When two people make a commitment to share their life and build a future, they plan to spend their golden years together doing all the things they could not do during their busy working life. Some of them plan to travel and see the world, but others are content to take the time to enjoy the pleasures that surround them. It does not matter what they plan, adjusting to life in retirement can still be a difficult time for each of them.
Losing an Identity
Many people work for decades to build a good career, and what they do to earn a living becomes a large part of who they are in the world. It is a touchstone of their identity, and they suddenly lose that part of their life when retirement becomes a reality. Even though they have planned this large life step, they are mentally unready to give up part of who they have become. It can be a rocky road for them if their partner is not yet ready to retire, and jealousy can be a factor in how they perceive their new life.
Filling Empty Days
Retirement for many people is a time when they suddenly find their days are no longer filled with rushing to get tasks done, but they might see them as empty days that require tasks. They no longer have their routine to fall back on, and there is little motivation to accomplish much of anything. The adjustment they need is to find a new routine that can help both of them find meaning in their new life.
Setting Plans into Motion
When a couple finally faces the reality of retirement, it is time to begin doing all the things they planned for this part of their life. They might not be quite ready to travel the world or begin a new career, but they must start somewhere. Sitting together and choosing what steps they will take next is an important part of having a good retirement. Once they have found their next step, they can continue their lives and complete their adjustment.
Busy Days Ahead
A couple that is suddenly faced with retirement is not a single person alone, lost in the world, and seeking help with their empty life. They are two people who have managed to solve life’s problems as they went along, and they can find new life after they have come to retirement age if they choose to work together. Their future can be filled with busy days that have even more meaning to both of them than all the previous ones put together, but they must cooperate as a couple to make it happen.
Retirement is often a difficult adjustment for many, but couples do have the advantage of facing it together. They have generally overcome many trials before reaching their reward of being able to live as they had always planned, so it need not be the worst part of their life. If they can take the first rocky steps together, their golden years can really become a time when all their dreams come true.