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JoeDavola

Is Being Retired Boring And Bad For You?

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I'm guessing the answer might be "only if you're a boring person", but hear me out...

I'm in my parents house this weekend. They are in their early 60's. Both retired at 60.

For reasons best known to themselves they have downsized from a spacious semi to a claustrophobic new build.

Dad sits and watches crap TV shows from the 60's/70's all day, and modern day dross like "Escape to the Country". Mum reads a lot.

When they first retired I bought them tablets/kindles and they have use of my Netflix account.

But I can tell they are bored. Both of them have said this to me separately, although Dad seems to be the one who is more content. Neither of them has any friends so it's just the two of them. And they don't really have any common interests.

And given they aren't THAT old (62/63) - there could be another 20 years like this.

It's got me thinking - beyond the glaringly obvious fact that they shouldn't have got married - is retirement a bit boring?

For all that people complain about them, a job gives you some purpose in life and for those who aren't rich, is retirement just going be sitting on your **** watching TV shows from your youth until you snuff it?

Anyone here having a good retirement, or have parents who are?

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I'm afraid it's your fault Joe for not popping a couple of G'kids out.

I'm sure my parents will be similar although working till older, looking after my niece a bit, walking the dog etc keeps them from vegetating completely.

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We're in our early 60s and have been retired for over six years.

Is retirement boring? That depends on the individual. I've always looked forward to retirement and being able to do what I want, when I want, or nothing, if that's what takes my fancy.

Is retirement bad for you? I'm sure I could extend my life expectancy by eating differently and exercising more, but, quite frankly, I don't care. I do what I want and enjoy life. Extending it by doing things that make it less enjoyable seems pointless.

God preserve us from interference from well meaning relatives.

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Not for my dad. He filled he day with woodworking, walking, being a footpaths officer for the parish council, reading, computing, researching the family tree, writing. Tons of stuff.
Suspect he was as busy as when he worked. He had worked for himself for the most of his life though.

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I've known people for whom retirement has been a disaster. The common factor has been that their dream was to have enough money to stop working rather than there being something that they actively want to do instead of work.

For others who have something they actively want to do they can now throw themselves into and love it.

There are people in the middle but I've known both extremes.

I used to be in the first category, I'd like to be in the second category but because I know there isn't that big thing I want to do I am not looking to retire early.

A good thought exercise is to think what you would be doing on a grey cold Monday in January 2015 if you won the lottery tomorrow. Because that's what your retirement will be like.

Edit: that makes me sound a bit dull! For the record there was one big thing I actively wanted to do, and left work at 30 to do it, did it for a few years, then with it out of my system went back to work much more contented. If I hadn't done that at 30 I would want to retire early and do it.

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I think retirement is very good for you. The main reason women and men's longevity is set to cross in 2030 is that women now occupy half the workforce. House work is something you can mainly control (obviously I am not talking raising kids, retiring early you are past that). My girlfriend is a bit more full time than me and indeed it is me that does most of the housework and compared to paid work it is bloody leisure almost a joy.

I guess one reason women used to massively outlive men, but wont soon, is that indeed they didn't have to go through the stress of paid work and had control over their lives at home. in their 40s and 50s, something akin to early retirement.

It does need to be structured with gardening, walking and that sort of thing. Daytime television is one way to an early grave.

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Joe, your parents are getting to be the right age for their first Harley-Davidson! Does one of them have a motorcycle licence yet?

They could go to China on it via Syria, Kazakhstan, and Tibet! :blink:

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My parents are fine, but they have wide ranging mutual interests. My grandparents were fine until they lost their hearing and eyesight, at which point dementia set in. If your parents pursue a sedentary lifestyle they might go dotty too, so probably in your own interests to encourage them to get out.

Your parents need to get out more and enjoy life, IMHO. Nothing wrong with being a homebody but if they are bored better change it. I don't want to be rude but I can now understand your retinence to get out there in your own life if this was the example being set when you grew up. Do you have siblings?

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I have been 'retired' for about 8 years now due to ill health - have to get back to work this year. On one hand it has allowed me to get well and to consider my place in the Cosmos, etc.

On the other hand, I am aware of being less driven and perhaps less focussed - but, perhaps, that is not a bad thing.

I know people still working in their late 80s because they enjoy it. I think it all depends on what you do - an author can still write as long as he or she is mentally able to. A builder or a plumber probably had a knackered body by the time they are 60.

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I have been 'retired' for about 8 years now due to ill health - have to get back to work this year. On one hand it has allowed me to get well and to consider my place in the Cosmos, etc.

On the other hand, I am aware of being less driven and perhaps less focussed - but, perhaps, that is not a bad thing.

I know people still working in their late 80s because they enjoy it. I think it all depends on what you do - an author can still write as long as he or she is mentally able to. A builder or a plumber probably had a knackered body by the time they are 60.

Absolutely it comes down to whether you enjoy your job. I really would like to stop now; I carry the burden of liability, and even professional indemnity insurance covering up to half a million claim all depends on a degree of compliance. There is a bit of loyalty to old clients and you are just not supposed to retire at 50.

When I overdo the work I do get palpitations and numbness to the left arm.

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Look around you.

The healthy-and-active retired play a huge role in our society, doing all kinds of voluntary work as well as leisure activities (and lots of things that are both work and leisure). They're the foundation of the "Big Society": the major group of people who can afford to take the time for it. When my dad was first retired, he became general administrator for a big voluntary organisation, organising events on six-figure budgets, and says[1] he was busier with that than he ever had been when in paid work!

Even as you slow down, you can still be out and doing things. Look at the number of 80+ people in lighter occupations, from the charity shop to the heritage industry!

[1] though it's an exaggeration.

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I have been 'retired' for about 8 years now due to ill health - have to get back to work this year. On one hand it has allowed me to get well and to consider my place in the Cosmos, etc.

On the other hand, I am aware of being less driven and perhaps less focussed - but, perhaps, that is not a bad thing.

I know people still working in their late 80s because they enjoy it. I think it all depends on what you do - an author can still write as long as he or she is mentally able to. A builder or a plumber probably had a knackered body by the time they are 60.

I was retired due to ill health 10 years ago. I lasted for 6 years on the sofa, then felt well enough to get [and hold down] a 15 hour job. now almost ready for my old age pension [in 9 months and 25 days!], I'm not sure whether to give up or to keep going and pocket the spare cash for a blowout round the world trip. Good way to use my old age pension? :)

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Joe, your parents are getting to be the right age for their first Harley-Davidson! Does one of them have a motorcycle licence yet?

They could go to China on it via Syria, Kazakhstan, and Tibet! :blink:

I did get mine, but sadly the ill health doesn't allow such adventurous travel!! :(

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I was retired due to ill health 10 years ago. I lasted for 6 years on the sofa, then felt well enough to get [and hold down] a 15 hour job. now almost ready for my old age pension [in 9 months and 25 days!], I'm not sure whether to give up or to keep going and pocket the spare cash for a blowout round the world trip. Good way to use my old age pension? :)

Find something - or things - you enjoy doing but never had time for. If it's also of benefit to society then so much the better, but that's secondary.

Something you can go on doing indefinitely. Not a one-off folly.

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Volunteering; charity work and most of all - get an allotment!

Surely you apply for the allotment when you leave school to qualify for it in time for your retirement?

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Volunteering; charity work and most of all - get an allotment!

Yes...retiring doesn't mean giving up work, only doing a different kind of work......giving up the TV and newspapers is easier than giving up proactive, creative, productive and community work. ;)

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Surely you apply for the allotment when you leave school to qualify for it in time for your retirement?

No, just be the sort of annoying person who knows how to bother the council enough to get a new site created near where you live. :)

You may want to practice being that person throughout your working life.

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I did get mine, but sadly the ill health doesn't allow such adventurous travel!! :(

You could put your cholostomy bag in one pannier, and all your diabetic stuff in the other, and get tattooed a lot! You could pull a trailer full of shoes, as I know you are a woman! Although "real bikers" don't wash until it rains! Except the gay ones! they are at least hygienic, and their trousers fit!

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No, just be the sort of annoying person who knows how to bother the council enough to get a new site created near where you live. :)

You may want to practice being that person throughout your working life.

I'm far too late for that.

Should I look for a missus who can do it? Or will she drive me to an early grave, long before I can enjoy my allotment?

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