Healthcare and Medicine Reference
In-Depth Information
Forced Early Retirement
Stress Because of Burnout and
Job Loss 1
Early retirement is a complex issue for many older adults who may feel
diminished and mistreated at work and see retirement as a way of cop-
ing with low morale and stress. Often it isn't a solution, since many
early retirees have not thought through retirement as a lifestyle change
and may still desire to work in new organizations but may believe that
their age makes new employment unlikely. Financial incentive plans for
early retirement that seem lucrative may in fact offer a person less
financial security in the long run and reduced social security and pen-
sion benefits. Work is important to most people because it offers status
and a daily schedule. When those two factors are taken away, many
early retirees feel unimportant and confused about how to spend their
day. As a nurse told a colleague when he began chatting about his plan
to retire early, “You have 30 good years ahead of you.” she said.
“What are you going to do with yourself?” She was absolutely right
and our colleague decided to handle his unhappiness with a current job
by finding another job elsewhere, and it gave him 2 more years of
work while he began careful planning for retirement and increased his
Mor-Barak and Tynan (1993) suggest that retirement as early as 62 is
an “artifact of the Social Security laws that has acquired certain conve-
niences, leading to its perception and adoption as 'normative' ” (p. 49).
They also says that it “enables employers to dispense with the services of
older workers gracefully, avoiding the administrative difficulties of selec-
tively firing often 'faithful' workers” (p. 49) while allowing older workers
to “salvage” self-respect because retiring at a specific age means you are a
member of a class of workers who were let go by mandate from the
workforce rather than being individually removed.
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