When I was graduating from college, I didn’t have a job lined up—I knew that meant I’d be moving home to live with my parents until I found employment (or won the lottery) that would allow for me to rent my own apartment.
I lived at home for eight months until I accepted a job in customer service at a startup in New York. It was hard. I fought with my mom, felt like I would live at home forever, and struggled to find normalcy living with my parents after four years of living with my best friends in college.
Now, three years later, I’m getting ready to say goodbye to New York City, pack up my belongings, and move back in with my parents. Again.
This time, it’s because I’m attending grad school near my mother’s home.
Financially, it makes more sense for me to live at home as I start school because I won’t be working full time. When I moved home the first time, I did so with some trepidation. I knew I couldn’t afford to live on my own, but I wasn’t sure how long it was going to take me to find a job. It was a strange in-between stage that was uncomfortable for everyone involved.
I had heard that it took some of my friends who graduated a year or two before me months to find a job, and even longer to be able to afford to move out on their own.
I felt like I was taking a step back by moving home again and I was going to be missing out and falling behind my friends who were graduating with jobs, apartments, and plans outlined ahead of them.
I know I’m very lucky, both then and now, to be able to have the option to move back in with my parents. I’m also very thankful that my parents would agree to let me move back in with them, again. I’m sure living with me at age 12 was no picnic, nor was it fun while I panicked about my life after graduation and agonized over finding my first grown-up job.
I can assure you (Mom and everyone else reading this) that I’ve grown quite a bit in the last 10+ years and I am a much more fun roommate now!
All joking aside, I am looking forward to this new chapter of my life.
I’m more than excited to start graduate school because it means I will be pursuing a passion of mine that will hopefully lead to a lifelong career. I’m also looking forward to spending some time with my parents, whom I’ve grown to appreciate even more in the last year or so as they’ve supported and encouraged my grad school ambitions.
My friends and I have often talked about how we’re embarrassed to be still living with our parents after we’ve graduated college, and even a few years after, as if living alone is a mark of success.While it is important to be financially stable and be able to support yourself, making smart financial choices is a bigger mark of growth and success.
I want to remind myself, and others, that this moment is passing and for better or worse, it will not last forever.
So, I look forward to a few more nights watching old movies with my mom, to having a well stocked fridge (shopping for one is hard!) and to having a safety net as I save now for my nearing future.
Have you moved back in with your parents at any point in your life?