

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #45 on: March 19, 2019, 12:37:35 PM »
I generally don't lie about anything if I can help it, but this thread is giving me ideas.

Now that I'm retired, I can be literally anything I want to be.  The next time someone asks me what I do, I could tell them I'm a professional ninja for hire.  Or a clockmaker.  Or a writer, motivation speaker, life coach, fish breeder, investment manager, dog trainer, landscape designer, or any of the thousand other things I now choose to spend my time on.

Is there some requirement or expectation that someone is else is paying me to be the thing I say I am?  People often respond to that question with "stay at home parent" and nobody bats an eye, so I don't think drawing a paycheck is necessarily required.

In reality, I've just been telling people that I'm retired.  That has so far been a non-issue.

Hikester

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #46 on: March 19, 2019, 03:22:15 PM »
If someone is reacting negatively about your financial independence, is that someone you want to be friends with? Confused or curious is ok, but if they shut you out or act super jealous, its not the kind of positive energy I want to be around.

frugalecon

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #47 on: March 19, 2019, 06:29:35 PM »
I generally don't lie about anything if I can help it, but this thread is giving me ideas.

Now that I'm retired, I can be literally anything I want to be.  The next time someone asks me what I do, I could tell them I'm a professional ninja for hire.  Or a clockmaker.  Or a writer, motivation speaker, life coach, fish breeder, investment manager, dog trainer, landscape designer, or any of the thousand other things I now choose to spend my time on.

Is there some requirement or expectation that someone is else is paying me to be the thing I say I am?  People often respond to that question with "stay at home parent" and nobody bats an eye, so I don't think drawing a paycheck is necessarily required.

In reality, I've just been telling people that I'm retired.  That has so far been a non-issue.

@sol, if you look anything like your avatar, I dont think anyone would believe you are stealthy enough to be a ninja. After your incident with the attempted burglary next door, maybe you could say you are a private security consultant.

Mr. Green

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #48 on: March 19, 2019, 06:42:08 PM »
I generally don't lie about anything if I can help it, but this thread is giving me ideas.

Now that I'm retired, I can be literally anything I want to be.  The next time someone asks me what I do, I could tell them I'm a professional ninja for hire.  Or a clockmaker.  Or a writer, motivation speaker, life coach, fish breeder, investment manager, dog trainer, landscape designer, or any of the thousand other things I now choose to spend my time on.

Is there some requirement or expectation that someone is else is paying me to be the thing I say I am?  People often respond to that question with "stay at home parent" and nobody bats an eye, so I don't think drawing a paycheck is necessarily required.

In reality, I've just been telling people that I'm retired.  That has so far been a non-issue.
There's an awesome old thread Arebelspy started, I think in the off-topic subforum for what occupation he should put on his business cards. The answers were hilarious. It's one of my favorite forum threads.

Found it!
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/business-card-ideas/
« Last Edit: March 19, 2019, 06:45:51 PM by Mr. Green »

MonkeyJenga

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Re: Do any of you flat out lie about keeping a job?
« Reply #49 on: March 19, 2019, 07:08:58 PM »
During my FIRE planning, I was honest with my friends, and even coworkers. For the most part people were happy for me, but thought I was a little nuts. Helped some of them with basic financial planning, didn't lure anyone to the cult. A couple friends of friends at work, who were older and decades from retirement themselves, probably gave me some dirty looks behind my back.

When I finally quit, though, the plan was never to stay retired forever. I haven't had to lie. I told people I was going to take a few months to travel and volunteer, and then maybe get a job in politics. Which I did for a while. People were jealous of the traveling bit and thought the politics bit was really cool, but it was much more in the realm of normal behavior for them. People change careers and take breaks between jobs all the time.

I'm now pretty open about my plans to work off and on, and only for causes I care about. If people ask how can I afford it, I tell them I saved money by living like a cheap-ass. Very few people are jealous of my year sleeping in a living room.