Author Topic: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."  (Read 15617 times)

Kaspian

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"Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« on: June 29, 2015, 09:58:40 AM »
Scott, a 60-year-old adjunct professor, said in an interview with Vitae. "Unless you have a spouse or partner, you're looking at dire poverty in old age...."

http://www.dailyfinance.com/2015/06/27/what-retirement-without-savings-looks-like/

As a single person, I don't think so and I certainly hope the fuck not!  (PS:  Suicide probably also shouldn't be promoted to the world as any sort of logical escape plan.)

Under "Start Saving for Retirement Now" tips it says:

"A recent LearnVest study found that a saver who begins putting away $600 a year in a retirement fund at age 25 will have $72,000 by age 65."

^^  What the fuck is that--some sort of joke?!  Are they telling people that $72K is some sort of sweet spot?  You're gonna need to save a little more than that, bucko.  And why did they need to do a whole "study" to determine a simple 5% return which Networthify  could tell me in less than 5 seconds?

Have I been click-baited through their RRS feed?  Surely the article can't be serious!

ms

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2015, 07:07:21 PM »
Heh. 72k is a lot of money for some people. My boyfriend thinks that 100k in his RRSP is a good goal to aspire to. Still working on convincing him we'll need "a little more".

MoneyCat

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2015, 07:15:20 PM »
There are some people who seriously talk about a "Smith and Wesson" retirement plan, because they are too weak to give up new trucks every three years and lunch out everyday while they are young.  It's really pathetic.

Elderwood17

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2015, 08:00:06 PM »
There are some people who seriously talk about a "Smith and Wesson" retirement plan, because they are too weak to give up new trucks every three years and lunch out everyday while they are young.  It's really pathetic.
I have heard of people jokingly referencing such a plan, but not seriously.  Even the joke is pathetic, if you ask me.

Mr Dumpster Stache

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2015, 08:16:35 AM »
Now I have a setting for a dystopian novel stuck in my head... everybody spends like crazy their whole lives then kills themselves once they can't spend anymore... And maybe the credit card companies figure out a way to bring them back to life as zombie slaves... hmmmm...

If anybody needs me I'll be negotiating my sequel and movie adaption rights. ;)

ash7962

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2015, 08:56:57 AM »
Wow, the first time "building an emergency fund" is suggested is in the 40's-50's section.  Terrible.

GuitarStv

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2015, 09:11:52 AM »
Hey, at least they're planning.

Apocalyptica602

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2015, 09:17:24 AM »
You know... I took a look at "$600/year" and was like... $72k after 40 years?! That math can't be right!

Then I realized I was subconsciously thinking "$600 / month" Like I couldn't even fathom only saving $600 / year.

As the younger part of my generation would say #mustachianproblems.

klystomane

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2015, 09:26:07 AM »
You've lived life to the max until you're in old age. Now, you're probably not functioning properly and have no family that cares about you. If you're not religious, what's so bad about it and what's really holding you back?

Objectively speaking, I don't think it's that bad of a plan...we all have to go eventually.

EricP

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2015, 09:41:09 AM »
You know... I took a look at "$600/year" and was like... $72k after 40 years?! That math can't be right!

Then I realized I was subconsciously thinking "$600 / month" Like I couldn't even fathom only saving $600 / year.

As the younger part of my generation would say #mustachianproblems.

Did the exact same thing.  Was thinking "Did they just put it in savings accounts and not earn interest?"  Then I did the math a little more, realized that wasn't right either.  Took me three reads to realize that was per year. 

Quote
extra income through insurance.

Also, could someone splain to me what that means.  Are they talking about whole life insurance?

vhalros

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2015, 10:34:13 AM »
Well, he is sort of right that as a 60 year old adjunct professor your are screwed. I honestly don't know how they get people to take adjunct professor jobs (well, I know a few of them who are already FI and they just do it because they like to teach, but I don't think that is the typical situation).

Cassie

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #11 on: June 30, 2015, 10:42:24 AM »
The thing about adjunct teaching is that the pay varies widely. Also with all the online courses some can pay very well. The public universities pay much better then the private ones. It takes some investigating but you can find some that pay extremely well. I know from personal experience.

MoneyCat

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #12 on: June 30, 2015, 10:43:29 AM »
Well, he is sort of right that as a 60 year old adjunct professor your are screwed. I honestly don't know how they get people to take adjunct professor jobs (well, I know a few of them who are already FI and they just do it because they like to teach, but I don't think that is the typical situation).

The only adjunct professor I know foolishly got a Master's degree in Philosophy, so it's the only kind of work he can get.  Other than his other part-time job working at Home Depot.

Kaspian

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2015, 11:27:31 AM »
Now I have a setting for a dystopian novel stuck in my head... everybody spends like crazy their whole lives then kills themselves once they can't spend anymore... And maybe the credit card companies figure out a way to bring them back to life as zombie slaves... hmmmm...

If anybody needs me I'll be negotiating my sequel and movie adaption rights. ;)

I'd read that!!  However, it could possibly trump any horror book I've ever touched and keep me up at night.  Mass consumers already seem like zombies to me--doubling up the zombiness is just plain horrifying!!

shelivesthedream

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2015, 12:53:45 PM »
I thought the middle section, about what lifestyle changes you would have to make if you retired on no savings, was quite reasonable. It could have been a bit harsher, but it was still sound.

However, the thing that I really don't understand is why being single makes it impossible to retire while having a spouse suddenly makes it possible. Of course you have two incomes with a spouse but you also have, guess what, two people needing to retire! Can anyone explain this to me?

EricP

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #15 on: June 30, 2015, 01:00:08 PM »
I thought the middle section, about what lifestyle changes you would have to make if you retired on no savings, was quite reasonable. It could have been a bit harsher, but it was still sound.

However, the thing that I really don't understand is why being single makes it impossible to retire while having a spouse suddenly makes it possible. Of course you have two incomes with a spouse but you also have, guess what, two people needing to retire! Can anyone explain this to me?

Economies of scale.  A single person and a married couple have exactly the same needs in terms of housing, electricity, cable bills, internet.  There are very few things that increase from one person to two.  Cars, food, and health insurance.  Other than that, the second person is basically free.  Even the car can be thrown out in retirement as there are few times when two retired people need to be going to two separate places.

Mind you, a single person could downsize to share a 2BR apartment or rent a room and the like, but that really isn't "acceptable" as a grown adult out there in ConsumerLand.

shelivesthedream

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #16 on: June 30, 2015, 01:17:41 PM »
I thought the middle section, about what lifestyle changes you would have to make if you retired on no savings, was quite reasonable. It could have been a bit harsher, but it was still sound.

However, the thing that I really don't understand is why being single makes it impossible to retire while having a spouse suddenly makes it possible. Of course you have two incomes with a spouse but you also have, guess what, two people needing to retire! Can anyone explain this to me?

Economies of scale.  A single person and a married couple have exactly the same needs in terms of housing, electricity, cable bills, internet.  There are very few things that increase from one person to two.  Cars, food, and health insurance.  Other than that, the second person is basically free.  Even the car can be thrown out in retirement as there are few times when two retired people need to be going to two separate places.

Mind you, a single person could downsize to share a 2BR apartment or rent a room and the like, but that really isn't "acceptable" as a grown adult out there in ConsumerLand.

Hm... I've heard "two can live as cheaply as one" before but I'm always sceptical. The things I value and the things I cut corners on are different to those my husband cares or doesn't care about. This means we end up spending to the highest common denominator on things like toiletries, food and household items which means we spend more on variable expenses than if I lived alone. Yes, there is the cut in rent by living together in a 1BR flat but it's not all gravy.

Faraday

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #17 on: June 30, 2015, 01:19:15 PM »
I thought the middle section, about what lifestyle changes you would have to make if you retired on no savings, was quite reasonable. It could have been a bit harsher, but it was still sound.

However, the thing that I really don't understand is why being single makes it impossible to retire while having a spouse suddenly makes it possible. Of course you have two incomes with a spouse but you also have, guess what, two people needing to retire! Can anyone explain this to me?

I think the implication is that two people can split the cost of housing, food and transport, making life more "affordable" for the two over the one.

But to me, this kind of rationalization is simply another permutation of the consuma suckka problem, because an individual, with only themselves to worry about, often has far more options for being frugal than does a couple.

But, guess what: If your single person is frugal, invests in the MMM way and also does something like pay off their mortgage before they retire, their spend rate can drop to insanely low levels. (I mean, how many zillion threads do we see on here where you've got a couple and one is frugal, one is not, and the frugal one has to complain to us about it? I don't see any "retirement advantage" in those threads!)

The one exception to this that I can think of is divorce, especially late-in-life angry divorce where two sets of lawyers are brought in to beat each other up.

My DW's parents were like this and had to work until nearly the days they died. Not only did they go out of this world without a dime, they had nothing to leave for their children - the lawyers got it all.


Cougar

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #18 on: June 30, 2015, 01:33:24 PM »
You've lived life to the max until you're in old age. Now, you're probably not functioning properly and have no family that cares about you. If you're not religious, what's so bad about it and what's really holding you back?

Objectively speaking, I don't think it's that bad of a plan...we all have to go eventually.


i would second this.

i've seen enough seniors to know that once you get over the mid seventys a lot of things stop working well and most people dont have much people contacts outside their immediate families. if they'd have enough and waking up with wet underpants on a regular basis trying to remember who you are; it might look like a good alternative.

Faraday

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #19 on: June 30, 2015, 01:53:39 PM »
i would second this.

i've seen enough seniors to know that once you get over the mid seventys a lot of things stop working well and most people dont have much people contacts outside their immediate families. if they'd have enough and waking up with wet underpants on a regular basis trying to remember who you are; it might look like a good alternative.

I would call bullshit on what you wrote, except it held true for my father's parent's generation. It was damn near terrifying to me to see it as a young adult. I mean, hey, am I gonna INHERIT this same fate?

No. I maintain, this fate is just another part of being a consuma suckka.

I have determined that hell will freeze solid with the devil in the middle before I allow this to happen to me and I'm using The Sacred Bicycle as my tool for achieving advanced old age without succumbing to this fate.

My evidence? I ride the "Assault on Mt. Mitchell" and the "Assault on Marion" (or at least I try). I am regularly passed (and burned to a crisp) by dudes who are retired and well past 65. There's not a Depends anywhere to be seen.

My plan is, in retirement. to become one of THESE dudes, or die trying!


yyc-phil

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #20 on: June 30, 2015, 02:20:39 PM »
i would second this.

i've seen enough seniors to know that once you get over the mid seventys a lot of things stop working well and most people dont have much people contacts outside their immediate families. if they'd have enough and waking up with wet underpants on a regular basis trying to remember who you are; it might look like a good alternative.

My plan is, in retirement. to become one of THESE dudes, or die trying!

+1. That's how I see old age. At 57, I can't stand one day without sweating my ass off doing a HIIT workout, hiking, or biking. I am the crazy old dude people see biking every day of the year, even in the dead of an Arctic winter, and I plan to continue as long as my body will allow it.

theknitcycle

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #21 on: June 30, 2015, 04:15:43 PM »
Now I have a setting for a dystopian novel stuck in my head... everybody spends like crazy their whole lives then kills themselves once they can't spend anymore... And maybe the credit card companies figure out a way to bring them back to life as zombie slaves... hmmmm...

If anybody needs me I'll be negotiating my sequel and movie adaption rights. ;)

There is a short story with a sort-of-like-this premise.  Not the planned suicide so much, but that anyone who's short on cash can sell the rights to their body to a reanimation company. Then after they die, the company collects, and zombifies them, and most of the menial/distasteful work in the world of the story is done by those zombies.  Pretty sure it was in here:  http://www.amazon.com/The-New-Dead-Zombie-Anthology/dp/0312559712

dcheesi

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #22 on: June 30, 2015, 04:34:43 PM »
i would second this.

i've seen enough seniors to know that once you get over the mid seventys a lot of things stop working well and most people dont have much people contacts outside their immediate families. if they'd have enough and waking up with wet underpants on a regular basis trying to remember who you are; it might look like a good alternative.

I would call bullshit on what you wrote, except it held true for my father's parent's generation. It was damn near terrifying to me to see it as a young adult. I mean, hey, am I gonna INHERIT this same fate?

No. I maintain, this fate is just another part of being a consuma suckka.

I have determined that hell will freeze solid with the devil in the middle before I allow this to happen to me and I'm using The Sacred Bicycle as my tool for achieving advanced old age without succumbing to this fate.

My evidence? I ride the "Assault on Mt. Mitchell" and the "Assault on Marion" (or at least I try). I am regularly passed (and burned to a crisp) by dudes who are retired and well past 65. There's not a Depends anywhere to be seen.

My plan is, in retirement. to become one of THESE dudes, or die trying!
65 != 75, or 85+

My dad worked his butt off (on personal and community projects) well into his 70s... Until spinal stenosis laid him out for a month, followed by back surgery and (attempted) recovery. He never has been the same after that. He's still sharp(ish), but his body just can't do what it used to, and without my mom and my brother around, he might well be in a home by now.

Human bodies simply wear out eventually, no matter how well maintained they are.

GuitarStv

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #23 on: June 30, 2015, 04:49:50 PM »
i would second this.

i've seen enough seniors to know that once you get over the mid seventys a lot of things stop working well and most people dont have much people contacts outside their immediate families. if they'd have enough and waking up with wet underpants on a regular basis trying to remember who you are; it might look like a good alternative.

I would call bullshit on what you wrote, except it held true for my father's parent's generation. It was damn near terrifying to me to see it as a young adult. I mean, hey, am I gonna INHERIT this same fate?

No. I maintain, this fate is just another part of being a consuma suckka.

I have determined that hell will freeze solid with the devil in the middle before I allow this to happen to me and I'm using The Sacred Bicycle as my tool for achieving advanced old age without succumbing to this fate.

My evidence? I ride the "Assault on Mt. Mitchell" and the "Assault on Marion" (or at least I try). I am regularly passed (and burned to a crisp) by dudes who are retired and well past 65. There's not a Depends anywhere to be seen.

My plan is, in retirement. to become one of THESE dudes, or die trying!

Well . . . if you're into Dante and the Divine Comedy, Hell is frozen at the centre with the Devil stuck in the middle of the ice.


Some people do well into their 70s.  Few do into their 90s.  We have a family history of dementia so I suspect things will start going south in my 70s.  I do not want to be kept alive the way my grandmother has been, and would prefer to remove that painful decision from the hands of my loved ones.

TrMama

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #24 on: June 30, 2015, 04:58:55 PM »
i would second this.

i've seen enough seniors to know that once you get over the mid seventys a lot of things stop working well and most people dont have much people contacts outside their immediate families. if they'd have enough and waking up with wet underpants on a regular basis trying to remember who you are; it might look like a good alternative.

My plan is, in retirement. to become one of THESE dudes, or die trying!

+1. That's how I see old age. At 57, I can't stand one day without sweating my ass off doing a HIIT workout, hiking, or biking. I am the crazy old dude people see biking every day of the year, even in the dead of an Arctic winter, and I plan to continue as long as my body will allow it.

That's all well and good for as long as it lasts, but even athletes aren't immortal. I've been spending lots of time with my grandma in her new nursing home lately and it's only solidified my decision to check out before I get to that point. She's the definition of "tough old bird", but again, she's not immortal and her quality of life is terrible.

My decision has absolutely nothing to do with finances and everything to do with quality of life. You know, that concept that's the precursor to mustachianism?

One Noisy Cat

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #25 on: June 30, 2015, 06:07:49 PM »
     Obviously living on a nest egg of $72,000 plus social security at age 65 is ridiculous. But if you look at it this way, saving $600 a year is saving $1.65 a day. A vending machine drink  costs about that much ($1.50 for iced tea at my local library).  If you can make seven such transaction everyday, you will have close to $500,000 by age 65.  The magic and power of compound interest over time.

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ozbeach

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #27 on: June 30, 2015, 10:41:31 PM »
I thought the middle section, about what lifestyle changes you would have to make if you retired on no savings, was quite reasonable. It could have been a bit harsher, but it was still sound.

However, the thing that I really don't understand is why being single makes it impossible to retire while having a spouse suddenly makes it possible. Of course you have two incomes with a spouse but you also have, guess what, two people needing to retire! Can anyone explain this to me?

Economies of scale.  A single person and a married couple have exactly the same needs in terms of housing, electricity, cable bills, internet.  There are very few things that increase from one person to two.  Cars, food, and health insurance.  Other than that, the second person is basically free.  Even the car can be thrown out in retirement as there are few times when two retired people need to be going to two separate places.

Mind you, a single person could downsize to share a 2BR apartment or rent a room and the like, but that really isn't "acceptable" as a grown adult out there in ConsumerLand.

Hm... I've heard "two can live as cheaply as one" before but I'm always sceptical. The things I value and the things I cut corners on are different to those my husband cares or doesn't care about. This means we end up spending to the highest common denominator on things like toiletries, food and household items which means we spend more on variable expenses than if I lived alone. Yes, there is the cut in rent by living together in a 1BR flat but it's not all gravy.

I have saved basically all my 'stache since being single. I can economise in those areas that make sense to me, and splurge where it feels good to me. I've moved to a LCOL area, and got to FI in the process and now I'm working on RE (maybe not that early, but I'll have a lot more than $72K behind me when I do!)

zephyr911

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #28 on: July 01, 2015, 07:03:15 AM »
Hm... I've heard "two can live as cheaply as one" before but I'm always sceptical. The things I value and the things I cut corners on are different to those my husband cares or doesn't care about. This means we end up spending to the highest common denominator on things like toiletries, food and household items which means we spend more on variable expenses than if I lived alone. Yes, there is the cut in rent by living together in a 1BR flat but it's not all gravy.
From what I've read, research indicates more like "two can live for about 40% more". Of course, details matter.

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #29 on: July 01, 2015, 07:28:43 AM »

i would second this.

i've seen enough seniors to know that once you get over the mid seventys a lot of things stop working well and most people dont have much people contacts outside their immediate families. if they'd have enough and waking up with wet underpants on a regular basis trying to remember who you are; it might look like a good alternative.

My plan is, in retirement. to become one of THESE dudes, or die trying!

Dementia can play out worst if the rest of your body is healthy. There is a certain point beyond which genuinly caring relatives curse the healthy heart, strong lungs and fine immune system of a dementia patient. This is when the family doctor recommends to discontinue flue shots and tells you to hope for some food particle causing pneumonia.

Suicide is my LTC plan. But not for financial reasons.

Squirrel away

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #30 on: July 01, 2015, 07:55:19 AM »
I've read this point of view on other forums when discussing pensions and retirement. It's incredible that some people would consider suicide rather than just saving and investing!

If I ever got a terrible disease and my quality of life was compromised I would consider suicide as a kinder alternative. Both my grandmothers lasted into their eighties so I will pull the plug if I get to the point where I'm constantly at the hospital or doctor and being propped up with a billion meds.

EricP

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #31 on: July 01, 2015, 09:08:39 AM »
I've read this point of view on other forums when discussing pensions and retirement. It's incredible that some people would consider suicide rather than just saving and investing!

If I ever got a terrible disease and my quality of life was compromised I would consider suicide as a kinder alternative. Both my grandmothers lasted into their eighties so I will pull the plug if I get to the point where I'm constantly at the hospital or doctor and being propped up with a billion meds.

Usually it's just from old people who have already screwed the pooch on the whole saving and investing thing.  They're in their 50s and 60s and are past the prime earning years, probably already layed off from their main career and are bouncing around from different jobs.  They're making quite a bit less than used to, still haven't paid off their house because they moved into a bigger one in their 40s so they could have enough room for their grandkids to each have a bedroom when they came to visit, and they're needing cash to cover their jobless periods.  They aren't willing to downsize because they don't realize the immense savings or they have emotional reasons (I can't sell the house my kids grew up in, etc.).

Healthcare expenses are also rising for them and they don't have long term care insurance and can't afford it.  Their kids can't help because they have student loans they are still paying down.  It's definitely a lot harder for 50+ aged people to save and that's the people who are doing this.  Although, I think a lot of the YOLO kids in my generation might be thinking the same stuff: Live large now, kill myself when I'm old cause it sucks being old.

Squirrel away

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #32 on: July 01, 2015, 09:34:40 AM »
I've read this point of view on other forums when discussing pensions and retirement. It's incredible that some people would consider suicide rather than just saving and investing!

If I ever got a terrible disease and my quality of life was compromised I would consider suicide as a kinder alternative. Both my grandmothers lasted into their eighties so I will pull the plug if I get to the point where I'm constantly at the hospital or doctor and being propped up with a billion meds.

Usually it's just from old people who have already screwed the pooch on the whole saving and investing thing.  They're in their 50s and 60s and are past the prime earning years, probably already layed off from their main career and are bouncing around from different jobs.  They're making quite a bit less than used to, still haven't paid off their house because they moved into a bigger one in their 40s so they could have enough room for their grandkids to each have a bedroom when they came to visit, and they're needing cash to cover their jobless periods.  They aren't willing to downsize because they don't realize the immense savings or they have emotional reasons (I can't sell the house my kids grew up in, etc.).

Healthcare expenses are also rising for them and they don't have long term care insurance and can't afford it.  Their kids can't help because they have student loans they are still paying down.  It's definitely a lot harder for 50+ aged people to save and that's the people who are doing this.  Although, I think a lot of the YOLO kids in my generation might be thinking the same stuff: Live large now, kill myself when I'm old cause it sucks being old.

It's probably a bit different here in the UK as people who haven't saved for retirement can rely on the state pension and they also get free healthcare and free residential care if they have to go into a home when they are old and unwell.

It's the more well off people who own property who have to sell up and pay for their own care when they are elderly, which is fair I suppose.




EricP

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #33 on: July 01, 2015, 09:39:56 AM »
I've read this point of view on other forums when discussing pensions and retirement. It's incredible that some people would consider suicide rather than just saving and investing!

If I ever got a terrible disease and my quality of life was compromised I would consider suicide as a kinder alternative. Both my grandmothers lasted into their eighties so I will pull the plug if I get to the point where I'm constantly at the hospital or doctor and being propped up with a billion meds.

Usually it's just from old people who have already screwed the pooch on the whole saving and investing thing.  They're in their 50s and 60s and are past the prime earning years, probably already layed off from their main career and are bouncing around from different jobs.  They're making quite a bit less than used to, still haven't paid off their house because they moved into a bigger one in their 40s so they could have enough room for their grandkids to each have a bedroom when they came to visit, and they're needing cash to cover their jobless periods.  They aren't willing to downsize because they don't realize the immense savings or they have emotional reasons (I can't sell the house my kids grew up in, etc.).

Healthcare expenses are also rising for them and they don't have long term care insurance and can't afford it.  Their kids can't help because they have student loans they are still paying down.  It's definitely a lot harder for 50+ aged people to save and that's the people who are doing this.  Although, I think a lot of the YOLO kids in my generation might be thinking the same stuff: Live large now, kill myself when I'm old cause it sucks being old.

It's probably a bit different here in the UK as people who haven't saved for retirement can rely on the state pension and they also get free healthcare and free residential care if they have to go into a home when they are old and unwell.

It's the more well off people who own property who have to sell up and pay for their own care when they are elderly, which is fair I suppose.

Old people can get all of that as well here.  We've got Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid.  It's just people like to live large and couldn't imagine living on only SS.

Squirrel away

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #34 on: July 01, 2015, 09:54:05 AM »
I've read this point of view on other forums when discussing pensions and retirement. It's incredible that some people would consider suicide rather than just saving and investing!

If I ever got a terrible disease and my quality of life was compromised I would consider suicide as a kinder alternative. Both my grandmothers lasted into their eighties so I will pull the plug if I get to the point where I'm constantly at the hospital or doctor and being propped up with a billion meds.

Usually it's just from old people who have already screwed the pooch on the whole saving and investing thing.  They're in their 50s and 60s and are past the prime earning years, probably already layed off from their main career and are bouncing around from different jobs.  They're making quite a bit less than used to, still haven't paid off their house because they moved into a bigger one in their 40s so they could have enough room for their grandkids to each have a bedroom when they came to visit, and they're needing cash to cover their jobless periods.  They aren't willing to downsize because they don't realize the immense savings or they have emotional reasons (I can't sell the house my kids grew up in, etc.).

Healthcare expenses are also rising for them and they don't have long term care insurance and can't afford it.  Their kids can't help because they have student loans they are still paying down.  It's definitely a lot harder for 50+ aged people to save and that's the people who are doing this.  Although, I think a lot of the YOLO kids in my generation might be thinking the same stuff: Live large now, kill myself when I'm old cause it sucks being old.

It's probably a bit different here in the UK as people who haven't saved for retirement can rely on the state pension and they also get free healthcare and free residential care if they have to go into a home when they are old and unwell.

It's the more well off people who own property who have to sell up and pay for their own care when they are elderly, which is fair I suppose.

Old people can get all of that as well here.  We've got Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid.  It's just people like to live large and couldn't imagine living on only SS.

Oh okay, I understand.

sleepyguy

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #35 on: July 01, 2015, 11:44:35 AM »
LOL, $600 per year!!!  Hell people spend more than that on their damn cell phone plans! (I don't).  I thought that was a typo as well!  Then I read the 72k at 65... omg.

I'd say $300 per mth would be the bare minimum, compound 40yrs with 5.75% return, that comes to $550k.  I think most at 65 would do ok with that... $550k 40yrs from now would be considerable less but would still be ok imho.


"A recent LearnVest study found that a saver who begins putting away $600 a year in a retirement fund at age 25 will have $72,000 by age 65."

^^  What the fuck is that--some sort of joke?!  Are they telling people that $72K is some sort of sweet spot?  You're gonna need to save a little more than that, bucko.  And why did they need to do a whole "study" to determine a simple 5% return which Networthify  could tell me in less than 5 seconds?

EricP

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #36 on: July 01, 2015, 11:58:18 AM »
LOL, $600 per year!!!  Hell people spend more than that on their damn cell phone plans! (I don't).  I thought that was a typo as well!  Then I read the 72k at 65... omg.

I'd say $300 per mth would be the bare minimum, compound 40yrs with 5.75% return, that comes to $550k.  I think most at 65 would do ok with that... $550k 40yrs from now would be considerable less but would still be ok imho.


"A recent LearnVest study found that a saver who begins putting away $600 a year in a retirement fund at age 25 will have $72,000 by age 65."

^^  What the fuck is that--some sort of joke?!  Are they telling people that $72K is some sort of sweet spot?  You're gonna need to save a little more than that, bucko.  And why did they need to do a whole "study" to determine a simple 5% return which Networthify  could tell me in less than 5 seconds?

5.75% nominal return?  What crappy investments are people investing in that are doing that poorly over a 40 yr. time span?  Bump that up to 7% and even then it's still going to be a real return and $300 a month is plenty if you plan on working until you're 65.

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #37 on: July 01, 2015, 01:37:08 PM »
"A recent LearnVest study found that a saver who begins putting away $600 a year in a retirement fund at age 25 will have $72,000 by age 65."

^^  What the fuck is that--some sort of joke?!  Are they telling people that $72K is some sort of sweet spot? 
$600 per year?  You're talking about saving $50 per month.  For many people, that means skipping one family meal out. 

If you're aware of retirement being an important need, yet are only able to do a minimal amount, let's use that math and see what you could end up having:

- Say you double that to $100/month ... now you'll have roughly 150K in savings.  Not a huge amount, but something.  Can't do it?  Pick up a second job just one day a week.  You couldn't possibly not earn $100/month doing that. 
- You'll need to work 'til full retirement age, then transition straight from paycheck to SS check.
- Buy a modest house and pay on it 30 years; thus, you now need only to pay maintenance in your retirement years. 

You're not living large, but you're also not so poor that you need to consider what another poster called the Smith & Wesson retirement plan.

I remember reading about this professor a few months ago.  Her big argument is that she's worked hard all her life, but she just hasn't "made it" because the world of academia is so tough.  Clearly she's smart.  So when she realized -- maybe around 35-40ish? -- that she wasn't going to make it to a comfortable paycheck, why didn't she go do something else? 


Kaspian

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #38 on: July 02, 2015, 01:03:15 PM »

I remember reading about this professor a few months ago.  Her big argument is that she's worked hard all her life, but she just hasn't "made it" because the world of academia is so tough.  Clearly she's smart.  So when she realized -- maybe around 35-40ish? -- that she wasn't going to make it to a comfortable paycheck, why didn't she go do something else?

Because math?  ...Apparently?  Constantly amazed by people who can quote a paragraph of Dostoyevsky but never calculated net income, years to retirement, and how much they may need.  This is second only to my amazement that people will spend more time watching cat videos on Youtube or playing Candy Crush on Facebook than they spend managing their money and then complain about debt.  Every single day is a battle against my own cynicism. 

Money Mouse

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #39 on: July 10, 2015, 05:06:35 PM »
I don't get it. Even as stupid as I was in my 20's when it came to money, I was still smart enough to contribute 3% of my pay to get the full 3% of matching funds from the company (plus a 8% annual discretionary lump sum I've gotten 15 out of 16 years of employment, which I admit isn't usual). Overtime I've increased that to 10%. If I don't change anything and my employer doesn't change anything, I'll retire w/between $1.3M and $2.2M, depending on ROR and when I pull the plug (ranging from 59.5 and 67, assuming standard American retirement ages). Not bad for essentially half-assing it all these years.

Using a basic compounding calculator, putting $3k per year away in savings (which is 3% of a $50k annual salary w/3% company match, or 6% of same salary w/no match) gets you to just over $900k if you start at age 22 and retire at the standard 67, assuming a 7% annual return. 

$3k per year. To earn ~$36,000 annually (4% withdrawal rate) in addition to SS. Just start when you're 22 and stop at 67. Just about anyone should be able to cough up $250 a month (or $125 if you have an employer match).

Hell, lets say you have your head up your butt and don't start saving until 35. You kick in 10% of your $50k salary and employer matches 3%. You still retire at 67 with $766k.

Unless you just flat-out refuse to save ANYTHING in your 20's, 30's, or even 40's, I just don't see retiring without some sort of nest egg. No, your retirement won't be "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous" but no reason to be put out on an ice flow, either.

WTF are these people doing? I get not thinking about retirement in your 20's and even into your 30's, it's hard to look 40+ years down the road (even though I did it, it was still pretty abstract for me at age 23 when I started my 401k). But by mid-to-late 30's, if NOTHING else, you should see your parents starting there own retirement journeys and it should occur to you to maybe start figuring it out. I have no understanding (or sympathy) for those in the their 40's (or god help us) 50's waking up one day and freaking out that they have no retirement savings.

wenchsenior

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #40 on: July 10, 2015, 07:44:08 PM »
I don't get it. Even as stupid as I was in my 20's when it came to money, I was still smart enough to contribute 3% of my pay to get the full 3% of matching funds from the company (plus a 8% annual discretionary lump sum I've gotten 15 out of 16 years of employment, which I admit isn't usual). Overtime I've increased that to 10%. If I don't change anything and my employer doesn't change anything, I'll retire w/between $1.3M and $2.2M, depending on ROR and when I pull the plug (ranging from 59.5 and 67, assuming standard American retirement ages). Not bad for essentially half-assing it all these years.

Using a basic compounding calculator, putting $3k per year away in savings (which is 3% of a $50k annual salary w/3% company match, or 6% of same salary w/no match) gets you to just over $900k if you start at age 22 and retire at the standard 67, assuming a 7% annual return. 

$3k per year. To earn ~$36,000 annually (4% withdrawal rate) in addition to SS. Just start when you're 22 and stop at 67. Just about anyone should be able to cough up $250 a month (or $125 if you have an employer match).

Hell, lets say you have your head up your butt and don't start saving until 35. You kick in 10% of your $50k salary and employer matches 3%. You still retire at 67 with $766k.

Unless you just flat-out refuse to save ANYTHING in your 20's, 30's, or even 40's, I just don't see retiring without some sort of nest egg. No, your retirement won't be "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous" but no reason to be put out on an ice flow, either.

WTF are these people doing? I get not thinking about retirement in your 20's and even into your 30's, it's hard to look 40+ years down the road (even though I did it, it was still pretty abstract for me at age 23 when I started my 401k). But by mid-to-late 30's, if NOTHING else, you should see your parents starting there own retirement journeys and it should occur to you to maybe start figuring it out. I have no understanding (or sympathy) for those in the their 40's (or god help us) 50's waking up one day and freaking out that they have no retirement savings.

I suspect a whole bunch of different factors, in combo or singly. First off, inborn personality. Some people are inherently better at controlling impulse, others are live-for-the-moment types. This can only be modified to a minimal degree (which is why the famous marshmallow test of toddlers is excellent at predicting certain markers of success for those toddlers 25 years later). Some people are cautious by nature, and tend to think more of the future consequences of actions, but most people are less so. Humans are not terribly good at long term planning of any sort, in general.

Second, environment and modeling behavior provided by parents or other role models is important. I had good modeling from elements of my family (who were frugal and saved in retirement accounts and owned their own businesses, though they never specifically discussed these elements of life with me or told me what I should be doing). My husband grew up with people who barely were always scraping by and never saved. They couldn't even conceive of how to save enough to retire on because no one they knew had savings. They weren't educated, and probably had no idea how to invest, how IRAs and 401Ks worked, or how to access them. They worked until they were no longer physically capable, and then lived briefly even poorer, and usually died quickly. When I first met my husband, he hated when I talked about planning for retirement. It was an inconceivable concept to him: Retirement and Death were synonymous in his mind.

Third, many people work in jobs with no retirement plans (perhaps about half? can't remember precise stats). Or they change jobs frequently and don't ever build enough of a 401k to feel that rolling it over is worth it, so they cash in when they change jobs. Often they have no consistent work culture where retirement options are discussed or reinforced. So, no regular peer pressure to get going on it.

Fourth, life cycle 'order': As you noted, when you were young it didn't seem real to you. But at least you were working a job that had the option, and you realized you should take it. My husband, after doing wage slave jobs and stints in the military, didn't even start his first professional non military job with benefits until he was in his late 30s (after going back to school). At that point, he just wanted a stable paycheck and to live in a decent house and pay off bills. At least he grasped the value of 401k by then, but for a lot of people (myself included) I think retirement feels like the thing you do AFTER you get the rest of your 'adult' life rolling. When I was in my late 20s and finally getting out of grad school, it was the first time it occurred to me to seriously consider retirement savings. But the first few years out, I was more concerned with paying off debt, getting a reliable car, buying a house, and hell...even buying a BED. Thankfully, I did recognize that employer matches were free money. But I can see how people sort of fall into, "first the house and student loan payoff; oh, now we need to have the kids; save for the kids' college; and then at 45...OH CRAP we need to save for ourselves!" Big challenges like stupid debt, divorces, medical bills, etc. also crop up in many peoples' lives and contribute to this problem.

Fifth, inertia, and lack of knowledge:  Some people react to uncertainty or anxiety by freezing up. Retirement planning seems like a complex thing, they are ignorant of it, so much is riding on it...they panic. Then they say, "I'll sign up for the 401k once I have a chance to read the paperwork/I'll sign up once I've paid this car off and can spare the money/What if I make the wrong fund selection...I need to consult with someone who know, but who should I trust?' etc. It's not logical, but research shows that the more options people have, the harder decision making is...and the retirement options can sometimes be large and scary unless you seek out guidance. I have family and friends who have frozen up in terror at having to tackle it, and others who just hate/are bored by even thinking about it. Either way, they put it off and tell themselves they'll do it later.

Sixth, 'too late now' syndrome: You're correct that, at a certain point, the need to save DOES sink in for most people. But if they have nothing, and they are past 40, it can seem like an impossible catch-up task, which makes many personality types avoid and ignore even more. That's where you get the "I'll just work till I die" and other unrealistic 'plans'.

Finally, sheer ignorance and lack of resources. Lots and lots of people are just not that intelligent and might find some of these concepts tough to grasp. Or, they might see their grandparents (who might have other sources of income than SS, such as pension) living ok and think, "it will work out somehow". Essentially, over optimistic magical thinking, which humans are very prone to. Or they just make so little money (remember that median household income is around 50K, which means half of the households make less. In those cases, the drops in the bucket they feel they can carve out probably seem too small to ever add up.

There's probably other contributing issues. It's not so much that I have sympathy for exactly, it's just that I think it's pretty easy when you combine a bunch of these to see why a lot of people get going quite late, and make a lot of less than optimal decisions. I've seen some combo of a LOT of these things among friends and family, all of whom are college-educated, so they don't even make up a representative sample of the average American.

Faraday

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #41 on: July 11, 2015, 11:00:25 PM »
I don't get it. Even as stupid as I was in my 20's when it came to money, I was still smart enough to contribute 3% of my pay to get the full 3% of matching funds from the company (plus a 8% annual discretionary lump sum I've gotten 15 out of 16 years of employment, which I admit isn't usual).

...various wise words were here...

WTF are these people doing? I get not thinking about retirement in your 20's and even into your 30's, it's hard to look 40+ years down the road (even though I did it, it was still pretty abstract for me at age 23 when I started my 401k). But by mid-to-late 30's, if NOTHING else, you should see your parents starting there own retirement journeys and it should occur to you to maybe start figuring it out. I have no understanding (or sympathy) for those in the their 40's (or god help us) 50's waking up one day and freaking out that they have no retirement savings.

It's possible for one to have had some really, really shitty savings and investment luck. Examples:


- My primary employer in the 80's and 90's didn't have 401k because they had a pension plan. When the jobs went to mexico (NAFTA), the site was shut down and the company got bought/merged, the pension disappeared
- I lost all company matching in a 401k the first employer I worked for that had a 401k, because "I didn't move it out fast enough". Nowadays you can't pull crap like that.
- I had some few, smallish stock investments that evaporated when the companies I bought declared bankruptcy out of the blue, with excellent fundamentals

So, by 2002, I'm pretty skittish about 401k but I'm still in there slugging it out, and from 2002-2007, I'm pushing as much money as I can into 401k, but the particular funds our carrier at the time invested in took a severe beating in 2005 timeframe, losing over half their value. I changed jobs, but couldn't move the money because I didn't want to realize the loss. So I let that money sit until 2010 when it finally recovered to what I had when I started. THEN I moved it to the current employer's 401k.

I wasn't doing anything strange or risky - my biggest losses came within two corporate 401k plans and entail ethics loopholes that are probably closed now.

Back in those days, I was saving "enough to get the company match", as that was the prevailing advice. Only in the last two-or-so years, after finding MMM, ERE and Bogleheads, have I really understood how to ramp up savings and maximize efficiency and yield. I'm rolling along pretty good now, excepting the fact that I taste-tested a fund in my 401k for six months that yielded negative returns and decided it was just a little too silly for me, went back to the tried-and-true Vanguard 2020 Retirement Index Fund.

There's a LOT of people in this world who've been shit on. Pension fund embezzlement, 401k loopholes, bad stocks, etc. Think of the Enron employees who were buying Enron and planning to retire on that stock. Think of the owners of "original GM" who had their investment wiped out.

You gotta understand: I'm a man who had a stay at home wife and two boys. When I got burned in something, I recoiled because I had primary obligations NOW and every time I got burned trying to save, I had to reallocate funds to the needs at the time, not keep doing something that seemed foolish.

I considered trying to sue some of these various entities, but I really didn't have the resources to do that. If I'd not lost any cash in my savings and investment attempts, I'd probably be FIRE by now. I try not to think about it that way and just count my blessings that I'm making progress now.

In my personal experience, "safe investing" using index funds and corporate pre-tax 401k plans has really only been available the last 8-10 years.

EDIT: Now, I don't mean to come across as a whining wet blanket. It is what it is, I don't have a time machine to go back and fix things. What I will say is that although the world is full of a bunch of loser lemmings when it comes to not saving properly, there are risks and those risks can't be glossed over. I'll tell you one thing: I don't regard the "emergency fund" as optional. It's an essential part of any balanced savings plan.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2015, 11:09:39 PM by mefla »

Digital Dogma

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #42 on: July 12, 2015, 11:57:12 AM »
Now I have a setting for a dystopian novel stuck in my head... everybody spends like crazy their whole lives then kills themselves once they can't spend anymore... And maybe the credit card companies figure out a way to bring them back to life as zombie slaves... hmmmm...

If anybody needs me I'll be negotiating my sequel and movie adaption rights. ;)
Check out a short story in "Rogues", it is called “Tawny Petticoats” by Michael Swanwick, it has a zombie debtor element to it that your post reminded me of.

As for the suicide retirement, that sounds like a whole lot of machismo bullshit made up by someone who doesnt have the self discipline to live within their means. They lack the self control they need to save money, but want to give the illusion to themselves and others that they still have control over their own welfare which they clearly havent planned for. Its a sign of immaturity, disrespect for their family (who would ultimately pay for a decision like that), and a lack of self control.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2015, 12:03:56 PM by Digital Dogma »

Faraday

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #43 on: July 12, 2015, 07:04:21 PM »
As for the suicide retirement, that sounds like a whole lot of machismo bullshit made up by someone who doesnt have the self discipline to live within their means. They lack the self control they need to save money, but want to give the illusion to themselves and others that they still have control over their own welfare which they clearly havent planned for. Its a sign of immaturity, disrespect for their family (who would ultimately pay for a decision like that), and a lack of self control.

+1...oh hell yes. Personal experience with that one.

wenchsenior

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #44 on: July 13, 2015, 07:42:51 AM »
Now I have a setting for a dystopian novel stuck in my head... everybody spends like crazy their whole lives then kills themselves once they can't spend anymore... And maybe the credit card companies figure out a way to bring them back to life as zombie slaves... hmmmm...

If anybody needs me I'll be negotiating my sequel and movie adaption rights. ;)
Check out a short story in "Rogues", it is called “Tawny Petticoats” by Michael Swanwick, it has a zombie debtor element to it that your post reminded me of.

As for the suicide retirement, that sounds like a whole lot of machismo bullshit made up by someone who doesnt have the self discipline to live within their means. They lack the self control they need to save money, but want to give the illusion to themselves and others that they still have control over their own welfare which they clearly havent planned for. Its a sign of immaturity, disrespect for their family (who would ultimately pay for a decision like that), and a lack of self control.

I understand most of the statement, but this part confuses me. Or maybe I'm misunderstanding? I think it would be more respectful of family to check yourself out rather than leave them worrying and trying to support you because you were irresponsible with money. How would the family have to pay for the suicide of an older, poor member?

(Caveat: Certainly a botched suicide is terrible....my sister is an outreach counselor who directs poor and disabled people to state and federal aid that they might qualify for, and she is dealt with such a case recently, and it was not a good scene.)

Money Mouse

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #45 on: July 13, 2015, 08:31:12 AM »
I don't get it. Even as stupid as I was in my 20's when it came to money, I was still smart enough to contribute 3% of my pay to get the full 3% of matching funds from the company (plus a 8% annual discretionary lump sum I've gotten 15 out of 16 years of employment, which I admit isn't usual).

...various wise words were here...

WTF are these people doing? I get not thinking about retirement in your 20's and even into your 30's, it's hard to look 40+ years down the road (even though I did it, it was still pretty abstract for me at age 23 when I started my 401k). But by mid-to-late 30's, if NOTHING else, you should see your parents starting there own retirement journeys and it should occur to you to maybe start figuring it out. I have no understanding (or sympathy) for those in the their 40's (or god help us) 50's waking up one day and freaking out that they have no retirement savings.

It's possible for one to have had some really, really shitty savings and investment luck. Examples:


- My primary employer in the 80's and 90's didn't have 401k because they had a pension plan. When the jobs went to mexico (NAFTA), the site was shut down and the company got bought/merged, the pension disappeared
- I lost all company matching in a 401k the first employer I worked for that had a 401k, because "I didn't move it out fast enough". Nowadays you can't pull crap like that.
- I had some few, smallish stock investments that evaporated when the companies I bought declared bankruptcy out of the blue, with excellent fundamentals

So, by 2002, I'm pretty skittish about 401k but I'm still in there slugging it out, and from 2002-2007, I'm pushing as much money as I can into 401k, but the particular funds our carrier at the time invested in took a severe beating in 2005 timeframe, losing over half their value. I changed jobs, but couldn't move the money because I didn't want to realize the loss. So I let that money sit until 2010 when it finally recovered to what I had when I started. THEN I moved it to the current employer's 401k.

I wasn't doing anything strange or risky - my biggest losses came within two corporate 401k plans and entail ethics loopholes that are probably closed now.

Back in those days, I was saving "enough to get the company match", as that was the prevailing advice. Only in the last two-or-so years, after finding MMM, ERE and Bogleheads, have I really understood how to ramp up savings and maximize efficiency and yield. I'm rolling along pretty good now, excepting the fact that I taste-tested a fund in my 401k for six months that yielded negative returns and decided it was just a little too silly for me, went back to the tried-and-true Vanguard 2020 Retirement Index Fund.

There's a LOT of people in this world who've been shit on. Pension fund embezzlement, 401k loopholes, bad stocks, etc. Think of the Enron employees who were buying Enron and planning to retire on that stock. Think of the owners of "original GM" who had their investment wiped out.

You gotta understand: I'm a man who had a stay at home wife and two boys. When I got burned in something, I recoiled because I had primary obligations NOW and every time I got burned trying to save, I had to reallocate funds to the needs at the time, not keep doing something that seemed foolish.

I considered trying to sue some of these various entities, but I really didn't have the resources to do that. If I'd not lost any cash in my savings and investment attempts, I'd probably be FIRE by now. I try not to think about it that way and just count my blessings that I'm making progress now.

In my personal experience, "safe investing" using index funds and corporate pre-tax 401k plans has really only been available the last 8-10 years.

EDIT: Now, I don't mean to come across as a whining wet blanket. It is what it is, I don't have a time machine to go back and fix things. What I will say is that although the world is full of a bunch of loser lemmings when it comes to not saving properly, there are risks and those risks can't be glossed over. I'll tell you one thing: I don't regard the "emergency fund" as optional. It's an essential part of any balanced savings plan.

I'm sorry all of that happened to you! But you a least were trying, and not really the type of person I was talking about. Anyone that got screwed by Enron-type shenanigans or even legal loopholes has my deepest sympathies, it sucks on a bunch of different levels (I loath financial crimes - or things that should be crimes -, I think these types of crimes are nearly as bad as violent crimes, really. Intentionally wiping out a persons life savings is despicable). It's the types that just float through life and figure it will all just work out, or claim "I don't have enough money to save!" while they have the loaded cable tv package that I just do not understand. The ones that do have decent options through their employer, or if they don't, that have no reason not to take a half hour of their lunch period to sign up for an IRA and stick even a smallish amount aside. I'm certainly not perfect myself, I squandered a fair amount of income over the years, and probably do face-punch worthy things to this day, by this board's standards at least. But to not even put in the tiniest amount of effort? That's the part I just cannot wrap my head around.

A good friend of mine made a ton of mistakes in her 20's and spent most of her 30's trying to get back on track and is finally doing pretty well now. She's the same age I am (39) and realizes that because she's a teacher in a state with a huge ass pension mess (IL), that she can't rely on that. She does at least have enough credits with SS through other non-teaching jobs she will qualify for SS on her own (teachers in IL don't pay into SS). But again, she realizes SS isn't enough to retire on either. So she's asked me for help in figuring out what to do about retirement savings. Late start? Sure is. But at least she's starting to think long term, and she's got enough time that she'll be fine.

Ah well. My original post came off as super judgey, more so than I intended. I really do give people the benefit of the doubt.  But there is a point at which you can't really blame external factors any more, it really IS on you to save yourself.

Digital Dogma

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #46 on: July 13, 2015, 08:58:06 AM »
Now I have a setting for a dystopian novel stuck in my head... everybody spends like crazy their whole lives then kills themselves once they can't spend anymore... And maybe the credit card companies figure out a way to bring them back to life as zombie slaves... hmmmm...

If anybody needs me I'll be negotiating my sequel and movie adaption rights. ;)
Check out a short story in "Rogues", it is called “Tawny Petticoats” by Michael Swanwick, it has a zombie debtor element to it that your post reminded me of.

As for the suicide retirement, that sounds like a whole lot of machismo bullshit made up by someone who doesnt have the self discipline to live within their means. They lack the self control they need to save money, but want to give the illusion to themselves and others that they still have control over their own welfare which they clearly havent planned for. Its a sign of immaturity, disrespect for their family (who would ultimately pay for a decision like that), and a lack of self control.

I understand most of the statement, but this part confuses me. Or maybe I'm misunderstanding? I think it would be more respectful of family to check yourself out rather than leave them worrying and trying to support you because you were irresponsible with money. How would the family have to pay for the suicide of an older, poor member?

(Caveat: Certainly a botched suicide is terrible....my sister is an outreach counselor who directs poor and disabled people to state and federal aid that they might qualify for, and she is dealt with such a case recently, and it was not a good scene.)
Having never experienced a suicide in my family I cant claim to have a personal insight, however Id feel terrible if I knew a relative chose to kill themselves because their bank account counted down to 0. Id rather support an elderly family member till they die than see them leave even one day earlier than they should have. Suicide hurts everyone, not just the primary victim.

CletusMcGee

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #47 on: July 13, 2015, 09:33:21 AM »
This kind of thinking has already been covered by a highly respected news institution:

http://www.theonion.com/blogpost/everyone-should-own-a-gun-for-protection-and-possi-11324

Kaspian

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #48 on: July 13, 2015, 11:10:45 AM »
Having never experienced a suicide in my family I cant claim to have a personal insight, however Id feel terrible if I knew a relative chose to kill themselves because their bank account counted down to 0. Id rather support an elderly family member till they die than see them leave even one day earlier than they should have. Suicide hurts everyone, not just the primary victim.

I've had a few friends kill themselves and yes--it's really bad for friends and family.  The amount of misplaced guilt they carry is unbelievable.  "I'll just spend until I can't pay it back and then kill myself."  <-- Yeah, way to go--self-centred to the very end, huh?

wenchsenior

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Re: "Suicide is my retirement plan..."
« Reply #49 on: July 13, 2015, 11:36:23 AM »
Having never experienced a suicide in my family I cant claim to have a personal insight, however Id feel terrible if I knew a relative chose to kill themselves because their bank account counted down to 0. Id rather support an elderly family member till they die than see them leave even one day earlier than they should have. Suicide hurts everyone, not just the primary victim.

I've had a few friends kill themselves and yes--it's really bad for friends and family.  The amount of misplaced guilt they carry is unbelievable.  "I'll just spend until I can't pay it back and then kill myself."  <-- Yeah, way to go--self-centred to the very end, huh?

Ok, I get it. Thanks for the responses. I guess that would be true in some cases. I think I have some biased thinking in this area because there is an ongoing situation happening that I think most of us would be relieved by a suicide, rather than feel guilty.  However, if it happens, maybe I'll discover that we were all wrong about that?

My perspective could also be different because in the situations I'm thinking of, the cause of the problems isn't financial.