I read a lot about travel and how to save money for overseas adventures and I keep finding one piece of incredibly disturbing advice:
Move back in with your parents.
How freaken evil is that? Let me tell you something, you little wanna-be globetrotting 20 year olds –
your parents DON’T want you.
your parents aren’t there to subsidise your dreams;
your parents have dreams of their own. So stop bludging and be a man. You have friends. Your friends have couches. Work with that.
So Kathryn, you ask, I’m a parent who has, in a moment of stupidity, let my child move back home. What do I do?
Trust me; you have my full sympathy on this one. My son moved back home a while ago and he was out the door quick sticks. Yippee.
These are my advice points:
- You have NO obligation to support your adult child. EVER. Sure, if your child’s only other option is sleeping on the streets, you are going to feel like a pretty rotten parent if you don’t (unless it’s the third time this year ...and it’s because they lost all their money at the pokies). Otherwise just say NO. It won't kill them.
- Make sure you are letting them back home for the RIGHT reasons. If you've been feeling lost and lonely since they left home, get a hobby or make some friends. Pack your own bags and take off travelling. There’s nothing more pathetic than a parent who retards their child in order to feel useful and needed. DON’T BECOME LUCILLE BLUTH.
- If they are working, they pay their share. It’s simple common sense. Work out how much you could rent their room out to a complete stranger then charge them accordingly. If they want catering, charge them for it, if they want ironing done, charge them. If they want to watch TV, rent it to them. Valuable life lessons, people.
- Don’t get all caught up with crappy parental guilt or any of that other bollocks. They are old enough to use a washing machine (and shame on you if they don’t know how) so if they want to leave the house in filthy clothes, let them. If it really bugs you that the neighbours might see them, make them put a bag over their head when they leave home.
- They shouldn’t be “helping you out with the chores” if they are adults. Helping out suggests a token effort. They should be doing their fair share.
- If you let them shag, you’ll never get rid of them. EVER. And you’ll have to put up with their girlfriend scabbing off you as well. Luckily for me, this isn’t an issue on account of my son being a total nerd.
Having a child is a life long commitment, but it doesn't have to be a life long financial commitment. Set them free, like little birds flying on their own wings. Then get the hell out of their way and have your own fun.