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Ask Sherry: All about retirement and old age

You asked, and I am answering every Friday once I have enough questions!

You can ask any question using the form here.

Would you be sad or upset if, once in a romantic relationship, your son spent more time with his in-laws than with you?

Yes and no. It depends on how he turns out. Truly, if he is a monster and I really don’t enjoy his company, no great loss to me. I’ll see him, love him from afar, but that’ll be it.

If all goes well and it is because of proximity, I’d make an effort to try and be there and closer more often as I would have the time, rather than forcing them to come up to me.

What about time with grandchildren and help in old age?

I’m assuming no help in my old age. I am saving and planning for that, so the most they could do to help is very limited, I am hoping.

As for time with grandchildren – same thing – I’d travel to be there if distance was an issue, the way my parents travel up to see Little Bun every year, and we are now traveling down to see them as he is getting older and easier to manage in the car.

What if his in-laws also got more of that than you?

I’d feel sad if all things were equal. I’d probably say something too, and see if they could even it out.

I know for sure this happens in relationships, one of my good friends has in-laws who are SO involved. They go to everyone’s birthdays, have events all the time, weekends away.. and she never had any of that with her parents, they never went away or did major things together, so she is used to not spending as much time with them and more with the in-laws.

I think you reap what you sow. If you spend a lot of time with them as kids, growing up, and keep it going, they will want to continue it with you as they age.

If you don’t make the effort as my friends’ parents have not done with her (they were both workaholics running their own business), then you will not miss spending time with your kids.

If it is what you want, it will continue to be what you want as you age.

People-wise, how would you envisage old age?

I think I’d be moving less. Probably taking longer walks than I do now, and just.. living. Going out to get groceries, taking walks downtown, maybe going to the market.. maybe going on a little road trip locally.

Nothing too strenuous depending on my age.

With whom would you spend your time?

My partner. If he goes, then I’d spend more time in Ontario closer to my friends and whoever is left. All my friends are in Ontario not Quebec. I suspect this will not change, and as they age, we can hang together.

Would you get a pet?

No, I am highly allergic.

For some people, life becomes difficult/scary after the romantic partner dies. What about you?

Nope. I’d be sad, but I am okay if he goes. I am prepared for it, I can cook, I know what bills have to get paid and how much it costs, how to run and keep a house, bring my car in for checks, etc.

I am able to live on my own without anyone, it is easier with him, but for the practicality of day to day living, I don’t need help or anyone.

Of course, I’d want him around, but it is more emotional, and less to do things for me.

This is why I am so adamant that women learn how to take care of themselves, know what they can earn in a job if they have to get one, learn how to budget their money, how to invest their money, and be wholly independent if they need to be.

If there are areas you are lacking in, it is time to learn them. You never know what can happen, what would happen, and it is best to be prepared.

I read your opinion on Portugal, can not find a date anywhere. I am in US, can not afford to retire & was not impressed with So america. Isnt it cool in the central area of the mountains? I am not a city person, so OK in small town. Just want to know when you were there

Within the last 5 years.


Things have not gotten better. I suspect no place will be that great, and if you are going to retire in Portugal, keep in mind that their health system is not that great if you are used to the American or Canadian one, in terms of technology and so on, and that is something you will need as you age, unless you are okay with being sick all the time, and/or slightly older methods of dentistry, and health.

If you cannot retire at all, consider a small little township in the middle of NOWHERE province in Canada or state. They are the cheapest you can get, and you can have a garden, live and grow your own food, etc.

And/Or, keep working. I see plenty of retirees doing low-impact jobs like greeting at Walmart and helping people find things.

Still have a burning question?

You can ask any question using the form here and all of my previous Ask Sherry posts are here.


  • marie

    In old age, what would you do in case of (1) physical or (2) mental disability, like forgetfulness etc.?

    Would you opt to go to an assisted living facility? Hire a person to take care of you in your own house? Live with some relative (if so, with whom)?

    I’m just curious. Thank you!

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