Volume 4 – Independence in Retirement
Most people, perhaps all people, seek a high level of Independence in their Retirement. This Series discusses the main elements of an independent life in retirement.
Issue #6 – Spouse
This one has to be handled delicately. Let’s just get that out there at the very beginning.
You’ve now been married for 30 years, or 40, or more and you’ve always gone on vacations together. You’ve always sat in the same room at night. You’ve always taken your meals at the same table at the same time. You’ve even slept in the same bedroom together all these years. And now you want to change some of that? Good luck mate !!!
It’s really perfectly reasonable to consider a trip away “with the girls”. Why not? Hubby does not want to shop, shop, shop. Some people call those vacations a “Mall a Day” rather than a Holiday. Talking constantly hour over hour, day by day, about shoes or handbags or husbands is therapeutic. It really is.
The boys can go fishing or watching football or rock climbing etc. It becomes a guy thing. Remember “City Slickers”..?
There’s really no need to go away alone or with the boys for every vacation you take in retirement, but there is equally no harm in doing so now and again. The one left behind so to speak probably enjoys the freedom of the house.
Then there’s the concept of the “man cave”. The shed at the bottom of the garden. The room upstairs with a locked door. The office in town away from spouse (and family etc).
In today’s world of online lifestyles, where we just don’t have the time to read every newspaper or watch every game, or use Facebook, or surf, surf, surf …. the need for alone-time has never been so needed. Mind you, when you end up talking to your spouse by e-mail between the man-cave and her lair, does border on the ridiculous. But that’s where we are these days. So what?? If you are enjoying it, let it be.
The opportunity to think and dream and reflect on your life is extremely important in these older years. There is absolutely no reason to call is selfishness. It is not selfish, it is therapeutic (there’s that word again).
So, it’s perfectly fair and reasonable to in some respects to lead somewhat separate lives. She is there for you, you are there for her. But you get on with what you like and want to do. She does likewise. It is not a case of disrespect or anything like that, it’s just a practical approach to both doing what you like to do. If what you want to do is liked by both of you, then fine. By all means travel together when you both want to go there, but don’t get cut up if she goes on another Mall-a-Day. Your chance will come.
Just make sure you take your iPad or laptop.
“Arrived safely. Hotel nice. Very cold. Speak soon”
What else do you need to know !!!!!
These are just some considerations you may have about being a Reclusive HomeBird stuck in your man-cave, but remember, your need for Independence can be reasonably expected to last for the rest of your life, so you must have plenty opportunities to have your own “alone” time. So give long-term thought to what is best for you taking all issues into consideration.