I believe women and men should retire at the same age. Women should have the opportunity to fully develop in their career. Since most career women have to take time out to have children and raise their families, success can come comparatively slowly. And when they finally begin to achieve success, they find retirement looming and their careers come to a premature end.
It is a waste of women's talents to force them to retire early. The current retirement age for women is 55, when many of them still are in good health. At that age, they have invaluable experience both of business and life, and they represent priceless human capital for their companies. They can give help and advice to younger colleagues. The extra five years they would gain by retiring at the same time as men would allow them to achieve more, create more, and contribute more to their companies and to society as a whole. It will give them more chance of promotion to higher positions and to realize their own career ambitions. And this would be good for women's confidence and general psychological health. People naturally feel happy when they feel that they are needed by others.
If women retire at 55, they will swap the world of work for a life of endless trivial housework, which requires neither knowledge nor experience. Joy and passion will be replaced by frustration. They may begin to feel a distance between themselves and their husbands who are still working.
Postponing women's retirement age is also good for the whole family. With living costs rising rapidly, if women retire early, their cut in their income will have a big impact on family finances. The pressure on their husbands as the main bread-earners will increase. But if women stay at work, the financial burden will continue to be shared between husband and wife. And sharing the task of raising the family is the best way to maintain a sound relationship.
The author is an editor in a Beijing-based newspaper.
Opinion articles reflect the views of their authors, not necessarily those of China.org.cn.