How does one manage retirement activities if their spouse is not as physically able?

Sep 10, 2023 by Anthony Damaschino, in Blog
How does one manage retirement activities if their spouse is not as physically able? All the things you imagined you'd do together has now drastically changed. Do I go it alone, find other friends and leave out the spouse? None of that sounds fair.
Thank you for asking this question. It's a difficult situation to manage, but I do have some thoughts on the matter that may be helpful. Although facing the reality that your spouse may not be physically able to participate in activities with you is disappointing, it's important to accept the current state and come to terms with the unfairness of it. Your goal should be to make the best of your future together.
In The Empty Nest Blueprint, I discuss what I call the "four plans" that can help you navigate this situation. First, you should focus on your own aspirations, interests, and plans. Although you may have wanted to do things together with your spouse, you can explore these activities alone or with other friends while still maintaining a connection and balance with your partner.
The second plan is to help and encourage your spouse to pursue their own interests and activities that they are passionate about and capable of doing. You can't fix their situation, but you can support and love them as they navigate their physical limitations.
The third plan is to find activities that you can still do together, within the limits of your spouse's physical abilities. This may mean adjusting your expectations and finding new ways to enjoy each other's company, whether it's through puzzles vs. hiking, binge-watching shows vs. long walks, or staycations vs. trips.
The key to navigating this situation is to balance your needs and desires with your spouse's limitations, while still finding ways to enjoy your life together. Communication and expectation setting will be vital to achieving this balance.
I hope this answer has been helpful to you. Remember that your future can still be filled with love, excitement, and joy, even if it's not what you envisioned in the past.