RELATIONSHIP REFLECTIONS

The Retirement Entitlement: An Entitlement vs. A Right

An entitlement to retire, for most men, is one of the last vestiges of “guy school” indoctrination that comes up in their lives.

Men certainly have the right to retire; it’s just that they are not entitled to do so.

An entitlement, remember, is a right that I claim that in effect cancels or overrides the rights of significant others in my life. It may be more or less conscious as in “Of course I have that right, and who are you to question me?” or something that I just take for granted and sail along my merry way oblivious to the needs or rights of others.

Note of warning to entitlement holders:
For every hour of entitlement you take, you get about an hour and a half of resentment coming your way in return. Watch out guys! The light you think you see at the end of this tunnel may be a train!

Hopefully, more and more men are realizing that retirement, even if they can afford to retire in this economy, may not be all that it was cracked up to be. As with most things in life, it depends.

work or retire

My desire to retire came upon me like a powerful itch. I needed to scratch it for a while to discover that retiring didn’t make sense for me or for my family, even though I felt entitled to retire.

I realized that it made sense to me to work about half time and continue my counseling practice with individuals and couples and to write more.

I have dodged the retirement entitlement bullet and choose to do the work that I love and that serves, to the best of my ability, this amazing, awesome world.

By John Mariner,
Licensed Clinical Social Worker

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