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Old 05-23-2013, 11:34 PM
 
Location: earth?
7,288 posts, read 10,879,617 times
Reputation: 8956

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When I was younger, I viewed any hardships as temporary - and because I was younger, I was able to shrug things off . . .

Fast forward to now (and I mean that literally) . . .

I had an expectation that "things would turn out ok," and I feel so frustrated that they didn't . . . and because I am older, I don't have the hope and resilience of youth.

I realize that it is my ego that gets all pissy, but I don't know what to do about it. I feel like I am having tantrums that things did not go my way and that I am not getting to do what I want.

I am tied down due to responsibilities but these are responsibilities I have chosen to take on - I just didn't understand when I was taking them on, what the cost would be to me - but if I had known, I probably would have done the same thing.

I am resentful that I am not getting to do what I want - and I know I have unconscious beliefs that "in retirement" you "should" get to do what you want - therefore, when I am facing unpleasant circumstances I get all bent out of shape (internally).

I don't know what to do about this short of hypnosis.

I think part of me is angry at God because I feel that I am "special" and should not have to suffer "at my age" (which I understand is just ridiculous, but these feelings are irrational - they just "are").

I am extremely exhausted and burnt out . . .

Today I traced my bad mood back to the fact that I had to do too much work . . . it feels like the work is "never-ending."

Can anyone relate?

Or are you all living perfectly blissful retirements?
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Old 05-24-2013, 12:04 AM
 
4,787 posts, read 9,325,761 times
Reputation: 12632
This really has nothing to do with retirement. This has to do what you're done to yourself.

You said it yourself. You took on responsibilities that maybe you shouldn't have. But knowing the effort involved, you would still have made the same choice. If that's what you're saying, then it's all on you.
This can happen to anyone at any point in their life.

Having made those decisions you now have two choices. You either give up some of that responsibility or you turn outward and ask for help. You haven't said exactly what your problem is.

However, for example, if you're caring for very elderly or ill family, look into respite care, home hospice care, etc. Ask other family members for help, financial, time-wise, what ever you think you need.

If it's all become too much, then give some of it up. Don't blame God, first you'd have to prove a mythical being exists so we won't go down that path. But look around you to see who you're really mad at. Family not helping out- get mad at them. Spending money you don't have, working when you don't want to. Try to fix that even if it means giving up those responsibilities or sharing them with others.

Again,without knowing what your specific problem is, can't really add any more. You do sound burnt out.
Talk therapy can help - you need to vent and maybe need someone to tell you it's OK to put yourself and your physical and mental well being first. You also may need someone to point you toward resources in the community that may be able to help shift some of the effort to others.

What's important is that if you feel you're coming part at the seams is to seek help. Anger is only helpful if it drives you to find solutions. Anger that let's you stew in place is useless.

And no, not everyone has a blissful retirement. As with everything in life, things ebb and flow. Learning to set boundaries with others is very helpful but perhaps you're in a situation where you can't do that.
( long term responsibility of raising grand kids, for example)

Good luck, I hope things improve for you.
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Old 05-24-2013, 12:09 AM
 
Location: earth?
7,288 posts, read 10,879,617 times
Reputation: 8956
Thank you. It does have to do with age - I am tired now - so I can't regroup as easily as I could before. I also had expectations about "retirement" and what I would be doing now . . . so it is dawning on me that my fairytale idea of what I imagined I might be doing in retirement isn't necessarily going to happen.

It's about expectations (even unconscious ones) and lack of energy and resilience.


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Old 05-24-2013, 01:10 AM
 
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,538,376 times
Reputation: 29083
I also believe that this has less to do with retirement and more to do with other factors, including age. As you indicated, at a certain point our bounce-back ability begins to be compromised because not only do we not have the same resilience we did when younger but we also have less time left to us.

Expectations can be a two-edged sword. On the one hand they can give us delightful anticipation which, when fulfilled, enriches our lives. On the other hand, when they become dashed they can lead to sadness, sometimes leading to depression.

One difficult lesson I learned in divorce about 20 years ago was painful but has since stood me in good stead. I rarely permit myself to have major expectations anymore. Rather, I take life as it comes and deal with it as it affects or challenges me. You see, if you have no expectations you can not be disappointed.

Go a little more easy on yourself. Think of every day in which you awaken with pulse and respiration as notm just a good one but a new beginning well.

Hope things get better for you.
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:02 AM
 
Location: Oregon
1,379 posts, read 2,678,176 times
Reputation: 1019
We had "great expectations", too. And I had to readjust my attitude, which helped a lot.
We had to close our business (with debt) and take my husband's social security at 62.
Sold our house for much less than we had "expected" to get.
We didn't get the dream retirement home.
We didn't get the RV that we had decided on.
We also don't have the funds to do all the traveling we hoped to do.
HOWEVER....
We have a comfy, cozy little home on a few acres....it's paid for.
We live frugally, but still have fun.
We bought a 10 yr old travel trailer that we just love to take on the road.
We paid off all our debt from our business.
Life is really good. So much less stressful than when we were working at our business.
Now that we're here....we're grateful that we came out above water. Some folks lost everything when the economy took a dive.

I hope that things improve for you!
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:10 AM
 
4,494 posts, read 4,759,071 times
Reputation: 9977
Sounds like you are spending alot of energy being angry about all of this. Reality, we are all heading in the same direcrtion.... whether you are 30 or 60. We break down. You nor I can stop the process.
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:40 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 19,014,482 times
Reputation: 15649
Protect your heart. Draw a mental visual circle around it and decide what you will let inside it and what you will not. You can keep dealing with the stuff that has to do with the people outside that circle, but you do not have to invest any emotion in and about them. It's call duty vs. emotional involvement. Visualizations like this help.
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:46 AM
 
Location: Oregon
1,379 posts, read 2,678,176 times
Reputation: 1019
Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
Protect your heart. Draw a mental visual circle around it and decide what you will let inside it and what you will not. You can keep dealing with the stuff that has to do with the people outside that circle, but you do not have to invest any emotion in and about them. It's call duty vs. emotional involvement. Visualizations like this help.
That's something that I need to work at all the time. I like the visualization.
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:48 AM
NCN
 
Location: NC/SC Border Patrol
21,135 posts, read 21,919,033 times
Reputation: 23222
Quote:
Originally Posted by imcurious View Post
When I was younger, I viewed any hardships as temporary - and because I was younger, I was able to shrug things off . . .

Fast forward to now (and I mean that literally) . . .

I had an expectation that "things would turn out ok," and I feel so frustrated that they didn't . . . and because I am older, I don't have the hope and resilience of youth.

I realize that it is my ego that gets all pissy, but I don't know what to do about it. I feel like I am having tantrums that things did not go my way and that I am not getting to do what I want.

I am tied down due to responsibilities but these are responsibilities I have chosen to take on - I just didn't understand when I was taking them on, what the cost would be to me - but if I had known, I probably would have done the same thing.

I am resentful that I am not getting to do what I want - and I know I have unconscious beliefs that "in retirement" you "should" get to do what you want - therefore, when I am facing unpleasant circumstances I get all bent out of shape (internally).

I don't know what to do about this short of hypnosis.

I think part of me is angry at God because I feel that I am "special" and should not have to suffer "at my age" (which I understand is just ridiculous, but these feelings are irrational - they just "are").

I am extremely exhausted and burnt out . . .

Today I traced my bad mood back to the fact that I had to do too much work . . . it feels like the work is "never-ending."

Can anyone relate?

Or are you all living perfectly blissful retirements?
Yes, pretty much, but that brings a guilt of its own. Maybe you are working for more stars in your crown.

When I retired my first goal was not to get in a rut. I had several people want me to take on volunteer jobs that would have seemed like work to me. I would love to go some days and help some people but most people do not want a day here or there. They want you to commit to a certain number of days a week every week. I love to travel and do not want to get bogged down to having to say I cannot go there today because I am commited elsewhere.

I wish someone would show us a happy medium here. I don't do enough. You do too much.

I keep telling myself that I am now a consumer and am helping the economy when I go shopping or to special events. As long as there is life, there is hope. I double-timed it for several years. I have goofed off for a while now and maybe am in the mood to help others again. I had a job where I helped a lot of people for many years.

I see my major job now as watching over our family but at a distance. I see problems and pray about them and sometimes send new dresses to the granddaughters or suggest a change when I think it is needed. I recently told my son he needed to kill all the snakes and spiders around his home to protect his children. He didn't seem to think that was needed because he is a naturalist. He thought it was O. K. to leave spiders and snakes alone. Where did I go wrong in his upbringing?

Last edited by NCN; 05-24-2013 at 10:02 AM..
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:03 AM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,346 posts, read 83,102,694 times
Reputation: 17517
Quote:
Originally Posted by imcurious View Post
I think part of me is angry at God
This type of (superstitious) thinking may be part of the problem.

Do you get enough exercise? I have found that people who exercise regularly either have no stress related problems or none that are bad enough to talk about.
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