Just cant turn it off......

by Secret Squirrel
(North Carolina)

I too, was a correctional officer. Did 24 years with the FEDS, could not wait to retire, just burnt out. Its been little over a week and just can't turn it off.

Those who have done the job I have done for that long, know what I mean. There are things i would like to do , just dont do them.

Retiredepression crept in.

I have a part time job that I have transitioned into because i have been doing it for several years. I thought " No issue with that". I'm good with that.

The part that is eating me up is the lack of communication with people, my spouse has no idea what type of job I did, so she has no idea what is going on. The communication was constant at my job, I loved it.......now its gone.

Financial issues are not a concern, I know what type of pension I'm getting, just need to hold of until they come in.

Would like to hear from Correctional officers who have dealt with the initial changes. No disrespect to others, just want to get a feel from Correctional Officers.


Secret Squirrel

Comments for Just cant turn it off......

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by: Noelle

I read somewhere in the comments where they were taking a "Look" at retirement. To this I would say: the Look of Retirement is totally different than the "Feel" of Retirement. Two totally different things.

Prior to retirement everything appears to be all positive but once you are in full time retirement, does the reality truly set in. There are pros and cons to everything in life, including Retirement.

For me, I imagined a bed of roses but settled for daisies. That may sound terrible to some but I much prefer a bouquet of fresh cut daisies to a bouquet of roses any day.

There are ups and downs to being retired and if you view them as obstacles, you will never make the hurdle. You simply learn to adjust. Nothing in this lifetime is guaranteed. Just take one step at a time like Wendy says and everything will eventually fall into place.

by: Anonymous

I just comments from former correctional officers and found it quite interesting. Even though I have never been a CO myself, I can definitely relate to the emptiness felt by being separated from "work family." As for me, I was with the appellate court for many years, and unlike the lower court system where you are in the public eye on a daily basis, the appellate court is totally different. We were totally isolated from the public, seeing no one except for judges, law clerks, administrators, and the small family each Judge's Chamber provides. I would make annual trips with the judge to aide in the process of hiring new law clerks - it was my job to just sit back during each interview with law students and observe their demeanor. It was a top priority that we not only chose new law clerks that were academically "top notch" but oh so important that they fit in socially with our small family. Just one bad apple could potentially ruin the entire environment. Only once did I find a problem with the judge's choice. He chose a young woman that was at the top of her class and her writing skills were above reproach. BUT, my observation as far as a social fit, she came up way short. Well, the judge had the last say, of course, and she was offered the position. Low and behold, about 6 months into her law clerk internship, she began to show her true colors. I really wanted to say "I warned you" but having the utmost respect the judge, I just looked at him and shrugged my shoulders. He knew me well enough to know what that meant. She was more trouble than I can write about in this forum. Example: had lots of marital discord with her husband, allowed and stood up for her teenage sons when they were arrested for shoplifting, would constantly complain about her monthly cramps (at least one of our male clerks, although academically brilliant, had absolutely no experience with women) her exploits made him blush red as a beet. I took her aside and nicely asked her to refrain from such verbal outbursts and explained why they were disruptive. But, my little talk fell upon deaf ears. To make a long story short, her 2 year tenure as a law clerk was cut very short. The judge finally saw the light.

So, when you speak of missing "close family" in the work place, I can totally relate. No, I sure don't miss HER but I do miss all the others. I spent more time with my work family than I ever did with home family, and surprising, they knew me better than my own husband. I've finally transitioned and so will you. Just give it some time. God Bless.

I get it
by: Anonymous

I ve worked corrections for over 26 years, I can retire any time, but 2 years ago I lost my husband. I ve lost 8 family members in the past couple years so now I am alone. I have nothing to do if I retire.

Retired Corrections
by: The Blonde

Hey Corrections family guy!

I retired June 2015 from CA Corrections prisons/HQ after 25yrs.

Just turned 55 and wondering what retirement life will truly look like as well.

Ease into the life of making your own deadlines!

I joined the Grand Jury, loved it. Out there are Cops on Patrol, teaching at Academy and other places, security. All these areas want our expertise.

Stay in touch...I am interested in your new journey!

Just can't turn it off
by: MaRianni Neptune Beach

I retired from the Navy and can't turn off missing the action and social camaraderie - the civilian world is lonely - moving around all my adult life having no place to call home and no mission to focus on is driving me nuts.

CO for 2 years, PO for 21 years
by: Kimberly/Tallahassee

I retired in May of 2014 and am glad I did. I was so stressed out that I could feel my health slip away. It took me a year to not feel exhausted all the time.

The bags under my eyes are now gone, and I am starting to become more social. I am only 55, so I still want to work, and feel strong enough now to start beating the pavement.

I also took a hit in the money arena, and our monthly income is a lot less than what it was when I was working. That has also been a major adjustment for my husband and I to deal with.

It will take time for you to adjust. Everyone is different.

One thing I did to slowly ease back into society was to volunteer 1 day a week. Do things you never could before, or if your budget can't handle it, volunteer somewhere you would enjoy. Start with just 1 day a week, and add more days if you want to. Just remember, you control how much you want to be there, and when you want to be there. It makes it so much more enjoyable!

Working in a prison
by: Nancy

I worked in the criminal justice, in prisons, for over 20 years in Illinois, Kentucky, and Indiana. Behind the fence as a counselor, teacher, and substance abuse counselor. Loved it.

Like Wendy said, you are only a week out. It takes awhile to turn it off. I get it. I wish you all the best.

Retired Correctional Officer!
by: Alison, Ontario, Canada

Hi there SS, I retired in February of 2015, after 35 years as a Correctional Officer. I have been through a lot of what is expected when one retires.

I never felt I was in "vacation mode" even from the beginning. I DO NOT FOR A SECOND regret leaving the dirt and horrors of corrections behind.

I have; however had a struggle with retirement right up until very recently. I have begun to do things I have been thinking about for the past year, cooking, yoga, gym. I am also looking at a new career opportunity, thanks to a good friend of mine.

I keep up on the jail activities thru facebook... always happy I am not a part of it any longer. I have a few good friends, all correctional officers, whom I keep in regular touch with. For me...this is sufficient.

You will find your way....a statement I began to hate during my own transition...but..ya know, it does come, and you also come to a place where you find yourself enjoying your freedom, and able to do as you please.

Please don't despair..not this early on. Your feelings are all so very normal. I also leaned on co-workers who had retired before me, to assure me that all was normal with the way I felt in the beginning.

Corrections, as with most law enforcement is a unique club. Please look outside of that world. It's not a healthy environment, as you know, and it employs a lot of very unhealthy people.

Best Wishes for a long and healthy retirement.

Law Enforcement Retirements
by: Wendy

A few thoughts from someone who worked with Sheriff Dept. employees who retired, but I was not LE.

1) You've only been retired one week. You really should be in "vacation mode' still... usually it takes weeks or months before depression really hits.

2) Law enforcement officers are "tight" with co-workers... they depend on each other much more than other occupations. Thus, they miss their "family" when they retire. Just an idea, why don't you start a weekly breakfast meeting for Retired LE from your area? Start with a few guys, and more will join in as word-of-mouth does its job. It might help...

Best Wishes! Wendy

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