Moving Back in with Your Parents
, by Maeve Reidy, 7 min reading time
, by Maeve Reidy, 7 min reading time
Sometimes moving back in with your parents feels like failure. But sometimes it just makes sense. There are a multitude of reasons for deciding to move back home, some good, some not so good. Here's some tips on how best to survive it ...
Sometimes moving back in with your parents feels like failure. But sometimes it just makes sense.
There are a multitude of reasons for deciding to move back home, some good, some not so good.
Here's some tips on how best to survive it ...
There are oodles of reasons for making the decision to move back home.
First and foremost it may be financial: perhaps your rent on your current place is putting you under severe financial pressure. Or perhaps you're trying to save a deposit for a mortgage.
Or perhaps you need emotional support: there is absolutely nothing wrong whatsoever to admit you are struggling with your mental health (it's actually a sign of real strength!) and just as you remember your mum patiently sitting beside you on your childhood bed while you hurled your guts into the bucket with whatever childhood gastro-ailment you had picked up, or your dad blearily heating lemonade at an ungodly hour to soothe your sore throat, you know instinctively that when you're "not well" the best place is to be with your parents.
Or perhaps it's them that is struggling: after all, they're not as young as they used to be. Perhaps you've come to the realisation that you need to live with them full time to care for them, whether that means doing the housework for them, or ensuring they're taking their medications correctly.
Most parents would do absolutely anything for their children. They are insanely proud of the strong independent caring person that you have grown in to. Maybe nothing much has changed since you moved out, and you still pop in at a moment's notice for a cuppa, or to cadge some dinner, or maybe you still bring your laundry home for your Mum to do?!
Whatever the reasons for moving back home, and no matter whether your parents are welcoming you with open arms, there are a few things you should consider before you completely regress to obnoxious teenager mode!
When you live independently, your life is your own. You can make plans to have drinks with your workmates after work on a whim, and stay out all night at a wild party if you feel the urge.
Discuss your reasons for wishing to move back home with your parents like the rational adult you have become. The last time you lived with them full time, you were a child, and they were the adults. This time around, you are also an adult. It may take a little while for your parents to realise that you're not their helpless scabby-kneed little boy or snotty-nosed little girl any more. If you're moving in to save money for a mortgage or rent deposit, still offer to pay rent to your parents. If your financial circumstances means you can't, offer to take care of some household chores (like bringing the bins out each week, or cutting the lawn, or some other chore they may find difficult at their time of life). Or perhaps you could take care of making dinner for everybody one day a week (buy the groceries for it, don't just raid the cupboards!)
may will be times you feel like you're being treated like a kid, when you move back in with your parents. But try to live by the mantra you heard in your youth - "This Is Not A Hotel!" It is common courtesy, plain and simple, to let them know where you are or when you'll be back. Your Mam is not going to be best pleased if she makes you dinner and you don't rock up til 11am the next day! This also doesn't mean you have to live the life of a monk when you're living with your parents - most parents will be happy to have some alone-time while you go out and enjoy yourself! Just be considerate and keep them in the loop when you're making plans, and if those plans change.
It's very easy to revert to childlike behaviour when you're back living with Mum and Dad. However, it's important to remember that you're returning to your childhood home as an adult capable of taking on adult responsibilities. Your Mam might have washed your clothes while you lazed on the sofa as a kid, but you shouldn't assume she wants to wade through your smelly smalls now. She definitely doesn't want to have more jobs to do because you're leaving wet towels on the bathroom floor or possessions around the place!
Offer to clean the house, cook family meals, and perform other household chores. Depending on your schedule, you might like to take on the lion's share as thanks for the roof over your head. Chat with your parents to ensure you're not taking over chores they actually enjoy, and consider creating a roster to ensure everything gets done.
Many household expenses increase as the family grows, so help out financially if your situation allows. You may like to pay a weekly amount of rent, buy groceries now and again, or come to some other arrangement that suits you all.
One of the things that creeps up on you as you become an adult, is that you accumulate "stuff"! And you love your stuff, and have loads of stuff. And each year your amount of stuff grows. Be aware that your parents most probably also have stuff. Therefore, the house might get a bit crowded with both their stuff and your stuff fighting for space!
Consider what you really need to move into your parents' home, and book a storage unit to house the rest. Good storage facilities keep your precious items in dust-free, pest-free environments, so that they're as good as you left them when you're ready to live independently again (and it might stop your poor Dad breaking his neck on your e-scooter dumped haphazardly in the hall during one of his nocturnal trips to the loo!)
Unless you're moving back home to care for ailing parents, living with Mum and Dad is temporary. Discuss what will need to happen for when you move out again, and ensure you're keeping up your end of the bargain.
If you're at home because it's easier to save for a house deposit, commit to setting aside a regular amount of your wages to help your savings grow. If unemployment has sent you back to Mum and Dad's, commit to applying for as many jobs as you can, networking, and even consider upskilling to land a new position. If you're simply looking for a new place to live, make sure you spend time inspecting properties and applying for them. If you're moving back in because of your own ill-health, commit to attending all your doctor's appointments, and collecting your medications (and taking them!) from the chemist, as well as whatever other treatments you need. If you are moving back in because of your Mam & Dad's failing health, ensure you make time for your own physical, mental and emotional wellbeing, whether it's a daily walk or once-a-week coffee/phonecall with a friend.
Whatever you need to do to return to independent living, make sure that you make a consistent effort to make it happen. Watching you sleep until noon, play video games, or spend days semi-comatose in front of the telly will quickly grate on even the most understanding of parents. Make sure that you're sticking to your plan to keep harmony in your Mum and Dad's home!
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