Guess what? I still live with my parents. Oh my god! NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! Why me?! What have I done?!
You want to know the answer? I’m broke and everything is too expensive. Have you seen rent prices? And that is in the less safe neighborhoods. How are any of us surviving in this economy?!
Maybe I’m not just some lazy ‘millennial’ who stays in my parents house. Maybe I don’t actually want to keep living with them. Maybe I don’t have any other choice except fall into deep debt trying to be ‘independent’.
Trust me, I know the stigma about people like me. I know the whispers and the jokes, like I’m somehow an idiot and lazy. Or the equally insulting implication that my parents somehow sucked at raising me. Just so you know I hear you and I think you’re a total jack ass.
That being said I am actually really thankful I have the option of living with my mom and dad. I can try to figure out my employment future and make life decisions before I’m stuck with a million bills and all that stress. It’s not like I need more stress right now, I’m barely staying afloat as it. I know not everyone has that option to live with family for a variety of reasons. For you guys, I am sorry.
For me the frustration isn’t, so much, living with my parents at my age (believe me there are days where that is definitely the cause). The problem is with what I see around me. Both the people, like the ones mentioned above, who make fun of me; and all these people, my age, on their own and living their lives. It makes me feel like somehow I’m behind everyone else. I’m lagging. I’m a loser. That I need to hurry the hell up and make some life choices and get my life moving or I’m somehow a failure.
My entire high school graduating class seems to be out on their own. They have graduated (or very close), some have advanced degrees. They all seem to be living on their own and working a job that gives them purpose. Many of them are married or have children or both. Even more are engaged or in a committed long-term relationship. And then there’s me…….I feel ashamed of myself. I should be better. I was going to be better.
But I have no choice other than to live with my parents right now. To survive my own humiliation I take steps to make me feel as independent as possible. Maybe some of you do something similar.
I try to treat my situation like I’m living with roommates. I can’t keep living like I’m their child. Sometimes I fall into that mindset (because it’s so ingrained), but I make attempts to be as independent in myself as possible.
Keep my own schedule. Since I don’t work a normal job I’m home a lot. Way more than probably what is considered healthy. When I write I work several hours a day just writing. Keeping my writing schedule helps me feel like I have my own life.
Demand respect. My parents and I both demand it from each other. Not in an unpleasant way. They know I’m an adult and I’m stuck and I know they are still my parents and they probably wish I’d just go away.
All that said none of this is an easy mind space. Even with the shame I do try to make the best of it. I’m able to save any money I make instead of spending it on rent or food. I actually enjoy my mom and dad’s presence in my life (most of the time). We’ve always been pretty close; so right now I’m trying to savor the times we have together, because even I know that it will end someday. I will move out and have the life that I’ve dreamed about and they will still be at home only without me. So until I can make my dreams come true I will attempt to smile and find the positive in this. I will no longer allow people to shame me for the way I’m living…well, I’ll certainly try.