Boomerang Kids: Moving Back Home After College Graduation
My nephew graduated from college recently. Many family members on both sides of the family traveled 500 miles or more for the occasion. After all, we have a lot to celebrate — he graduated summa cum laude! He finished school in four years while playing on the baseball team and serving as Senior Class President! He will soon begin his marketing career with a well-paying job!
He has moved back home to live with his parents and younger sister.
Cue the dramatic music, because, regardless of the planning that went into his return, there are bound to be “situations”.
While returning home just for the summer before graduation is commonplace, moving back home after graduation was an anomaly until recent years. With the downturn of the economy, finding a job after graduation became more difficult and moving back home was more likely than not.
Whether your young adult will go back to school in the fall or has graduated, returning home after several months of relative freedom can be challenging for all family members.
Relationship experts agree: communication is key. It is a good idea to negotiate reasonable ground rules from the very beginning. Re-establish house rules regarding family meals, curfew and household chores.
Post a calendar so events and schedules can be recorded for all to see. There may be a few occasions during the summer that are not negotiable to miss, such as a family wedding or birthday celebration. Make sure those expectations are understood and posted on the family calendar.
The K-State Parents and Family Association webpage offers resources and insights to help with this transition at http://www.k-state.edu/parentsandfamily/
Keep the big picture in mind. Recognize your young adult’s academic success. Consider that a review of household rules and expectations may be in order. Flexibility is important, the summer won’t last forever. The economy is improving, so your graduate is more likely to find a job after graduation, making the move home only temporary.