Are you like me? Do you experience night terrors about your parents moving in with you because they have failed to set up any kind of retirement plan? Does your spouse have to wake you in the middle of the night to assure you that your father-in-law is not in the kitchen scrambling eggs in his underwear at three in the morning? That it has all just been a bad dream? While they may be nightmares now, if I don’t get my parents hooked up with an IRA soon, these nightmares could easily become reality. I cannot bear the thought of living with my old, exasperating parents. Are you like me? Are you horrible like me?
But really, my parents are idiots. Hopeless imbeciles. How they have made it this far is beyond me. They recently purchased three brand new flat screen TV’s, and yet they have no retirement plan. My parents-in-law, however, are a different story. While they have a retirement plan in place, they’re Sicilian – tiny little Sicilians. They’re kind of cute really; but beneath – beneath they’re scary. Italian scary. They have crazy ideas about family. For Sicilians, family is FOREVER. They’re not only convinced that they’re moving in, but they’re plotting an area in our backyard for their burial. I’ve come to accept that I am powerless against their eventual take-over. Yet, if I can get MY parents to start an IRA, I can at least feel comfortable when I pack my bags and head for the hills once HER parents move in. Let HER bury them in the backyard. They’re not MY responsibility. Are you like me? Are you horrible and scared like me?
So I’ve been doing a lot of reading on IRA’s lately. Initially, I included two pages worth of basic, boring information on IRAs, Roth IRAs, SEPs and Simple IRAs. As a favor to the DINK audience, I chose “select all” and “delete.” I could not bear to bore the DINK audience with all the information that everyone but my parents, and myself included, already know. It appears that no “insider” or groundbreaking IRA information exists out there. It appears that putting away for retirement is all about discipline. It appears that I need help. I feel horrible and scared; and I can’t sleep.
My parents are in their late 60’s. They run their own business. They make about $80K/year. They have NO retirement plan in place, but they do have a great home theater system. Please, I need advice. How do I convince my parents to put their money towards an IRA, and where do I start? Am I really horrible for feeling this way, or should I just embrace the arrival of a new home theater system, and a Sicilian graveyard outside of my living room window?