Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
S.O.S - Terrible work situation - Advice pls.
Old 05-03-2008, 10:05 PM   #1
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 32
S.O.S - Terrible work situation - Advice pls.

Hello. I haven't posted in quite some time because my PW was reset, or I couldn't remember it, and didn't take the time to request a new one.
(I'm super stressed right now, hence the "SOS")

BACKGROUND: I am a non-practicing attorney. (although I did take and pass the bar exam in my state) I have worked for the same corporation for almost 16 years. My job is barely quasi-legal, nothing that one would need a law license to perform. My skills have been used in a Analyst/project management/editorial type capacity. I live in the Midwest, not very many oppurtunities in my town. My spouse had a somewhat stable position, with a company that is known for their loyalty. He also has more transferable job skills. No kids.

Job benefits: 5 weeks vacation
Pension (small, I think I have $33K after 16 years)
401 (K) - standard. I have $196K after 16 years, DH and I fairly frugal.
Debt - mortgage only
Age: I'm 41

Recently my entire division was told that our jobs are going away. We were told that we could "apply" a set of newly created positions (that's how they do it in coporate USA, you are never let go, your job title "goes away" and suddenly the exact same job functions re-appear with a new job title and wording). Obviously, this has been a great deal of stress. When they finish with this masacre the division will be left at 15%.

MY PROBLEM (finally, thanks for sticking with me) I believe that I may be offered on of the "remaining positions". The 'new job' will require overseas travel to a very remote location. (think 18 hour flight) The travel will be at least 2x/yearly for a minimum of 3-4 weeks. I HATE TO TRAVEL. I know that is odd, but I do. I'm not afraid to fly, or anything like that, I just don't like the discomfort, being away from DH, the whole mess. I don't like it, have never liked it, and doubt I would ever like it.

I was brought up in a very blue collar home and my dad was part of the steel mill industry that eventually fell to pieces and he lost his job at 50 with 3 kids in college. Very hard times. This has left a lasting impression on me.

I am terrified to leave a decent paying job with good benefits. It does not help that every time I turn on the TV all I hear is that the economy is falling apart, recession, massive job loss, etc.

I don't want the job. In my heart of hearts, the new job is not what I want to do.

Does anyone have any insight, wisdom, simliar experiences or words to help me make this decision. I have a few weeks to decide.

My apologies for length.
__________________

__________________
Tracker 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 05-03-2008, 10:19 PM   #2
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 11,615
Are they offering you anything to leave the company (a severance package or anything)?

Is there a potential that taking the position in the company might lead to something you'd like (another job in the company, better contacts in other companies so you could more easily jump ship on your terms?)

What's your opinion of your marketability? Could you find another position you'd like as much as the "must travel" job and which has similar compensation?

Can you do anything to reduce the downside of the traveling? Could DH occasionally accompany you, etc?

Frankly, it doesn't sound like you love your present job very much, and that you'll probably like the new opportunity even less. You know an 85% cut is coming. Is there a reason you shouldn't be actively hunting for a new job?
__________________

__________________
"Freedom begins when you tell Mrs. Grundy to go fly a kite." - R. Heinlein
samclem is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 03:50 AM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 5,072
Sorry to hear it Tracker.

Ditto samclem, check on packages.

Someone with your education can make a career adjustment.

If you are in a large metro area, another job (locally) should be fairly easy. If not, you may need to consider relocating. Since your DH works (and has a job) a relo will not be in the cards unless you both move.

I lived in an area where jobs were a bit scarce and economically less viable. I bit the bullet 30 years ago and relocated. That is a bit different than being early 40's.

On the positive side, at your age, you will be able to successfully make the break and start a new career or job.

Keep in mind. Someone with your knowledge and management skills can transition into a number of jobs and management at a variety of different companies. You might decide to think broader than legal.

You might consider taking the bar exam and hanging out a shingle or working in a group.
__________________
chinaco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 03:57 AM   #4
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Rambler's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 2,250
I hear you on the travel. I used to be away from the house about three out of every four weeks and it got real old, real fast. I still travel but not as much...maybe 3-4 times a year or so, for a week to 10 days each time.

Ditto on checking the available severance package. If it is big enough to allow you the time to find a new job, maybe best to take it. Otherwise, keep the job and look for a new one while you continue this one.

Good luck.

R
__________________
Rambler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 04:24 AM   #5
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: New York
Posts: 898
Can you guys live on DHs income indefinitely? Not suggesting you throw in the towel for good but if it takes you a number of months or even a year to find another job, would you be ok?
__________________
Money's just something you need in case you don't die tomorrow.
Maurice is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 05:59 AM   #6
Full time employment: Posting here.
Delawaredave5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 606
There's limited financial info - but looks like you cannot Early Retire yet.

I'd take the job and look for another. You're always more "marketable" looking for a job when you already have one.
__________________
Delawaredave5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 07:19 AM   #7
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 32
The severenance package would pay the mortgage for two years. (approximately) We are 11 years into a 15 year mortgage. (we owe $40K at this point on our home) Worse case scenario we could refi and stretch it out to a 30 year term, mortgage would be approximate $400-$500 instead of the current $1200. Severance would be maybe $24K after taxes. Not enough to pay off $40K mortgage.

Things would be tighter, but we could get by. What kills me about this whole mess is that we were so on track to pay off the home and be debt free. I feel like I am ruining our plans and de-railing our future. If I could last 5 more years I could pay off the mortgage and get my 401(k) close to $300K. (and have a total of 20 years on the paltry pension) That was the goal. My goal was to be 45 years old (41 now) and have no mortgage, $300K in retirement savings.

However, I haven't 'liked' my job for several years now. This new job would be absolutely miserable. (most of the team gone, outsourcing main focus)

On one hand I value finanicial security. Very, very, importanti to me. On the other hand, I have only one life to live. I don't want to be even more miserable in my job than I am now.
__________________
Tracker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 07:32 AM   #8
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 50
Tracker, have you prayed about this? That might help you focus on what is really important to you. Sometimes Jesus tells us to get out of the "boat" and walk on the water.
__________________
blessed is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 07:35 AM   #9
Moderator Emeritus
Rich_by_the_Bay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 8,827
Is the $196k in your 401K the entire nest egg (plus house and pension)? Can you estimate your annual living expenses? Are you interested in retiring or semi-retiring?
__________________
Rich
San Francisco Area
ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
Rich_by_the_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 07:52 AM   #10
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
2B's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Houston
Posts: 4,330
I'll second the suggestion to keep your j*b if you can. It may not be pretty but it will keep the cash flow going. I'll also add the suggestion to immediately cut your budget to live on your husband's income only. You'll see how life would be without your income plus you'll get a boost in savings. Also, start looking for a better position. If you have hated your job for several years, you have to ask yourself why you're still there. If you have no alternatives in your area, maybe it's time for both of you to look at other pastures.
__________________
The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane -- Marcus Aurelius
2B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 08:41 AM   #11
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Posts: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by blessed View Post
Tracker, have you prayed about this? That might help you focus on what is really important to you. Sometimes Jesus tells us to get out of the "boat" and walk on the water.
Try as I have to bite my lip and let this 'advice' go through, even accept it as genuinely heartfelt, I can't help but see it as gratuitous, bordering on sanctimonious.

The OP has a difficult, real-world dilemma, divine intervention is unlikely to offer a solution, other than at a miraculous 'win-the-lottery' level.

If you have no practical advice, please check your own 'spiritual beliefs' at the door
__________________
mbooth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:01 AM   #12
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 50
mbooth,
I did not mean to sound sanctimonious. I had a bad situation like this at 39 and needed to still be employed. I was praying about the situation and I got fired or let go. They gave me 4 weeks severance after almost 15 years of good work. I had to do contract work for 4 years. I learned a lot about myself through this time and saved like crazy the full 25% allowed in the SEP. I finally went part time with the company I mostly worked for. I was never fully used there but I continued to save and do my time. 17 months ago I FIRED for good and am very happy! What I learned through the self-employment part was like walking on water; you never knew if there was work next week or next month. Kind of walking by faith each day which christians are to do all their lives. I am just another sinner saved no halo here.
__________________
blessed is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:09 AM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Rambler's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 2,250
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbooth View Post
Try as I have to bite my lip and let this 'advice' go through, even accept it as genuinely heartfelt, I can't help but see it as gratuitous, bordering on sanctimonious.

The OP has a difficult, real-world dilemma, divine intervention is unlikely to offer a solution, other than at a miraculous 'win-the-lottery' level.

If you have no practical advice, please check your own 'spiritual beliefs' at the door
Yes, and those if us who do believe in God do feel that He will help us. More often than not, IMHO, that help will be in the form of comfort that we'll be OK. I think if you don't like the advice to pray, don't take it. Same as if you don't like the advice to buy a certain stock, you don't take it.

R
__________________
Rambler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:11 AM   #14
Moderator Emeritus
Rich_by_the_Bay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 8,827
Tracker - there have been many members of the board in comparable situations and an interesting and consistent observation is that once a decision and commitment is made to retire early, the stressors and negatives of the job become much easier to tolerate.

So one approach might be to get to know FireCalc and share some more financial details with the board (to the extent that you're comfortable doing so). If it turns out you can FIRE in a year or so, that might make your decision much easier, and your job much more tolerable.
__________________
Rich
San Francisco Area
ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
Rich_by_the_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:25 AM   #15
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Posts: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by blessed View Post
..........They gave me 4 weeks severance after almost 15 years of good work. I had to do contract work for 4 years. I learned a lot about myself through this time and saved like crazy the full 25% allowed in the SEP. I finally went part time with the company I mostly worked for. I was never fully used there but I continued to save and do my time. ..............
There ya go, some 'real-world' experience

I don't want to get into any 'conviction wars' with you, I appreciate your own beliefs, I just thought that your "Jesus Saves!" (we're all 'savers' on this board) was somewhat inappropriate and non-constructive in this case.

Peace be upon you my friend
__________________
mbooth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:37 AM   #16
Moderator Emeritus
Rich_by_the_Bay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 8,827
OK.

I'm going to ask all participants in the religious advice exchange to please stand down. This is a highly personal issue and has the potential to quickly ignite all kinds of passionate responses.

With respect for the sincerity of all parties, the moderators will discuss just how the board should handle this issue and try to provide some input going forward.

Thanks for your restraint. We now return you to your regularly scheduled thread.
__________________
Rich
San Francisco Area
ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
Rich_by_the_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:41 AM   #17
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Posts: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rambler View Post
Yes, and those if us who do believe in God do feel that He will help us. More often than not, IMHO, that help will be in the form of comfort that we'll be OK. I think if you don't like the advice to pray, don't take it. Same as if you don't like the advice to buy a certain stock, you don't take it.

R
Appreciated. But the OP was asking for some (what I took to be real-world) advice. Asking for divine intervention is a very personal thing, the OP might have asked for Christian, Muslim, Buddist, Hindu, Shinto, Confucian.....[name your flavour) advice. But they didn't, otherwise they might have gone to an appropriate religious forum, just not this one.

Again, I'm not after an ecumenical discussion, and I'm not 'judging' or getting all anti-whatever, I just don't think it's appropropriate here given the 'thrust' of the forum.

I'll shut up now, we're in danger of getting 'all 'het up' where this might (only just 'might') be more appropriate to the 'Other Topics' or 'Soapbox' forum
__________________
mbooth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:41 AM   #18
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
2B's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Houston
Posts: 4,330
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa View Post
Tracker - there have been many members of the board in comparable situations and an interesting and consistent observation is that once a decision and commitment is made to retire early, the stressors and negatives of the job become much easier to tolerate.

So one approach might be to get to know FireCalc and share some more financial details with the board (to the extent that you're comfortable doing so). If it turns out you can FIRE in a year or so, that might make your decision much easier, and your job much more tolerable.
I'll second Rich's input. Figure out where you are financially and, if nothing else, you'll see how bad or good the situation is. My earlier comments were that both of you aren't in the position to FIRE at this time.

My own DW quit her job to take care of her parents and they are just now in a situation that I'd call "contained." She's doing some PT stuff but hasn't tried for a full time gig. I'm not really encouraging this because I'm making more than I've ever made before and want to begin traveling more. Even though I officially have a FT j*b, I consider myself almost semi-retired because their is absolutely no stress. I know we are financially secure enough to retire today. I also am looking forward to full time retirement in the not too distant future.

Things would be entirely different if DW suddenly decided she didn't like to work one day and she'd retire with us both knowing that it would mean I'd have to work FT for the next few decades. She might find out what it's like to live on her half of the assets in her "retirement."
__________________
The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane -- Marcus Aurelius
2B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:51 AM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
2B's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Houston
Posts: 4,330
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbooth View Post
Appreciated. But the OP was asking for some (what I took to be real-world) advice. Asking for divine intervention is a very personal thing, the OP might have asked for Christian, Muslim, Buddist, Hindu, Shinto, Confucian.....[name your flavour) advice. But they didn't, otherwise they might have gone to an appropriate religious forum, just not this one.

Again, I'm not after an ecumenical discussion, and I'm not 'judging' or getting all anti-whatever, I just don't think it's appropropriate here given the 'thrust' of the forum.

I'll shut up now, we're in danger of getting 'all 'het up' where this might (only just 'might') be more appropriate to the 'Other Topics' or 'Soapbox' forum
Rather than using the word "pray" blessed could have said "reflect and meditate on your situation" and would not have provoked a response. They are pretty much the same thing. I'm a Christian but have problems with the theological approach that whatever happens is "God's Will." There are numerous scriptural references to "free will" and biblical versions of "sh*t happens." I don't believe or encourage anyone else to believe in predestination.

Tying this into the thread, the original question is based on Tracker wanting guidance and other thoughts on her situation. She is getting input from people with a broad level of experience that are also not emotionally involved.

P.S. Tracker,

I've worked a lot of jobs that I really hated while I looked for a better position. I'm sure I'm not the only one on this forum who has.
__________________
The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane -- Marcus Aurelius
2B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2008, 09:57 AM   #20
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Posts: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa View Post
OK.

I'm going to ask all participants in the religious advice exchange to please stand down.

Thanks for your restraint. We now return you to your regularly scheduled thread.
Done, and my apologies to all for treading on any toes
__________________

__________________
mbooth 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
Advice on Current Financial Situation (Novice) yamasho Young Dreamers 20 06-15-2007 08:58 AM
Airline customer service rep--what a terrible job samclem Other topics 12 08-13-2006 03:01 PM
Car insurance saving idea: agent input pls poocher FIRE and Money 15 05-08-2006 09:51 PM
Bonds & Fixed Income Allocation, comments pls jj FIRE and Money 3 04-03-2006 01:30 PM
Seeking advice on how to make money work wildcat FIRE and Money 22 08-02-2005 12:22 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:50 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.