And just like that, I’ve been living with my parents for 4 months.
As we all know, it’s strange how time works. It seems like just last week I was gallivanting around Europe, thriving in the constant stimulation of a new environment. And now here I am, as a 22 year-old, writing a piece about how to survive living under the same roof as your parents after years of complete independence.
Am I embarrassed? Ashamed? No, not quite. Am I proud? No, not that, either.
Moving back in with your parents after college definitely has a slight stigma associated with it. You might be embarrassed that you haven’t figured out your next step as quickly as everyone else has. You probably have some anxiety thinking about how stifled you’re going to feel when your parents ask where you’re going on a Saturday night. But I’m here to tell you–it’s not that bad! Just breathe and remember that it’s a temporary solution, and one that will probably help you grow in ways you wouldn’t have imagined. Remember the following tidbits before the next time you freak out about calling Mom and Dad your roommates for the next chapter of your life.
1. Free rent! Free food!
This one is an obvious plus. Whether you have a full-time job and are just living with your parents while you seek out your next place, or you’re job-searching and working part-time, free accommodations couldn’t be a bigger blessing. Assuming you’re not blowing all your income going out or shopping, after a few months your savings account is going to look preeetty nice without the dreaded monthly blow of paying rent. (Even if your parents are charging you a little bit of rent, chances are you’re saving a lot by living with them!)
2. Dinner conversations are not as boring as they were in high school.
At times you might feel like you’ve reverted to your high school days when you come home to dinner being served, true. However, now dinner conversations aren’t going to be about whether or not you finished homework for Mr. White’s Geography class. Instead, you’ll engage in discussions about current business/political affairs or maybe they’ll even give you some of the previously censored details of their college days that they never would have shared with you before.
3. Your roommates actually want to hear about your day.
Regardless if your college roommates were complete randos or your best friends, it’s doubtful they actually wanted every last detail of how your presentation went that day. Your parents do. They want to hear what went well, what went poorly, and are probably going to match your spirit either way.
4. You’re not drinking wine out of a bag anymore
Assuming your parents are wine-drinkers, you’ll get to enjoy much finer wines with your dinner than you did in college. You’ll be amazed how quickly you’ll learn the difference between a Merlot and a Zinfandel when you’re not concerned with how many seconds you can guzzle down Sunset Blush Franzia.
5. If you didn’t learn to cook before/during college, here’s your 2nd chance!
In college, you can still get away with not knowing how to cook…there are dining halls and ramen sold in the convenience store on campus! It’s not so easy in the real world. Unless you want to bleed your wallet dry by eating every meal out, you need to learn to cook. Cue the parents. They’ll teach you what you forgot to learn before you went to college, and make sure when you move out you’ll be cooking more than just eggs and pasta.
6. You live with your cheerleaders.
Your parents want you to succeed. They want to see you soar and accomplish everything you ever dreamed of. They’re gonna be a hell of a lot more supportive about your job prospects than a random roommate you found on Craigslist is. Take advantage of this type of support while you can!
7. You also live with your coach.
While your parents are likely going to be awesome cheerleaders, they’re also going to tell it to you how it is. They’re going to make sure you don’t get stuck in this limbo state, and ultimately help you get it together. Not to mention, just like any coach, they have tons of experience and therefore, tons to teach you about life.
8. Remember…it’s not permanent!
The sooner you realize you’re not moving back in with your parents indefinitely, the sooner you’ll get over the little things that bug you about it. Appreciate all that your parents are providing for you during this transition period…because chances are it’s going to be the last time you’ll ever have it this easy.
All of this isn’t to say that living with your parents is going to be all rays of sunshine. You’re going to have your share of frustrations as well. I just hope that during those times of frustrations, you’re able to stay calm and remember the good stuff.
Shoutout to my parents for being awesome! Thank you for all the support. (But can’t wait to move out in a few months and feel like a real adult, haha)