Wednesday, December 1, 2010

All The Bits Still Work

When I was a teenager there were two things that were really important to me - Getting my license, which I did at 18; and moving out of home – also done at 18.  Both of those achievements gave me some measure of independence.
I am a mother and have pushed independence on to my children; hoping they would at least acquire enough autonomy to be able to exist on their own.  Mostly it has worked – except for maybe my youngest, he is 19 and still living with dad (can’t cook either which is why he got a swag of cookbooks for his birthday from moi!)
My daughter has only just moved back to Melbourne and is staying with me until she finds a place.  My older son has just moved to Cairns – children are so much more loveable when they live in another state…
So why is it that a hell of a lot of kids in their 20s, still live at home?  I see it all the time; adult children – all living at home.  WTF?  Where did the independence go?
I suspect one of the biggest deciding factors of it is cost; after all, I know my daughter and her friend will struggle financially when the move happens – but they see the struggle as worth it.
Still, there are a million variables that kids just don’t seem to get.  For example, living at home is so much easier if parents are still married and relatively happy.  There has been no asset split, generally speaking, they can probably afford it.
It’s a little more difficult when the parent is single.
But it’s not just the financials.  I remember saying to my daughter once, “hustle and find a place of your own!  You are cramping my style!” – To which she walked to the front door, pulled it wide open and said “I’m not exactly seeing a queue!”  Sadly, all I could do was laugh; she was right.  She did inherit my sarcasm after all.
I’m sure kids don’t actually want to even think about their parents have sex, but news flash – all the bits, actually still work. 
When I started going out with the squeeze, he had two adult children living at home.  They are about as messy as any kids could get.  We are talking leave it where you like, drop it where it falls, messy.  Three men living in a house; makes me shudder even thinking about it.  Hell for the first month I couldn’t use the bathroom without having my eyes water.
Because the squeeze is not a clean freak like me, he wouldn’t walk around saying ‘put that away!” or “wash your dishes!” – He would just let it go.  By the time I was staying there most weekends, the monster he had created had turned into Gigantor and the first order of the evening when I arrived on a Friday, was to pour a glass of red.
As you can imagine, discussion on the squeeze and I moving in together has been a lengthy and rather protracted exercise encompassing odd references to the fact and then warnings to find a place to live because this is happening; homelessness is imminent!
One moved out a few months ago, albeit, not successfully from what I gather, however he has been persevering.  The other is off to Vietnam this month on holiday; then there is Christmas, then the squeeze and I are off to the beach for three weeks – so the move is still a way off; but I’m not seeing any planning happening.
Then; yesterday, I get it.  An email from the squeeze…
“Boy 1 dropped around last night and in the midst of a conversation re the landlord painting to possibly sell the house, I mentioned that i wasn’t worried because I was moving in with you.  He took that as a good thing because it meant he could move in too…”
Lucky it was on email, because my face must have been a picture.

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Thanks. Better check it out but it should be up today!