Saturday, June 13, 2009
The grim reality of being old.
I was pretty disturbed by the letter I got from a new blogger friend, Julie. She is looking into losing her job in a weeks' time and she is very heart broken with the prospect of unemployment. She is over 50 years old and she narrated to me how her friend who is 65, was told to pack up and vacate her desk - just like that.
While hundreds of thousands of people have lost their jobs this year, I would agree that it is the older group that is being hit hardest. As their working lives are cut prematurely short and their ability to pay into pensions becomes impossible, they now fear to face the double whammy of financial hardship and a retirement marred by poverty later.
Of course, there are government legislation being put in place to protect workers 50 and over against age discrimination in the workplace, but in reality, the attitudes of employers and wider society hasn’t kept pace with the law!!!
For Julie who will lost her job, the future looks bleak: because the odds of finding another job are sadly stacked against older people. Besides the skills needed to find a new job in today’s marketplace are very different.
My heart just bleeds though when I know that she won't be getting a social security pension and on top of that she still worries about house mortgage payment. I didn't know getting old in other countries is a lot tougher than I originally perceived it to be. I believe older folks today don't really fear international terrorism. Their fears are more economic in nature. When I look around and I see that so many old persons who have worked their entire life are in such bad condition and they really don’t have enough money to live, I think you get frightened a bit.
Here, our older folks enjoy retirement because it is us, the children, and not the government who makes sure they are taken care of. We lavish them with attention and each child would provide the parents monthly allowances. So yes, it does pay to have many kids, hahaha!
My dad who is now the more senior member of the family after grand mother died, even enjoy allowances from nieces and nephews. My cousins set aside a part of their salary and deposit them (as they are scattered around the globe now) to a single account which another cousin had access to and she in turn, give this to my dad every month. No it isn't an obligation, they do it out of love.
I will turn 47 next month and even when retirement is still far fetched, I would like to think that I don't have anything to fear when I get 60 and over.
Please visit Julie's page and give her moral support. She is a former news writer and she writes very interesting story and funny anecdotes. She may lost her job, but let her gain more friends...