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a home + living guide for the post-college, pre-parenthood, quasi-adult generation

01.19.2004

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under mom's roof moving back home after you're all grown up
by Jodie Deignan | 1 2

There are many reasons that one might live with their parents during their twenty-something years. It's a tough job market; many of us aren't paid what we're worth. It might be a choice of convenience, or fear of living alone, or because we simply want to. It might be for a combination of reasons. Whatever your personal motivation, I think it's good to know that we're not alone, and that it's not shameful or lazy or anything else you might see on Judge Judy. Choosing to move back home with the parents is something a lot of us do today, and we need to make the best of that situation.

I was always sure that I was going to move out of my parent's house. When I was a teenager, I constantly dreamed of the house that I was going to live in when I grew up. I didn't have a clear picture of what it looked like, but I knew it was far away from where my parents lived. I knew it would be decorated mostly in purple. And it would be all mine -- no one to share a bathroom with, no one to tell me to clean up my messes, no one to rag on what I watched on the television. But, then I got a little older, and a little skittish about moving away.

I went to college about 150 miles from where I grew up -- which ended up being a perfect distance in my mind. I could go home when I missed my mom's cooking or needed to do laundry; but I was far enough away that if I had a lot of "studying" to do, no one expected me to come home. I didn't have quite my own space, but at least I had a few like-minded roommates when it came to decorating. When I got to my senior year of college, I found myself at a crossroad: go away to grad school, or move back in with my parents? I was feeling way too stressed out to head right on to grad school, so I chose the latter. I ended up moving out for a while and living with roommates, and started filling out those grad school applications. But then my dad died.

He had been sick for a very long time -- close to 14 years -- but since he always seemed to beat the odds, my family started to sort of believe that he would never die. When it happened, it was actually something that brought my mom, my brother and myself closer together, and I ended up moving back in, choosing a grad school that was close enough for a long commute. Nearly 4 years later, I've finished grad school, and I'm still living at home.

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