Moving Back Home with Mom and Dad: What You Need to Know
The current downturn in the job market has meant that many young people who may have lived independently now find that the only way they can manage is to move back to their parents’ home.
If you have lost your job or you are a recent graduate unable to find work and having to return to the family home, here are a few pointers to make that transition easier.
Family and Friends
You may have enjoyed inviting friends round for dinner or for a party in your own space but you will no longer have that freedom.
Moving back in with family means that you need to take their needs into consideration; you are now living in their home and that means their rules so inviting your university friends over for dinner and drinks is not a great idea.
Your parents have got used to doing their own thing and whilst they love you dearly they may not take too kindly to stubborn red wine stains on their carpet! Their patience may well be tested if the neighbours complain about the noise from you gathering because you thoughtlessly left the windows open.
When you are in your parents’ home you may be able to have people round but you should ask your parents beforehand. If your parents say no, or place a limit on numbers or how long visitors can stay; respect their wishes. You’re not fourteen anymore so don’t act like it.
Doing Your Bit
When adult children need to move back in with mum and dad it is all too easy to revert to the habits of the past and expect everything to be done for you. You need to remember that your parents are doing you a favor; they may have reached a point in their lives in which they enjoy having the place to themselves.
Stop any resentment before it starts by giving your parents some space from time to time and doing your bit around the house. You could offer to cook a couple of times a week and clean the windows once a month.
Parents can be judgmental when you are living back at home so be prepared for some criticism. Keep your own room clean and tidy; you’re not a teenager any more and your parents deserve some consideration act like the adult you are and you will receive adult treatment.
You may not receive much in unemployment pay, but you should be open with your parents about what you do have so that you can come to an agreement about what you should pay towards your keep if possible sort this out with your parents before moving back home.
If you are fortunate enough to find a job, offer to make a more realistic contribution to the household budget, even if you are saving most of it towards moving out to your own place again.
Don’t Get too Settled
You need to see moving back in with your parents as a temporary measure. Make sure that everyone understands that the situation is temporary and you intend to do everything you can to become self sufficient again. You need to have a detailed plan for the future and a realistic goal for when you expect to be back in a home of your own.
Ms. Jensen is a leading advocate for families and children and was the founder and president of ACES, The Association for Children for Enforcement of Support.
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