Staying home with parents can be overwhelming in adulthood. Between the errands and the controlling, you’re left to wonder when you’ll be free. People look forward to a time when they can do things on their own terms and be happy. Nothing beats not having to hand over a remote that sits five feet away from your mum. Or coming down a flight of stairs to take plates to the kitchen only to be followed closely because, well, they want to wash their hands.
Social media has made it all worse. On their end though, much better. Scrolling through Twitter or Instagram and a WhatsApp message pops up: ‘Pick 5 cups of beans, thanks.’ Suddenly a feeling of gloom washes over you. You let water do its thing (if you know, you know). Washing cars was at the top of the list of things we sought freedom from, standing in the chilly December weather with a wet towel in hand, looking up to the sky and asking, God when.
The best thing about moving away from home for me is the lack of stress on the home front. I feel like I escaped the stress my parents put me through forever. It was always do this thing or the other, I was like a robot that never got tired to them. It was really tiring. On the other hand, living alone can be boring. Sometimes I feel like gossiping with my mum or washing some plates while I groan about it. I also miss the really delicious meals; turns out I am not much of a cook but I get by. It has been a bittersweet experience for me.
As many who looked forward to moving away from home, there are also many who loved nothing more than to be home with parents. The comfort of having your family around, in an environment you are accustomed to cannot be understated. Irrespective of where our preference lies, there comes a time when we all have to leave home for one reason or another.
When I first moved away from home, I had challenges settling on my own. I miss my parents terribly, having never lived away from them even while I was at the university. I miss the long walks I used to take in my estate which I can no longer take because I do not feel the safety I feel at home. I miss the food, the gossip with my mum, the pampering, I miss everything. I prefer living with them and would give anything to be able to work close to home. I do not have anything that stands out for me about living away from home. I hate the silence and emptiness.
Staying away from home can be really satisfying, though. You get to wake up whenever you want, do house chores when you want, or even not at all. You can stay out late doing whatever or bring friends over without having to subject them to parental scrutiny. We all know how we have to go through a mini interview when we visit a friend at home for the first time. This interview will set the foundation of the rest of the friendship so we all prepare to ace those, sometimes having to throw our friend under the bus just to look the more decent one.
I was very eager to move away from home, I hated the chores and the curfew. I longed for my freedom and now that I have it, it is the best thing that has happened to me. While I miss some things about staying home, but they are nothing compared with staying away from home. I am in a much better place emotionally and mentally. Admittedly, it has been difficult keeping up with bills and other responsibilities that have crept up on me, but I would rather break my bones working to stay afloat than going back to live at home with my parents.
For those eager to move out and be on their own, the autonomy and self-sufficiency you are going to get once you move out of home will be worth all the hardship you may be faced with. There will be no house rules to observe, no constant arguments about your rights and responsibilities, no more bitter reproaches and scornful remarks. You will be able to set your own rules and to do whatever you feel like.
What I like about living away from home is the fact that I do chores in my own time and even though I have siblings, I used to have more chores at home than I do now. I also like the freedom that I now have. I used to have to get home before seven and the fun does not even start until after seven. Living alone has been very enjoyable, having my space to myself and being able to keep track of where you keep your things because no one is moving them. I miss not having to cook all the time and I also miss the safety of staying home, but I would certainly rather stay away from home.
Parents tend to be inquisitive, no matter how old you are or how responsible you have become. They always want to know what you have going and could put you in really uncomfortable positions with the direct questions they ask about things you would rather not talk about. Moving out gives you the privacy you might have been longing for. You have your space to yourself and while you might not be able to design your dream house on the get go, the extent of your design will suit your personality. Also, you can master your free time. It is very annoying when you’ve had your day planned and just when the highlight of your itinerary is nearing, something comes up to disrupt it, which happens a lot when you live with parents.
However, we soon begin to realize that we are accustomed to living at home with our parents and it takes a lot of effort to get used to having to do things on your own. Even things as insubstantial as waking up. There will be no one to wake you up by 5:30 AM claiming it is 6:30 AM. We all know the magic of that white lie, it takes away the residue sleep that lasts ten to fifteen minutes after the alarm goes off in an instant. Coupled with the free food and free rent, going to work from home makes life all the more better.
Moving away from home has only been a matter of necessity so far, not preference. If I had any choice I’d still be home. There’s free food, I could invite people over to spend the night, I did no chores, I paid no bills, only bought cereal and petrol when I felt like it. It was comfortable. But home’s too far from work and I had no choice but to move. Definitely top five least favorite things about adulthood.
For many people, their parents’ house will always be a second home that they can go to unwind when they need a break from life as they know it, or when all else fails and they need to start all over. Also, for people fortunate to work close to their parents house, not having to pay rent and other bills passes as a very good financial plan as money can be saved toward other things that can further advance you in life.
I moved out of home for a little while. But it wasn’t sustainable for me. Before the middle of the month, I was always broke. I found that I spent less at home than I did staying alone and far away from home. December 2018, I decided to move back with my parents, as it should be. My story changed from then. I am not spending money on food, electricity and other things. Sometimes, I even ask out-rightly for transport fare when I want to go and flex. And this is a good thing. When you’re flexing on your own credit, it’s not sweet, but on someone else’s credit, it’s extra sweet. Thank God I wised up.
We feel homesick sometimes having stayed away from home for a long time, and then when we eventually make time to visit home, we are reminded in a few days of all the reasons we left in the first place. There are a lot of things to miss about home. The meals you most times knew nothing about, the communal support when you need to be comforted, the safe feeling of being at home, and of course not having to pay bills.
Living away from home comes with a lot of pros as well as cons. While some prefer the security of living with family both financially and physically, others want the freedom that comes with living alone and doing things on their own terms. Regardless of your inhibition toward moving away or otherwise, we all have things about home that we will sorely miss.
People have different experiences staying away from home as well as staying at home, while some may prefer the former, others prefer the latter. Are you living at home with your parents? Have you moved out and still have to run errands for your parents? What has been your favorite thing about your situation? Do you live at home and still have to pay rent or pitch in for food? Share your experience with us in the comment section.