What Happens to Old People Who Don’t Save for Retirement?

What Happens to Old People-Rebel Retirement

What happens to old people who don’t save for retirement?

Answers to questions like this one are usually very negative. 


Because so many of them cannot see anything except misery, and lack.

They are often answered by retirees who sound bitter about their circumstances.

Or, answers are from financial experts who gaze into their crystal balls and chime in with facts, figures, and fear tactics explaining how old people who don’t save for retirement find themselves in serious financial difficulty.

Then, there are the individuals who pop out of the woodwork who are not retired, but critical of old people who didn’t save.

They spout opinions on what they think could have been if only the old person had saved for retirement.

Take the following illustration taken from an answer I found on a forum.

An 80-something grandmother who lives alone is described as “having” to share garden vegetables with friends, kind of co-op style. The writer’s tone is such that Grandma growing her own vegetables and sharing her bountiful harvest is a terrible thing – a result of her grandmother not saving for retirement.

It’s sad to think that this person views their grandmother this way as though she is a loser.

To be fair, I don’t know Grandma’s situation. To say nothing of the fact that it can be difficult to get a complete picture from someone’s answer on a forum.

Nevertheless, from what is described in a few sentences, Grandma appears to be an independent self-reliant octogenarian who tends her garden and also has a network of supportive friends to share it with!

What happens to old people who don’t save for retirement is dependent on their attitude about life.

What Happens to Old People Who Don't Save for Retirement- Rebel Retirement


It’s okay if Grandma’s golden years are different than what you think they should be.

A rich life has nothing to do with money

In my opinion, Grandma’s contentment in her old age has more value than her inability to live an extravagant lifestyle..

-People have lives.

-They live, love, laugh.

-They have kids, buy houses, start businesses.

-Kids get sick, houses get foreclosed, businesses fail.

For all we know, she couldn’t have saved for retirement even if she wanted to.

As a result of living life, Grandma found herself without a nest egg. She may even require financial support.

However, it doesn’t mean that Grandma has a bad life because she didn’t save for retirement. It’s just different than the way life was before.

Yes. I’m looking at Grandma’s situation from a positive point of view.

Because, what is the alternative?

To be a complainer and only see misery and lack? If you know anything about the law of attraction, you know that what you focus on manifests in your life including health, wealth, and happiness – or misery and lack.

In case you think this is some kind of New Age woo-woo, you are wrong.  

Since the beginning of time, respected people from all walks of life have understood that our thoughts create our future. 

Mahatma Gandhi, Earl Nightingale, Dale Carnegie, Dorothea Brande, and Jesus Christ to name a few all knew that the way we think about our circumstances controls the course of our lives, and the outcome.  

Mindset applies to retirement just like it does to everything else in life.  A positive mindset will bring contentment and abundance. Thoughts of fear bring an unpleasant retirement experience into reality. 

My article on poverty consciousness explains how focusing on the lack of money perpetuates the situation.

(If you have an interest in this topic, I encourage you to read the Game of Life and How to Play It. It’s a prosperity classic and a quick and easy read.)

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!

What comes to your mind when you hear the question, “What happens to old people who don’t save for retirement?

Are you afraid you will be an old man or old woman living in squalor?

Are you scared you’ll be eating cat food for dinner?

Fearful thoughts indeed!

But, the truth of the matter is that most people who live in squalor have a mental condition and are under the age of 65.

Therefore, if you’re a middle-class boomer who is halfway sane, most likely you won’t become a statistic.

Yes, you can find sad stories about elderly people resorting to eating cat food because of a lack of money, but that’s rare too.

With that in mind, if you know of anyone in this situation, please help them by providing them with some nourishing food.

Regardless of whether you saved or didn’t save for your retirement, it will most likely look different than what you’ve planned.


I don’t know of anyone who has played the game of life and had it turn out exactly as they had planned.

It’s reasonable to say that neither will your retirement.

However, if you embrace change, have a positive approach to “old age”, and do some spiritual work on your attitude about money, you’re likely to make it through okay.

And who is to say what the ideal retirement looks like?

Only you can determine that.

If you would like some practical solutions to what to do if you haven’t saved for retirement, please check out the related articles below.


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This is my opinion. I would love to hear yours. Please leave me a comment below. And before you go, please take a moment to subscribe to our newsletter, and like us on Facebook!

Last update: 10/26/22

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