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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-29-2006, 06:35 PM   #41
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Re: Stuck newbie

Quote:
Originally Posted by AltaRed
I am stunned by the misunderstandings regarding 3rd party intervention. No "trained" 3rd party sides with either side nor offers an opinion about what is right! It's about guiding the discussion as a mediator between 2 parties having difficulty having a real conversation and understanding each other. Having said that, it takes both parties to want to do that...
I've seen plenty of "ministers" (your word) give biased advice. Ministers in and of themselves have to be biased. (They certainly aren't going to recommend a divorce for example!)

With that said, I agree with you that if the relationship is strained and there are basic communication difficulties, then a counselor might be in order. That's just not the gist I was reading. And it was also unclear to me if people were recommending expert advice, or simple mediation, which are two very different things. My apologies if I've misunderstood.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-29-2006, 06:55 PM   #42
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Re: Stuck newbie

From what I have seen in my family 'ministers' are better at holding hands than resolving this type of issue.* What I had is mind is something like a family counselor with an advanced degree in psy or education and a licence to practice counseling.

I can understand why the wife is confused.* Evidently OP was the one who wanted to buy this house, the two of them have put a lot of $ and effort into making it magnificent, and NOW he wants to get out of it and quit his job.*

I can understand why he thinks they need to change their lifestyle.

Above all, this should not be worked through in front of the child.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-29-2006, 07:09 PM   #43
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Re: Stuck newbie

C'est la vie. My original post said 'minister or family psychologist' and I also noted 'counselling services' that employers retain for use by employees. Think it was pretty clear I was talking about a professional 3rd party... and I only mentioned 'minister' since some folks seem to think 'ministers' walk on water... and wouldn't be caught dead in a psychologist's office. .... In any event, both parties need to be agreeable to any process, whatever it is.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-29-2006, 09:23 PM   #44
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Re: Stuck newbie

From Mrs FI@35
I understand what its like to put a lot of work in to your home. We did that with our first fixer upper house and it was hard to leave even when it was no where near as nice as yours sounds BY FAR.
I also understand totally what you mean about the neighborhoods being cold. It seems like the more you make/the more expensive your home, people have no time for friendships or being neighborly. I find it also true in bigger city area living. Even in our last neighborhood people were friendly but it seems like the garage doors go up, car drives in and the garage doors go down and you sometimes dont even see your neighbors until summer rolls around and yard work forces them to come out. People are so busy with working hectic schedules that there is no time for leisure.
Sounds like its not really the house size your wife is worried about because you mentioned that you dont use much of it.
Now, to me it sounds like it could be a matter of just finding the right place. as you said, nice woodwork, trim and the extras.
Doesnt sound like either of you would miss the neighborhood.
To me its easier to create a new house than to create a new neighborhood.
How about you could sell your house, get a smaller one and bribe the kids with a backyard pool.
That would do it for me. !!!* :




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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-30-2006, 10:17 AM   #45
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Re: Stuck newbie

Ash,

Thanks for the VERY relevant post. I think more people are considering the same type of move, which worries me from a resale standpoint.

How does your new residence compare to the old? Money aside, which one do you prefer? Are you looking at any $$ for improvements to the new place to bring it up to snuff?
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-30-2006, 10:23 AM   #46
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Re: Stuck newbie

Afloat,

Is it me or is this just a crazy, stressful field? On top of the myriad of business and client issues, there is the constant stress of keeping up technically and now foreign competition. Seems like a bad way to make a living. There is money to be made, but it is by no means easy money.

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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-30-2006, 11:02 AM   #47
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Re: Stuck newbie

IT's a tough job. You succeed when you invisibly effect change on schedule and under budget, and completely avoid downtime. None of which is plausible. If you get close, note the word 'invisible'.

Even the perception issues are tough to manage. I had an IT VP tell me that she wouldnt consider my work successful until we reached "utility provider type uptime percentages, and we're nowhere near that!". The next time we met I showed her charts that demonstrated that our average customer uptime was already better than PG&E and SBC's.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-30-2006, 07:25 PM   #48
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Re: Stuck newbie

Quote:
Originally Posted by RoadAhead43
How does your new residence compare to the old? Money aside, which one do you prefer? Are you looking at any $$ for improvements to the new place to bring it up to snuff?
We're renting a house right now, and probably will for at least another year or two while we wait to see what happens with the RE market, which has at the very least stopped going up in our area.

The house we're renting is no match for the old house! Even though it's in the same neighborhood, our McM was a great house, we loved it. BUT, we still both feel that we made a great move. The cost of the old place was simply too much, in everything from mortgage to utilities.

One of the most helpful practices I have begun doing is equating my spending behavior not with dollars, but with number of hours worked (including taxes, travel, etc.). It has really helped me to put things into perspective.

BTW, I too understand the sweat equity. My wife and I had done a lot of painting and shelf-work in our house. We put a pool in, and landscaping, etc. It was hard to walk away from all of that.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-31-2006, 06:41 AM   #49
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Re: Stuck newbie

Ash,

Do you find that you are still working as hard as before, or do you really have more free time now ? Have you left your old job? Is your goal to retire early? How have you and your wife adjusted to the lesser material stuff?

I would love to do exactly as you have done. After a rough weekend, due to discussions on this topic, my wife is showing some flexibility...the time may be near.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-31-2006, 08:29 AM   #50
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Re: Stuck newbie

Quote:
Originally Posted by RoadAhead43
Do you find that you are still working as hard as before, or do you really have more free time now ? Have you left your old job? Is your goal to retire early? How have you and your wife adjusted to the lesser material stuff?
I own a small IT firm (with a business partner) that I am looking to exit from within the next year. So, currently I am working just as hard as before, although that isn't very hard. Honestly though, you may be right, since my net worth has increased I do find myself less interested in work.

I'd like to be able to semi-retire by age 40 (I'm 36 now). I've only got $600K currently, and by 40 I should have $1M+ total but that's not enough to pull 4% from and give us the lifestyle we want. So...my goal is to lower the lifestyle, as long as it doesn't reduce our happiness. And while we really loved the house, I love the prospect of not working more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RoadAhead43
I would love to do exactly as you have done. After a rough weekend, due to discussions on this topic, my wife is showing some flexibility...the time may be near.
I told my wife about this thread, and how it closely matched our position and she had a good laugh (at me, not at you!). We went through some really tough discussions on the issue, and like I mentioned it took a year for me to convince her (and myself somewhat) that this was the best thing to do.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-31-2006, 09:26 AM   #51
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Re: Stuck newbie

Road--I didn't get very far with the hubster on LBYM and saving a lot to FIRE until I stopped the discussions and gave him "The Millionaire Next Door" to read. Hearing it from a dispassionate author(ity) helped him cut through the emotions (my wife is depriving me of the things I love and the way I live!) to just see the facts, including the fact that a lot of people have stepped off (or never gotten aboard) the hamster wheel and are having more fun than us!

The funny thing about ratcheting down the expenses is that we actually ended up living better and feeling much more happy and relaxed while semi-retiring at 52 (and I retired fully at 55). Now he's the more frugal one

Good luck.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 07-31-2006, 11:37 PM   #52
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Re: Stuck newbie

I advise NOT having a custom home built at this time. It would be very stressful on an "already stressed" marriage. My husband is a builder and we see it happen. You and your wife will not agree on many items, there will be delays & changes - you don't need this right now. Sell the McMansion, find a wonderfully charming but smaller home and allow a decent budget to decorate & landscape & take a special vacation. Think about having a new home built later on.

Your wife is a little nervous about the changes right now - but you seem like a thoughtful guy. I am betting it will work out great for both of you.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 08-01-2006, 09:47 AM   #53
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Re: Stuck newbie

Quote:
Is it me or is this just a crazy, stressful field?
RoadAhead -
IT's an extremly stressful field. I used to love programming and system development but at some point it turned on me and became a monster that I couldn't control. I made a good living but I had to get out to salvage my life. Once your out you'll never go back. I've been RE for 7 months now and can not imagine going back to IT. There's too much else in life.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 08-01-2006, 04:19 PM   #54
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Re: Stuck newbie

I guess I need to chime in.* My wife and I lived in a nice big place with a swimming pool in San Jose and a $350K mortgage.* I was employed in high tech.* I was laid off in 2001, and immediately put the house on the market and started looking for work.* Because this was in the middle of the tech crash, the house took 9 months to sell and I was still out of work.

When the house finally sold, we decided to move to a small town in another part of CA where we could buy a small (1900 sq. ft.) house with the equity from the SJ house.* Two days after we moved in, I got a job offer from a small food company nearby at about 40% of my high tech salary and went to work.* 4 years later and we couldn't be happier.* No stress, no bills, love the small town, the job is fun, love the neighborhood, etc. etc.

Best thing that ever happened to me.* Sorry I can't claim credit for it!
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 08-01-2006, 07:30 PM   #55
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Re: Stuck newbie

On the 3rd party help, there is mention of "Triangulation" in an article partly on emotional barriers about money:
http://www.fpanet.org/journal/articl...p0806-art7.cfm
Quote:
When two people are uncomfortable with each other, they "triangle" a third to decrease tension. The third party may be another family member, a friend, or even the financial advisor, who could end up being blamed if something goes wrong.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 08-01-2006, 08:20 PM   #56
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Re: Stuck newbie

I would spend a few days doing the open house and looking at model homes. I am sure the kid is just echoing what her mom says. I think most people hate change. Even if its going to be an improvement in the long run many people dont want to upset the status quo.
I would also look for other things that can bring her over the the dark side (err your side) . Try to find an area that might be closer to her family. Ok that might be a big negative but you get the idea.

PS when I hear you guys talk I am glad I didnt pick my other college choice > computers . Although I think I would of been good at it.
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 08-02-2006, 07:26 AM   #57
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Re: Stuck newbie

Quote:
Originally Posted by AFloat
IT's an extremly stressful field. I used to love programming and system development but at some point it turned on me and became a monster that I couldn't control. I made a good living but I had to get out to salvage my life.
As a roving IT consultant for the last (almost) 20 years, I have seen all kinds of IT places. Some are very intense to the point where working 100+ hours/week is not unheard of. Been there, done that, got the ER discharge slip. Others are as slow and bureaucratic as any other big business/government department that I have seen. And then there are all kinds of oddball little places, often run by one or two people with no CS background.

It can be rough sometimes, but at least I have enough stories to last me the rest of my life
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 08-18-2006, 09:55 PM   #58
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Re: Stuck newbie

Road,

I hope you're progressing well in your fledgling lifestyle blueprint since your last post.

Yup, spousal (... and to a lesser extent offspring) buy-in are crucial to the sustainability of any structural shifts in your lifestyle. The disconnects I noticed here include a dichotomy of life philosophies (LBYM, true happiness, ... the works); spousal lack(?) of awareness of your not-so-silent cry to end your job-related sufferings; and divergent views on what really matters in life and marriage and family.

Before you talk downsizing, decompressing, de-cluttering and such, you need to pin-down the fact that: at the current life-work trajectory, you'll either drop dead within 12 mths or, if you're still alive beyond the 12 mths, you'll be forced to take drastic measures to either keep (work harder and harder* ) or get rid* (work hard to sell in a rapidly souring RE market) of the 5,000 sq ft money pit.

Your DW need to fully and rationally comprehend the life (and death) options in hand. Once the point gets across, your house (and all the trimmings) is just a minor detail.

Go search my "Hi, I am ..." post. I was CEO of two subsidiaries of a huge Telco MegaCorp. I came home drained after yet another 16 hour day and was a virtual rat race zombie wired to say/do/act/think the MegaCorp's way 24/7. No amount of cash and perks will compensate for a lost soul !* Sorry MegaCorp (....or IT Consultancy or whatever), my life's not for sale. I refuse to be unhappy and to see my life sucked from me for the sake of a 5,000 sq ft McM and (.... list all the clutter beyond whats in your bedroom and basic kitchen utensils).

In my case, upon getting "it," my DW metamorphosed from a prolific clutter-collecting enterprise to a top-notch advocate of LBYM and intelligent spending. My 7 yr old son is proving to be a masterful LBYM advocate himself. No tantrums at Toys-R-Us with this kid, LOL ! Anyway, DW's regular prodding for me to end the w*rk-induced sufferings played a big part in my pulling the plug literally cold turkey. One of the best decisions I've had to make.*

We may not be able to splurge on new toys and trinkets with previous impunity, but I'm home and free and am using my emancipation to enjoy our own simple life's pursuits.

The bottom-line, don't make the 5,000 sq ft plaster edifice the issue of contention. Stress on your need to stop doing something you hate that are* now affecting your health. The McM disposal and downsizing and de-cluttering are just the necessary elements in your bigger goal of maintaining your sanity and staying alive.

Good luck.


* *
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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 09-03-2006, 07:25 AM   #59
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Re: Stuck newbie

Wow, Underfire,
I can totally relate. Not to the fancy lifestyle. But to the fact that for so many years I "sold my soul" to selling software for an international IT company. i worked so hard and by the time I got home in the evening I had no energy left for my kids.
I recently quit my job because I really do feel that there is much more to life than working my life away for some NASDAQ traded company to show better results. I can't tell you how free I feel. Even though I have a VERY simple lifestyle and can't afford anything right now. I had to give back my company car, laptop and phone. It wasn't easy, but it was as though I belonged to my company. Ewww.
It's nice to be free. If I were used to a fancy lifestyle I would never be truly free.

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Re: Stuck newbie
Old 09-03-2006, 10:41 AM   #60
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Re: Stuck newbie

RoadAhead,

If you can manage it, this would be a good time to have a very mild heart attack.
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