I am going to speak about my personal experiences of growing into "adulthood" the process, and then how I have been treated along the way. I would love to know your experience and if this is something you can relate to. I graduated from high school at 18. I went to college for a year, and realised I didn't want to go that route, so started working a full time job. I moved out of the house at 19 and got an apartment with my boyfriend at the time. As this was my first experience out "on my own" I did have help from my parents with things like the deposit of our apartment, or gas and groceries here and there. Since I was so young, with no college degree, it was very hard to find a job that paid well enough to cover living expenses, and then anything else outside of that. This part of my life was very crucial l to learning how to plan, and budget. I practiced this for several years. Trial and error. So thankful for mine or my boyfriend's parents help when/if needed. I really wanted to prove that we could do it alone, and we didn't ask for help often.
After he and I split up after some years, I moved to Tyler, Tx. I lived with my mom for several months to save up to get my own place. I met and dated someone for a bit, and we then moved into an apartment together. Very much so the same type of situation as before. Still no college degree, but really just getting jobs based off of skill and prior experience. I did get paid more, but the cost of living was also more. There were times that we had help from our parents, and times we even had to get help from the local food bank. I remember for a while we had $18 to spend on groceries or gas after we paid our rent and bills. I knew that this was not the way to live, and that there had to be a better way. I tried to pay things a certain way, but my boyfriend at the time and myself did not agree on paying bills the same way. After several years of struggling and an unhealthy relationship, I moved out on my own. With the help of my parents, I got a garage apartment and started to pay bills the way I wanted to. It worked very well, and I felt so relieved that I had found a system that worked. I knew that financial security and freedom was something I always wanted to prioritize. I eventually purchased a home with my now fiance, and we pay our bills this way and it still works well.
Okay, so, why did I just go through my entire 20s, you ask? Because I believe that financials have a huge deal to do with how we get treated as adults. How we manage our lives, others, and our finances.
Even though I have learned quite a bit about how to manage finances, and bills, etc... I still have a hard time receiving the respect and understanding from my parents that may be due to me. Holidays are hard because they are so used to me coming to them during these times, and them hosting. When I say I am going to host a holiday at my house, it's as if they feel like I am not capable of hosting it. If it comes to how I choose to spend my free time, my parents feel that maybe I should be spending it differently.
I think what it comes down to is accepting that our parents will never truly let go of the idea that we are their children, no matter how old we get and how well we manage. They spend so much of their life making sure we are okay, taken care of, have the things we need and want, that when we finally figure out how to "adult" they don't know how to respond, or they yearn for the feeling of being needed.
If you are like me and spend time after time, effort after effort, of proving, explaining, and showing your parents that you are an adult, just stop. Let them tell you to drive safe. Let them be concerned about the holidays. Let them help with some smaller things. Let them ask the questions. When it comes to respect, it is okay to simply remind them that as an adult you have boundaries.
As frustrating as it may be at times, one day we will ache for our parents to still be around to give us advice, share about their view of politics, tell us what they think we should be doing with our free time or money. I know this is hard because at one point we place so much value on what our parents say and do, but as we continue to develop and grow into an adult, we really do learn what works best for us and have to trust this process of life.
I hope that this blog has given you some peace that you are not alone as our parents try to continue to parent us as adults, and some potential ways to navigate these types of situations. I hope that next time you feel frustration start to surface, that you choose love over pride. I hope that you are proud of yourself for the growth and what you have learned, whether you are 23 or 32.
Again, I'd love to hear your experience with this and how you handled it.
Until next time, my friends,