Retired or Re-fired

maggs224 By maggs224, 23rd May 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Retirement

This is just a brief look at how retirement and life expectancy has changed since the 1950, along with the experience and expectations of those who are retired.

Retired or Re-fired which will you choose?

I was born in the 1940s, so I have been retired now for a few years. Retirement today is very different to retirement when I was a girl.

I remember my next-door neighbour, he was a train driver back in the days when the trains were steam trains. When he retired he looked and acted very much like an old man. It seemed like once he left work that was his life done. Once retired he stayed at home, never seemed to go out much, and within a very short time of his retirement, he was dead.

Life expectancy in the UK according to World Health Organisation 2013 is 79.5 yrs for a man and 82.5 years for a woman. Back in the 1950s when the train driver retired, it was around 67 years for a man and around 73 years for a woman. These figures are according to those I found on this site

So back in the 1950s the men on average were only expected to live a couple or more years after they retired. Unfortunately this is what happened in so many cases, they only lived a few years past retirement age. Of course not everyone died shortly after retiring.
Even back in the 1950s there were exceptions that lived into their 90s.

When Parliament passed the Old Age Pensions Act in 1908 the life expectancy for men was around 53 years.
Those eligible for a pension had to be over 70 years old and of good character to be eligible for an Old Age Pension.

The Old Age Pension was payable from the first of January 1909. Clearly back in 1909 there was not many people expected to live long enough to collect the Old Age Pension.

I remember when my mum and my mother-in-law retired at the age of 60, this was in the early 80s neither of them wanted to leave work. My mum and mother-in-law would have stayed on working if their firm had given them the opportunity to continue working. After my mum retired she took on two part time jobs as a cleaner, one place she cleaned in the early morning and the other in the evening.

I am sure that if my mum had not been the victim of a hit and run accident, she would have probably worked if allowed to right up until she died. The accident unfortunately changed her life drastically.
When I look at today's pensioners many seem to have found a new lease on life, many are following interests and trying new things. The health of today's Pensioners is much better and the levels of fitness too.

Many people now look forward to their retirement, and rightly so. My friends father went skiing for the first time when he was 70 years old. He even spoke about wanting to try Hang gliding much to his daughters dismay.

My friends father is not that unusual, now many retired people are trying out new things. They are even trying out those that include physical activity such as the skiing.

So the pensioners of today rather than just retiring are being re-fired. Today's Pensioners have the fire and the excitement back in their lives and the time and the energy to enjoy the rest of their lives. Many are going on to have 20 or even 30 more years after their working lives are over.

Where I live in Spain there are many people still active and living independently in their 90s. I too, God willing, will be around long enough, to be one of them someday.


Life Expectancy, Old Age Pensioners, Refired Not Retired, Retired, Retirement

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author avatar vickylass
23rd May 2014 (#)

Working life is just one of our stops during our lifetime. just as getting off at such or such tube station, because we've to do this or that. If during our working life, we don't have any interests to develop while we can, our retirement time will be a boring and dull living, because our main object in life will have ceased to exist. Like these folks that claim not to have time for reading and that they'll read when they're retired. Reading is a life long activity that can't be achieved in a couple of years. Good topic to bring about. Thanks.

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author avatar Maggs224
25th May 2014 (#)

Thank you vickylass thank you for your comment, like you I think that we need to live well before we retire,so that when we retire we can carry on living and not fade away.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
23rd May 2014 (#)

Only few can manage retirement well in Asia. Working life is demanding for most to take interest in other activities and retirement life rings hollow except for few holidays. Active retired life is still a dream for common folks who tend to withdraw into a shell - siva

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author avatar Maggs224
25th May 2014 (#)

Unfortunately this world is full of inequalities, and the poor are the victims of greedy and corrupt people who have become rich at the expense of the poor.

Many working class people cannot afford the luxury of retirement, and work long after the official retirement age.

As you so rightly say Sivaramakrishnan for many a happy retirement life has a hollow ring, as many have to carry on working as the poor have to bare a disproportionate burden.

They earn the least but seem to have to pay proportionately the most as you pointed out so well when it comes to things like banking charges.

Thank you so much for your comment :D

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author avatar Kevin1877uk
26th May 2014 (#)

Very interesting Maggs, yes things have changed so much since back in the 50's although I wasn't born then.

The other day when I was in San Francisco going to the airport I saw a poster "1 in 3 babies born today with live to 100".

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author avatar maggs224
26th May 2014 (#)

Hi Kevin1877uk from as long as I can remember, baring accidents I have always thought that I would make 120. So I am just over half way lol...

Are you back in the UK now?

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