Little did I realize when I was old enough to make the statement, “Kids today…” what I was actually referring to was adult kids today. In today’s generation, young adults live at home for a much extended period than ever before. Don’t get me wrong, there are some advantages to staying at home that include saving money, seeing your family on a daily basis, and security. When one comes from a financially secure family, there is no need to worry about if there is going to be food on the table or if the mortgage/rent along with other living expenses are going to be paid on time. All sounds well and good but allowing adult children to stay home without much of a deadline or expiration date aka expectation for them to leave, this is actually hindering them from becoming an independent adult and allowing them to create their own security for themselves. As parents, one of the greatest gifts that can be provided for their children is to teach them how to stand on their own two feet as opposed to giving everything or doing everything for them which puts them in the adult children category. So how exactly can you encourage young adults to want to grow up and move out already?
Plant the Seed When They Are Young – It is extremely important to start with a strong foundation from the very start of their childhood. In order to do this, you need to set high expectations for your children, especially as they become young adults. If they understand what their expectations are along with ways in which they can meet their expectations, chances are they will automatically rise to the occasion without much of a push needed.
Teach Them Life Skills – This is absolutely crucial in their own personal self development that will carry them throughout life. If you take the time to teach basic life skills like how to manage money effectively, do basic things autonomously, and to be independent, then once they are old enough to live on their own, they will have all the tools in the tool belt (in this case, life skills) to make it happen and quite successfully too might I add.
Stop Doing Everything for Them – Parents tend to want to do everything for their children. If you continue to do things such as their laundry, cooking all their meals, and much more, then why would there ever be an incentive to leave this scenario? By continuing to do everything, this also could potentially promote laziness, which is never an attractive quality.
Give Extra Responsibilities – If they are not motivated to move out on their own, then there should be extra responsibilities around the house or to benefit the family more. This can be a combination of having them contribute financially in some way along with added chores such as having them do the grocery shopping, clean the bathrooms, cook meals for the family, etc. At least this way, they are contributing in some way, learning how to become more responsible, and hopefully by assigning too much to them, this will serve as a huge incentive for them to start the process of looking for places to live.
Guide Them Every Step of the Way – Over time, it can be a very touchy subject to bring up the idea of moving out and often become the elephant in the room. Rather than shaming them or placing an ultimatum, it is wise to guide them in the direction of moving out. This can be done by assisting them in looking for listings for a place to rent/buy, find ways to help them save money, offer to help in any way once they begin the moving process, and much more. It can be a scary transition for certain people to move out for the first time so any way you can ease them will be much appreciated.
Although it might be too late to take back their childhood in terms of how you raised your kids, that does not mean it is ever too late to make some changes for their future. It might be much more difficult but it can definitely be done if you take the time to focus on promoting them to grow up and be independent adults. It might take many baby steps to get to the end goal of having an adult child move out but ultimately it will lead to the greater good along with elevating their self confidence and self worth.