top of page

Parenting Young Adult Children that Move Back Home After College


Is your grown child back in your empty nest? Do you find yourself torn between the joy of having them at home and the desire for them to spread their wings and start their adult life? Parenting young adults can be both challenging and rewarding. As children grow older, they naturally seek more independence, which can bring pride and happiness but also moments of struggle and frustration.


Continuing the support of a grown child that is not fully employed can be overwhelming. Statistics show that there are many jobs available. We also see that those that have graduated from college within the past 5 years have difficulty finding a career in their degreed field of study, particularly against the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic's impact on higher education and the job market. Over-education (or vertical mismatch) appears when graduates work in non-graduate jobs. A horizontal mismatch (or field-of-study mismatch) occurs when graduates, trained in a particular field, work in another field at their formal qualification level. You can find more information on this issue of mismatch at Home | Journal for Labour Market Research or Home | U.S. Department of Labor (dol.gov). This is my child’s situation, over-educated, under-employed, with vertical mismatch. I mention this to show that my son has been caught up in the statistical swirl of the pandemic – he spent his junior year at home doing virtual studies for the entire year. If you are in a similarly situated circumstance, then you understand. Here are some tips to help. One of the most important things to remember when parenting older children is to offer them guidance and support while also giving them the freedom to make their own decisions. It is important to listen to your adult children and to respect their opinions, even if you do not always agree with them.


Encouraging them to explore their interests and passions helps them to develop the skills they need to succeed in life. As a parent, it is also important to provide your adult children with a strong moral foundation. Our priorities and base or foundation we rely on changes as we become adults. Teaching them about the values and principles that are important to you as an adult, and by setting a good example through your own “grown folk” actions.


Parenting young adults living at home can be a complicated endeavor. Here are some tips to help you manage the situation:


Communicate openly and honestly: Encourage your children to talk to you about their feelings and concerns. Listen to them without judgment and offer your support and guidance.

Be patient and understanding: Remember that your children are going through a lot of changes and transitions, and that they may need your support and understanding more than ever. Be patient with them and offer your love and encouragement.

Encourage independence: Allow your children to make their own decisions and to take responsibility for their own lives. This will help them to develop confidence and self-esteem and will also prepare them for the challenges of adulthood.

Set clear boundaries: Establish clear rules and expectations for your children and enforce them consistently. This will help your children to feel safe and secure and will also help to prevent conflicts and misunderstandings.

 

One of the major issues with grown children living at home is not finding work or being under-employed for one reason or another. In either situation they are not able to sustain themselves on their own with the basics – food, shelter, clothing. Finding a job can be a daunting task for young adults. Here are some tips to help your older children find a job:


Encourage networking: Encourage your children to network with friends, family, and acquaintances. They can also attend job fairs and other events to meet potential employers.

Help with the job search: Help your children with their job search by reviewing their resume, cover letter, and job applications. You can also help them to identify job opportunities or to pursue further education that match their skills and interests.

Equip your children with essential job search skills: Show them how to effectively search for jobs online, prepare for interviews, and follow up afterwards. Help them grasp the competitive nature of job hunting. Reinforce that rejection is a normal part of growth and encourage them to use feedback from unsuccessful applications or interviews to enhance their next opportunities.

Consider internships and volunteer work: Encourage your children to consider internships and volunteer work as a way to gain experience and build their resume. The point is that you must cast a wider net to get better opportunities.

Provide support and encouragement: Finding a job can be a frustrating and discouraging experience. Perseverance is key. Absorbing the “no” or “rejection” can take its toll. Find ways to keep them in the job race. It is important to provide your children with emotional support and encouragement throughout the job search process.


Remember that finding a job takes time and effort. By providing your children with guidance, support, and encouragement, you can help them to find a job that is right for them.

 


Incorporating biblical perspectives into guiding young adults fosters spiritual maturity, resilience, and purpose. These perspectives offer invaluable guidance and inspiration for parenting young adults. Personally, I consider this to be the most important and effective advice, relying on the promises of the Lord. By grounding themselves in God's Word, seeking divine wisdom through prayer, relying on Christ's strength, prioritizing God's kingdom, remaining steadfast in service, and cultivating the fruits of the Spirit, young adults are empowered to navigate life's challenges with faith, integrity, and impactful purpose." A few examples:


Proverbs 3:5-6 (my personal favorite!) – Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

Encourages reliance on God's wisdom and guidance rather than solely depending on human understanding.


Ephesians 6:1-3 - Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother—which is the first commandment with a promise—so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.

Emphasizes the importance of honoring and respecting parental authority, which contributes to a blessed life.


1 Timothy 4:12 - Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.

Encourages young adults to live as positive role models, demonstrating integrity and faithfulness in their actions.


James 1:5 - If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

Encourages seeking divine wisdom through prayer, acknowledging God as the ultimate source of guidance and understanding.


Proverbs 22:6 - Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.

Highlights the significance of parental guidance and upbringing in shaping a child's character and values.


Philippians 4:13 - I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

Inspires young adults to rely on God's strength and empowerment to overcome obstacles and achieve their God-given potential.


Matthew 6:33 - But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

Emphasizes prioritizing God's kingdom and righteousness above worldly pursuits, trusting that God will provide for their needs.


1 Corinthians 15:58 - Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

Encourages perseverance and steadfastness in serving God faithfully, reassuring young adults that their efforts for God's kingdom are meaningful and significant.

 

Navigating financial responsibilities can be challenging when supporting a young adult living at home. Parents may find themselves conflicted between offering financial support and fostering their child's independence. Below are tips for maintaining balance and sanity while managing your household with a young adult:


  • Set a timeline: Establish a timeline for when your children should move out of the house. This can prevent them from becoming overly comfortable at home and motivate them to pursue independence. Engage in open conversations about financial contributions and responsibilities. Set clear boundaries and specify the extent of support you are willing to provide.

  • Encourage financial literacy: Educate your young adult on the principles of budgeting, saving, and spending responsibly. Encourage them to take control of their financial situation.

  • Consider charging rent: Charging your children rent can be a valuable lesson in financial responsibility and a way for them to contribute to household expenses. Establishing mutual agreements on contributions, such as rent, utilities, or chores, promotes accountability and partnership within the household.

  • Encourage them to save: Encourage your children to save money and to plan for their future. Help them to set financial goals and to develop a budget.

  • Maintain Open Communication: Maintain open lines of communication to tackle any challenges or issues. Foster a candid conversation about financial objectives and necessities.

  • Prioritize Self-Care: Navigating the complexities of household dynamics can be a source of stress. It's important to dedicate time to self-care and relaxation to preserve your well-being.


Encouraging financial independence and setting healthy boundaries can aid in your young adult's development while also safeguarding your personal well-being.


Living with adult children can be a rewarding experience. Providing them with guidance, support, and a solid moral foundation can assist them in overcoming the challenges of adulthood, allowing them to become self-assured, competent, and empathetic individuals. Wishing you good luck and God's blessings on this journey!


Dr. Quita

The Quitassential Life 🌹 QLife Bible Group

Founder & CEO of Faith Not Sight: A Spiritual Journey

Click here to purchase your Bible Journal to bring you closer to God.


Resources used and more for reference:

Living with Adult Children - Manage Adult Kids - Empowering Parents. https://www.empoweringparents.com/article-categories/ages-and-stages/adult-children/.

Adult Children | The Guide to Parenting Adult Children - The Hartford. https://extramile.thehartford.com/family/parenting/parenting-adult-children/.

How to Manage When Your Adult Children Are Living at Home - Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-manage-when-your-adult-children-are-living-at-home.

The Good, The Bad and the Ugly of Moving Back Home After College. https://www.accreditedschoolsonline.org/resources/how-to-survive-moving-back-home-after-college/.

Is Your Child Moving Back Home After College ... - City National Bank. https://www.cnb.com/personal-banking/insights/moving-back-home-after-college.html.


Comments


bottom of page