The empty nest is no longer guaranteed for moms & dads of adult children. Statistics show adult children living at home is quite common. Moms & dads feel differently about such situations, but most agree getting the adult child to leave home takes some finesse. After all, you want to keep your relationships intact while gaining the freedom of the empty nest stage.
Look at the reasons the adult child is at home. There are plenty: finances because of a tough job market or economic setback; general malaise about moving on with life; divorce; personal problems, and all of the above.
Discuss ways of resolving the main issues with your partner. Money, counseling or tough love are all solutions depending on the situation and your abilities.
Talk it over with the adult child. This is the first of several discussions, so do it in doses without laying out all your issues and setting a move-out date right away. Focus on the fact that it's time to leave, and ask for concerns or problems.
Respond to concerns and problems with ideas, but empower the adult child to find solutions at the same time. This can be where you offer helping with finances—careful on this one—or finding an apartment, for example.
Set a move-out date, and request a plan. Keep kindness and compassion in the tone, continue to offer help and support, if you can. But again, be firm that you expect the date to be honored.
Make home less comfortable. Charge rent if you aren't already, add on prorated costs for cable, Internet and phone services. No one wants to leave a great deal.
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