MPN Voice
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Early retirement

Hi Guys, I know some of you have already gone down the route of early retirement and wondered what your experiences had been. Between my PV and osteoarthritis which has decided to do a rampage through more joints, I am starting to go down the path of early retirement due to ill health.

After returning to work with my partial new knee plus a venesection, I am still suffering from quite bad fatigue and lethargy as well as pain from some new and old joint issues. I have decided enough is enough and have seen occupational health who are suggesting the first steps of more working from home, reduced hours, etc but with a view to early retirement in the near future.

How was the process for you and any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Kind regards Aime xx😺😺

11 Replies

Hi Aime - I can't offer you any advice but am very interested in your post because I too have made the decision to go for early retirement, I am 58. I haven't started the process yet, but intend to in the next few months. I have had enough of juggling work with ET/PV JaK+ 1000 mg Hu daily, fatigue, aches, etc, etc. I will only have a very small pension to live on and of course I will only get my state pension at 66 so the financial goal posts have changed radically. I don't get much support from the health professionals and asking for a sick note when I am ill stresses me out, also taking time off from a very busy job adds to that. I have thought of this long and hard for some time and weighed up the impact on my finances but I am ready to cut my cloth accordingly. I just want a quality of life that is my own without dancing to the beat of someone else's agenda. Best wishes with your decision :)


Good luck too Mallard, will keep you updated on progress and will be having a party when I retire.xx😺😺Aime xx


Hi Aime. I am sorry to hear your osteoarthritis is giving you so much trouble , it's enough to deal with an MPN.i haven't written to give you advice on early retirement as I am already retired!

You give so many people good advice , help, reassurance and care, that just giving you some back!

Certainly life will be easier for you In terms of fatigue, you will be able to switch that alarm off and doze a bit longer!! Seriously it is difficult to 'listen to your body' when you are really tired at work, and have to keep going when you feel exhausted. I really don't advocate sitting in a chair all day, I certainly don't ....but to know you can sit when you need to is reassuring , when we get a great day, just potter into that garden, no pressure. everyone has some form of stress whilst working. So that will be lifted also. I really felt rather useless when I retired initially , I suppose loss of status ( be it ever so lowly) but meeting friends helping out where and when you can soon replaces that .

So when you do decide to retire or cut down on your work, I am sure you will soon wonder how on earth you had the time to work !!!!

All the very best Sandy X


Hi Amie,

After a few stressful weeks at work I decided to retire last June. I was 62 and like a Mallard I don't get my state pension until I am 66 but I took drawdown on a small pension I had which will last me until my state pension kicks in. I think it's important that you can afford to do this as worrying about money is the last thing you need but if you can afford to do it you will never look back. I found the first 6 months rather like a holiday, keeping busy and Christmas shopping. In January I felt a bit lost and wondered what I was going to do with myself and was wishing my husband was here to enjoy retirement with me ( he passed away 10 years ago) but, as you know I have grandchildren, number 7 due in 2 weeks so I feel great that I am around for them and can leave some memories for them as my mum did for my children. These things are priceless and in no way compare to work. I generally do things in the morning, meet friends for lunch occasionally and then, if I decide to sit down for the afternoon, watch TV and knit ( just taken up again) or potter around the garden I don't feel guilty.

Just do it Aime, you will never regret it, have some time for you!

Love and best wishes to you

Judy xx


Hi Aime

I retired at 59, five years ago. It was when I started on Hydroxycarbomide.

I had a very busy job as a hotel sales manager, travelling all over for meetings, presentations etc and I just thought 'no more'.

I didn't have a clue what to expect in the future with PV and wanted to 'quit while I was ahead' and enjoy my life with my family.

I knew I wasn't due my state pension for five years and only had a very small pension coming in but between my husband and I we managed to move out to sunny Portugal that same month - for part of the year (where the cost of living is so much better) and now have the best of both worlds living between UK and Portugal visiting family in both places.

My pension started this month so hopefully the financial burden will now lift. Good luck with your retirement - it's the best thing I ever did.

I totally agree with Sandy - listen to your body - it's the only way 💕

Lesley x


Hi Aime

I took a reduced pension at the end of last year due to ET fatigue and struggling to work full time

My local authority declined my request for flexibility retirement and to work part time.

In hindsight I went about this the wrong way and did not get good advice from my manager.

I should have gone down the Occupational health route instead of trying to do this without being retired through ill health. Not sure why now looking back that I did not do this.

Like others no state pension until 66, I am now 60, my work pension is small, I was not able to claim job seekers allowance due to my husband working, my health and fatigue is worse and I am now in the assessment phase for Employment support allowance.

I don't know if I will get this after the assessment phase,.

It is a hard decision to make, for me I intended to work part time but due to health and limitations on my working day it has proved hard to find work anyway. Sounds like your doing things the right way round.

I do find it hard being at home all the time, it's a huge change from working full time.

I would say be mindful of your finances but put your health and well being at the top of the agenda.

Good luck whatever you decide

Regards Lynn

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Guys, thank you so much for your reassuring replies - they have helped to put life into prospective- you don't get it back! Financially we will have to watch our pennies and cut the cloth to suit but like you say Sandy I will be able to listen to my body for a change and stop ignoring it and pushing myself to exhaustion. I'm lucky that my hubby is still alive and is fit enough to work part-time. I totally agree with you Judy about grandchildren. I have two and wouldn't know what to do without them but I'm not enjoying them as much as I should because I'm always shattered by the weekend.

So here's to another appointment with Occupational Health to progress the early retirement route. Thank you all again, Aime xxxxxxx😺😺😺😺😺


Sorry to hear that Aime. I can't comment specifically but wish you luck. Xxx

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HI Aime

I went at 55 as the firm wanted to make people redundant and the package was good . I found as chief engineer I just could not work the 50 odd hours that the job required .

I have now been retired 17 years , have long holidays with my caravan and help with a Britain in Bloom group . I was Town crier for 10 years and now I am deputy TC.

So my advice is get out as soon as you can afford it and find some charity type work to fill your day and take long holidays.

your a long time dead

all the best Town Crier

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I took early(ish) retirement 6months before diagnosis of PV which I had almost certainly had for 2 or 3 years previously. I worked half time for six months (very good employer fortunately) before retirement and if you can swing that I can highly recommend it - it eases you into the the new routine. I do miss the social aspect of work.

From a financial point of view, going to work costs money - in my case a significant commuting cost etc. - and I'm not sure I'm any worse off overall than when working.

Best wishes whatever you decide.


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Morning all, so glad I popped in to read the MPN posts this morning! I've had PV for, must be, 12/13 years now; controlled by Hydroxy & Clopidogrel. I also have mild/mod COPD. To top it all, I was diagnosed with AVN (a vascular necrosis-think that's right!) in my right hip as a result of the top of my femur dying off due to interrupted blood supply to top of the bone). The pain is indescribable. I have 2 jobs; one v physical managing a shop part time and the other is a sedentary part time job. Sooo, the first job where I've been employed 14 years now, Occupational Health have requested an appointment on Apr 18. I'm unsure what this is all about I'm guessing they're gonna assess my fitness to do the job anymore so I have been thinking of taking early retirement. But what does that actually mean? I can't survive on the income from my other job and my retirement age is 66 so what happens if you have to give up work because of chronic health problems? I would welcome advice here. Much love Poll x


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