Now that the adventure is over, are you considering moving back home?

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Answered by: Laura, An Expert in the About Moving Back Home Category
Let me guess. You were bold and fearless, though admittedly a little nervous. You bought the ticket for the plane, bus or train or filled up your car with gas for the trip. You packed your bags and took one last hard look at your home, thinking that from now on it would just be a place to visit now that your old bedroom was to be turned into a guest bedroom or given to your little brother. You took your first deep breath of young adult freedom and left. This is where every story differs. Did you find what you were looking for-- a lasting love, a college education? How long did it last? Why did it end? The final question is this-- did you ever think that you would end up back here again? Your bags are packed once again. You feel so tired from your journey. Wearily, you walk through that familiar front door and notice that some things have changed. Welcome home.

Every home situation is different. You may be welcomed home with hugs and celebration. When I first returned home to New Jersey after three years of working and exploring my sexuality in Michigan, I was the golden child. My father thought of me as the wayward daughter returning. My mother saw me as a stronger, more confident version of the child she had remembered raising. My brothers thought I was cooler than before and were glad to have their buddy back, even though it was a small house and all five of us barely fit. My dad had already been sleeping on the downstairs couch for years. I was provided with a cot to sleep on that I had to pack away every morning and set up every night in my littlest brother's bedroom, which was my old room. It wasn't the most private or comfortable experience, but for me, moving back home after my first big psychiatric hospitalization and a painful break up with my fiance was the right choice. It gave me time to heal and feel like I was in a safe zone. I also had to pay little rent and saved money from my paychecks for things I needed-- a used laptop on Ebay, clothes, food, cigarettes. Financially, moving back home might be the best option for you right now.

Not every home situation is healthy. As time passed after my return to New Jersey, my parents began to fall back into old habits. My father, though adoring, was religious and disapproving of my gay lifestyle. My mother, a meek woman, began to shy away from my strong personality and didn't ever tell me that she loved me regardless of my sexuality unless my father was securely out of earshot. My brothers made fun of me for playing guitar and writing my own songs. Life wasn't bad by any means-- it was merely full of discouragement. An approval-seeking Aries, I found this to be disheartening and moved back out a year after coming home. Remember that, if you are moving back in with the folks, it won't be forever. It is important to think of it as a step forward and not a step backwards.

I'll leave you with a final word of advice. Don't stop dreaming. Whatever was worth leaving home for in the first place, even if it was ultimately lost or unfinished, is good practice at achieving that happiness. You didn't get it on the first try so you have to move back home and start over, but you know what they say; try, try again.

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