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Old 07-20-2010, 02:18 PM   #21
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I like Brewer's idea of saying you're taking a sabbatical.

You could also tell them you came into a little money. They probably won't ask more but will assume it's a stock option thingie or an inheritance or whatever, even though you actually came into it because you planned for it.

I think the negativity from people, especially people who are essentially our peers, is caused in part by them feeling inadequate because they didn't plan ahead to be in the same financial position. If it matters to you, they can save a little face if they think, hey, his rich uncle must have left him a bundle or something.
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:24 PM   #22
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I would just say you are taking a sabbatical.
That's a good idea. After all, if some of the doom and gloom predictions I've read on the board lately come to pass, I may have to go back to work! "Sabbatical" leaves that option open...
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:32 PM   #23
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Not embarrassed. But ... [having trouble putting this in words] I think the fabric that holds many middle-class, middle-aged friendships together is the comraderie that comes from knowing you're both stuggling against a common enemy: the drudgery, confusion, anxiety, and thanklessness of modern workaday life. When you retire early you give up your membership in that struggle, and your friendships (with those still in it) can't be the same.

I don't think I'm imagining all this?
I know what you are trying to say here. Basically, you don't want to put out this vibe that you are somehow different, wealthy, or of a higher socioeconomic class than your peers. Maybe it is called being humble?

I can imagine in a number of years when we are FIRE, I won't want to really come clean to a lot of people I know for various reasons. Money or perception of having a lot of money can change how other people think of you and treat you.

Especially if you are 30 something and independently wealthy. You may loathe the drudgery of work as much as your pal, but you just took some (very prescient) different steps financially to remove the need for work. You still have the same values and dislike the serfdom that work represents, but now you have that divide between your two lifestyles. Sure, that divide can be crossed between good friends, but it may be harder to cross the divide between more casual acquaintances that you may want to keep. Hence the need for judicious choice of words or descriptors so as to not let on more than necessary regarding your wealth.
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:32 PM   #24
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Gee...maybe I should have mentioned a sabbatical....
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:34 PM   #25
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I suppose you could just tell people you are going to rehab/fat camp.
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:35 PM   #26
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That's a good idea. After all, if some of the doom and gloom predictions I've read on the board lately come to pass, I may have to go back to work! "Sabbatical" leaves that option open...
You can be perfectly honest with yourself and others by leaving the definiteness out of your statements re: retiring. Sabbatical or "taking time off" certainly makes sense to 30-somethings. Retiring is a foreign concept.

And describing it as a sabbatical to those who aren't too close leaves open the ability to return to part time or full time paid employment without having any "I told you so's" thrown back at you. Not that anyone would be jealous enough of your ability to take an extended sabbatical to try to hurt you later by throwing your financial shortcomings in your face!
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:36 PM   #27
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I suppose you could just tell people you are going to rehab/fat camp.
"I'll be going away for a while"...

Oh, wait a minute, Lindsay Lohan probably said the same thing this morning...
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:37 PM   #28
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Gee...maybe I should have mentioned a sabbatical....
Let's just say we all referred to the sabbatical idea nearly simultaneously...
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:42 PM   #29
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About 20 years ago my wife met up with some college friends from her class. They all had what seemed like great careers on the upswing and she had a good job, but not making headway to the top (hitting the glass ceiling). She was very quiet for a few days after that, feeling like an underachiever.

My wife ER'd 10 years ago and I'm on my first month. We met up with them again not long ago. They are all caught in the rate race, broken marriages, underwater mortgages and feeling tired and trapped. One had her 1st baby with a sperm donor at 47 (yikes).

So driving back I asked "so how do you feel now?". She was happy that she felt she made the right decisions. Now instead of work today, she went to yoga and then golf. It's a hard life

So in the end, most people want to show off what they've achieved and most of it also has a dark side. I would not think twice about it. I'd say I ER'd and that I understand its not for everyone. Personally, I would say that the biggest luxury in my life is to no longer be rushes into everything. I now enjoy life as it happens. So don't let them bring you down. If he's your friend he'll adapt, if he isn't, no loss.
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:44 PM   #30
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Furthermore, I would most definitely use Fuego and bbbam's earlier suggestions of a sabbatical .
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Old 07-20-2010, 02:58 PM   #31
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Let's just say we all referred to the sabbatical idea nearly simultaneously...


Who knew a 52 year old woman could think like a 30 sumpin' year old man.

Uh oh....maybe I've blown my cover....
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:02 PM   #32
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Ok, off with the boots
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:04 PM   #33
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follow that up with... and you ??.... how are those staff meetings going ?

You are cruel, sir!
Oh perhaps it is a bit cruel. I probably wouldn't say it.
I would only go there if the hostile reactions about ER started though.

On a broader note: Don't we all have a bit of that Victorian work ethic ingrained in us, so it's not them but us that feels a bit squeamish when discussing ER. Are we not all a bit torn on this issue ?
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:11 PM   #34
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Ok, off with the boots
Just for you...don't show it to anyone else....

(FD, I promise not to post any more songs or pics of my feet)
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:22 PM   #35
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Nice paint job.
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:26 PM   #36
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Your photo of naked feet is sandalous...
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:39 PM   #37
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Your photo of naked feet is sandalous...
bo! The pain...
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:46 PM   #38
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I pulled the plug in early 2005 and was up front with everyone. The last few years, as the recession dragged on, I have felt a little self conscious about this with people I don't know because I worry about tossing around a status they may be unable to achieve in the current environment. I will be 62 at the end of summer so I am getting to the age where it isn't a surprise anymore. But, if I was 50 or so I might go with the ESR or sabbatical status.
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:49 PM   #39
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Basically, you don't want to put out this vibe that you are somehow different, wealthy, or of a higher socioeconomic class than your peers.
That is definitely part of it. But a bigger part is that I just don't want to hurt the guys I care about the most. We grew up together and have faced all of our lives' challenges together. How can I tell them, "I'm going to spend the next 20 yrs watching you writhe in agony and quiet desperation, while I'm sipping lemonade in the shade"?

Reading what I just wrote I think I must have some guilt issues to work on.


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Let's just say we all referred to the sabbatical idea nearly simultaneously...
But doesn't "sabbatical" just postpone the problem? After six months your friends will be asking the same questions again, no? Mine would be.


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On a broader note: Don't we all have a bit of that Victorian work ethic ingrained in us, so it's not them but us that feels a bit squeamish when discussing ER. Are we not all a bit torn on this issue ?
That is a very interesting idea that I will have to think more about.
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Old 07-20-2010, 03:57 PM   #40
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On a broader note: Don't we all have a bit of that Victorian work ethic ingrained in us, so it's not them but us that feels a bit squeamish when discussing ER. Are we not all a bit torn on this issue ?
I think there is a little bit of that for me...
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