An interesting perspective.
I hope Mao realizes that her decision is win-win. If she retires after the Sochi Olympics, good for her. If she continues competing, good for her.
This is why they don't retire. Season by season until she's like 40 she'll be like "maybe- I'm thinking of it - I am taking a break" and then year after year after year people finally get it! Like with Kwan or Joannie Rochette. Just never ever say your done!
If a skater wants to retire, for heaven's sale LET HIM/HER RETIRE! There IS life after figure skating!
Midori Ito also faced an incredible amount of pressure, particularly to skate in Nagano. Hopefully Mao makes a decision that is right for her. I could see her retiring next year, or becoming invigorated if she gets her jumps back and can compete for the top spot for years to come.