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Adult Children

Last post Thu, Jan 27 2011 8:21 PM by MarthaMFI. 18 replies.
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  • Tue, Jun 12 2007 1:13 PM

    • Pat
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Tue, Mar 6 2007
    • Colorado
    • Posts 14,463

    Adult Children

     Adults Living With Parents is an interesting, well written answer to a woman who is supporting, not only her two 21-year old daughters, but the boyfriend and child of one of them, as well as a younger daughter. One of the older daughters is going to college... and the woman is "bitter" because they don't give her money.

    While I liked the answer given, I'm wondering how I would handle a situation like that. My youngest daughter lived at home until she was 23, but she worked from the time she was 15 and has always paid her own way, so I've never really faced that.

    Do any of you have adult children at home? How do you handle the money situation? Do they pay rent? Buy their own groceries? I'm curious how it works for you.


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  • Tue, Jun 12 2007 7:10 PM In reply to

    • Alison
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Sat, Mar 31 2007
    • Pittsburgh, PA
    • Posts 131

    Re: Adult Children

    I don't actually have any children, but my sister lives with my husband and me.  I am 33 and she is 27.  All three of us go to school full time.  My husband works two part time jobs, my sister works one full time and one part time job and I have just cut back to one part time job.  We all agreed that my sister will live with us until the end of the year.  She graduates in October, so we thought this would give her three months to be able to work extra hours after school is finished to save up more money for her move.  For the first year, she lived here with me when my husband deployed to Iraq, and she will have lived with us for another 18 months after he came home.  Her responsibilities are to clean the bathrooms, to keep her room clean, to do her own laundry, to help with the dog and cat (feed, walk, kitty litter, etc.) and to wash the dishes after dinner (we have a dishwasher, so this is pots and pans, serving bowls, etc.)  She is also in charge of buying all cards and mailing them out for everyone's birthdays/anniversaries/Mother's and Father's Day, etc.  (It's a little thing, but it's time consuming and she is happy to do it.)  I buy all the food and do the cooking.  She is welcome to take food for lunch and/or dinner if she will be out of the house, but she buys her own toiletries.  She also pays us $200 per month. 

    I wanted to share my rationale behind this plan with all of you because I think you will understand where I'm coming from.  Everyone in my family was very upset with me when they learned that I was "charging" my sister to live with me.  I don't need the money, although it does help offset the costs of her living here since I buy the food.  I did it to help teach my sister how to budget her money using a monthly budget system that I helped her set up and also to teach her some responsibility.  Food, lights, water, phone - these things cost money.  If you are paying for something, even at a reduced rate, you still feel some ownership over those things, so she is more apt to turn the lights off when leaving the room, for example. 

    I can honestly say that I have seen a change in her since she moved here.  She paid off the smaller of her two student loans, saved up enough money to move and start her small business when she graduates and has a nice emergency fund.  She doesn't have any credit cards. I am teaching her how to cook from scratch and how to go grocery shopping on a budget.  I taught her how to sew a button on a shirt so she could wear it again instead of throwing it away.  I am trying to teach her about the importance of making choices with money.  Sometimes it's ok to spend some money, but you need to plan for it and not do it if you don't have the money to pay for it.  Even though we grew up in the same house, we have very different approaches to money.  I am so grateful that one good thing came out of this war for our family - I was able to spend this time giving my sister the tools she needs to be successful in the future.  I know she's going to be ok.  It took a little bit of tough love and we definately had some arguments along the way, but it was worth it.

    I'd love to hear other stories about this!

    Alison in Pittsburgh

    PS - Hubby is also enjoying having her around, but I think he will be happy to have the house to ourselves again :)

  • Tue, Jun 12 2007 9:28 PM In reply to

    • Gigi
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Posts 1,065

    Re: Adult Children



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  • Tue, Jun 12 2007 10:49 PM In reply to

    • Becky
    • Top 100 Contributor
    • Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007
    • Posts 574

    Re: Adult Children

    I lived at home until I was 25, and I did not pay rent. We lived on a small farm and I worked a full time job and helped around the place. My job started at 6:30am, and I would get up at 4am to help with morning chores of stock feeding, etc. I also helped with household chores, paid my own vehicle insurance, purchased food and provided my own personal care and clothing items. My parents would also travel at times and I would take care of things when they were gone. 

     I really do not have a problem with adult children living at home provided they are not "sponging" off their parents and are not living free. There also needs to be a goal they are trying to reach. There needs to be some sort of agreement and they need to be responsible for certain things. My son knows he can live at home as long as he is in school, but he will have to hold a part time job that covers his expenses of clothes, insurance etc. He will also have to do his own laundry and keep his room and bath clean. We will not charge him for food as long as he eats what is on the menu. If he wants specialty items he has to provide those.  

  • Tue, Jun 12 2007 10:59 PM In reply to

    • kabin
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on Thu, Mar 29 2007
    • Indiana
    • Posts 1,618

    Re: Adult Children

    We tried it with Dh's two older daughters and it didn't work out very well. So, I said no more because they would not contribute to anything, especially house work, while here and they both had children. Neither of them has lived with us for some time, but I wouldn't do it again. Now, if our DD wants to live here after she gets out of school then there will be some rules she will have to adhere to, but she has a few years to go yet.

  • Wed, Jun 13 2007 8:38 AM In reply to

    Re: Adult Children

     My husband lived at home til we married when he was 24.  His brothers lived at home on and off, also until they married.  His parents owned a restaurant and were seldom home, so it was like they all cohabitated. The parents kept and open door policy.  None of the kids paid rent, but my husband paid for some home improvements and they all pitched in around the house, but did not have regular  household duties. This worked out fine for their family.  I do agree though that charging rent isn't a bad idea.  I will keep it in mind if our youngest stays around home :)  It is a good way to prepare them for life, and imho that is what our job is as parents. 

  • Wed, Jun 13 2007 10:30 AM In reply to

    Re: Adult Children

    We have not had to deal with this issue as of yet.  My dd is nearly 16 and won't finish school until she is 19.  I've told her that she should get a part time job and she refuses.  I want her to do this, not just to have her own money and learn to manage it; but because  I believe that it would be good to help her build self-esteem and confidence. 

    Her pat phrase is:  "If I need money, Dad will give it to me...."  I see big issues coming soon.   Dh (her step-father) will not tolerate this attitude when she reaches her "majority".    Ground rules will change when she becomes an adult.  Even though she will be in her last year of school, she will have to have a job and contribute to the family (small amount AND help with the house) or she will have to move in with her father.  At this time, it's pulling teeth to actually get her to do her assigned chores. 

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  • Sun, Jan 23 2011 6:04 PM In reply to

    • cjennmom
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on Mon, May 19 2008
    • Posts 2

    Re: Adult Children

    I read the article in the 1/23/11 ezine. I have real problems with this because we've been in a nasty recession for the past couple of years and the way the article is worded it sounds as though they expect the only adult kids to move back with the parents are the screwballs. IMO, as long as the 'kids' are decent people and not sponges, welcome them with open arms!
  • Sun, Jan 23 2011 6:16 PM In reply to

    • Becky
    • Top 100 Contributor
    • Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007
    • Posts 574

    Re: Adult Children

    And he blew the arrangement because he could not live up to the agreement. Now he is out, and paying rent and working one job and looking for a second because he did not want to commit to college...he is learning a hard lesson and hopefully he will get the message before he is too old.  He was asked to leave...we did not want to do it but it was necessary.

  • Sun, Jan 23 2011 9:00 PM In reply to

    • MarthaMFI
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Apr 16 2008
    • New Westminster, BC, Canada
    • Posts 10,850

    Re: Adult Children

    that is an older story so I think it is before the recession but still doesn't matter the reason everyone can contribute to the household.  our kids are too young for this arrangement yet but momma is not putting up with no fools or attitude lol

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