Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Feeling left out?
Old 08-25-2017, 06:48 AM   #1
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Mdlerth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: The Shire
Posts: 1,130
Feeling left out?

A good friend at w*rk just announced his retirement. Much more in alignment with this forum than I am, he's going out at 52 (I'm 58 and still trudging through TMY).

The logical half (quarter? eighth?) of my brain says my buddy's situation is completely different than mine. For one thing, he and his DW had zero offspring, putting him a million lifetime bucks better off in the expense department, so they have no debt. His lovely & talented wife runs an online business with a 10 year track record of predictable income, which she will continue.

They live way below their means, but so intelligently that if you went to their house you'd think they spent like royalty. They are moving from The Shire to a much lower COL area south of Gondor. He has a glorious hobby for which he already owns all the equipment he could ever want, so they will get by fine on a budget one quarter of the salary he's leaving. Good for them...

...but it also su*ks. The non-logical half (three quarters? seven eighths?) of my brain is awash in thoughts of which I am not proud. I am insanely jealous and feeling like "everybody gets to retire early except me."

Anybody else want to admit suffering ER envy in the last years/months before they got to FIRE?
__________________

__________________
Paying it forward is the best investment.
Mdlerth is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 08-25-2017, 06:53 AM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 4,186
I knew I was getting there when I'd go to meetings of my professional society and meet former colleagues who had already retired and was feeling the little Green Monster of Envy. Most were a bit older than I was. One had retired at 57 and told me I could, too, except she had a husband with years of experience at IBM who had retired with a nice DB pension and retiree health insurance. DH was a dear man but he had neither!

I think what t did was to step uo my saving and planning.
__________________

athena53 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 07:04 AM   #3
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
JoeWras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 4,289
I suggest a ride through some of the areas where the hobbits sweat their buns off to eek a living, and maybe it will lend some perspective. I'm 55, in OMY, and I saw people bail at 40 at my Megacorp back during the bubble 90s. I missed out as I was not vested. Yes, those that remained were quite jealous.

However, this week I drove down to the eclipse through typical small town areas where people were eeking out a living making by doing things like making water heaters and chicken nuggets for the rest of us to live on.

It gave me perspective. I'm blessed.
JoeWras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 07:15 AM   #4
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
RunningBum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 7,951
I remember a few where I was retire earlier than me. I was jealous of them, but it also gave me a goal to work toward, and proof and hope that it could really happen. Some made better choices than me on when to cash out, and that also made me jealous, but also helped me learn from some poorer decisions that I made. I also saw some who I knew were further away than me from retirement even though they were older or had been around longer. I'll bet if you look around you'll see the same.
RunningBum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 07:17 AM   #5
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 446
I feel that my biggest life achievement is my children and my family, much more than my career achievement as one of the top researchers in my field.
No regret to have children here, even if that may delay FIRE by quite a few years.
flyingaway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 07:24 AM   #6
Full time employment: Posting here.
CaliKid's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Cali
Posts: 905
That guy might go home every night and say to his wife "I am insanely jealous of Mdlerth... he has kids... I wish we had kids...."
__________________
______________________
Hoping to get out around September 1, 2022... I hope, I hope, I hope. Until then off to work I go....
CaliKid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 07:41 AM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
jollystomper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,997
You will never be satisfied looking at what others have. Concentrate and give thanks for what you have. You will ALWAYS find folks you have, or seem to have, more or better. It can be easier to see that, than see all that you yourself have. My Dad, who grew up very poor, had this saying as part of his philosophy: "I used to complain that I had no shoes, until I met those who had no feet".

For every person I know that has been able to RE comfortably, I can think of many more I know who either will never be able to retire, or where forcibly retired and had to make drastic changes to their lives.

You also do not know if not having children would have motivated you in the same way. DW and I could have chosen not to have children, and from an financial perspective saved $close to 400K in college expenses alone. But I know having kids was a key motivation for DW and I to be careful with our expenses, and to try to maximize our income. Maybe without kids we would not have had that motivation and would be worse off financially.

I am 59, and I know of plenty of folks my age or older whom have no hope of retiring and are in absolute panic over losing their job. My recommendation is to focus on your planned positive outcome, and enjoy that.
__________________
FIREd date: June 26, 2018 - wwwwwwhat a rush!
jollystomper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 07:51 AM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
38Chevy454's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 2,183
I agree, perspective is needed. You are still looking at retiring at 60. According to all of the retirement savings surveys, high percentage of people in your age group (80% range if my memory is right) have almost no savings and will never be able to retire. You are still way ahead of the general population in that you will be retiring.

As for situation with your co-worker, yes a bit of jealousy is hard to deny. But what works for him and what works for you are different scenarios. Enjoy what you have with respect to your situation. Keep perspective in mind - you are still way ahead of most in your age group.
__________________
The advice we're giving you is invaluable, that's why it's free
Experience is a good teacher, but the tuition can get expensive real fast

Semi-Retired 7/1/16: working part-time (60%) for now [4/24/17 changed to 80%]
Retired Aug 2, 2017; age 53
38Chevy454 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 08:30 AM   #9
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,528
Quote:
Originally Posted by 38Chevy454 View Post
I agree, perspective is needed. You are still looking at retiring at 60. According to all of the retirement savings surveys, high percentage of people in your age group (80% range if my memory is right) have almost no savings and will never be able to retire. You are still way ahead of the general population in that you will be retiring.

As for situation with your co-worker, yes a bit of jealousy is hard to deny. But what works for him and what works for you are different scenarios. Enjoy what you have with respect to your situation. Keep perspective in mind - you are still way ahead of most in your age group.
+1
splitwdw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 08:37 AM   #10
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 1,643
I ER'd at 60, and I know at least 2 people that were jealous of ME. When I was much younger, a co-w*rker of mine was in her 60's, and confided to me that was FI and w*rking as a matter of choice. At the time, rather than being jealous that gave me my first target enroute to ER.
Maybe you can likewise use your co-w*rker's ER for your positive motivation.

Edit to add: I agree with the other posters' comments about perspective.
mystang52 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 09:40 AM   #11
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Amethyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 7,492
Probably he would not say this, because if it's due to infertility, she will burst into tears or maybe hit him.

Unless people flat-out announce that they are "childfree by choice" or some such, I never assume they didn't want kids. Infertility is surprisingly common and adoption is not always the answer for everyone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaliKid View Post
That guy might go home every night and say to his wife "I am insanely jealous of Mdlerth... he has kids... I wish we had kids...."
__________________
If you understood everything I say, you'd be me ~ Miles Davis
'There is only one success to be able to spend your life in your own way. Christopher Morley.
Amethyst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 10:45 AM   #12
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Sojourner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,063
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amethyst View Post
Unless people flat-out announce that they are "childfree by choice" or some such, I never assume they didn't want kids. Infertility is surprisingly common and adoption is not always the answer for everyone.
This is a good assumption but still doesn't consider the wide range of reasons people don't have children. I know some people who are (and will admit to being) very career-driven and ambitious, so much so that they don't feel they could be good parents, so they choose not to procreate. Others think there are already too many people in the world, so why create more, especially when they are so many unwanted children being born all the time. Others might have wanted kids but never found the right person to have them with, just due to timing or other circumstances.

Full disclosure: I don't have children and never will, and I think that's the right thing for me. I don't refer to myself as "childfree", because that sounds a bit too self-righteous for my tastes, but I do feel a certain sense of satisfaction that I did my small part in not adding to the overpopulation of the earth.
Sojourner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 10:59 AM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
ER Eddie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 1,196
Seems like infertility is a rather unfair assumption to me. Plenty of couples choose not to have children, for a variety of reasons. It's becoming more common, afaik.

On topic, though, I'm surrounded by people who are 65 to 75, who are not retired and cannot find a way to retire. I think your friend is an anomaly.

As others have said, comparisons are joy-killers -- especially when you compare yourself to some guy who is probably a remote, remote outlier. If you're going to compare yourself to someone, compare yourself to the average Joe your age, who is in much worse shape than you.
ER Eddie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 11:09 AM   #14
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
RunningBum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 7,951
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sojourner View Post
This is a good assumption but still doesn't consider the wide range of reasons people don't have children...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ER Eddie View Post
Seems like infertility is a rather unfair assumption to me...
What assumption do you two think Amethyst made? It wasn't an assumption at all, just a warning AGAINST assumptions, so you don't make someone who is childless and not by choice feel bad due to your insensitivity. Heck, I have friends who have disclosed to me that they ARE childless by choice but have no desire to discuss it with most people because it's none of their business. Seems to me like a topic to avoid unless the couple themselves bring it up.
RunningBum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 11:15 AM   #15
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 5,015
Back in 2008 as I was nearing my retirement, I knew a few coworkers who retired a few months before I did. One was 55 and married (not sure if he had kids) and his wife worked so that took care of his health insurance issue. The other, also 55, was like me never married and proudly childfree. I didn't envy either one of them, just glad that I would soon be joining them as early retirees.
__________________
Retired in late 2008 at age 45. Cashed in company stock, bought a lot of shares in a big bond fund and am living nicely off its dividends. IRA, SS, and a pension await me at age 60 and later. No kids, no debts.

"I want my money working for me instead of me working for my money!"
scrabbler1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 11:23 AM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
JoeWras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 4,289
Well, since the thread went there... The whole kid/no kid thing is incredibly sensitive. Or insensitive. People have no place to say: "Oh, you have no kids, so you can afford 'x'."

What a ridiculous comment.

Maybe I should say: "You live in a shack, so you can afford a nice car."
JoeWras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 11:25 AM   #17
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Sojourner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,063
Quote:
Originally Posted by RunningBum View Post
What assumption do you two think Amethyst made? It wasn't an assumption at all, just a warning AGAINST assumptions, so you don't make someone who is childless and not by choice feel bad due to your insensitivity. Heck, I have friends who have disclosed to me that they ARE childless by choice but have no desire to discuss it with most people because it's none of their business. Seems to me like a topic to avoid unless the couple themselves bring it up.
Definitely agree it's a topic to avoid in most social situations, as it's a very personal issue that many people without children are pretty sensitive about. I was merely pointing out that just because someone without kids doesn't announce themselves as "child-free", this doesn't mean they had issues with infertility or decided not to adopt. In my case, I never say I'm child-free, nor did I ever consider adoption or have any fertility issues, etc. Straying OT a bit here... sorry bout that.
Sojourner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 11:35 AM   #18
Moderator Emeritus
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 42,332
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdlerth View Post
...but it also su*ks. The non-logical half (three quarters? seven eighths?) of my brain is awash in thoughts of which I am not proud. I am insanely jealous and feeling like "everybody gets to retire early except me."

Anybody else want to admit suffering ER envy in the last years/months before they got to FIRE?
It totally $ucks!! I went through that and hated it! Here's my story. (TL; DR "Me too.")

After a rough divorce in 1998, I was left with nothing but a sofa, an old worn out k-car with erratic electrical problems, my clothes, books, and a temporary (soft money) research job. Oh, and I had just moved to a strange city where I knew nobody, had less than $1K in the bank, no investments, creditors were calling, the rent was due, and I was over 50, fat, and dealing with divorce baggage. I felt so insanely jealous of every other woman who had ever lived. Most women my age seemed to have it made. I felt like a total failure, and completely alone.

So I wallowed in that for a while. Then I decided to pick myself up, figure out what I had to do to fix things, and do it. Those first few years were tough and I even slept on the floor for a couple of years because according to my financial planning I couldn't afford a bed, and the old lazyboy sofa had metal things in it that poked me and gave me painful bruises if I slept there. I knew that to get retiree medical I had to wait until age 61+1/2 before retiring, but I was FI a couple of years before that. Along the way I met F, who had his own financial situation and was also working towards retirement so he really understood. Katrina almost derailed us but we powered through and didn't let that happen.

Then my dear beloved mother died and left me a moderate size unexpected inheritance. Life has its ups and downs and really, I would rather have had my mother than an inheritance since I was FI and on track to retire when I did, but you don't get to choose these things. I miss her so much.

It's SO nice to make a plan, stick to it, and reach that goal.
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
It's so all about me, I coulda been a Kardashian
Old 08-25-2017, 12:12 PM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Mdlerth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: The Shire
Posts: 1,130
It's so all about me, I coulda been a Kardashian

OP here. Sorry if I encouraged the impression that presence or absence of children was the key variable. It was just one factor that I chose to note. There are plenty of others.

For example, I admit I got distracted for about the first twenty years of honest toil. Thought about retirement a lot, but it seemed like a hazy, semi-fictional concept that in any case would be far in the future. Sort of like the flying cars and moving sidewalks from 1960s Tomorrowland. I didn't make working toward it a priority, and instead just ambled through, paycheck to paycheck, because that was all I knew to do. A grasshopper for two decades, I hit my early 40s with virtually zero saved. Didn't become an ant until an awful lot of summer was gone.

It is perfectly logical that proactive people, like a lot of posters here and my buddy from w*rk, who did NOT just amble through p-to-p, would be in ER position at a much earlier age. It's not that I'm puzzled by that; I'm just a bit green with envy now that someone near me gets to cross into Lothlorien while I'm still laboring in the mines of Moria.

And, of course, every poster who commented on the folly of comparisons is absolutely right. But in doing so they are trying to reach that logical half of my brain, which isn't the half feeling the envy.

Feelings are funny things. They can be highly resistant to data and reason. In fact, they are most likely to be soothed by finding kindred spirits to share commiseration. So I decided to share my feelings in a thread to see if others have felt the same way.

I do appreciate everyone who has commented. I especially appreciate that everybody offers encouragement rather than blame...

...except for 38Chevy454. Did you have to include a signature line saying you also just retired at 53? Now I have to envy you, too!
__________________
Paying it forward is the best investment.
Mdlerth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2017, 12:25 PM   #20
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Amethyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 7,492
I see that others have already defended my post. I checked my wording, and I think it's clear that I am against making assumptions about people's motivations regarding childbearing, until you hear it from the people themselves. Which means, in most cases, that you will never know. I suppose that inevitably invites assumptions.

Edited to add: Fertility treatments can be very, very costly. And people don't always want others to know that they are taking them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sojourner View Post
Definitely agree it's a topic to avoid in most social situations, as it's a very personal issue that many people without children are pretty sensitive about. I was merely pointing out that just because someone without kids doesn't announce themselves as "child-free", this doesn't mean they had issues with infertility or decided not to adopt. In my case, I never say I'm child-free, nor did I ever consider adoption or have any fertility issues, etc. Straying OT a bit here... sorry bout that.
__________________

__________________
If you understood everything I say, you'd be me ~ Miles Davis
'There is only one success to be able to spend your life in your own way. Christopher Morley.
Amethyst is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Feeling burned out explanade Hi, I am... 21 05-13-2008 08:23 AM
Hi I am feeling old and poor old woman Hi, I am... 54 12-29-2005 03:50 PM
Feeling Lucky !$!$ JPatrick FIRE and Money 5 12-19-2005 10:11 PM
Bill Gates is left handed! Zipper Other topics 2 10-14-2005 11:53 AM
Any good 0% balance transfers for 1 year offers left? soupcxan FIRE and Money 10 09-25-2005 08:33 PM

» Quick Links

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:08 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.