Tuesday, 4 July 2017

What is the right age to leave home?

I left home at 17 and moved into a flat share with a friend, attending college and working part time in the local supermarket in the town where I grew up. Aged 18, I ventured further a field and took a job in care with accommodation.
My husband left home at18 to go to university, his parents moved to the other end of the country at the same time.
We prepared our children to leave home at 18 also. From the age of 16 we started discussing with them the what next? The two oldest boys were able to leave school aged 16 but they were told this was not an option and they knew they had to go into further education. Child 2 chose public service and joined the army just after his 18th birthday and ended up based in Germany, he left the army after 4 years and now lives back where he grew up, with his girlfriend and works locally.
Child 3 chose catering and went into the hotel trade, leaving home aged 18, moving to Reading, with accommodation, then a short spell in Cheltenham before settling in Leeds. Now aged 25 him and his girlfriend are moving out to Australia the end of the month.
Child 4 wanted to join the army from the age of 5, he completed his education in South Africa, leaving home at almost 20 now living in Northern Ireland.
Child 5 completes his education in the UK this week aged 18, he is moving 'home' temporarily with me into a one bed flat in South Wales. The plan is to find him an apprenticeship and accommodation, settle him in and I can return to Dubai.
But I'm not sure it's going to be as easy as this.
The older 3 boys had accommodation with their jobs as did I with mine and hubby had with uni. 
Many of our friends children  and our children's friends are still living at home, well into their mid 20s and in some cases are living there with their partners and even children. Most are working, but quite a few aren't and nearly all are showing no sign of moving out, wanting to move out or their parents wanting them to move out.
The teen doesn't have the option of living at home and getting a job near by and whilst I know family read this and may be upset by this next bit, they're not in a position to support him, they haven't done so to date so we can't assume they will now. He needs a room, a lift to work, a reminder to get up in the morning, lectured of eating well, gentle nagging to do some household chores, support to set up bank accounts, general parenting and guidance into adulthood. He's been in a bubble the past 4 years in boarding school, it's going to be a lot harder for him than it was for the other 3.
As his mum I need to be around, he needs to know I'm around, that I'm there so he can pop home on weekends, I can pop up in the week, help him out with his washing, just say hi and be there to offer guidance and support.
I don't think my husband has fully thought this out, I know I haven't. It's not just a case of finding him somewhere to live, paying a deposit, first months rent, some basic furniture and hoping on a plane and going back to Dubai.
I feel I need to stay in the UK on a regular basis for the first year and pop back to Dubai for visits rather than the other way round. The teen won't be living with me in the UK, it's only a one bed flat and not in an area where there are many opportunities for an apprenticeship, but I'd be in the UK, I'd be near by and I'd feel like I was able to parent when I was required instead of having to find someone else who could spare the time to drive over to find out what he needed, rather than instinctively knowing how to help and what to do.
How old were you when you left home?
Did you have parental support?
At what age did your child leave home? 


14 comments:

  1. As she's 13, we still have all that to come!

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  2. I think you're right and things are going to be tricky for a while. Going to uni offers a half-way stage of living away from home but without all the responsibility,and there's always mum and dad or uni support services to fall back on if things go wrong. Both my daughters left home that way. The elder came back briefly before getting a flat with her boyfriend. The younger is back now for a gap year but will (presumably) be off again in autumn. Me? I got married at 19, so obviously left home then.
    I hope you get things settled quickly but at the same time it's not good to rush such a big decision.
    #tweensteensbeyond

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    1. it would just be nice to be in the same country, i don't need to be on his doorstep, he just needs to know i'm near by should he need me

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  3. I left home at 18 and went off to University and at the same time my parents moved to Singapore so it was a big life change for me and my sister to suddenly be without parental support nearby, but my father had always travelled with his work and my mother decided to stay at home with us until such an age that we were old enough before she joined him so we were pleased for them. University was my home and during the holidays I stayed with friends or family if I wasn't visiting my parents or in my university accommodation. I grew up very quickly as a result of this and I think it served me well. My eldest is heading off to University this September. He wanted a year out and to work locally but I am keen for him to continue his education and get on with his life and to be honest it is time to cut the apron strings too! I think it sounds as if you are making the right decision in being around to support your son through the transition from boarding school, it will be a big change for him. Good luck with it all Suzanne. #TweensTeensBeyond

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    1. I think had the teen been at home till he was 18 I'd have been happy to do what your parents did, as we did with the others before him, but I really have no idea what skills he has and how he'd cope without the structure of school or us around him

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  4. You have your work cut out my dear. I also left home at 21 and my husband 18. I know that things are very different now but it got me on the property ladder at a young age and I am very glad that I did so. I imagine your house would have to be pretty huge to accommodate all of you at the same time anyway Suzanne. I love that are all using their wings #tweensteensbeyond

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    1. i jsut wish they wouldn't fly quite so far or that we were all on the same flight route

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  5. I left home in a small town at 18 to go to university and middled through on my own from the start: I was always determined to be independent. My children are all at home, 1 will probably never leave as she needs 24/7 care, one will need a lot of help to live independently, but I'm sure it's possible, and the eldest is just not in a position to move out yet - at the same age I was a home owner....

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    1. our eldest boy is 28 this year, at his age i had 5 kids to look after and my own home, our eldest child is almost 30 and is in care in the UK since the age of 12

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  6. Yes I can completely understand how you feel. Dubai is along way to travel back from if something goes wrong. I left home at 18 but it was into university halls of residence and then a flat share so it was quite protected and my parents were only 60 miles away. My eldest daughter has also left at 18 but is still in the same city as us. I hope you manage to work through this. Thank you for sharing with us at #TweendTeensBeyond

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  7. It's great that you want to do this for him. I left home and went back on more than one occasion. Where we live the price of living is quite high and I just couldn't afford to buy or rent anywhere on my own. I eventually moved out for good when I was 28 just after I got engaged to my now husband. My parents were fabulous on very occasion and still are - even now when I go away on holiday my Mum can't help herself and pops to my house to give it a clean for our return. Thanks so much for linking up to #TriumphantTales - hope to see you again on Tuesday!

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    1. i've got to make sure i get the balance right, let him spread his wings and not stifle him but be around to support him if he needs it

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  8. I left home at 21 to move in with my boyfriend then to become first husband. Then moved back home a few years later with a houseful of possessions and four cats! I think these days it's much harder to leave home without the accommodation that your others had. Thanks for sharing with #PoCoLo

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