Strengthening My Marriage In Retirement

Written by on May 28, 2013 in Relationships - No comments | Print this page

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RetirementWhen big changes happen in a couples life it can sometimes cause a strain on their marriage.

I recently underwent a large-scale change when I retired from my lifelong career as a CPA accountant.

Suddenly I was home all the time, and my wife wasn’t used to it. We seemed to get in each other’s way, and didn’t know exactly what to do with all the free time.

However, we learned to make adjustments, and in the end my retirement has only strengthened our love. A recent article in Forbes said that out of people who retire, 75% believed that their quality of life in retirement would improve, but only 40% of retirees found that it actually did. I would definitely number myself among the 40%. Here are some things that my wife and I did.

Spend the mornings together

While I have always loved spending time with my wife, I certainly wasn’t used to being around her 24/7. I worked roughly 40 hours a week as a CPA accountant, which ends up being a lot of time away from home.

Instead of suddenly spending all day together however, we choose parts of the day that we would give each other our complete attention. In the mornings for example we wake up, eat breakfast and read the paper together and go on a morning walk.

During this time we talk about family, friends, hobbies, the news and anything else that happens to be on our minds. After the morning we would each run our errands or work on our own projects. In the afternoon we would get back together.

It was also an easier transition for us because my wife and I have always remained close despite the work schedule I had for years. We are each other’s best friends and never used work as a way to get away. Retirement has given us a chance to do what we love most, spend time with each other.

Work on projects and set goals

Not only do we spend much of our time talking but we work on projects together. Throughout our marriage we have found that working together towards a specific goal has brought us closer together.

We have renovated certain parts of the home, learned to cook meals together, read books together and shop for our grandchildren. We set goals at the beginning of each week on what we want to accomplish together and then we work on it each day.

Forge a new lifestyle

Retirement is all about learning to adapt to a completely different lifestyle. My wife and I sat down together before my last day of work and talked about how we wanted to live the remaining years of our lives.

Ultimately we wanted to spend them together, and with others who are close to us, especially family. We do not have the same income as we did when I worked but we have made the financial adjustments to make it work.

To us the changes are more than worth it. It wasn’t easy to leave my career behind. But now I get to do what really matters most, serve and love those I care about.

I’m Kevin Devoto, first and foremost, proud father and grandpa. Retired CPA. Write about things pertaining to my life and interests.  You can follow me on Twitter at @KevinDevotoCPA

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