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As autumn draws near, my phone rings with anxious parents concerned that their adult kids seem nowhere near ready to make it on their own. Sometimes they have reason to worry - their kids are afflicted with the ADD of adult children - addiction, dependence and/or depression. More often, they‘re just stuck in that netherword between delayed adolescence and the kind of adulthood that involves setting goals, establishing careers, making commitments to others and shouldering the responsibility for their own lives. And now that they‘re finished with college and supposed to be grown up, they don’t appear to be in any hurry.
Is this a real problem, a cultural trend, or a reflection of the kind of parents we were?
Yes, yes and yes. The fact is that our kids feel entitled to what we’ve raised them to expect - the kind of life most of us worked for years to achieve. But they want it now, and many aren’t budging from their childhood bedrooms or wherever we‘re helping them pay the rent until they get it. I
If this is the scenario in your home, consider whether you‘re enabling them to continue living in this dream world by making nit easier for them to do so. Living at home with no plans to leave? Maybe it’s time to set an estimated date of departure and make them stick to it. Don ’t want them out on the street? That’ not likely to happen...most of them will figure out a way to share the rent with some friends and say yes to the entry level jobs it’s killing you to watch them turn down. Full of dreams that seem to have no chance of succeeding? Support the ones that look possible in any way you can, but don’t rain on their parade -= they’ll find other dreams to dream, or make the kind of all-out effort required to get at least a foothold in the world they‘re trying to join. Looking to you to solve their problems? Remind them that they‘re their problems, not yours, and suggest they get on with the business of doing that.
The fact is, it’s a tougher world out there for the millennials than it was for us.  But aside from a little tea and sympathy, there’s not much you can do except stop the behavior that enables them, support the kind that indicates they‘re getting on with the business of growing up, and reinvest in the relationships, careers,friends and activities that give meaning to your life.




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