Tips if Your Husband Wants to Retire and Move, but You Don’t

Your Husband Wants to Move-Rebel Retirement

By 2030, all baby boomers will have turned 65.

Most will have retired; many will have downsized to save money, and others will have moved to follow their dreams.

For couples, the retirement transition was likely stressful.

Whether to stay put or where to move in retirement can be a major source of that stress.

Does your husband want to retire and move, but you don’t?

Envision a scenario where your husband announces one day that he is retiring, wants to sell the house, and finally realize the dreams that both of you held as a young couple.

It may be visions of moving to the country and growing your own food, buying a farm and raising chickens, living self-sufficiently in a forest off the coast of Oregon, or in a cozy cabin in the woods where life is pure and simple.

Also, let’s not exclude a seaside bungalow where you can swim, and fish, or an apartment in a bustling downtown within walking distance of your heart’s desire.

Your husband is gung-ho about the idea, but you are not.

Time to seriously ask yourself, “Why not?”

After all, this is supposed to be a dream come true for both of you.

Let’s explore some possible objections to moving.

When your husband wants to move and you don’t, you may find yourself with many objections.

Perhaps you don’t want to lose friends or move away from beloved grandchildren.

Maybe you’re afraid family and friends will chastise you. You may ponder whether you still have the initiative to do the things that once enthused you and your husband as a couple.

Other thoughts may go through your mind:

  • How would you fit into a new community?
  • You don’t make friends easily.
  • You dread the thought of moving and starting over.
  • You’re loquacious and afraid you’ll be off-putting.

Understandably you think, “Why would I want to move?” “I’m happy here!”

You love your current neighborhood and it could be embarrassing if your new home doesn’t live up to your old one.

Your life runs like a well-oiled machine and your life is full.

It would be silly for you and your husband to run away like a couple of teenagers.

Everything you need is available where you presently reside.

The list is endless!

Of course, these are valid objections. While it may be true, if you seriously think about it, these objections stem from fear.

4 tips if your husband wants to retire and move, but you don’t.

Certainly, your concerns are worthy of thoughtful consideration. But they can cause great anxiety thinking about them, especially if the thoughts are negative.  You’ve heard the term, a self-fulfilling prophecy. 

No. 1 – Dissolve fears by facing them.

Cliche’ as it is, thinking of how awful a move with your husband would be will attract just that – an awful experience.

On the other hand, think positively about the wonderful adventure to be had. You will definitely get a better result.

This piece of advice is particularly relevant for any new challenge that you are faced with. 

Make your dominant thoughts positive.

Fearful thoughts attract more fear. Positive thoughts attract success.

Instead of expecting the worst, train your mind to expect the best. Make positive assumptions about your future.

When you confront your fears and make your dominant thoughts positive ones, your husband’s crazy notion to move may seem less objectionable.

No. 2 – Embrace Change

Examine your feelings and be truthful with yourself. You may realize that you have fallen into a lifestyle trap that is no longer serving you.

Be open-minded about your retirement plans. Don’t be afraid to move your life in a different direction.

Many if not all of your fears will dissolve when you embrace change.

Ultimately, face your fears about retirement, whether they are about money, aging, or relocating.

Saying “What am I afraid of” helps to dissolve the irrational thoughts about change. 

Disclosure: This article contains Amazon affiliate links to products we recommend. If you click through and make a purchase through these links, we’ll get a small commission, but you won’t pay any extra. Thank you! 

Perhaps you’ll find Susan David’s bestselling book helpful – Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life.

No. 3 – Achieve peace of mind through research 

It doesn’t make sense to relocate to a place that doesn’t offer the experiences that interest both you and your husband.

For example, if you want to retire and raise goats, you will need a home and ranch store conveniently located near your home.

If you’re looking for a particular type of recreation, for instance, cycling, make sure the area you are considering is biker friendly.

Before making a major decision, like relocating to another state, you should:

  • Check out the demographics of the area
  • Visit the region and stay for a while
  • Chat with the locals
  • Experience the area as if you were living there
  • Try the local cuisine
  • Browse the library
  • Buy groceries
  • Explore the area on foot
  • Look at what types of vehicles the people drive
  • See what type of shopping is available

No. 4 – Communicate. Communicate. Communicate.

Unless your husband is completely selfish, he will also think of you when considering a move in retirement. 

And he’ll show interest in hearing your concerns and working toward solutions that work for both of you.

I don’t know your husband. And I hope he is a good man. That said, I think most husbands are good men who want to please their wives.

If you do your research and communicate with your husband, you should not have any major complaints about where you move. You should iron that out before your relocation.

Plus, it is critical to note that you and your husband trust one another.

Unless you are absolutely against moving, I encourage you to explore the possibility that a move can be an enriching experience.

Giving in to demands from either party will only create misery for both of you.

Read: Don’t Compromise with Your Spouse on Retirement Plans

My unique experience moving across the country.

Fortunately, Rebel Retiree and I agreed on most things when we moved from the deep South to the frozen North.

However, at age 50, and after 31 years of marriage, it was a monumental lifestyle change.

Although we both wanted to move, it created a tremendous amount of stress getting everything in order to do so.

After selling the comfortable house in the middle-class neighborhood, we moved into a smaller, but nevertheless, charming home in a walkable town.

Everything was wonderful! Our research had paid off. I couldn’t have been happier.

Nevertheless, there were adjustments.

-The people were friendly, but not in the way that I was accustomed to. However, I came to realize that it was their respect for individual privacy. It’s one of the things I truly value. Therefore, I came to understand that people are basically the same everywhere you go. I had been judging friendliness on a regional basis.

-The locals’ taste in food was lackluster. We had moved from a city renowned for its cuisine. I adapted to the fact that restaurants catered to the preferences of the people in the area, not mine.

-Grocery stores did not carry all of the foodstuffs I had used for years. After a while, I found substitutes. Eventually, I discovered that I could find some of my favorite brands if I took the time to look.

-The sun didn’t shine in the winter as often as I wanted, but the change of seasons and the overall climate were magnificent. The wintertime gave me a new appreciation for spring and summer.

As you can see, my complaints were all minor inconveniences that worked themselves out.  And they may seem trivial compared to your concerns.

The important point is that you don’t let your worries, whether big or small, keep you stuck in a retirement rut.


I hope this article gives food for thought to any woman who finds herself in a situation where her husband wants to retire and move and she doesn’t.

Above all, know that your concerns about moving are important and that a considerate husband will listen to them.

However, it’s possible that your concerns stem from fear. And thoughtful communication can assuage fears.

Relocating in retirement is stressful, especially if one spouse wants to move, but the other does not.

Revisiting the desires of what you both wanted to achieve as a younger couple will help bring focus to what direction both of you want to take now.

Facing fears and embracing change is often more rewarding than you imagine. While it is prudent to research and evaluate before making a move, it is also essential to focus on the positive.

Does your husband want to retire and move, but you don’t? Let us know in the comments below. And before you go, please take a moment to subscribe to our newsletter, and like us on Facebook!

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Header Photo by Josh Willink from Pexels

Updated for clarity 05/22/213

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