July 19, 2014

Still supporting adult kids?

According to Dennis Miller, “Nothing can screw up retirement plans like supporting adult children after you've shelled out tens of thousands of dollars in college tuition, shuttled them back and forth for Thanksgiving and Christmas breaks, and maybe purchased a new computer for all that research and writing they did (or maybe didn't do) over four-plus years. And yet, some 85% of parents plan to provide some sort of postgraduation financial assistance.”
“As Eileen Gallo and Jon Gallo note in their paper “How 18 Became 26: The Changing Concept of Adulthood,” for a certain socioeconomic set, growing up and moving out—permanently—means downgrading your lifestyle.” The authors quote sociologists Allan Schnaiberg and Sheldon Goldenberg: “The supportive environment of a middle-class professional family makes movement toward independent adulthood relatively less attractive than maintenance of the [extended adolescence] status quo. Many of the social gains of adult roles can be achieved with higher benefits and generally lower costs by sharing parental resources rather than by moving out on one's own!”
“So, what can parents do to make ‘home’ a lot less welcoming, and make complete financial independence look like the brass ring it should be?”
Be honest with yourself. Ask yourself: Is my financial assistance helping or hindering my child's emotional and financial growth?
Mom and Dad must be on the same page. One parent slipping the son or daughter money while the other fumes does little for a marriage or the emotional and financial well-being of the child.
Be a parent and a coach. Offer emotional support and financial mentoring.
“Retiring rich is hard enough without paying for your child's extended adolescence. The job market may be tough for new graduates, but forcing your child to navigate it anyway might just be the best way to help.” Read the full article at: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/supporting-adult-children-try-tough-love-instead-2014-07-08

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