i have known a few that have come off the C/O work, due to their wife's health, or some other reason. They tend to get jobs working with other dubs, at first anyway, or start a cleaning business , or they can wangle plum assignments as Assembly Hall resident Overseers, that sort of thing
Circuit Overseers, their roles, and their spouses
I concur with most of the posts. COs get very little from the WTS. They don't even pay for a mobile phone for them & are expected to get their own laptop - usually some friendly brother gives them something. Over here (UK) they can usually claim housing benefit on their apartment unless they have investments or another property.
Virtually every CO & wife I have known are on some kind of strange diet or health food regime - it seems to go with the job. The joke here is that the elders would get one page from the CO with the weeks arrangements & 4 pages with faddy diety requirements & conditions for the accommodation (no air fresheners , host sister not to wear perfume , no kids , bath and constant supply of hot water required etc). I remember when food combining was all the rage in the 80's that a CO insisted on having separate plates - no meat & veg combined , fruit as a starter etc.
Although quite a few of the COs & wives I have known are decent people , it does seem to be a depressing life & this mainly impacts on the wives. Many are sad that they have given up children & the routine of a different home every week , constantly trying to be cheerful & listen to weeping sisters would get anyone fed-up. I've known a few COs wives who you will rarely see during the week - there was always some mystery illness or "sick relative" that excused the absence. Many in the cong assumed one CO was single ( there were even rumours he was gay) as we never saw his wife for 3 years until she turned up (mid week) on the last visit!
" Well, if he should ever look for a job, he would have the best resume."
Almost wet myself when I read that - as if spending decades as a CO would look good on a CV! As Bluebrother said , most COs who retire early manage to find something as they know a lot of people and can network , so usually end up getting an adminstrative or sales job working for a JW company or similar. In the UK quite a few found work in the office equipment , lawn care or general cleaning sectors , where a few JWs have build up big concerns. Alternatively if they are still on good standing with Bethel they can usually get something there.
In regards to dietary requirements, When I served where the need is great, once or twice a month
I would travel to a cong. to give a talk.. A family was assign to feed my family. Don,t get me wrong
and I appreciated the jester, but everyone are not good cooks. Since I had to travel great distant to
give a talk there were times( on my way home) when it was necessary to make bath room stops.
That was only A few times A month. So with the CO, they eat in someone home on the average of
five days A week.. Imaging if sister spicy(love spicy food) fix A large pot of spicy chili and it,s A meeting
nite. You young people will find out as you get older there are foods you can not eat unless you are
prepare to stay home for the evening..SO i CAN SEE with A middle age CO couple they would need to
watch their diet..
There was one CO couple that ate only raw veggies and fruits, nothing cooked. That was fun NOT!