Let me begin by telling you a true story.
Since I began exposing myself to the financial industry, I was often asked – “Bro, I’m in my 50s nearing retirement. I have not prepared for it financially. I have nothing. What should I do to NOT suffer financially?”
Let me be honest with you…
I don’t have the answer.
You see, the industry is big on not just preparing, but also preparing EARLY. And clearly, the people who ask this question are the ones who failed to do just that.
One time, I sent this “lesson” in my email list (click here to subscribe for free) without giving any solution to this problem. Because that was the real intention – to let them know I don’t have the answers.
Because let’s face it.
If there is something in the future to salvage the “financially-unprepared-for-retirement-oldie” situation, then let’s just go YOLO (You Only Live Once. The term used to justify rash, stupid and impulse decisions – according to Wikipedia) today and stop preparing.
I mean, why even bother, right?
My friend, the truth is – There’s no such thing. *ouch*
Unsurprisingly, it hit a nerve. Not from the oldies, but from the millennials (this time, I was surprised).
Apparently, I had millennials in my list who are part of the “Sandwich” generation. (I’m a millennial too, by the way).
If you’re supporting your parents and your kids at the same time, you belong to the sandwich generation. Just in case you didn’t catch it – imagine a cheese sandwich. Your parents and your kids are the bread, and you’re the cheese.
Hence the term “sandwich”.
Unfortunately, it’s a never ending cycle in the Filipino culture .
A family raise their kids, do what they can so the kids can graduate from the best university they can afford, then they find a (hopefully) high-paying job so the now-adult children can support BOTH their parents and new family.
Unfortunately (again), the latter does not always happen.
But since the breadwinner never attended to himself – was not able to save and invest for his own retirement, he now becomes the “new bread” to his children. (Quite ironic to call them “breadwinners” if you think about it).
And the cycle continues.
Here’s the good news – the cycle can stop with you. And an even better news is – you can prosper too.
Yes, you read that right.
PROSPER. (Hold that thought for a moment)
I may not have the answers to help your old folks, but I can definitely help YOU.
Trust me, I’ve seen it unfold right in front of my eyes. A poor Filipina probinsyana goes to the city. Takes on a job. Supports her family. Then started her own family.
For many, this is where the disaster starts.
But for some, they were not only able to make ends meet, but also turn their life upside down.
They were able to send their kids to great schools.
They were able to make sure they will not depend on their children financially.
And they did this while supporting their old and sickly folks.
The latter can be your story.
“Wait bro. I’m only supporting my parents. I don’t have my own family yet. This article ain’t for me.”
It’s only a matter of time before your “sandwich” comes to completion. After all, the top bun (your parents) has already been served for you.