In our increasingly connected world, our children move for their work and with their partners and families. Sometimes this is in the same country, but now, it’s quite often overseas.
This is fun and exciting and of course we are very proud of them. But then reality hits. How are you going to continue to see them once you have retired and living on a smaller income. Here are some tips that may help –
- For a start, it’s probably not a very smart idea to move with them. Not only are they spreading their wings and learning the ropes of a new culture and work, but they might not have the time to spend with you. And there you are, left to make your own way in a new country, with a different culture and customs, and perhaps even another language.
- So, if you don’t move, and everything screams at the folly of doing that, what financial provision have you made to visit on a regular basis? Not only is there the cost of flights, often there is accommodation to be considered as well. Remember, If you are a recipient of the Aged Pension, you need to be aware of the rules around time spent out of Australia.
- Consider learning to use technology to keep in touch. Skype, Facetime and Whats App are excellent platforms to see and speak to your children and grandchildren.
- Where do you live now? It may be that you need to consider access to an airport or transportation so you can get to where your children are fairly easily, if they do happen to need you urgently.
- Where you live now may also require adapting to give more space for when they visit. In the meantime, you may be able to rent out these rooms.
- How is your health? Are you able to withstand long flights? And when should you pass on flying and await their return or visits to Australia?
- Consider researching the culture and customs of their new home and learn some basic language. This will help when you visit them.
Finally, welcome their achievements and their ability to make their way in the world and support their endeavours to understand their new world. Remember, it’s only been in the past 50 years or so it has become easy for families to stay in touch when their children have left to seek a new world and be grateful for this.