Author Topic: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?  (Read 22644 times)

swampwiz

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What I mean here is that someone whose situation is that he can't possibly think about early retiring.

I'll start.  I knew a guy (early 30's at the time) who had 4 young children at the time, all from a fairly high-maintenance wife (stay-at-home at the time), who had just rolled all his savings into his McMansion in California's Imperial Valley (I think it was Moreno Valley) in early 2007, and still with about $50K of student debt (instead of paying that down, he had built up his savings to buy a $550K home in what had been "the hottest real estate market around".  He said that he absolutely could not lose his job (aerospace engineer), so he made sure to be the hardest working, boss-supplicating corporate peon at work - and totally miserable - so that he would be at the bottom of any layoff list.  He said that he could see 20 years in the future as when he could start to "sock away retirement cash".
« Last Edit: April 10, 2018, 12:55:48 PM by swampwiz »

wageslave23

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This is going to be the most depressing thread ever.  I don't know if I can think of a more depressing situation than a person who hates their job and has no way out.  The Million Dollar Baby of threads ;(

EconDiva

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Not sure why the person in your example couldn't find a way to retire...if that was 2007, it's 10 years later so any updates?  Did they change anything/start thinking about retirement?

Not sure if you want examples of people who claim they can't think of retiring early or people actually in situations where they cannot retire early (i.e., 68 years old with no savings, tons of debt, no pension, high recurring monthly bills, no job, no education and no spouse or family to help out would be the kind of situation that comes to mind).

Khaetra

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My neighbors.  Very long story short, he's an alcoholic who could never hold down a job and she works in a grocery store (neither have any kind of education).  He wrecked his car while drunk so he's on house arrest, she has to get rides to work because her car is broken and they don't have any savings.  The only saving grace is they don't have a mortgage but they have no health nor home insurance and they have legal and medical bills (he's had two minor strokes).  Neither of them are even 60 yet.

Chrissy

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I'll play:  a lady who's marriage had been tumultuous and, at times, abusive for 40 years (they married as teenagers).  She raised the kids/ran the house with no help from him while getting her first job AND multiple side-gigs, two degrees, and some tough certifications by the time she was 30.  The eldest was ~12 when she started making good money, but husband was a spender, so they saved NOTHING.  She wasn't too worried, though, because her father promised her a big inheritance (MILLIONS, he said).  But, not a penny if she left her husband.

Each and every one of the kids were high-performers.  They left for college, paying their own way.  She and her husband were in their 40s, making the best money of their lives.  She saved some and invested, but he developed some expensive tastes in liquor and cigars and a gambling habit.  The inheritance arrived in their very late 40s, but it was NOT millions.  By this point, the husband was accustomed to spending $5,000/mo just on the aforementioned recreation. 

She's still working today, and still married, 10 years later, a grandmother, almost 60, no retirement in sight.

jim555

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Know a lady who is 73.  She must work jobs like cleaning or receptionist to get by.  Her son is helping her pay for her expenses.  She gets minimal Social Security.  No escape for her and she worries what happens if she can't work.  One step away from homeless.

Hula Hoop

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I have a friend who is 80 and still working.  Her husband is in his 90s and in very poor health so obviously no longer working.  She seems to enjoy her job so it's not that sad but it's a worry what is going to happen if she can't work anymore.  She rents her apartment and has other expenses.

Miss Piggy

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She wasn't too worried, though, because her father promised her a big inheritance (MILLIONS, he said).  But, not a penny if she left her husband.

WTF? Where does an arrangement like that come from?

PhilB

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I'll put forward my father-in-law as exhibit A. Good job for decades (Uni lecturer), but nothing to show for it - largely because of spending his time chasing a series of younger women.  Drew out and blew all his superannuation in double quick time.  Now mid 70's and trying to hide his Parkinson's disease so he can continue working as a cab driver on the 5am shift to make ends meet.

Epor

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She wasn't too worried, though, because her father promised her a big inheritance (MILLIONS, he said).  But, not a penny if she left her husband.

WTF? Where does an arrangement like that come from?

Some religious family? I know my grandparents were against my mother's divorce (even knowing about my father much younger mistresses and illegitimate child) because Catholicism. Grandparents comforted my mom: "Worry not, soon he will be old and unattractive, so he won't be going around anymore"; Divorce happened anyway a few years later, but it was very hard for my mother not to have her parents support.



jlcnuke

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I have a friend who is retired military (so almost-free healthcare for his whole family plus a good $20k after tax income before he shows up to work), who works a job making between $90-100k/year. His wife works part time min-wage jobs (when she can keep one) and they have one child in high school.

He has two major detriments to his financial situation however (and both revolve around his refusal to put what he knows is his best financial interests ahead of other factors):
1. His wife is not fully mentally capable, and has full ability to spend and spend and spend (I'm talking rent-a-center big screen TVs and furniture and appliances when they last moved for instance).
2. His wife's family mooches off of them.

Between their outflows for his wife's family and her spending, he literally had a vehicle repossessed recently (despite a low cost of living they have such as their housing costing them ~$35k for the trailer-home they got because they couldn't afford a regular mortgage payment for a modest house on his 6-figure income....). He's exceptionally intelligent, so he knows that it's a ridiculous situation they shouldn't be in, but he bows his head and accepts it and probably always will.

Everyone he works with is "responsibly" taking multiple vacations per year and living in McMansions with newer cars and he's left with nothing after his wife and her family eat through all his earnings (and then some sometimes).

Chrissy

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She wasn't too worried, though, because her father promised her a big inheritance (MILLIONS, he said).  But, not a penny if she left her husband.

WTF? Where does an arrangement like that come from?

Epor nailed it.  It comes from the 1970s, and the following circumstances: her father was a nationally acclaimed expert in a child-related field of study, prominently employed at a religious institution, so...  lots of problems having either an unmarried, pregnant 17-yr-old daughter living with him, or, an unemployed, divorced daughter and her children living with him.  Probably scandal, job loss, etc.  Gotta get her married and KEEP her married.  Using the stick won't work, because life with the husband is crap, so gotta use a carrot.

And, to be fair, her father probably thought it would be millions. 

NV Teacher

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During my first year teaching I worked with a first grade teacher that was 72 years old and so miserable and grumpy that she made everyone around her feel the same way.  She had never stayed with one district long enough to build up a retirement and had to work.  I decided that year that I would start saving and investing and now in just a few more years I'll leave teaching with a nice healthy pension and and several solid investment accounts. 

Caroline PF

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My father would qualify.

When I was growing up, he had his own business, and was very financially savvy. He taught me about investing, mutual funds, and retirement accounts when I was a teenager. He was maxing out his SEP-IRA every year. He built a custom house on an acreage mortgage free. He was on track to retire early.

And then the recession hit, and his business withered. And for whatever reason, he and my stepmom couldn't alter their lifestyle, even though relatively small changes would have been enough. He had paid for private college for the oldest stepchild when business was good. When the business starting failing, he couldn't cashflow the other kids, so mortgaged his house and took out parent plus loans in order to put the next 3 kids through private college, rather than apologize for the changed circumstances and make them take out their own loans, or change colleges.

Then the business ended completely. He had to sell his dream house to pay off the mortgage. He started living on his retirement accounts, paying fees in order to access them early. They moved across the country in order to help a family member in need, where they rented a large house for an ungodly monthly rent. (It had to be large enough for 6 kids, even though 5 were through college and out of the house, because of course they'll all come for Christmas and need their own room) Of course, neither could find jobs in the small town they moved to. So 2 years of no income, and large expenses, burned through a large portion of his retirement accounts.

They finally moved back to a large city, where they were both able to find intermittent work, that never paid enough. Of course, they still had to rent large houses in nice neighborhoods. They supplemented by raiding the retirement accounts.

Where are they now? All retirement funds are gone. He is 67 and still working, but starting to feel his age. They still have the parent-plus loans, with no hope of ever paying them off. Despite both working full-time jobs, they couldn't cover their expenses, and got behind on multiple bills (did I mention the large, lake-front house they rent?). He took social security in order to make ends meet. So when the day comes that he is physically no longer capable of working (and his job is a physical one), they will be well and truly screwed.

It's interesting because my mom is also in a bad place financially, has relied on family to support her for the last 5 years, and will need family (aka me) to support her for the rest of her life, and yet my father's situation seems so much worse to me. I think it's because my mom has always been bad with money, so I expected it. But my father was good with money, and still managed to screw everything up.

Nightwatchman9270

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I work in health care in a very lucrative specialty.  Typically my partners and I gross 475k a year.  Couple years were even higher.  Despite that, I have a partner who got divorced (strike one) while still supporting two of his three kids, got remarried to one of the hospital secretaries (strike two), got screwed in his divorce because he was schtupping "strike two" while still married and got her pregenant (strike three), then had another kid (strike four) and has had to support his step kids who he tried to buy their affection or approval (strike five), then he has adopted three more kids (VERY KIND NICE AND CHARITABLE but...strike six, seven and eight), has purchase not one (strike nine) but TWO (strike 10) vacation homes.  Oh yeah and he's in his sixties and can't afford life insurance.

Needless to say despite making a salary that makes him nearly a 1%er, he lives paycheck to paycheck. 

dude

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I don't know these people personally, but my god, out here in the small town where I work, the fast food joints are staffed largely by old people (60's) who look in terrible health. It's very obvious to me they are NOT working there by choice, and it's a near certainty they'll never retire, in the voluntary sense (it's likely they won't be able to work anymore and go on SS disability and Medicaid). I don't frequent these places (McDonald's, Wendy's), but man, when I do, I'm saddened at the sight of these people. I want to ask them how it came to this; I'm genuinely interested to know what choices or circumstances in life led them to this place.

Awesomeness

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During my first year teaching I worked with a first grade teacher that was 72 years old and so miserable and grumpy that she made everyone around her feel the same way.  She had never stayed with one district long enough to build up a retirement and had to work.  I decided that year that I would start saving and investing and now in just a few more years I'll leave teaching with a nice healthy pension and and several solid investment accounts.

Seen this before and itís just the worst.  These people have such important jobs teaching our youth and when theyíre burned out like this itís not good. Another bad one is people in the healthcare field.  My mom passed last summer and one of her nurses was a horrible bitter woman that clearly hated her job but probably couldnít afford to leave. Itís fine when these people work at mcds, you half expect it but in jobs like these it just burns me. If I had money Iíd hand them a glob of it and say GTFO!

Vegasgirl

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This is so bad but, my current boss.  She is 69, turning 70 in August and can't retire because she's got three adult sons that she still financially takes care of, I mean housing, cars, even groceries and vacations.   She's got a pension from IBM (34 years then retired) and make mid-six figure salary at current job. How they are the boys not embarrassed and ashamed to be taking such advantage of there mother, I'll never know.  Her husband is in a VA nursing home.  She's maintaining two houses, one that the boys live in and one where she lives,  Still has car payments and this morning when I gave my official notice to FIRE in three months, she mentioned that shes looking for a new car since hers is starting to break down but is thinking of keeping it since its and SUV for winter driving !!! Some things/people just defy logic.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2018, 09:04:01 AM by Vegasgirl »

Epor

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I work in health care in a very lucrative specialty.  Typically my partners and I gross 475k a year.  Couple years were even higher.  Despite that, I have a partner who got divorced (strike one) while still supporting two of his three kids, got remarried to one of the hospital secretaries (strike two), got screwed in his divorce because he was schtupping "strike two" while still married and got her pregenant (strike three), then had another kid (strike four) and has had to support his step kids who he tried to buy their affection or approval (strike five), then he has adopted three more kids (VERY KIND NICE AND CHARITABLE but...strike six, seven and eight), has purchase not one (strike nine) but TWO (strike 10) vacation homes.  Oh yeah and he's in his sixties and can't afford life insurance.

Needless to say despite making a salary that makes him nearly a 1%er, he lives paycheck to paycheck.

F*ck! This is really a financial wreck but... is he happy? Seems like he longs for a big family/lots of people around, and if that was his goal, he surely made it.

Nightwatchman9270

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He's a great guy with a very big heart.  That part I get.  The beach house and the mountain house that he now can't sell, I don't get.
I'm really afraid one day I'm going to find him unconscious in our call room.  This is NOT the kind of job for an older person, for an "indoor job" it is VERY stressful and physically demanding and this is coming from someone who used to work construction in South Georgia to put himself through school.

kanga1622

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I don't know these people personally, but my god, out here in the small town where I work, the fast food joints are staffed largely by old people (60's) who look in terrible health. It's very obvious to me they are NOT working there by choice, and it's a near certainty they'll never retire, in the voluntary sense (it's likely they won't be able to work anymore and go on SS disability and Medicaid). I don't frequent these places (McDonald's, Wendy's), but man, when I do, I'm saddened at the sight of these people. I want to ask them how it came to this; I'm genuinely interested to know what choices or circumstances in life led them to this place.

One of our local Walmart greeters makes me want to cry. She sits on her walker (at least it is the nice one with the flip down seat) as she greets people and checks receipts as people leave. I have seen her there in her full winter coat and gloves because of the draft from the large doors. Watching her walk to the back of the store to clock in just looks PAINFUL. I wouldn't mind working a job part-time when I am older as I would tend to otherwise be a hermit, but being FORCED to work crappy shifts at poor wages while in poor health would be terrible.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2018, 02:06:02 PM by kanga1622 »

Awesomeness

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I don't know these people personally, but my god, out here in the small town where I work, the fast food joints are staffed largely by old people (60's) who look in terrible health. It's very obvious to me they are NOT working there by choice, and it's a near certainty they'll never retire, in the voluntary sense (it's likely they won't be able to work anymore and go on SS disability and Medicaid). I don't frequent these places (McDonald's, Wendy's), but man, when I do, I'm saddened at the sight of these people. I want to ask them how it came to this; I'm genuinely interested to know what choices or circumstances in life led them to this place.

One of our local Walmart greeters makes me want to cry. She sits on her walker (at least it is the nice one with the flip down seat) as she greets people and checks receipts as people leave. I have seen her there in her full winter coat and gloves because of the draft from the large doors. Watching her walk to the back of the store to clock in just looks PAINFUL. I wouldn't mind working a job part-time when I am older as I would tend to otherwise be a hermit, but being FORCED to work crappy shifts at poor wages while in poor health would be terrible.

This shit terrifies me.  I personally donít know anyone in this situation but when I see it it upsets me.

Abe Froman

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She wasn't too worried, though, because her father promised her a big inheritance (MILLIONS, he said).  But, not a penny if she left her husband.

WTF? Where does an arrangement like that come from?

Don't marry for money - you can borrow it more cheaply

BTDretire

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I know a women, call her Sal, got married, graduated college, had 3 kids, then divorced after 12 to 14 years.
 At some point she got a girlfriend, they lived in a van for 5 to 7 years, with the girlfriend making some money
in a technical business and Sal just helping out but never making any money.
  The Sal inherited 1/2 of a house when a family member died, so the two have lived there with the girlfriend
going off on intermettent tech jobs. The girlfriend pays no rent.
Sal got a part time job when she was 56, worked about 4 years then moved to another job with more hours but not fulltime.
 Now at 61 she works, the business is pushing more and more work on her but only gave her a very piddly raise. She can't quit has no savings and lives paycheck to paycheck.
 The best part, because of her lack of work, she says she will only get about $550 month in SS.

Exflyboy

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No I can't I just ca.. Well OK then.

A couple I know, the wife calls me and say's Hey EXFB, I heard you know a bit about money.. Umm yeah I do.. Need your help.. OK.

She gave me the story.. OMFG! Three teenage kids, almost 60 and the grand total they have save for retirement is a big fat NOTHING.

Live in a rented house, and are currently saving.. guess what?.. Nothing.. "We just can't afford it, life is so expensive!"

I'm having a giant WTF? moment at this point.. I asked her what she thought was going to happen.. like you are spending every last penny and then some to make it to rent day. Are you going to work forever? because SS ain't gonna cover more than about 1/3rd of your current lifestyle.

OK.. where can we save in your budget... "Well these kids are so expensive and my Daughter's clean food diet".. OK WTF is a CF diet and is it medically necessary?

No but she feels better.... I'm now pounding my head on my desk..

What are you spending on your cell phones?.. $400 a month!..... ARRRGH.

in 2 minutes I wiped $1300 out of the monthly budget.. But of course they have no intention of saving anything and they have not come back.

The end of the conversation she tells me the tale of how her Mother is 70 years old and works paycheck to paycheck on a min wage job she hates and doesn't think her health will allow her to do much longer... And then WE will have to help her......

Damn, wow and a few expletives!

Travis

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One of my best friends. 37, divorced 3 years ago, primary custody of a 12 year old.  She's a licensed therapist and he works the network help desk at a university.  While married their combined income couldn't have been more than $70k.  Her share was around $20k.  She stuck around the clinic where she intern'd working just above minimum wage part time so she's have more time at home with her kid.  Not only didn't they save, but she has around $20k or so in student loans and he ran up credit card bills equal to their annual income. In the divorce she had to take half of it.  Even knowing their marriage was doomed, she refused to increase her hours or find better work because she'd lose "mommy time."  The clinic closed down her section and rather than accept job offers of close to $90k/year from other places, she took her patients with her and opened her own clinic.  The catch is they're all the type who can't afford normal therapy rates so she runs it as a non-profit.  It's noble and she's really good at it, but for working 60 hours a week she's making at most $30k/year.  Her former supervisor is now her partner and they can barely tolerate each other.  She continues to plow ahead hoping somehow the business becomes a little more self-sustaining (a few government contracts are helping) rather than look to her financial security by accepting any of the half a dozen job offers she gets each year to run somebody else's program for triple what she's making now.  She finally opened an IRA last year (at EJ of all places), but only fills about half of it.  Any time I mention her financial security she gets indignant and I won't hear from her for a few days.

I realize she's still young and not in the target demographic of this discussion, but in the long run unless she accepts the cold hard math she's going to be like her business partner working well into her 60s keeping it together.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2018, 07:52:49 PM by Travis »

2Birds1Stone

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No I can't I just ca.. Well OK then.

A couple I know, the wife calls me and say's Hey EXFB, I heard you know a bit about money.. Umm yeah I do.. Need your help.. OK.

She gave me the story.. OMFG! Three teenage kids, almost 60 and the grand total they have save for retirement is a big fat NOTHING.

Live in a rented house, and are currently saving.. guess what?.. Nothing.. "We just can't afford it, life is so expensive!"

I'm having a giant WTF? moment at this point.. I asked her what she thought was going to happen.. like you are spending every last penny and then some to make it to rent day. Are you going to work forever? because SS ain't gonna cover more than about 1/3rd of your current lifestyle.

OK.. where can we save in your budget... "Well these kids are so expensive and my Daughter's clean food diet".. OK WTF is a CF diet and is it medically necessary?

No but she feels better.... I'm now pounding my head on my desk..

What are you spending on your cell phones?.. $400 a month!..... ARRRGH.

in 2 minutes I wiped $1300 out of the monthly budget.. But of course they have no intention of saving anything and they have not come back.

The end of the conversation she tells me the tale of how her Mother is 70 years old and works paycheck to paycheck on a min wage job she hates and doesn't think her health will allow her to do much longer... And then WE will have to help her......

Damn, wow and a few expletives!

Your friend's almost 60 and her mother is 70, I'm impressed!

Firehazard

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I have a friend who is a 55 year old woman.  She makes around $130k, is married and has 3 adult children, 25, 28 and 30.   25 and 30 still live at home, with no intention of moving out.  One has a low paying job and spends all his money on alcohol and travel with his buddies, the other just lies around the house all day. Hubby was a stay at home dad, so he has never worked since first child was born.  They have a large home in a nice neighborhood that is literally crumbling around them from neglect (despite hubby's 100% free time for at least the past 10 years), yet they spend money lavishly on trips, restaurant meals, clothes, salon services, and enough groceries to feed five families.   The house is jam-packed full of every kind of unnecessary stuff imaginable.  Their kitchen has multiples of every gadget ever made.   She is so very tired of working, but it's all on her and none of them seem to care that she'll be grinding it out until she is a very old woman.   She seems to accept it, thinking there is no other way unless you strike it rich by inheritance or lottery win.   I almost dread the day she finds out we we have quit our jobs and retired early.  She doesn't know of our plans, as she works with my husband and we want to keep it quiet until he's ready to give his notice. 

Exflyboy

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No I can't I just ca.. Well OK then.

A couple I know, the wife calls me and say's Hey EXFB, I heard you know a bit about money.. Umm yeah I do.. Need your help.. OK.

She gave me the story.. OMFG! Three teenage kids, almost 60 and the grand total they have save for retirement is a big fat NOTHING.

Live in a rented house, and are currently saving.. guess what?.. Nothing.. "We just can't afford it, life is so expensive!"

I'm having a giant WTF? moment at this point.. I asked her what she thought was going to happen.. like you are spending every last penny and then some to make it to rent day. Are you going to work forever? because SS ain't gonna cover more than about 1/3rd of your current lifestyle.

OK.. where can we save in your budget... "Well these kids are so expensive and my Daughter's clean food diet".. OK WTF is a CF diet and is it medically necessary?

No but she feels better.... I'm now pounding my head on my desk..

What are you spending on your cell phones?.. $400 a month!..... ARRRGH.

in 2 minutes I wiped $1300 out of the monthly budget.. But of course they have no intention of saving anything and they have not come back.

The end of the conversation she tells me the tale of how her Mother is 70 years old and works paycheck to paycheck on a min wage job she hates and doesn't think her health will allow her to do much longer... And then WE will have to help her......

Damn, wow and a few expletives!

Your friend's almost 60 and her mother is 70, I'm impressed!

He Husband is is somewhat older than her... He's nearly 60.

LearnTo

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I know someone who drove her family into bankruptcy by financing her kids' college expenses on credit cards and keeping up with the Jones when her youngest attended a private high school.
  Then along came addiction problems and compulsive gambling.  She actually got onto permanent disability via an unverifiable back injury, but her loyal husband will never be able to retire from his physically demanding job until it becomes impossible to perform, I suppose.
She considers her disability check "her money" and I suspect contributes very little to household expenses.  And somehow they still go out to eat ALL THE TIME and take at least one fairly nice vacation a year.
She is the type who has always needed to feel pampered, spoiled, and special.

Imma

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I don't feel sorry for spendypants people who can never retire because they live in huge houses and drive clown cars.

The sorriest situation I know is a lady who doesn't feel sorry for herself at all. She's almost 80. When she grew up, schools were not mixed and girls received little real education, just home economics, cooking and sewing.  She had limited marketable skills and married young. She divorced her abuse husband at a time where divorce was still a big taboo and divorced women were awarded only little spousal and child support. She raised her children on her own with little support from her family, because they were ashamed she was divorced. She worked very hard and did all sorts of low paid jobs (cleaning, mending, factory work, taxi driving) . She didn't work fulltime for a very long time because she didn't have anyone to look after the children.

In those days, women earned far less than men and they only built up a very small pension through company pension schemes, so when she reached conventional retirement age she had no savings and only a very small company pension on top of her state pension. She worked until the age of 75 as a school bus driver for disabled kids and on Saturdays in a small shop. The shop went bankrupt and she was fired from her bus driver job because she was too frail to handle the kids in case of emergency. She hasn't been able to find a job since. That means she's had to cut back on her expenses to make ends meet. She's never had a life of luxury, but she's afraid she'll have to get rid of her car or move to a different neighbourhood where rents are a little bit lower. Those are great ways to save money when you're 30, but not when you're almost 80 and very much rooted in your community.

She's not the type to complain, but it feels unfair to me that she's lead a life of hardship and poverty for no other reason than not wanting to stay in an abusive marriage. Meanwhile, her ex-husband quickly remarried, and did not suffer from any social stigma or financial problems.

saguaro

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SIL and her DH are ones who are looking like they won't retire, they certainly won't retire in the manner they are accustomed.  There's a couple of reasons why.

SIL is a spendthrift, loves shopping, bought a horse a few years ago, got a trailer for the horse, plus the big new Silverado to pull the trailer, of course there's stable and vet fees.   She lives in a paid off house but several years ago got her parents to fork over money for a condo on a lake, then a couple of years after that, she acquired another condo on the same lake that her parents bought and decided to give it to her.  So she and BIL have two condos for which they pay the associated taxes and fees.  The condos largely sit empty but for the occasional weekends that they go boating.  So they have a boat.  And a jet ski.  She works part time in her "fun" job which doesn't pay much.   BIL is 68 and still working however he's had his bouts of unemployment over his career which has impacted his ability to save for retirement.  Just before he got his last job, they had to pull from retirement to pay bills.   There's no indicator of them cutting back.

I imagine when BIL has to stop working for whatever reason and at 68, that could be soon as he's not in the greatest health, it's going to be a shock.  I think SIL is banking (no pun intended) on inheritance from her own parents however they are both still living and are running through their own money pretty quick as they are spendthrifts themselves (apple don't far fall).   She doesn't make that much on her own salary and for the time she was on an ACA policy, the monthly premium took up her entire paycheck.  BIL would be on Medicare when he leaves the workforce but she has a number of years (59) before she would be eligible for Medicare herself so it would be going back to the ACA policy.  Or going without.

I suspect my niece and nephew are her retirement plan.  I hope they are prepared.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2018, 09:19:23 AM by saguaro »

sparkytheop

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I don't feel sorry for this guy, and it's not the "have to work until I die" situation, but it's pretty "sorry" for where he could have/should have been.

Minimum retirement age is 57.  He was 55.  Job does a rare offer of "early outs", which our "department" is almost never allowed to participate in (because we aren't considered extraneous).  But this year, they were going to let some of "us" do it.  It even included a nice little cash bonus to accept the deal ($25k or $40k, can't remember).  He couldn't do it, because he "couldn't afford" to.  Too much debt, too many bad spending habits, too much spousal revenge (he and his wife had separated for two years, during which time they tried to inflict as much financial stress on each other as they could-- between lawyers, damaging each other's cars/motorcycles, etc, etc, but were then back together).  He'd still be able to access his pension without fees, get full access to his TSP, carry the health insurance into retirement, etc.  But, he had to work those two more years and couldn't take the early out.

That solidified my decision to do everything I can while I'm young to make sure I can take advantage of the early out if it ever comes around for us again (I'll be eligible when I'm 46, but it would still be very rare for it to be allowed for my crew).

I guess he retired at 57 (after a demotion because he got in trouble), and now works for a contractor.  I just can't imagine not being able to retire two years early with the income we make and still getting full retirement benefits without penalties.  Not with as many years as he had in the system.

Pigeon

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  She lives in a paid off house but several years ago got her parents to fork over money for a condo on a lake, then a couple of years after that, she acquired another condo on the same lake that her parents bought and decided to give it to her.  So she and BIL have two condos for which they pay the associated taxes and fees.  The condos largely sit empty but for the occasional weekends that they go boating.  So they have a boat.  And a jet ski.


So do they alternate weeks in each condo?  That's just weird!

swampwiz

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Don't marry for money - you can borrow it more cheaply

I've had divorced men tell me that there is something else in a marriage that can be sourced more cheaply too ...

saguaro

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She lives in a paid off house but several years ago got her parents to fork over money for a condo on a lake, then a couple of years after that, she acquired another condo on the same lake that her parents bought and decided to give it to her.  So she and BIL have two condos for which they pay the associated taxes and fees.  The condos largely sit empty but for the occasional weekends that they go boating.  So they have a boat.  And a jet ski.

So do they alternate weeks in each condo?  That's just weird!

They do not.  They just stay in the one, the first one they bought.  My nephew might stay in the other one maybe 2x year when he's up there for holidays.   And they can go months without ever visiting either one.   My niece lives nearby as she married someone from that area so I guess she goes over to check on things from time to time.


Imma

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Imma, the saddest part to me of that story is that her children arenít pooling funds to support her now. She sure did a lot for them.

(Or maybe they keep offering and she keeps declining their offers. I've seen that!)

I don't know her children at all, so I have no idea. But she's a proud lady, I wouldn't be surprised if that is what's happening.

Acastus

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Coworker:  Single, age 60. Blue collar worker with decent salary. Has had more jobs than you have owned cars, so all retirement money was spent long ago during bouts of unemployment. Does not contribute to 401k. Lives hand-to-mouth, including figuring how to spend money before payday and hope checks cross in the mail. Inherited a modest house in questionable repair, so at least there is that. Owns a cabin cruiser, so must also own a large truck to haul it. Purchased new truck for 40k or so, 7 or 8 year loan. Parks it in driveway because garage is full of derelict cars, chachkies of misspent youth. Spends impulsively to feel good.  Would greatly benefit from early retirement due to health issues.

Not teachable. I suggested getting a small used car and paying someone to haul the boat to the lake once in spring, then return to storage once in fall. No way. Must have 12 mpg truck year round to haul personally on same schedule. Refuses to seek counseling.

Coworker will need to work until the end, at least as a Walmart greeter.

weston

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A lawyer in my building is a hell of a trial lawyer. Very aggressive and very talented but not in a high paying specialty.  He and his wife always have to look the part. New identical BMWs every couple of years. Over decorated McMansion. Trips to Europe.

I'm talking to him the other day and he is bemoaning the fact that he pissed off an opposing party who filed a bar complaint. The bar is taking it very seriously and he is looking at a possible 1 or 2 year suspension. His comment to me "How can I pay my living expenses for 2 years if I'm suspended?"

 The man is 72 years old and has practically nothing at all set aside for retirement.  He needs to keep working  but won't be allowed to do the one marketable thing he is good at. I'm in my 60s. If some licensing board told me I could not practice my profession for 2 years my thought would be "Well I wanted to retire on my own terms but I guess I'm all right with doing it a little bit earlier than I planned."
« Last Edit: April 13, 2018, 01:59:52 PM by weston »

Fishindude

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I know quite a few folks close to my age(58) that I'm certain have little if any savings for retirement and have worked most of their lives doing things like construction and farming where they worked as a 1099 employee and never had any insurance or benefits of any type.   A lot of their income was never seen by uncle Sam, so when they get to social security age they will only get the minimum.   When their bodies give out and they can't work physical labor anymore they are destined for government subsidized housing and a pretty grim existence.

frugalecon

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The sorriest situation I know of is someone who is retired after a fashion, b/c he can't hold down a job, but he is essentially penniless. He lost his job 4.5 years ago and has been unable to hold down a job since then b/c he can't get through probationary periods. He is just no longer matched to what the job market wants (at least in his field). So I wouldn't say he is retired...he is more just scrambling to eke by, while drawing a meager SS benefit and living in a very HCOL area. Unfortunately, he is unwilling to make adjustments in his behavior, his job expectations, or his place of residence.

Channel-Z

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One of my managers kept working because he divorced twice in the time I knew him (three times in his life total), and paid for his kids' college educations. He also bought a new house after the final divorce. He made a decent amount of money, but a lot of the money was spoken for. At age 70 he had heart bypass surgery, but came back to work. At age 73, he developed cancer, went on medical leave for months, but came back to work. At age 75, cancer returned. He left work intending to come back, but died two months later.

One of my current co-workers used to be full-time. She left to be a stay-at-home mom, but didn't downsize her lifestyle. Her husband was recently injured and can't work. Now she's returned part-time (no benefits). I think she's counting on a lot of inheritance to fund retirement.

MissNancyPryor

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There was an unfortunate fellow in my office who was terrible at his job.  He had a varied and inconsistent work history and had already filed bankruptcy once.  He finally got fired at age 68 and had to look for a new gig.  He had lied on his resume about his work experience and education already to get this position and will have to rely on doing that again to get another job.     

While employed with us I know he spent every nickel.  He impulsed a trip to Iceland for a short four day vacation alone (he can't stand his wife).  That is a long trip for only 4 days and he seemed to only be doing it because another guy in the office had just planned a vacation trip there.  He would head down to Costa Rica occasionally too, though that is cheaper.     

He had serious PTSD from Vietnam.  He has kids he never speaks to on the other side of the country from an earlier relationship. 

Such a sad life.  I am sure he will be working until he dies.     

Step37

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Wow, some of these stories are beyond comprehension. I worry that my sister and BIL could end up with a similar fate (43 and 50 now); fairly high income, but high expenses, lots of debt and they save nothing. Even if they could sell their property and net a million or two after paying off everything, I donít think theyíd have the discipline to adjust their spending and make it last.

gerardc

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I have a friend who is a 55 year old woman.  She makes around $130k, is married and has 3 adult children, 25, 28 and 30.   25 and 30 still live at home, with no intention of moving out.  One has a low paying job and spends all his money on alcohol and travel with his buddies, the other just lies around the house all day. Hubby was a stay at home dad, so he has never worked since first child was born.  They have a large home in a nice neighborhood that is literally crumbling around them from neglect (despite hubby's 100% free time for at least the past 10 years), yet they spend money lavishly on trips, restaurant meals, clothes, salon services, and enough groceries to feed five families.   The house is jam-packed full of every kind of unnecessary stuff imaginable.  Their kitchen has multiples of every gadget ever made.   She is so very tired of working, but it's all on her and none of them seem to care that she'll be grinding it out until she is a very old woman.   She seems to accept it, thinking there is no other way unless you strike it rich by inheritance or lottery win.   I almost dread the day she finds out we we have quit our jobs and retired early.  She doesn't know of our plans, as she works with my husband and we want to keep it quiet until he's ready to give his notice.

I wonder what her reaction will be when she learns you FIREd. Disbelief, rationalization, blaming it on luck, etc. Anybody has stories about reactions of "consumer" co-workers to your early retirement?


bluemarie

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I work in health care in a very lucrative specialty.  Typically my partners and I gross 475k a year.  Couple years were even higher.  Despite that, I have a partner who got divorced (strike one) while still supporting two of his three kids, got remarried to one of the hospital secretaries (strike two), got screwed in his divorce because he was schtupping "strike two" while still married and got her pregenant (strike three), then had another kid (strike four) and has had to support his step kids who he tried to buy their affection or approval (strike five), then he has adopted three more kids (VERY KIND NICE AND CHARITABLE but...strike six, seven and eight), has purchase not one (strike nine) but TWO (strike 10) vacation homes.  Oh yeah and he's in his sixties and can't afford life insurance.

Needless to say despite making a salary that makes him nearly a 1%er, he lives paycheck to paycheck.

If this is in Georgia, I think you work with my dad :\  If he has a daughter in New York and a son in Alaska, it's definitely him.  Crazy life choices for sure.

ETA: To be actually on topic in the thread - when I was in school and working retail, one of my coworkers was 80+.  I wish it had been a "work part-time for fulfillment/social engagement" thing, but she was so miserable that I don't think she would have been there if she didn't have to.  She was so tiny and frail she physically couldn't do most parts of the job, but was still there when I moved on.  The store eventually closed and I've wondered a few times what happened to her - no matter how hard it must be to work a job you hate at that stage of life, having to job hunt again seems like it must be even worse.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2018, 06:41:16 PM by bluemarie »

dude

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A lawyer in my building is a hell of a trial lawyer. Very aggressive and very talented but not in a high paying specialty.  He and his wife always have to look the part. New identical BMWs every couple of years. Over decorated McMansion. Trips to Europe.

I'm talking to him the other day and he is bemoaning the fact that he pissed off an opposing party who filed a bar complaint. The bar is taking it very seriously and he is looking at a possible 1 or 2 year suspension. His comment to me "How can I pay my living expenses for 2 years if I'm suspended?"

 The man is 72 years old and has practically nothing at all set aside for retirement.  He needs to keep working  but won't be allowed to do the one marketable thing he is good at. I'm in my 60s. If some licensing board told me I could not practice my profession for 2 years my thought would be "Well I wanted to retire on my own terms but I guess I'm all right with doing it a little bit earlier than I planned."

Reminds me of an AUSA I work with (I'm agency counsel) who, back when the GOP shut down the government during the Obama administration, was freaking out about how he was going to pay his mortgage!  Not live for 1-2 years, but pay ONE mortgage payment! Guy drives a Lexus SUV, paid obscene amounts for his kid's sports travel team, makes around $175k/year and is in his mid-50's. I was floored. My guess is he doesn't have jack in his TSP (401k).

Pigeon

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The saddest situations I've seen are people who have children with serious and expensive long-term disabilities that have prohibited them from saving for retirement, despite being quite frugal.

Sibley

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The saddest situations I've seen are people who have children with serious and expensive long-term disabilities that have prohibited them from saving for retirement, despite being quite frugal.

There are times that I think much of the medical knowledge, technology, medicines, etc that we have today are a bad thing. People who live every day in pain because we can keep them alive but not fix the problem.

Nightwatchman9270

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I work in health care in a very lucrative specialty.  Typically my partners and I gross 475k a year.  Couple years were even higher.  Despite that, I have a partner who got divorced (strike one) while still supporting two of his three kids, got remarried to one of the hospital secretaries (strike two), got screwed in his divorce because he was schtupping "strike two" while still married and got her pregenant (strike three), then had another kid (strike four) and has had to support his step kids who he tried to buy their affection or approval (strike five), then he has adopted three more kids (VERY KIND NICE AND CHARITABLE but...strike six, seven and eight), has purchase not one (strike nine) but TWO (strike 10) vacation homes.  Oh yeah and he's in his sixties and can't afford life insurance.

Needless to say despite making a salary that makes him nearly a 1%er, he lives paycheck to paycheck.

If this is in Georgia, I think you work with my dad :\  If he has a daughter in New York and a son in Alaska, it's definitely him.  Crazy life choices for sure.

ETA: To be actually on topic in the thread - when I was in school and working retail, one of my coworkers was 80+.  I wish it had been a "work part-time for fulfillment/social engagement" thing, but she was so miserable that I don't think she would have been there if she didn't have to.  She was so tiny and frail she physically couldn't do most parts of the job, but was still there when I moved on.  The store eventually closed and I've wondered a few times what happened to her - no matter how hard it must be to work a job you hate at that stage of life, having to job hunt again seems like it must be even worse.

Nope not him.  I don't work in Georgia. I guess its an all-too-common story.  Sorry if your dad is in a similar situation though.  FWIW I've done a lot of stupid things in my own life too and I'm just now getting back on track so I guess I shouldn't be so holier-than-thou.

« Last Edit: April 17, 2018, 05:42:04 AM by Nightwatchman9270 »