I had held my job for 22 years, after holding my previous job for 13 years. I was 59 and was told that I was going to have a pay cut--no number was not given. I objected, not so much to the yet to be identified cut, but the lack of a reason for the cut, since no other staff members were taking cuts.
Two weeks later I get called into the boss' office and am handed a termination agreement that I was told was not negotiable. It included a very generous severance pay package, and the company picked up my cobra costs for a year. I was planning to retire after two years and to use the retiree option of retaining the group insurance.
Again, I was given no reasons for the dismissal.
For 19 years, under a prior boss, I enjoyed the job. For the last three years, I did not. So I was not totally unhappy to leave, until I was hit with two realities I did not expect.
Under COBRA, you can convert to a private policy IF that insurance company writes such policies in your state. It did not and with pre-existing conditions, I could not get coverage.
I also learned the lesson of harsh reality. Men pushing 60 have a hard time finding jobs. I applied for jobs that paid one-third of my former salary and assured them I would commit to saying three to five years. I had several interviews, but no offers.
Fighting insurance issues has been the hardest part and the fact I resent most amount my termination. I have a line on a job that is looking promising that provides insurance. If I get it, it will be a nice way to end my career. If not, I can draw Social Security next year (it will still be here), and my wife will start this year. With our savings and no mortgage, we will do find--except for for the insurance issue, which I hope Obamacare helps to resolve.
I felt all the emotions listed in the question. There was no cause to dismiss me. My biggest sin is that I am not a yes man. I will tell a boss if I think he is incorrect--in the proper manner, by telling him we tried that before, and it did or did not work and why. However, I told my boss that by the end of the day, I would have completed the task the way he wanted it done.
So I guess I feel angry for the failure to offer any real notice, for not providing reasons and for forcing me to sign an agreement that severely limited my legal recourse. They wanted me gone, and they paid decent money to get rid of me. That is a hard fight to win.