Coping with our Parents – But We Are Adults Too!
So! We haven’t had the chance to fully move out, some of us know how that feels or some other have decided to move back home with mom or dad or both. Life throws us various challenges and this is just one of those things where we have to take what it has served us.
Yup! We’re at home… All grown up and having our parent(s) to deal with on a daily basis. Yea!!! The reality check…
It is true that parents are considered as the biggest and an important part of our life. Life is incomplete without them and they are some of the most precious gems of our lives. Yes we know and are minded that they are the one who supports us right from the beginning of the life. When we were barely able to walk and needed a hand to cross the street as well as our first day of school and into college. Alright we know… we know… we know…
However as we come into our own adult space, life changes somewhat. Our day to day living routine gets all crazy, and it is not black and white but lots of grays and colors now… Lots of pressure and the burden of “adulting” arises. Coming to mind are things like getting a reputed job, earning money, participating in household expenses, etc. Our parents forget that we’ve all grown up and no longer the five year old.
True we are all in the same living space but, the dynamics are all different.
How do we manage?
It is to some extent dependent on us, and how we tackle the family situations in as positive a manner as we can as an adult child. First remember that your parents love you more than anyone else. Like we said before, they held our hands and watch us as we learned to walk and talk and grow and so on. Therefore our duty as adult children in the same living space is the need to respect that our parents at times will still see us as that five year old.
Yes we know this is a challenge…and what you can do to cope is to engage or enlist a good friend or close relative to become your champion. What will they do? They’ll become the referee at times…and act to gently remind our parents that we are now adults. this does not mean that we won’t be respectful but they can help ease the relationship challenge. Ideally even though our parents may not say it, it is still wise to contribute in some form or fashion to help in maintaining the home whether financially or otherwise.
The path is a two-way path… Your parent provide a living space, you help manage and support that same space all the while you are there.
Conversely, some experts quote that “…every parent’s aim should be to get their child out and on their own. You [parent] should treat them in some respects the same way you would treat a lodger, and say if they [child] don’t meet the rules, they’ll have to find another place to live.” As an adult “lodger” this is one thing to keep at the front of the mind, that at times the dynamics of parent-child will change and swing towards parent-lodger and vise versa.
Show some independence as well…and push back on the relationship. Some adult children living at home, may want to poach and enjoy free living, however this should not be so. Parents will remind you that they have sacrificed some of their dreams and wishes for you, do not let this become a guilt trip.
Here you’ll have to exercise your own self and show a gentle giant step-up to the plate. Show independence and manage your own affairs, grab some space for yourself.
One thing that needs to be followed is that you must try to listen to their words. Even though you are an adult it doesn’t mean that you have grown older in front of them. Respond to them with a positive attitude and try to perform the activities that they expect from you, as best as you could. Respect their choices and wishes, and also remind them that you should also be respected. Encourage them to see that you have done something for them as an adult, and that you are also adding further value to their lives.
Again on the other side…. There will be times that you can see your parent will just not listen to you. You know what? Give them space to fail. Just simply – Let Them Fail… within reason of course, and as long as they are not endangering their lives or any one else’s life. This opens them up to be vulnerable and here’s your chance to show up right on time. DO NOT GLOAT…
You want to protect your parents as they protected you as a child. However, try to remember, that as a child, often times you needed and wanted your own space to try things yourself. The same goes for your parents. Give them the space to figure out their own needs as well.
As much as you’ve moved back in, remember they are trying to manage as well… Be patient but remember – gentle force and when needed get yourself that referee…[when needed]