Transition Thursday: Relationship Advice for Couples Who Stagger Retirement

Baby Boomer Couple Talking with Financial Advisor

In the AARP article Advice for Couples Who Stagger Retirement, author Margery D. Rosen writes that planning can be tricky if one opts out of the workforce before the other, also known as “Out-of-Sync Retirement Syndrome”:

“As 76 million boomers march toward what was once a generally agreed-upon ‘retirement age,’ many are poorly prepared for the conflicts unleashed when one partner retires and the other continues to toil. ‘Retirement can magnify preexisting problems in a marriage,’ says social historian Stephanie Coontz. ‘The decision to stop work forces you to reevaluate what you both want — and you may discover the gaps are wider than either of you thought.'”

Boomers in particular may struggle with this transition.

“‘In the past, most couples took it for granted that when one of them retired, the other would, too — and they usually faced only the husband’s retirement,’ says sociologist Phyllis Moen, author of Encore Adulthood: Boomers on the Edge of Risk, Renewal, and Purpose. ‘Two-career boomers are the first generation that has had to deal with his-and-her retirements.'”

Another issue: Many 50+ women in the workforce opted for the “mommy track,” putting their careers on hold while they raised their families.

“Then, when their nests emptied, they reentered the workforce with renewed ambition. Today, more than 25 percent of women ages 65 to 69 — and 15.5 percent of women ages 70 to 74 — are employed full time. (The figures for men are 33 percent and 24 percent.) Not only do they enjoy the regular paycheck, they also don’t want to lose the intellectual stimulation and social life a job often provides. ‘While husbands may be thinking about volunteering, traveling or having more time as a couple,’ notes Dorian Mintzer, coauthor of The Couple’s Retirement Puzzle, ‘their wives may be hitting their stride at work. Both spouses are in transition, but they’re traveling different roads.'”

Read the rest at Advice for Couples Who Stagger Retirement.


DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

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