Young adults: what an interesting term. You are young, but you are still at or right over the threshold that means you are an adult. You have to make your own doctor’s appointments, pay rent possibly, and do other ‘adult’ things. However, you are still close enough to being young that you remember what it was like when your parents did most of those things for you. Being a young adult is difficult, I get it. I’ve been there and amazingly enough, your parents have been there as well. Now that I am a parent myself, my relationship with my own parents has turned a corner. I’ve learned a bit more of what they need from me as a young adult.
5 Things Parents Need from Their Young Adults
1. Your parents need you to listen to their advice.
Your parents have just spent the past 10 or so years giving you advice that was often times met with resistance, or in my case, eye rolling. Now that you are a young adult, your parents need you to listen to them. When they warn you about getting deep in credit card debt: listen to them. They have likely been just where you are and want to help you to avoid making the same mistakes that they did as a young adult.
2. Your parents need communication from you.
I know that being a young adult is exciting. You can stay out as late as you want and eat ice cream for breakfast. You may be living 5 or 5,000 miles from home. Either way, your parents need to hear from you. They are still in the process of learning how to handle the fact that you’ve flown the nest. Listen to me: they worry about you. If they don’t hear from you for three days, they often start to wonder if you are ok. Call your mom. Call your dad. Text them, send them a funny selfie. Just communicate with them.
3. Your parents need to see you being an adult.
No, they don’t need a receipt for your groceries to prove you are actually eating something other than ice cream for breakfast. You may wonder why sometimes they still ‘treat you like a child’. That’s because you ARE their child. They will always see you as their baby. However, letting your parents see the pieces of your adult life that you are starting to build, will help them start to see you more as an adult. You don’t have to involve them in every decision you make as an adult, but when you visit or talk with them, talk with them about some of the ‘adulting’ you are doing. Let them know that you are ok and are truly thriving as a young adult.
4. Your parents need to see that you still want to be a part of the family.
It’s easy to get caught up in your own life as a young adult. However, if you live near your parents, try to visit them as often as you can. If you live far away from them, maybe you start a group text with your parents and siblings to stay updated on what’s going on. Making an effort to let your parents know that you still want to be a part of the family, as silly as it sounds, can help to soften the blow and ‘empty nest syndrome’ they may be feeling.
5. Your parents need small gestures from time to time.
Your relationship with your parents is just like any other relationship you have. They need small gestures from you now that you are an adult. If it’s your mom’s birthday, send her flowers. If you can’t afford flowers, video chat with her and wish her a happy birthday. If there is a certain holiday that you typically spend together, let your parents know your plans in advance. When you are with your parents, truly listen to them. Have a conversation with them. Put the phone down! Small gestures like this mean so much to parents.
Navigating the world of adulthood is not an easy thing, especially when you are a young adult. However, part of being an adult is developing and nurturing relationships, especially the one with your parents.