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Old 09-28-2016, 11:40 AM   #41
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...........
It's hard enough as a single person to know when is the right time and am I really protected for the possible things that could come up during a long retirement. I'd imagine it's doubly hard for a couple when you each have an idea of what is enough.
Everyone faces uncertainty over finances, but there are lots of tools like FIRECALC that can give one as much confidence as is possible. For a spouse to ignore those tools and just insist the other keep working until they say it is OK to retire is outrageous.
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:16 PM   #42
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I'll play Devil's Advocate here.

If the only way that you were able to retire is by living off your wife's income then you may be retired but you are not financially independent. To see you represent yourself to everyone as Retired may be a bit misleading/annoying from her perspective.

Given that you wife is bothered by this and seems to have latent resentment issues, you may be in precarious position.

FWIW When I FIRED and DW was still working it had to be a joint decision. She was a bit unsure at first, but I could return to my job after one year if I desired (unpaid dependent leave program at MegaCorps).

DW was concerned about how we would explain this to friends and family. I knew that I had to own this. I came up with some language that she could honestly use to answer the pointed questions such as "Well -- What do you think about him not working?!"

She could honestly say "She is evaluating it on an ongoing basis..." or something to that effect.

She also needed to know that we were financially okay enough that if she needed to quit/retire earlier than the current plan that it would be possible. She didn't want to feel trapped.

Fortunately I believe that it has all worked out for us. After 1 year leave of absence I was allowed to FIRE and pursuit other unpaid interests.

We are to the point now where FIRE for DW is about a year off which includes a big pension bump (~0.5M) for age/years of service attainment which was the original plan. (whew).

May want to consider attendance at a seminar or something that teaches skilll in couples communication.

I hope it all works out for you.

-gauss
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:27 PM   #43
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No true scotsman RE would agree.

OP--good luck and GodSpeed with getting on the same page with DW. Hopefully transitory discomfort is all that is happening.
We were well into retirement when my former wife who had worked little and earned less shouted at me to get a job. Instead, I got a divorce and I consider that a much more satisfactory solution.

Ha
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:37 PM   #44
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If the only way that you were able to retire is by living off your wife's income then you may be retired but you are not financially independent. To see you represent yourself to everyone as Retired may be a bit misleading/annoying from her perspective.
OP already stated his DW does not need to keep working, they have enough (from his perspective at least).
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:53 PM   #45
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OP already stated his DW does not need to keep working, they have enough (from his perspective at least).
But not from her perspective. One of them is right.
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:54 PM   #46
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We were well into retirement when my former wife who had worked little and earned less shouted at me to get a job. Instead, I got a divorce and I consider that a much more satisfactory solution.

Ha
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:58 PM   #47
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My view is that the family income is a pool and it wouldn't matter who took the SS to enable either party to retire.
That's our take on it too. I retired in 2002 and wanted desperately to get out of the area around Washington, D.C. DW was reluctant to leave her federal job but we both thought she'd be able to get another in WV (lots of federal sites around here) because she always had excellent reviews, outstanding service awards, and the like. Although she interviewed for a number of jobs we eventually figured out that the hiring culture here is different and it is almost essential to "know somebody" to get hired, so they were just going through the motions in interviewing her.

Eventually FIL's health issues required more and more time from her and she was happy to not have a job. I was fine with all this because it kept her happy and not exhausted all the time from working and looking after FIL. And while the additional income had she found a job would certainly have been nice, it is far from being essential. While DW was spending a lot of time dealing with FIL's issues, I stumbled into a nearby low-stress job with a 3.4 mile commute and worked there for a few more years, and quit when things started to go south at the job site.

What we planned on happening didn't happen but we made certain to allow for that possibility before planning the move to WV and we were careful to not put ourselves in a position such that we would need to have jobs. So in the end DW "retired" at the age of 46. In no way do I consider her a "slacker" of any sort. Hey, stuff happens and we just went with it.
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:34 PM   #48
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My view is that the family income is a pool and it wouldn't matter who took the SS to enable either party to retire. ...
+1 but perhaps the OP is a second or late marriage where finances tend to be separate.... especially if they married later in life. We don't know. Also, the OP says they have 401ks but have not made any withdrawals. If the OP's 401k exceeds what his DW will collect in SS before she retires or his FRA, whichever comes first, then he is arguably FI even on his own as he could have just tapped into his 401k to fund his earlier retirement rather than rely on his DW's SS. We don't have enough information to know.
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:35 PM   #49
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You probably are not a slacker but I don't imagine Mrs Youngster will be happy that random strangers from the Internet agree with you after hearing one side of the story. Probably better not to mention you've posted about it.
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:37 PM   #50
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If you needed your wife to take SS early then it sounds like you also need her p.t. income which effectively ties her to working and she is older then you. Just a thought.
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:53 PM   #51
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+1 but perhaps the OP is a second or late marriage where finances tend to be separate.... especially if they married later in life. We don't know. Also, the OP says they have 401ks but have not made any withdrawals. If the OP's 401k exceeds what his DW will collect in SS before she retires or his FRA, whichever comes first, then he is arguably FI even on his own as he could have just tapped into his 401k to fund his earlier retirement rather than rely on his DW's SS. We don't have enough information to know.
If he could have tapped into his 401K, then he wouldn't be able to complain that his wife took SS early and deprived them of $200/month
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:56 PM   #52
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Please end this thread. Thanks.
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:59 PM   #53
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There does seem to be a little bit of double...
Old 09-28-2016, 03:04 PM   #54
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There does seem to be a little bit of double...

standard going on in some of the responses. I have worked since I was 14 years old (I consider college work, plus I did bar tend during college... ok, that wasn't really work ). My wife has also worked for quite a long time. Now, by chance, I always was the larger earner, with a much higher stress level vocation, and that also gave the opportunity for her a couple of times to say "take this job and shove it", and take some time in finding a better work environment.

If I were to decide to retire early (and btw, what's early?) and she DECIDED to continue to work part time and start SS so that could happen, and then she called me a slackard. We would have a problem. Either we are a team working together to enjoy our upcoming retirement years (however we choose to spend them, meaning working part time or whatever), or we aren't.

At the end of the day, one person's FEELINGS are not more important than the other. IMHO of course.
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Old 09-28-2016, 05:49 PM   #55
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But wait.... if the wife retires early and the husband continues to work that is considered totally normal and perfectly fine? If so, then gender equality is a one-way street. If one is fine then the inverse should be fine as well.
So true.
I know a couple and the wife stayed home to take care of the kids, when I pointed out she should go back to work since the kids are in College, the excuses flew around.
If she worked they would pay more in taxes
She had to stay home to take care of the dog
Still she complained about the cost of things, the mortgage, etc. ..
She says they can't afford for her husband to retire.
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Old 09-28-2016, 06:34 PM   #56
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We are in a very similar situation just opposite the OP. I am younger, the higher wage earner and retired this year about OP age (not my own decision). Hubby is the age of OP's wife and still working. Initially I felt the "slacker" attitude coming at me and felt it myself, as I decided if I was truly retired or not. As it turned out, I had a health scare and some residual issues that have made retirement a true blessing. Working would make my condition worse. I no longer feel like a slacker or feel hubby's attitudes (real or perceived). He likes his job and wants to continue working. His job will help bridge us until I can take SS at 62. I am just focused on enjoying life. We never know how much time we have.
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Old 09-28-2016, 06:35 PM   #57
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Yes, it is other stuff that she and I discussed. I am not a slackard because of retiring; but, because of other stuff we discussed. I should not have aired my personal issues on a forum. Probably a poor thread title that should have been different.

The question at the time (not now) should have been (or something like this) without me discussing my personal life as follows. Is it inaccurate to say you are retired when only the taking of wife's SS made it financially feasible?

Thank you everyone for your input.
Somehow I don't think you want to thank us any longer Say you are between jobs or Thinking about your options, or unemployed if you want to.Whatever you call yourself shouldn't matter to your spouse if you both are on the same page.
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Old 09-28-2016, 07:26 PM   #58
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I don't get the whole "she took SS so I could retire" bit. The OP could've tapped the 401Ks for living expenses and waited on taking SS.
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Old 09-28-2016, 07:30 PM   #59
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I don't get the whole "she took SS so I could retire" bit. The OP could've tapped the 401Ks for living expenses and waited on taking SS.
Which she will probably benefit from if/when he dies first.
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Old 09-29-2016, 09:51 AM   #60
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Because of the age difference, she is 6 years older, so it is probably him that will die first and she will soon follow, being pretty similar to both dying at the same time.

So there is effectively no spousal benefit to delaying SS, but what I see is they have taken SS early instead of using the 401K to bridge the time.
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