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Recent retirement
 Readers respond

Dear Readers: In a previous column, I published a letter from a reader who wrote in about her recent retirement and how being able to play more Bingo was one of her retirement goals. She ran into some difficulty, however, when her retiree husband began to complain that she was playing Bingo too much.
I suggested that part of his complaint might stem from her going out and leaving him home to fend for himself. I also suggested that if she helped her husband find his own interests, he might stop complaining about her Bingo playing.
The topic resulted in a litany of letters from other readers, such as those that follow. —Aunt Bingo

Dear Aunt Bingo,
I just read the letter in your column from the recently retired woman whose husband is giving her a hard time about going to Bingo.
I think your answer hit the nail on the head. This sounds to me like a man who has yet to find his own retirement activities and expects his wife to sit home and make sure he is entertained. I would say that the only part I disagree with is that it is this woman’s responsibility to help her husband find his own retirement things-to-do so that she can enjoy Bingo in peace.
He is not a child. He didn’t do anything to help her prepare for retirement. Why must the burden now fall to her to coddle and baby him through a retirement he did not prepare for?
My husband Terry and I are also retired now for about six years. Long before retirement we began talking about what we would do once we did retire. Travel and spending time with our kids and grandkids were at the top of the list. But there were other things—like me wanting to join a cards club or learning to kayak with some friends on the lake—which I wanted to do alone. I also intended to play more Bingo.
At first Terry had no ideas, and I said that he better come up with some because I didn’t think we needed to be together all the time. He agreed (grudgingly) and after retiring got involved with a local gardening co-op and with a croquet club at a golf course up the road. He also got a part-time job doing deliveries—which he loves.
It is too bad your reader is in her situation. Now she really may have no choice but to follow your advice and spend the beginning of her retirement helping him figure out how to handle his. What a drag. —LC, Maine, via email

Dear Aunt Bingo,
I am very happy that you published the letter from the woman who recently retired and is now being pestered by her husband who has not adjusted to retirement yet.
My husband and I found ourselves in a similar situation when we retired. We’d worked with a consultant on our financial planning for retirement, but it never occurred to either of us that we should talk with a “social” consultant as well.
Both of us found ourselves “stuck” at first with too many hours in the day and not enough activities to occupy our time constructively. Eventually our friends introduced us to senior groups, and we found other thing to do online and through the newspaper. But it must have taken a good two years for us to find our retirement rhythm simply because we weren’t prepared.
I strongly advise everyone who is nearing retirement to do some planning about how they will spend all that free time. Going out to dinner or playing Bingo can only do so much. You really need to have some bigger plans for the future. —Marge M., Virginia, via email

Share your views! Write to Aunt Bingo c/o the Bingo Bugle, P.O. Box 527, Vashon, Washington 98070, or email her at STENGL456@aol.com. Be sure to include your name and address (you can request that your name not be published), as typically she will not include anonymous letters in her columns.

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