The Age
Stigma out the door as more kids boomerang

Stigma out the door as more kids boomerang

Mon July 30, 2012 7:19am

New research finds generation of children welcomed home with open arms - for the most part.

SOME parents might complain of increased housework and the awkwardness of meeting their adult child's latest partner over breakfast, but new research finds a generation of ''boomerang kids'' are being welcomed home with open arms - for the most part.

A study by Deakin University's Elyse Warner into how families experience the transition of an adult child returning to the parental home also found that while some children felt there was a ''stigma'' attached to living with mum and dad, they often did so for financial reasons.

Nearly a quarter of Australians aged 20-34, more commonly men, still live with their parents. Of those aged 25-29 who live in the parental home, more than half have moved out and returned. A previous study found two-thirds of those who returned home were motivated by money.

Ms Warner's research involved interviews with young adults aged over 22 - and their parents - who had lived out of home for at least four months before returning. She said that despite it often being perceived as ''quite a negative life event'', the study found it was usually the opposite.

''Typically the arrangement was a positive one,'' she said. ''Because the families already had good relationships … and both understood it wasn't forever.''

The study found the key motivation for young adults returning home was ''a significant change or challenge in their circumstances''.

''This could be financial, such as changes at work, returning to study, or saving for a house or travel, or emotional factors like a relationship breakdown.''

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