Loosing it all to age discrimination …

AFL Home Forums Life After 50 – Love It OR Hate It Loosing it all to age discrimination …

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    My 50s promised to be glorious until I lost my Commercial Aviation career and was stranded in a foreign country (Canada) with a Work visa expiring in 30 days from the date of my lay-off and a brand new house I just bought. I managed to sell the house and packed my household which included a daughter I had just taken care of through a series of 5 major surgeries during the previous 3 years. We arrived in Southern Nevada in January 2002, The international move came with a price tag of $10,000+ and my daughter’s medical bills kept coming. In the meantime I found out that my pension had become a casualty of the hostile corporate takeover. For 3 years I worked a full time job + a part time retail job; my daughter was working full time.
    The pay was barely over minimum wages but I was thankful I got something. I kept an eye out for something half-way decent. Still sharing an apartment with my daughter so that we could both financially survive, she found another job and by 2005 I also found a better job. Within a couple of years, I was making a decent income again and I put as much money as I could toward rebuilding a retirement. When I felt confident things were solid again, I bought a house in 2007 and life looked good at 55. Then came the crash of 2008 and Southern Nevada went down hard. The value of Southern Nevadans homes plummeted and lost 2/3 of their values just about overnight, While I dodged the first 2 corporate waves of lay-offs, I went under with the third one in 2009. Trapped like a rat in the state with the highest unemployment rate in the nation, choking on an underwater mortgage of a property in the worst real estate market in the nation, this, now 60-year old woman frantically tried to find employment for months as whatever money I had saved was dwindling again. Nothing gave. Unemployment ran out. It was suggested to me that I get a Medical Assistant Certificate as this may be the only field that would be hiring in post-recession Southern Nevada. I went ahead and got my certificate, but in a market saturated with thousands of unemployed, only the young and the perky gets hired. I applied for a Student Loan to seek out another career in the Applied Health field. Competing against kids that could be my grandchildren I maintained a 3.69 GPA, made Dean’s List most semesters and became a Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society member. I am now 65 and will need to work until I die, which is not an issue for me, but at this point in time, the second retirement fund I had rebuilt is running out and I am still looking for a decent job in Southern Nevada. My two best friends of 45 and 19 years respectively both died within the past 12 months and no one in Southern Nevada appears to have any interest in hiring a 65-year old woman regardless of what she has to offer and how much profit she could add to a business bottom line. No matter how resilient I have remained through the dismantling of my professional life and the financial loss of everything I worked for my entire life, I am not seeing any light at the end of my tunnel. There is nothing in the world that I would make me feel happier than being able to put my professional experience, skills and abilities to work again. Until then I’ll have to say that my 50s/60s very much suck!

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