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Don't Retire Early Even If You Can!!

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Even knowing how good early retirement can feel in the end, others feel the jitters while taking the leap. Jay, who is becoming a stay-at-home dad later this year after deciding to retire early at the age of 41, is one of them. He has been saving and has a wife who will keep her full-time job as a professor — but he’s still a little unsure about the big lifestyle change. 



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I’ve refuted the major reasons listed for why you “shouldn’t” retire early, am I wrong?

Identity crisis.

You may have an identity crisis, but if your identity is tied to a job, especially a job that is making you consider early retirement, then isn’t the bigger danger to never develop your own identity as a human being outside of your identity as a laborer?

Others won’t understand.

You’re the one who has to live your life, not them.

Lost future wages and lower SS.

Money is here to buy you independence and freedom; it isn’t something to arbitrarily collect. If you have all you need, more is useless.

Medicare Age Restrictions

Save enough so you can afford insurance on the open market.

401k Early Withdrawl Penalty

If you’re retiring early, I believe you can access the money without fees if you meet certain conditions. I think the main condition is you agree to take out a regular amount every year.

Also, if you’re retiring early then you almost certainly have far more money in your taxable account so you shouldn’t need your 401k for many years. 

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I am with you Ed. Imagine the author writing that "OTHERS WILL NOT UNDERSTAND" is this author SERIOUS?!!!

Again this is all CRAP. This "author" has no idea why young people are going this route. It is brutal working for some of these companies. Sure they get paid a lot but the stress is not worth it. So according to this author, these young people should NOT THINK DIFFERENTLY because others won't understand. Is this serious or what. And it gets worse! What a crock! This author is desperate for a publication. 

I met 60 of these young people last summer and they are super. They are working to get out of their high-stress jobs working for somebody else and want to be financially independent at an early age. I love it. 

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39 minutes ago, sschullo said:

It is brutal working for some of these companies.

No  Kidding. My son is finding this out. He was "promoted" a month ago which was a complete farce. They gave him a .50 cent raise per hour and now instead of working 10 hour days he is working 12 hour days. He tells me its a brutal environment. My brother is in industry too and his job has pretty much destroyed him physically. At age 57 he still as to ask permission to go to the bathroom and says his body can't take it much longer. Neither one has a  defined pension.  This has opened my son's eyes. It was /is a good experience but he is realizing that this type of life can't be a long term proposition. He is reviewing his options including returning to school.I am encouraging him to save all he can so he may leave this envirionment.

I was fortunate I guess to have a pension and to have been in  a job that  while stressful gave me the summers off and didn't require so much physical wear and tear. I don't miss the working world at all. Your average American is working 50 hours a week or more!! They say hard work never killed anybody. I am not so sure . You got to wonder why so many folks are abusing pain killers. Maybe its their jobs. Things need to get much more worker friendly for employees but seems like management is only interested in the bottom line.


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If you buy into two ideas:

  1. The FIRE community has grown significantly in recent times.
  2. American workers have grown increasingly aware that companies view them as disposable objects to be maximally used and exploíted.

...then I wonder how much of this growing FIRE community is driven by the desire to escape that abusive employer/employee relationship. The correlation is there, but is it causation? I struggle to think of other "new" factors that would have driven growth in this movement. Presumably everybody always wanted freedom/independence, but they didn't seem to be as driven as they are now.

FIRE is almost exclusively for rich folks and I often wonder about the poor folks who experience the worst of this economy. If I were working minimum-wage type jobs that guaranteed I'd always struggle and never get ahead, then I'm not sure I wouldn't just reject and abandon the entire system. I think about folks like Gandhi who fundamentally rejected an exploítative economic system and led people into the country side to grow their own food and hand make goods to sell for a bit of money. Sometimes I'm amazed that our working class doesn't take a page from that book.

...I reread this post and found it interesting that poor and working class have become synonymous in my mind.

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