It’s now been six months since I moved back in with my mum, at the age of 28. Overall, it’s been a (very) long six months, but I’d be lying if I said it was all bad.
All being well, I’ll be moving out in the next couple of months, so I thought it was a good time for me to share my experience with you - if you don’t live with your folks, and have no intention of doing so, it might not be for you. But look on the bright side - you can laugh at the fact I did.
If you do find yourself back in your childhood bed, here’s my guide to not killing your parents:
A simple one to kick us off. There was never ever doubt I’d be paying rent. Admittedly, it’s much less than I used to pay for my city centre flat but it suits both parties. But, be aware: paying rent doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t still be asked to do plenty of guilt-laden chores. You know the ones; “oh, can you just walk the dog…” or “can you stay in and wait for the neighbour to pop round with the Tupperware box she borrowed last Christmas?”
I’m all for helping, but my past flatmates didn’t take these liberties. The guilt-chores were probably my least favourite part about moving back. Once I move out, I can experience the guilt of not helping, from afar. Perfect.
Try not to moan
Trust me; this is easier said than done. But I’m closer to 30 than I’d like to be and moaning about living with your mum just makes you look like a right sad case. Instead, why not set up a blog and moan about it there?!
See your friends
My mum lives in a place where not very much happens. The day a Subway opened up in the village, it was big news. I mean, BIG news: it made page two of our local newspaper. So it was important to go out as much as I could. Due to a distinct lack of public transport, this has varying rates of success. Waiting at Manchester Piccadilly for an hour, alone, after three glasses of wine just didn’t appeal to me by the fifth time it happened.
Also, be aware that there is a fine line to tread here; don’t go out enough and you will drive yourself mad. Go out ‘too much’ (mum’s words, not mine) and chances are your parents will drive you mad with all their questions about where you’ve been and if you’re going to be in for tea tomorrow.
Embrace the routine
Parents are, by all intents and purposes, weird creatures. And if you haven’t lived with them for years, the routine that you followed last time will seem even weirder. My mum likes to do things a certain way and if I suggested a different way, that would save her time, you’d think I’d spat in her eye. So smile, happily talk about the neighbours’ lives (at length) and leave everything in the bathroom exactly how you left it. And I mean, exactly.
Keep it quiet
Plenty of people my age live with their parents (if the stats are to be believed), but whenever I told somebody new, there was usually a look of pity which made me feel a bit sad. If worse comes to the worst, lie but I’d probably just gloss over it to save yourself the pity party.
I asked my mum the best bit about having me under her roof again. Her response?
"The weeks you weren’t here; there was no hair in the bathroom."
Thanks, mum, love you too.