Adapting to retirement

Learning to spend time together when one or both of you stops working is very important.

Over the years of work, you would each have developed routines and a way of living that worked well. Suddenly finding each other in the house every day can have a negative impact. Social interactions also change, as your colleagues no longer play a daily role in your life.

Many couples retire having never spoken about how they felt about the transition or how they would cope with the changes. 

Tips for planning retirement together

  • It is a very positive step to prepare for retirement at least five years before it actually happens - that way, you will have developed hobbies and interests so that by the time you stop working you have other things in place to put your energies into.
  • Plan now, for your future self. Make a list of things you'd like to do - whether it is learning a new language, taking cooking lessons or doing more travelling. 
  • Talk to your partner about what interests you can develop together so that you spend time together and have interests in common that you can share.
  • Choose and then emulate a positive mentor. This could be anyone you admire who has coped with changes and challenges in a constructive way. 
  • Widen your circle. Most people go through this, and many find it difficult, so don’t be afraid to talk to family members and friends about their experiences and how they dealt with the change.

Retirement can be a great time to reconnect with your partner and share experiences and interests again. If you are anxious about planning for retirement or you're already retired and finding the changes difficult talking to a Relate counsellor can help.

How we can help

If you’re looking for support with your relationships, we can help. We offer a range of ways to speak with a trained relationship expert including ongoing counselling, 30 minute web and phone chats, and one session therapy.

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