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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-20-2006, 05:23 PM   #61
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-20-2006, 05:23 PM   #62
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-20-2006, 05:24 PM   #63
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
So, those of you with children where* both husbands and wives work, how is it working out?* This is sort of on topic as the OP and his wife both work hard and thus need outside childcare.
My wife and I both worked long hours trying to raise two kids. *We used daycare and did the best we could to spend as much time with the kids as possible. *It is a tradeoff and you have to deal with the consequences of the decision to not stay home with the kids. *My wife worked shorter hours than I did so she was able to spend more time with the kids. *After the divorce, we split the kids and so I was now a single parent of a 13 year old trying to climb the corporate ladder are raising a kid at the same time. *It was tough and I know I missed out on a lot of things in both of their lives. *Staying at home was not an option financially. *

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Originally Posted by Martha
Most of the lawyers in my age group in our office had wives who stayed home with the kids while they worked too hard.* Some have regrets about missing their children's childhoods.* I think it would be very tough for two parents that work long hours to raise their kids. *I don't mean to be critical that they have children; I just don't know how they make it work without feeling like you are missing out on their lives.
It happens, but eating and having a house to live in were priorities. *Somebody had to work and my income was 2X my wife's but it took both to make ends meet. *We could have lived in a cave but it was not an option. *Regrets? *sure I do. *Especially when I was traveling over 50% of the time for 6 years when my son was still a young teenager. *I missed a lot and I wish I could have been there more but it was what it was and I can't change that now. *That job allowed me to save enough to get my debts paid off and for me to get a real jump on ER. *I don't believe I owe every minute of every day to my kids. *I did my best considering my circumstances; far better than my own father did so I don't have anything to be sorry about. *

They grew up to be very independent and together men. *Time will tell how they address their own family issues but I am proud of them and who they are today. *It is not always the amount of time spent as much as the quality of the time invested in them.
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-20-2006, 05:25 PM   #64
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
So, those of you with children where* both husbands and wives work, how is it working out?* This is sort of on topic as the OP and his wife both work hard and thus need outside childcare. We never had kids so we never had to worry about someone else caring for them.*

I think it would be very tough for two parents that work long hours to raise their kids.* I don't mean to be critical that they have children; I just don't know how they make it work without feeling like you are missing out on their lives.
My spouse and I both work at professional jobs where we can be flexible on our hours. *We have 2 school age kids. *When the kids were younger and in daycare, we still interacted with them before 9 am and after 6 pm and on weekends, so there was plenty of time to be together.

When kids are of school age, they spend lots of time with in school (Duh!), so you aren't interacting with them during those times. *Also your kids have friends, so they don't necessarily want to be around mom and dad anyways.

However, you can still do lots of things outside of work and school hours. *For example, we have found the time to coach youth sports which is a bigger commitment than dropping them off at practice. *We must be doing OK because our kids beg us to coach their teams after experiencing how other adults have coached them.

A big help for us has been to live very close to work, so the commute time is less than 10 minutes.* This should not be underestimated.
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-20-2006, 06:43 PM   #65
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
So, those of you with children where* both husbands and wives work, how is it working out?*
I think it would be very tough for two parents that work long hours to raise their kids.* I don't mean to be critical that they have children; I just don't know how they make it work without feeling like you are missing out on their lives.
It takes the whole freakin' village.

Our kid started childcare when she was six weeks old-- as soon as Mom's military maternity leave was over.* (Dads don't get military paternity leave.)* Luckily we held off starting a family until we were both on shore duty so we could drop the kid off in the morning with a six-pack of fresh-squeezed and Mom could drop by, so to speak, at lunch.* Good thing neither one of us was in shiftwork-- just extra hours (and weekends "as required").

Our daughter was six months old when we got the coveted call from the childcare center that they had an opening-- she could be with all the other kids!* Unfortunately our kid caught a nasty case of chickenpox that first week, so we were out of both systems and at home for two weeks.* Spouse got her week's break with no problem.* My boss deemed me critical to the functioning of the entire Navy (or else he'd have to do my job) so his spouse stepped in to handle a couple days when he couldn't abide by my absence (or when she couldn't abide by his whining).* Right there my mental scorecard said "You don't want to do this."

I remember being thrilled when DoD said it was OK for military parents to "occasionally" leave their kids at the center for more than 10 hours "as validated by the chain of command for the needs of the mission."

I remember a second mental check of "You don't want to do this" when I found myself arranging a medical evacuation for a submariner in the South China Sea on a tight schedule.* Spouse was at sea for a couple weeks so when the call came at 10 PM, we shifted our entire command to my cubicle-- crib mattress, pillows, the entire baby support system.* I spent the night either dozing with a baby or writing message traffic, sometimes both simultaneously.* We pulled off the medevac about 4 AM (ruptured appendix, he recovered just fine) so I caught a couple hours' hedonistic snoozing and arose at 6 AM to get the kid to the childcare center to start the day.* I was OK with everything until I met my boss' boss as I left the building with kid & ballast.* His comment was "You need to get cleaned up and I need to see you as soon as you get back so we can brief the admiral."* Yeah, and good morning to you, too, sir.

Compared to friends of ours we had it easy.* They were both on sea duty and would have his or her grandparents stay with the kids for up to six or eight weeks at a time.* (Their holiday letters were such marvels of professional & familial juggling that we've saved two of them for a decade as a reminder-- or a warning.) Another friend of ours was thrilled with a nanny who'd arrive at 5:30 AM, cook breakfast & dinner for the kids, stay until 6 PM, and occasionally stay until midnight if the workday wasn't going so well. And that friend was the commanding officer, with her spouse on sea duty.

Even near the end of my career, when I was at training commands and could control some of my schedule, I still dreaded being stuck in Pearl Harbor by traffic while my kid was waiting at the after-school program.* The biggest relief of retirement was knowing that I'd be able to be in the kitchen baking cookies every school day for the rest of her years. Of course now our kid's a teenger who wouldn't be caught dead in the same time zone with us, but I'm sure that she'll gratefully thank us for "being there for her" someday!
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 12:14 AM   #66
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

MedicalDoc,

I think your goals on ER need to be in sync somewhat with your wife's. If they are out of sync then the goals should be addressed. Easier said than done I know.

I still like to read the book "Your Money or your Life" by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin although it is getting somewhat dated.

Keep up the good work and keep us posted on how things go.
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 05:25 AM   #67
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Spouse and I both work, kid goes to daycare all day. Not a major problem at this point. One big thing that changed (perforce) was that we both went from regularly working late nights and weekends to spending evenings and weekends at home. All in all, a vast improvement in lifestyle, and priorities, as far as I am concerned.

[Note: not a comment on the original poster's lifestyle.]

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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 05:26 AM   #68
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

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Originally Posted by TromboneAl
Fair or not, that $7 million figure is going to come into my head when I write my health insurance checks. Just like I think of the oil company record profits figure when I pay $2.75/gal for gas.
I wonder if the $7M figure will enter your head when your only child is on the emergency room table from some accident, or when those record profits help your mutual funds move higher (or make people actually conserve energy).

Damn those capitalists for making life so difficult for us po Americans. :P

(I'll admit it does get out whack and I'm sure changes will evolve. Al, didn't you get to develop a nice little hi tech widget and sell the business under that capitalist system, oh and collect on homeowners insurance in the great state of CA where they tend to build homes in the middle of flood, fire, earthquake, and landslide zones?)
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 06:39 AM   #69
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Quote:
$2.75/gal for gas.
Whiner.

Bpp, pays 50% more than that, uphill both ways in the snow, and LIKES it.

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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 11:52 AM   #70
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

My posting seems to have generated a number of comments.* I'll respond to a few (in no particluar order) and add some new thoughts.

1.* The key to keeping savings safe from malpractice claims is to have enough malpractice insurance.* Also, I believe that in most places, retirement savings (e.g. 401K, 403B) are immune from liability claims and bankrupcy (even O.J gets to keep his NFL pension).

2. The two goals of giving our time and providing financial support/security to our children (and to our spouses) are sometimes at odds and each one of us tries to pick the balance that seems right.* Either one at the exclusion of the other is unthinkable.* My wife and I try to spend as much of our free time with our child as possible.* Certainly, others have more free time than we do.* But our child is very happy, has lots of friends, and is the top student in her class.* We can provide her with many opportunities that some parents can't including a debt-free college education anywhere.* These are opportunities that my wife and I didn't have (although our parents worked long hours, too).

3.* Compared to teachers, M.D.s are paid too much (actually I just think that teachers are paid too little).* Compared to athletes who can barely read and are easily "disrespected", CEOs who too often seem either clueless or dishonest, and Wall Street investment bankers with their multimillion dollar bonuses, M.D.s aren't overpaid.* Besides in the long run, you often get what you pay for.* Medicine remains a highly competitive profession.* Pay docs $50,000/yr and you'll attract the type of people responsible for making sure that your luggage doesn't get lost at the airport. Can you imagine? "I'm sorry Mrs. Jones, we lost your husband during surgery......No, he isn't dead, we just can find him. We're hoping he just wondered over to the blood bank to find something to drink".

4.* I don't think that nurses are overpaid, nor do I think that they are underpaid.* In my area, nurses are making $50-90K/yr, depending upon experience, for 40 hrs/week.* Time and a half for overtime.* I have a nursing friend who is a Certified Nurse Anesthetist who is making $140K in base salary.

5. Since someone asked, it's not true that husband and wife physican couples have zero sex.* Not true. They have plenty of sex. It just tends to be kinkier.* * * * *
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 12:35 PM   #71
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

And why not? You have access to all that rubber tubing and gauze!

Well thought out and presented post.

My wife is in respiratory care and her mom is a charge nurse. Neither one is overpaid. Getting five figures to try to get a guy who was hit by a train to breathe again or trying to revive a 6 month old baby that drowned in a sink should entitle one to a little compensation.

However from the peanut gallery...I'll bet your kids would enjoy more time with their parents a great deal more than a free college education.
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 01:48 PM   #72
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Median US pay (2004 Bureau of Labor Statistics figures) show family practice docs at $137,000. I wouldn't call that overpaid. And half make less than that. For pediatricians, the median is only about $133,000.

The money is in the specialties.

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos074.htm
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 04:13 PM   #73
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Martha
Thanks for posting that website. It belies the myth that all docs are millionaires. Family practice docs and pediatricians are making no more than lots of people in middle management, engineers, or lawyers. Certainly, specialists make more, but that typically requires additional training.

Cardude
Amazing after tax savings. Obviously you and your wife are committed to saving. Cost of housing in a rural areas is typically much lower than in metro areas, so you do have the benefit of saving money that would otherwise go towards mortgage payments (lucky for you). I'm guessing that taxes are also lower in rural towns. Parking, too. Think parking doesn't add up? We pay more than $300/month just to park at work (yes, we are charged to park at the hospital). Car insurance, too. Metro areas are also big into toll roads, probably not so much in rural areas.

Still, pretty amazing job...
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 04:32 PM   #74
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

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Cardude
Amazing after tax savings.* Obviously you and your wife are committed to saving.* Cost of housing in a rural areas is typically much lower than in metro areas, so you do have the benefit of saving money that would otherwise go towards mortgage payments (lucky for you).* I'm guessing that taxes are also lower in rural towns.* Parking, too.* Think parking doesn't add up?* We pay more than $300/month just to park at work (yes, we are charged to park at the hospital). Car insurance, too.* Metro areas are also big into toll roads, probably not so much in rural areas.*
Oh yeah, it's cheap here.* When I said "small town", I'm talking a population of 5,200 people.*

HOUSING
We've lived in the same house since 1990, and we bought it for about 50K.* Added a pool and have remodeled a couple of times, but still very cheap digs.*

ENTERTAINMENT EXPENSES
Ha! Give me a break!* Nothing to do here but drink beer, hang with our kids (ages 6 and 9), surf, skateboard with the kids (not advisable after drinking beer, BTW) so that helps keep expenses down.

PARKING EXPENSE
No parking expense.* Plenty of pasture around us for free.
No toll roads, in fact, not much pavement!

The downside to all this is that it does get boring sometimes, but if we get stir crazy we just take a trip to the "big city" about 100 miles away.* God, we sound like a bunch of hillbillies I just realized..........
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 04:39 PM   #75
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

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God, we sound like a bunch of hillbillies I just realized..........
Well the first thing you know ol cardude's a millionaire,
Kinfolk said "cardude, move away from there"
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 04:40 PM   #76
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Is that banjo music?
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 04:50 PM   #77
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

And you've already got a cement pond...

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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 04:58 PM   #78
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Quote:
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Oh yeah, it's cheap here. When I said "small town", I'm talking a population of 5,200 people.
Is that including sheep, horse and cattle?

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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 04:59 PM   #79
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

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Martha
Thanks for posting that website. It belies the myth that all docs are millionaires. Family practice docs and pediatricians are making no more than lots of people in middle management, engineers, or lawyers.
Or even less. I know someone who finished med school when I finished law school. She is a family practice doc for a fairly large clinic system and I am a lawyer at a midsize law firm. Until I went part time, in the past few years I made significantly more than she did. And no one calls me in the middle of the night either. And nobody dies.

Your original question was about maintaining your standard of living when you retire. For a while, we had a house on Lake Superior and a lake cabin. I would cringe when I paid the property taxes. Nine years ago we sold the house and moved into an apartment in a small building we own. We also sold the cabin (though we did buy an rv).

Downsizing turned out to be really very painless. Some of my coworkers did find it odd that we have lived in our apartment so long.

My husband retired some years ago and I will soon. We likely will increase our spending by buying or renting a house and traveling more. So I expect to spend more in retirement than we do now, but on different stuff.

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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.
Old 03-21-2006, 05:10 PM   #80
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Re: More Details On My Savings and Salary.

Martha:

I looked at your physicians salary index and really didn't believe it. So I looked at my profession.

Keep in mind that if you live in one of the high cost areas like Boston, California, NYC, etc. then your salary may be significantly higher than the median indicated.

In my geopgraphical area I'd add about 50 -75 percent to the median indicated salary.

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