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Old 03-18-2011, 11:06 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,740,386 times
Reputation: 32304

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O.K., I'll confess! Sometimes I do feel just a little bit guilty, because I see people who have to work so much longer. This is irrational, I admit, because first, I didn't retire all that early, just earlier than many (age 61). Second, I had put in 34 years with that employer in order to get a defined benefit pension I could live on. Third, some of the 34 years were extremely stressful, sort of like being in hell. So I think I earned my pension, having contributed 8% of my salary the whole time.

Soon after I got out of the daily grind, my sister had to get back into it at age 62 in order to have health insurance for her and her husband. She will be stuck there until age 66. I feel sorry for her.

Most of the time I feel no guilt at all and I am very pleased with how retirement has turned out for me. It's just occasionally when I hear about people who have lost their jobs and had to take Soc. Sec. at age 62 just to have some income to live on instead of no income at all that I am forced to think again about how fortunate I am. And sometimes that is accompanied by a slight feeling of guilt.
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Old 03-23-2011, 07:38 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,888 posts, read 25,327,549 times
Reputation: 26385
Guilty? Heavens no! I started working at 12, finished University by 19 and worked the whole time. While all those other folks were playing, I was working. I earned it!

I saved. I didn't buy what I couldn't afford and I lived below my means. I had no children and therefore didn't support any.

Last edited by yellowsnow; 03-23-2011 at 07:40 PM.. Reason: added
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:18 AM
 
Location: Western Colorado
11,091 posts, read 12,475,857 times
Reputation: 26116
I retired at 58 after 35 years. Feel guilty? Heck no! If someone tries to make me feel bad for not producing for the collective, I just laugh, tell them to have fun getting up at 6am, driving in traffic and being micromanaged while I'm in a quiet lake trout fishing.
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:28 AM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,133 posts, read 20,826,624 times
Reputation: 8293
NO it is my patriotic duty to get out of the way and let someone younger do the job. Advice the Supreme Koch and Senate should listen to
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Old 07-12-2011, 11:26 AM
 
Location: Tampa, FL
27,798 posts, read 26,217,684 times
Reputation: 14611
I worked my tail off, lived in a couple of war zones, saved my money over the years, lived beneath my means, so do I feel guilty?

Sometimes -because others I know can't live the same early retirement lifestyle as I do. Also, I spent a lot of years earning a couple of degrees in my chosen profession, and now I'm not taking advantage of all the education via work.
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Old 07-12-2011, 11:38 AM
 
Location: High Cotton
6,131 posts, read 6,443,832 times
Reputation: 3657
When I'm playing golf, traveling and having fun in my retirement I sometimes wonder what others my age who wish they could retire (but carelessly spent too much and didn't save for retirement) are feeling. I spend maybe one second thinking about it, shake my head and grin! Do I feel guilty? Hell no!
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Old 07-12-2011, 01:55 PM
 
29,782 posts, read 34,871,258 times
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Not guilty but increasingly I feel more and more empathy for those who haven't and especially those who had worked at it but the recession hammered them. I am really concerned about those in their 50's who lost their, jobs, health care and now their homes. Next on the list for them I am afraid is their future.
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Old 07-12-2011, 03:18 PM
 
Location: Tampa, FL
27,798 posts, read 26,217,684 times
Reputation: 14611
Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
Not guilty but increasingly I feel more and more empathy for those who haven't and especially those who had worked at it but the recession hammered them. I am really concerned about those in their 50's who lost their, jobs, health care and now their homes. Next on the list for them I am afraid is their future.
If you watch any of the national news, you see how unfortunate millions of people are. Some of them, I must admit, lived well beyond their means - some bought houses when they should have rented, some got up to their necks or over their heads in credit card debt, much of it had to do with materialism. I think many have learned valuable lesson. So there is some guilt when you can saw that you're financially able to retire early while millions will work, if they can, to their final days and will never be able to realize retirement.
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Old 07-12-2011, 06:07 PM
 
Location: Florida
4,365 posts, read 3,702,696 times
Reputation: 4111
Quote:
Originally Posted by windflower View Post
This question is for anyone else who retired before age 60.

I retired five years ago at age 53, after working fulltime ever since age 18. My father died unexpectedly in 2001 and I inherited his house, life insurance and retirement policies, et cetera. I decided to sell his house plus my own, because I'd fallen in love with an "older house with great character" (this is a euphemism for "Money Pit", by the way; I see elsewhere on the forum there's a young man who believes he can purchase an older home for $50,000 and spend no more than $2000 on repairs and improvements – he certainly is in for a rude awakening!) which I subsequently bought and spent almost three years restoring and repairing.

All of my friends, family and acquaintances are, however, still working full-time. I am the only one who has retired and at every social gathering someone ALWAYS asks the dreaded question: "So, what are you DOING with yourself nowadays? Are you WORKING?" in the tone of voice that implies rather "Are you still being a layabout, or have you decided to return to doing something productive?" During the years I was restoring the house, I at least had that "excuse", but it is now finished. I get the unmistakable sense that people feel there is no earthly reason why a healthy single childless 58-year-old woman of education and reasonable intelligence should not be still in the workforce… other than sheer laziness or irresponsibility, that is, neither of which has ever been the case. I have sometimes felt guilty enough to actually lie and say that I am doing temporary-employment work! That always results in a response of "Oh really? That's very nice" and the conversation turns elsewhere; but if I instead evade the question by answering "Oh, this and that", it continues on into more of a third-degree investigation: "But what exactly do you DO with all that free time?" There are times when I am tempted to reply "None of your bloody business" but of course I never do…

So I am wondering if others who chose early retirement feel, or are made to feel, uncomfortable or somehow 'guilty' about it at times?
I would say you are lucky.
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Old 07-12-2011, 07:19 PM
 
29,782 posts, read 34,871,258 times
Reputation: 11705
Quote:
Originally Posted by rjm1cc View Post
I would say you are lucky.
I get what the person you responded to all the time. Especially with former co workers. Other really retired people I worked with get the same thing.
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