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Different pace in retirement

(91 Posts)
Rubicon12 Sun 11-Apr-21 17:53:57

Hi, I'm a 64 yo male, retired with a 61 yo partner who works very part time. The issue I have is that I have always kept myself fit and still have the energy to be active in retirement. I like being out and about and, post Covid, want to travel a lot. The problem is, whereas my partner used to be equally active, she now seem perfectly happy pottering around at home. This is fine as it's her choice but I do feel very frustrated that she doesn't want to make the most of these years and I get frustrated thinking that I could ( already have ) spend a lot of my later years on solitary pursuits. She is fine with this and last year was happy for me to go to South America for 10 weeks. I loved it and its given me a taste for further similar travels but its not really of interest to her. I saw a lot of couples travelling together and felt envious.
It has got me wondering whether we are just growing apart and I do often wonder whether I would be happier in my later years with someone who is closer to me in how they want to spend their time.
Am I right to have concerns or am I just being selfish?

NotSpaghetti Tue 20-Apr-21 12:24:12


Maybe he has gone away on holiday for 10 weeks


Polarbear2 Sun 18-Apr-21 16:36:46

Sounds wonderful. I completely agree re travelling alone. It can be lonesome and other women always think you’re after their man!!! And/or man thinks you’re fair game 🙄. Annoys me intensely.

ALANaV Sun 18-Apr-21 13:29:39

When my husband was alive he REFUSED to go anywhere (apart from occasionally back to the UK to visit his aged mother) ...I think maybe because he had travelled the world in the Navy and then in his work ......he didn't mind if I went off somewhere for a week or two he had died (after four years of caring for him) I go (OR DID before COVID !) all over the place alone ....does get a bit lonesome when no one speaks to you and I sometimes feel like hanging a notice round my neck declaring I AM NOT after your husband .....would just like a chat to you as a couple ...ha ha ...I think I will try that ! I like to go around and explore on my own, take boat trips, excursions, walking etc I just had an e mail from my Travel Agent with an offer for the Seychelles ,,,,,,,,,,,aargh ! BORING ....I am waiting to see if my trip to Antarctica will still be going in November. Russia overland is in the balance as no visas as being issued, and the Russian embassy tells me they may decide to allow only direct flights in but won't decide until June (by which time I will not have the necessary 90 days to obtain the visa !) ........same applies to a proposed trip to Samarkand, overland by the Sapsan train it will have to be a beach chair on the beach one minute from me in the UK next to the beach cafe ............c'es la vie grin

Harris27 Sun 18-Apr-21 13:27:12

I’m 61 and still working full time in a very tiring job. However my weekends I’m keen to potter but when I retire I hope to do more than that. My husband reaches retirement before me and has decided to keep working even part time as we need the funds as well. Different ages and different needs all need to be spoken about.

Chinesecrested Sun 18-Apr-21 12:31:45

If you were wealthy, you'd have a companion paid to keep you company on a platonic basis. They're called walkers. Otherwise there are clubs for people to travel on their own. You could investigate that?

JaneJudge Sun 18-Apr-21 12:00:38

Maybe he has gone away on holiday for 10 weeks

NotSpaghetti Sun 18-Apr-21 11:51:26

I think Rubicon has gone.

greenlady102 Sun 18-Apr-21 11:35:33

so many aspects to this. Your partner is not retired yet. Did she ever enjoy travel? How much of a deal breaker is it? Do you do anything together? Does your partner not like travelling or is it that she prefers being at home? Are there aspects of the kind of travel that you enjoy that she hates? My sister does american tours and loves them, I would LOATHE all the moving around and packing and unpacking. If this one thing is making you think of breaking the relationship then how much do you actually love her?

Scullion52 Sun 18-Apr-21 11:32:05

It feels like harder work in retirement,I tire quicker,yes it's sometimes quiet,the demands of the tech age life stress me out more,I have less tolerance for rich idiots who create incompetent govt websites,driving I tire quicker and with covit around it's more dangerous

nanna8 Sat 17-Apr-21 07:49:46

If my husband wanted to travel extensively without me ( more than just a weekend) I would tell him to sod off permanently and I think he would do the same to me. Different strokes for different folks.

effalump Sat 17-Apr-21 07:37:18

I would think having a partner/wife/otherwise who is happy for you to travel without them for weeks at a time would be an absolute Godsend for most people. As someone else said, we don't know how long you two have been together but, as the saying goes, "opposites attract". If you left this person to find a travel companion, I feel you would regret ot later. If you didn't regret it then I would say "yes, you are being selfish" especially in these uncertain times.

Puzzled Fri 16-Apr-21 16:59:21

On then retirement course, we were told "You are about to start on the longest holiday of your life"
We have different interests, so we pursue them, but value the time and interests that we spend together, and try to make the most of it.

Our separate interests do encourage either of us to develop a relationship with anyone of the opposite sex, so little danger there, of us growing apart.

Polarbear2 Wed 14-Apr-21 10:03:50

I’ve loved - well that’s a stretch - liked, lockdown for that reason. I can snuggle up and read for hours with nobody to say I should be doing something. Nothing to do so 🤷‍♀️ It’s a joy. Particularly if I have a big walk in the morning, home for lunch, then I’ve earned my big read 😁

Witzend Wed 14-Apr-21 09:02:02

Sympathies, Polarbear - people who need to be non-stop physically busy can be exhausting. Each to their own of course, unless they try to make out that it’s some sort of virtue - ‘Oh, I keep busy all day - I never sit down!’ - thus implying that anyone like me, who can happily be ‘busy’ reading a book, is a shamefully lazy idler. 😂

Polarbear2 Wed 14-Apr-21 08:46:49

Were like you and your wife. I’m happy to potter, read, sew etc. I go out with DD and GC for walks and meet friends for coffee occasionally. My OH can’t sit still. Drives me bats. He’s always got to be doing. I’ve come to the conclusion I’m happier with myself than he is. I’ve thought he’s not content whereas I am (largely). We’re all different and lockdown has taught me to respect and accept that what I feel and think and want to do isn’t the same for him.

NotSpaghetti Wed 14-Apr-21 08:07:12

Where are you Rubicon?

nanna8 Wed 14-Apr-21 07:22:39

She is still working and giving mental energy to work and that makes all the difference. Plus the Covid isolation can take a while to recover from, I felt that. We travelled constantly until that and we are in our 70 s but now we only want to go local, the thought of going overseas does not appeal one little bit. Germ factories as fas as we are concerned!

Oopsadaisy1 Wed 14-Apr-21 07:17:19

DH went out for half a day yesterday to see his mate, I stayed at home and ‘pottered about’ I cleaned the bathroom, stripped the beds and put the washing on, hand washed his T shirts, did an hours ironing, made lunch, prepped dinner and weeded a patch of garden, I also looked after DD who is still with us after her op and walked the dog.
That was fine, I didn’t want to go with him.
That’s maybe what your OH has to do when she potters about ( after working) whilst you are ‘out and about’?

fatgran57 Wed 14-Apr-21 00:49:10

Yes Oldmom me too! I didn't like the way the OP said his partner was working VERY part time also - looked like a barbed comment to me.

I didn't like the way he put things the first time he asked the same thing a little while ago and wonder why he thinks its necessary to ask the questions again now.

Looks to me like he is looking for a way out of the relationship. The fact he refers to his partner as not making very much money is not very admirable.

Ro60 Tue 13-Apr-21 23:49:44

Don't think that it will be a doddle to find someone new.

Most of my now-single friends are happy to have friendships with men but are quite astute & can spot faults & foibles a mile off.

Added to that, is the thought of taking on another caring role when we've sometimes not got over the last.
Nurture what you've got. As we get older the more baggage we all have.
Guess that's why we're called Old Bags. - pardon - couldn't resist it 😱

CafeAuLait Tue 13-Apr-21 12:56:34

We know from the past thread that one of her potterings was trying to start her own business/self employment. Maybe she was trying to ensure an income stream? Maybe she's more willing to travel when she feels more financially secure?

oldmom Tue 13-Apr-21 12:42:57

All of this just pottering about doing very little rubs me up the wrong way.
I'd start by asking, who does the cooking, the cleaning, the grocery shopping, the gardening, paying the bills etc?

If the answer to 2 or more of those is the wife, she's not the one doing "very little".

I would really love to hear the poor wife's point of view.

CafeAuLait Tue 13-Apr-21 11:28:22

I found OP's attitude to helping his partner, and to her apparent lack of work ethic due to their financial differences, off putting in the last thread.

If I was in a relationship with OP, no way would I be quitting work to go travel and no way would I be spending my nest egg on travel because of his desires. The relationship isn't stable and they are not equal partners financially. I'd be doing quite the opposite to what he wants - making sure my financial ducks were in a row and tight so that I can look after myself in the future, possibly alone. It would be terrible to spend all my money on travel then, when it runs out, be alone and without any money behind me. Especially at this time of life.

What if she travels and spends all her money and can't afford to keep travelling? Will OP then be unhappy because she needs to stay home while he wants to travel? Will he then seek greener pastures when he bank account is empty?

I think OP's partner is making the wise choice financially by keeping herself secure for her future.

ExD Tue 13-Apr-21 10:33:26

You sound as though you're asking permission to kick her out.
If you do, and if she goes quietly, will you then look for a new 'partner'? Will she be expected to go to work and support herself financially whilst running your home and being to all intents and purposes your wife, and still find the energy and enthusiasm to take holidays of your choice with you?
I know that sounds harsh, but what are you trying to get across? What is your real question?

Will she be expected to finance herself?

Good luck.

Yammy Tue 13-Apr-21 10:15:14

Thank you TrendyNannie6,I was beginning to think I was the only one who saw the situation as I did.
I would hate it if my partner was asking other women on a forum mainly used by women, rather than talking with me, or even his men friends. I viewed it as if ammunition was being stored.