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Here’s the story of a couple who worked hard for their money and lived frugally to save for retirement. Once they were semi-retired with significant savings, they tried to protect themselves from financially irresponsible relatives asking for money.
Partly Retired with Savings
The original poster (OP), Jose, and his wife, Hannah, recently retired from full-time work with four million in savings, including their one-million-dollar home.
Frugal Lifestyle and Financial Decisions
Joe is a part-time engineer, and Hannah is a fully retired registered nurse. Throughout the years, Joe has made it clear to his wife never to tell his family they have money.
Family’s Poor Money Management
They kept their wealth a secret from Joe’s family. Unlike Hannah’s family, who never asked for money, Joe’s family was clearly irresponsible with it.
Frustration with Constant Requests for Money
Joe’s dad and brother work in the oil and gas industry, and despite earning well, they never save money. Layoffs hit them hard, and they have racked up credit card debt.
Maintaining Privacy About Financial Situation
Joe’s parents borrowed from their house frequently and never paid the principal. Although Joe’s parents are past retirement age, they must work to continue paying off their debt.
Joe’s brother inherited his father’s spending issues and is going through his second divorce.
Family’s Reaction to Discovering Retirement
Although Joe told his wife never to inform his parents of their wealth, his son didn’t get the memo.
Dealing with Ongoing Financial Requests
Things went downhill when Joe’s son told his grandparents his parents were retired. After hearing this, Joe’s parents were furious that he had led them to believe he was broke.
Setting Boundaries to Protect Financial Stability
Joe’s parents didn’t take long to start asking for money when they discovered he and his wife were on vacation. Joe started to post less on social media and lied to his parents about winning money.
Learning from Past Mistakes
Joe has mixed feelings about his parent’s reaction. He didn’t tell them about his wealth because they would have asked for money, and now he’s been proven right.
You Have Just Enough
“You don’t have any money, you have enough to cover your retirement and that is it. You don’t know what kind of medical expenses you’re going to run into in your old age, and there is no more money coming in.”
Give a Good Excuse
“Give them the ‘Yeah, I’m semi-retired. I’m having to work part-time still.’ That implies things are still tight while being the truth.”
Talk to Your Son
“And do talk to your son about privacy and not sharing what is internal family business with your relatives.”
Balancing Family Dynamics and Financial Security
Joe’s parents and brother have proven they can’t be trusted with money, and Joe doesn’t feel responsible for their bad financial decisions. However, should he be more generous with the wealth he has accumulated?
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