Skeptical about institutions, they face new rules of how Americans prepare for Golden Years As kids, they sat on gas lines in the backs of their parents’ cars. As young adults, they saw the stock market crash, and when it finally came time to settle down, they bought a house at the peak of the housing bubble and then were faced with the worst economy since the Great Depression. It’s no shock that Generation X — those born from 1965 to 1981 — may get short changed in their golden years. Though they’ve watched parents and grandparents nestled with pensions, Social Security and strong economic growth, these are no longer guarantees. On the other hand, longer life spans with more medical bills and greater need for cash are the reality for many. Gen X is the first generation to deal with the fact that the models of American retirement are changing — and its members are flustered. The generation once called “slackers” has been true to form with retirement planning. “Gen X is a transition generation,” says Carol O’Rourke, a certified financial planner and Executive Director for the Coalition for Debtor Education in New York City. “Gen Xers were young during the tech bubble, and when they came of age, housing was a lot more expensive. With all the talk about whether Social Security is going to survive, there is a sense of not having something to look forward to.” More... Fun.