This Is What Life Without Retirement Savings Looks Like

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    • #249233
      • Total Posts: 1,447

      CORONA, Calif.—Roberta Gordon never thought she’d still be alive at age 76. She definitely didn’t think she’d still be working. But every Saturday, she goes down to the local grocery store and hands out samples, earning $50 a day, because she needs the money.

      “I’m a working woman again,” she told me, in the common room of the senior apartment complex where she now lives, here in California’s Inland Empire. Gordon has worked dozens of odd jobs throughout her life—as a house cleaner, a home health aide, a telemarketer, a librarian, a fundraiser—but at many times in her life, she didn’t have a steady job that paid into Social Security. She didn’t receive a pension. And she definitely wasn’t making enough to put aside money for retirement.

      So now, at 76, she earns $915 a month through Social Security and through Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, a program for low-income seniors. Her rent, which she has had to cover solo since her roommate died, is $1,040 a month. She’s been taking on credit-card debt to cover the gap, and to pay for utilities, food, and other essentials. She often goes to a church food bank for supplies.

      I feel much better since I gave up hope.

      "If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there’d be peace." – John Lennon

    • #249251
      99th Monkey
      • Total Posts: 204

      This is me, only I’m a 76 y.o. guy who had the misfortune — or good fortune, depending on how one looks at it — of getting into a nasty car wreck at 18 y.o. while “serving” in the Army National Guard.  The wreck resulting in a life-long set of health issues related to a hip dislocation and three hip replacement surgeries over my lifetime.  I too never thought I’d still be alive at this age since I definitely lived much of my life in the live-fast-die-young lane, but that dying part never quite happened.

      The good fortune part of the car wreck is that it rendered me 4F to be medically discharged (instead of going to Viet Nam ag the hight of the war), and qualified me for a monthly VA disability check.  That check is now about half of my monthly income, without which I would almost certainly be homeless and broke trying to live on my measly Social Security checks.

      What is even more terrifying is that CheetoMan keeps threatening to cut SS even further, like to the bone.   We absolutely need to elect Bernie in 2020 to begin setting things straight in this country.


    • #255212
      Bernice Ta
      • Total Posts: 216

      Sometimes life kicks us in the head. I’ll be 62 next month, but won’t get my first check until April. Mine will be $843. I still won’t have health care, so will continue to use the free clinic for my diabetes and high blood pressure. Everything else will be ignored, hoping for Medicare in three years.

      I am fortunate in that with the help of my sons and other family, I managed to pay off my land, my trailer is paid for, as are our vehicles. We are making it, though not living rich by any means. I won’t have to work, for which I am grateful, as I physically can’t work any longer.

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