Yesterday, I had a birthday, marking 59 years I have been on this earth. In the overall scheme of things, that's not even a flicker in the eye of the world. I don't live in the overall scheme of things, though, I live in the here and now.
The here and now says that people between the ages of 55 and 65 are in their awkward years. We are too old to be considered young and too young to be considered old. We have none of the advantages of youth or age. Try getting a job if you are in that age group, well you can try. We have serious problems, but we get no sympathy. Most of us aren't disadvantaged in the traditional definition of the word, but the economy has made shambles of our finances. Our 401(k)s and retirement plans have been wiped out or severely reduced, nobody wants to hire someone with 30-40 years of experience. They assume that we'd want too much money. Social security rules are changing so much that none of us really know when we'll be able to collect.
Those of us who have seen our chosen line of work just disappear have tried to start over, getting training in a new field, but again, who wants to hire someone 63 with no experience?
We are used to taking care of ourselves and our families, but due to unforeseen circumstances, we are having trouble doing that. There are almost no government programs or aid for people of this age. Once we spend our savings, what is going to happen to us? We can't get into a retirement home (too young) or a youth program (too old). Where do we go? Many of us chose to have our children later in life as well. What happens to our kids? Do we just take them on the street with us?
Our morals and outlook is different from younger people. We believe it is our responsibility to take care of ourselves, and have done that for all our lives. Now we are in a bind through no fault of our own. Could anyone have predicted accurately which jobs/businesses would disappear 40 years later?
This situation needs to be addressed and very soon. Decent, hard-working people, yes, your mom and dad or grandparents are fighting this right now. What can be done and who should do it?