Life moves fast.
You’re busy caring about your own family; saving money for your kids’ college, funding your own retirement and dreaming about the day you’ll retire.
Suddenly, you realize that your parents are aging too, and FAST.
The question that arises is: “Should I care about my aging parents?”
Yes, of course you should, right?
Can’t imagine seeing your parents walking around the neighborhood begging for food and stealing medicine in your hometown pharmacy.
Besides, you would be paying them back for raising and helping you.
For a matter of fact, one day, our aged parents won’t be able to drive, to climb stairs, or maybe even change their own clothes or feed themselves.
My 57 years old mother two years ago had a brain stroke compromising her health. Today, she is still auto-sufficient but not for long.
Also, she is broke. My two fathers, 62 and 67 years old are in good health, but for how long?
Fortunately, their wealth is in better shape than my mother. So, crossed finger.
I face the dilemma like living arrangements in retirement, long-term care, inheritance, and funeral wishes.
What about you?
My story is a good one, luckily I’ve got a good relationship with my parents.
Some kid is been abused, not being looked after by their parents creating resentments and even not talking for years with each other.
In this case, not everyone is willing to take care of their aging parents. Furthermore, there is a “fairness” issue.
What if your parents live a very extravagant lifestyle and made zero effort to boost their retirement savings?
Would you be happy to support them?
Yeap, the issue have a lot of egos and isn’t an easy one.
Think in this way: We didn’t have a chance to support our self during childhood. We depended on our parents for anything. You were entitled out of necessity.
On the other hand, your parents had choices about saving for the future, how to spend their money and ultimately planning for their retirement.
As I said often on this website, we are the result of our own past decisions.
Your parents may have decided not to work even if they were 100% capable… or spend their savings on useless toys (big cars, boat, holidays, etc.) opting to think about them self rather the family members that they eventually become dependent on.
Resentment? You bet.
Like it or not, I think this is going to be the norm. Our parent’s generation (baby boomers) is the most spoiled and self-eccentric generation ever.
Looking at retirement saving statistic in the US, the outlook is scary:
- Only 15% aged 44-54 have over $250,000 saved
- Only 19% aged 55+ have over $250,000 saved.
- 44% aged 44-54 have less than $10,000 in total savings.
- 29% aged 55+ have less than $10,000 in total savings.
Considering the staggering cost of home nursing and health care ranging from $2.500 to over $10.000, I wouldn’t feel confident in my parent’s ability to afford the bills.
Also, in most world’s countries, you don’t have a choice. There are laws that mandate adult children to pay for their parents support if they can’t provide for themselves.
So, for the sake of the conversation, let’s imagine you have a CHOICE, would you foot the bill for your aging parents?