If you are not sandwich meat right now, you probably know someone who is. It’s not very tasty being squeezed between kids heading off to college and the needs of aging parents, and at usually right about the time your career is hitting a peak and you’re starting to think about your own retirement.
Although it may not be easy, it’s important to stand still long enough to put things into perspective. These times are not going to last forever – but the impact of the financial decisions you make just may.
You have competing priorities for your money and your time. Making and sticking to a plan of action can help you from making decisions that you may later regret.
Parents and caregivers have found the following ideas helpful in their planning:
- Determine how much money you need for your future. Using those funds now for other’s needs, or stopping your retirement plan contributions, may put endanger your retirement.
- If you decide to borrow money, decide right then how you are going to pay it back. It is important that you do not let your debt get out of control.
- Rather than quitting a job, look for potential flexible arrangements with your employer if you find that you need time away from work.
- Research alternate care options and sources of income that your parents (and children) may have available to them, or find a professional to help you do this.
- Talk openly and realistically with your siblings, your children
andyour parents. You don’t have to do it all, and you aren’t in this alone!
Most importantly, take care of yourself. You’ll need the ability to cope. When you look after yourself, you’ll be in a better position to care for the others who need you.
Laura Mickels has spent more than 30 years working for investors with both Wall Street and independent firms. CochranMickels Retirement Specialists provides personalized planning and investment services to individuals approaching and in
These are the opinions of Laura Mickels and not necessarily those of Cambridge, are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed or acted upon as individualized investment advice.