When to retire?

Some people look forward to retiring when they're older, but others would rather have more financial security and be busy, so they keep working. But what happens when your husband forces you to retire?

Dear Wendyl,

I’m 63 and went into retirement recently with my husband – who asked me to – for about 10 months. At first I was a bit unsure because I knew I had an outstanding credit card that I wanted to settle, but he said he would pay it off with his pension.

I was thrilled and a bit hesitant but he insisted I stop working. However, there were no payments as promised, which led us to resume working again – this time together.

I haven’t received any personal spending money for myself or even from the benefit we were on. Whenever I ask for money for anything he goes into a rage. Just the other day I asked for $20 and he was furious. I’ve been thinking of quitting, as he seems to have control of all of our money. I’m not happy with the arrangement and it’s driving me mad. What do you think I should do?

Mary, by email

Dear Mary,

I hope you mean quitting work and not the marriage, because that would be a bit drastic. It’s so easy to take back control. Quit the work you’re doing with him and get your own job with its own pay slip, with the money going straight into your account.

And this time, pay off your credit card and make up your own mind when and if you retire. Many people work in some capacity right up to the day they die because they like to be busy and active. No-one should be expected to stop work just to keep their husband company in his retirement. And while you’re at it, when you get your new job, put aside some money in another account for a holiday just for you – you deserve it.

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