Posted by Nancy Hecht, CFP®, AIF®
I get more calls from my female clients vs. their male counterparts telling me that there is a family emergency and they need to pull funds from their retirement account to help. It pains me to liquidate the funds but I know they have no place else to turn. These withdrawals add to the double whammy of most women earning less, therefore, they save less than their male counterparts.
We are conditioned to be the caregivers. It makes sense that when a loved one is in trouble, we throw on our capes and rush to help them. We need to start turning the cape around and be a little selfish once in a while or we will be no good to anyone.
Women in their 60’s today carry much more debt than past generations. Carrying debt in our later years, with waning earning power, and the illnesses that often come with aging, means women are worse off financially. At some point if nothing can be done to increase your earning power, you need to start saying “no” to family members in financial need, plow into your debt to get rid of it, and save for your own retirement.
If we are not good to ourselves, we will be good to no one.