Is it selfish to think of your retirement before kids' education?

By Madhurie Singh, July 20, 2012

Is it right to think of yourself first and then about your children? Is it moral to think of your survival before your kids'?

It depends on the you and your social background. So no easy formula here that I can share with you, but a few thought for your barin to work on.

I think its our duty to first make sure our retirement is safe and comfortable. No its not being selfish of keeping this thought above our children's needs.

Simply because, tomorrow this same decision will become a boon to YOU and your kids!

You will not be dependent on your children. I find it really very selfish when parents' tell their kids that they are born to look after their parents. I think we bear children for our own happiness and satisfaction. No child has ever come and asked if he or she can be born to YOU. I wanted to have kids and you wanted to have kids. So its the parents who wanted to have kids. Then why should they be made to be guilty that its your duty to take care of us! Kids will take care of the parents. No child ever wants to not be able to support his/her parents. But …

Once born kids have their own life, especially in today's world. It extremely competitive to survive and do well.  There is pressure on them to perform and be successful that is 10 times more than our times and 100 times more than their grandparents!

The times of our parents were easier and cheaper to live in than ours. They had better employment conditions, better food and environment to live in, better interest rates and far better life in terms of stress.

Then came our days, with lesser jobs, layouts, inflation, low interest rates and bad enviroment to live in. I think our generation did the maximum damage after our seniors.

Tomorrow when our kids grow, they will have to fight for jobs, but there will be newer types of professions to look forward to. They will have to be on their toes to think laterally and adapt to newer professions to survive. More stress.

Tomorrow the kids will have really low interest rates to help them save yet very high repayment rates. They will have high inflation to deal with in day to day life. 

Tomorrow the environment will be in it worst conditions with over polluted air to breathe, contaminated water to drink and adultrated food to eat. Each of our kids have been born with daily usage of plastic and eating plastic since childhood. More cancer and autoimmune diseases to deal with in future.

The health expense for our children will be maximum due to various early onset diseases that happened in the >70  age in our parents, will happen in >45 in our age and in our kids' life will be >35 age. SO when they have to deal with health conditions so early, its not fair to burden them with your own health conditions. So take good family health insurances NOW before its too late. Take individual health insurances for yourself and your spouse now.  (over and above your company health insurance ). Infact teach your kids too take it when they start earning. 

Now when you forsee such big expenses and stressful life ahead of you, you may take the steps mentioned below to lower the burden off your kids shoulders right away and be the good parent you ought to be.

  • Change your lifestyle with no plastic, more organic and more holistic life.
  • Take good medical / health cover.
  • Take a term cover to protect your family members.
  • Start saving first for your retirement.
  • In case you are going to inherit then give that to your kids later but not in your life time or when there is a need that arises for your kids future.
  • A bonus for you is that when you start planning for your retirement which will be to fund yourself for close to 20 yrs, you also are indirectly building a corpus for your kids, provided you are eating the interest and not the principal saved. 🙂
  • The education corpus can be started by saving as low as 5k – 10k every month in a RD for young parents.
  • The marriage corpus for your children should be of  least importance as kids are very sensible and will go for marriages with low expense and more of value for money arrangements, unless you belong to a stinking rich clan. 

So you see there are only three important areas of fund building that you need to do.

  1. Number one priority :   Your own retirement.
  2. Number two priority :    Your health and medical needs.
  3. Number three priority : Your kids' education.

If you can take care of these three and still be able to save more then go have a great vacation, build gift corpus for your kids and donate a part to clean the environment which needs to improvise drastically to make the lives of our kids better and liveable. 

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