r/NoStupidQuestions Sep 24 '22

How real is the cultural stigma of "living with your parents" in the west? Unanswered




u/galaxyfrapp Sep 24 '22

It's very real, however with the fianancial state, the stigma has bren lessened a bit.


u/WhoAmIEven2 Sep 24 '22

Depends on the country. Sweden? It's weird if you live at home past 18-19.

Italy and Spain? Normal to live there up until you're 25-30.


u/semioasis Sep 25 '22

Not that weird in Sweden, at least in Stockholm. Housing is hard to find.


u/DiggityDanksta Sep 25 '22

My parents yelled at me to get the hell out of the house... and then immediately told me they missed me and wanted me to visit more once I did.


u/DemanoRock Sep 24 '22

In general expected to move out soon after College. If not College pretty soon after graduating HS. The perception (not as harsh anymore) is you aren't capable to take care of yourself as an adult if still in parents' house.


u/[deleted] Sep 25 '22

Its going away as houses get into insane territory. There are literally entire states in the US you can not buy a house in unless you make 6 figures.


u/Boredummmage Sep 25 '22 edited Sep 25 '22

I am 33, it is real. My parents expected me to pay my own way when I turned 18 and go to college. I did, no loans thanks to significant scholarships, then internships, parent made it seem like loans meant I was a failure, and I am successful now with a good job… I made it through. There were weeks I lived off of a pack of oatmeal a day with water. They thought I was anorexic, nope I was poor AF. Found a hovel in the ghetto of my college town that 3 of us shared - $397 with utilities included. That was cheaper than dirt even then. I am so lucky I didn’t get shot it wasn’t a place you should live. I rode a bus and walked a long distance, but I managed. One of my family members took pitty though I never told them what my situation looked like I think they could tell. They gave me a car that sometimes worked… I was happy for it even with some crazy electrical issues. It was 50-50 each day but when it worked such sweet relief. (Good god this sounds like an i walked 50 miles in the snow up hill both ways without boots story, but it really was rough; people deal with a lot more than what I did)

Needless to say college was very stressful trying to make my way; i wasn’t allowed to get loans per my family. I came so close to not being able to be there. Funnily enough my parents are offended no one stayed in their same city as them post college. It is like we were told we were on our own or something…


u/Ok_Snape Sep 25 '22

I see a lot of reasons, in this story, why doing this automatically (kicking your kid out at 18), is a horrible idea. For some people it might be a great idea but for most, I think, it's not as black and white.


u/Amiramaha Sep 24 '22

I think it’s much less so now, but as a GenX kid, it was pretty common to get luggage for graduation from high school if not sooner. I was out at 17. How inconvenient could we really have been as children, we had been literally raising ourselves since we were 5. Whatever I guess, I know now that no matter what happens I can fend for myself. So thanks for the toxic independence, inability to be vulnerable, and life of solitude mom and dad!


u/fakeuser515357 Sep 25 '22

There are three main parts to this.

The first is that living with your parents can be infantalising if the parent-child relationship doesn't evolve healthily.

The second is that there's a media-driven expectation that infantalising, or otherwise restrictive, parent-child relationships are the norm. The 'not under my roof' trope is the problem here. This leads to the expectation that leaving the family environment is a high priority, something that a successful person will do as soon as possible, and hence living with family is a sign of failure.

The third part is that the media-driven, consumption-driven culture increasing equates a less than ideal lifestyle with failure, to the extent that people will go into significant consumer debt to maintain the appearances of the lifestyle they think is expected.

There are two key outcomes from this:

  1. If you're happy living with your parents and it's working for everyone, live with your parents.
  2. If anyone judges you for your living situation, where your living situation is healthy and autonomous, then their opinion is worthless and they should be ignored.


u/eman_cireneg Sep 25 '22

Nice take on it


u/PunishingLawyer Sep 25 '22

I'd add that if anyone judges you for a living situation that is not healthy and autonomous, their opinion is probably also not worth your time. I can attest to how incredibly difficult it is to leave an environment of abusive control and isolation that you have been in since literal childhood. It's not as simple as "just move out".


u/FlamingoQueen669 Sep 24 '22

I'm 36 and I've always lived with my parents, I've never noticed anyone judging me for it.


u/WhatTheFlox Sep 25 '22

Half the people I work with live with family. Ranging from 25 to about 55. And the brothers in some of the houses too not just 1 sibling. It's more living with family than living with parents.


u/Trustnoboody Sep 24 '22 edited Sep 24 '22

Idk, I think parents are so obsessed with their kid being able to be independent and survive on their own, that they don't sit back and actually think about that.

I say 30 though is the time you should be out by. Preferably by 25ish.

Idk how this'll work out for me as I have my issues, but uh- yeah.

*For my imaginary kids, all I care about is that they are able to survive on their own, stay home as long as you want. And it'll be free as long as you do. I wouldn't have had kids with trying to save money in the equation.


u/Johnnyonthespot2111 Sep 25 '22

I left home at 18.


u/shortweirdandhangry Sep 25 '22

It can depend. I live in Australia and the majority of my friendship circle are of SE Asian descent (myself included). Most of us lived with our parents till we were married or financially stable enough to buy our own place (late 20s - early 30s). Within our group, there was no judgement because it was pretty normal.

The only flak I ever got was from older Anglo Aussie colleagues, who prided themselves on having lived in grungy sharehouses and living off instant noodles in the 80s. I decided their opinion wasn’t relevant…times are different now, and what do I care for the opinions of peasants? 🤷🏽‍♀️


u/smolpp12345 Sep 24 '22

People in the west value their autonomy and freedom a lot. Much of the east is still socially backwards and oppressive af imo. You have to answer to your parents for every little thing. Can't go out at night without them getting upset. Can't eat out without them getting upset. Can't date, can't marry or not marry, can't invite your friends over. So many things you can't do unless you live on your own. You can't even be affectionate with your wife. Your parents and other relatives constantly try to interfer in your life. Also most young people in eastern/Asian countries can't even afford to live on their own. I'm sure there are people who don't have controlling parents or relatives that don't understand or respect boundries but many do and unlike westerners we all can't just move out, even if we could you still have to deal with rest of the society. As someone who's part of multiple minority groups I absolutely despise living in asia.


u/Fishinabowl11 Sep 25 '22

Mid 30s M -- Extraordinarily strong. Living with your parents beyond your mid 20s is quite sad. By that point your parents need to have 'launched' you into your own adulthood. The child gets the space they need, and the parents regain the space they earned.

Living with your parents will severely hamper your ability to find a long-term partner. Really the only benefit is to save money.


u/im_phoebe Sep 25 '22

You should visit Asia where kids leave their home for studies and lend a good job but if they are in the same town they will live with their parents and trust me it doesn't hamper finding a long term partner, can hamper one night stands though.


u/Business_Parfait7469 Sep 25 '22

Sigh. I have my own home and married. And I have a parent living with me. I couldn't afford to live on my own then but now that I can, the tables turned.


u/[deleted] Sep 25 '22

Or the turnes have tabled.


u/Henarth Sep 24 '22

Really depends. I lived with mine until I was 26 but that was also mainly economic reasons I supported myself for the most part had a job making 60k a year. I couldn’t even afford a one bedroom practically in the area I live in . I don’t have a partner and now live alone in the cheap apartment my parents moved out of


u/littlemarcus91 Sep 25 '22

I think it's lessening especially since '08.


u/PotatoImpossible Sep 25 '22

Is there a difference between live with your parents and parents live with you?


u/bangbangracer Sep 25 '22

It's very real in the US. Hopefully that will be changing because of the state of housing though. It makes no sense that it's somehow more socially acceptable to live in relative squaller with multiple roommates than to either still live your parents or to move back in between situations.

It's amazing the dirty or confused looks I got from people when I moved back in with my parents at the start of the quarantine. I lived alone at the time and really didn't want to do quarantine alone.


u/mmohaje Sep 25 '22

The 'West' is quite big and diverse, so depends on the country. For example, it's generally looked down own upon in the US whilst it's totally the norm in Australia.


u/Suesquish Sep 25 '22

No not cool in Australia at all and not culturally acceptable. The idea was that using mummy as a slave to cook your meals, clean your room, do your washing and dad to fix your car and pay your rent didn't make for a responsible adult who could take care of themselves. Part of being an adult is just that, adulting.

Most people who still lived at home here as an adult lied to themselves and everyone else. They said it was to save money, when in reality they did it because they were lazy. Still not cool to do.


u/TurtleConsultant Sep 25 '22

Hmm, I guess it depends. In my experience it’s very common in Australia to live with parents during uni, unless you move from the country to the city or move interstate for uni (obviously).

I would say about three quarters of the people I met at uni (excluding mature aged students) lived with their parents for most or all of their undergrad.


u/Suesquish Sep 25 '22

Good point about being rural. I can see why rural areas may differ. Around cities and towns many people live in share houses whilst going to uni.


u/Assholejack89 Sep 25 '22

Latin American here, not that weird to stay at home until your 30s or until you can find a job in your field if you go to college. The expectation in return however is that you take in your parents when they can't fend for themselves any longer.


u/Briewnoh Sep 25 '22

Do you really invite people over back to a place where your parents live...?


u/MrWisemiller Sep 25 '22

If your a girl its ok.

If your a guy - complete loser, unsuccessful, immature, obviously lazy and probably a creeper.


u/netz_pirat Sep 25 '22

"the west" has very different views on that, depending on where you go.


u/NeedsSupervision69 Sep 25 '22

As an early Gen X it has changed in the U.S. since I came of age, but not as much as in some other parts of the world. My single parent household was lead by a very independent woman that had to be tough as nails in her professional life and was so in our relationship also. She informed me since my preteen years that I was out at 18, and if I went to college it was going to be all on me. I enlisted in the Army at 17 and she had to sign the papers to allow me to go as soon as I got my diploma. (reported to induction 2 days afterwards)

My situation was a little more harsh than a lot of my classmates, but the feeling of “getting away from your parents control and be independent” was pretty normal at that time. And it was expected that you should have been preparing yourself to to be a “productive member of society” throughout your formative years and ready to go forth and succeed! Was it easier to do that in the early 80’s than today? I’d have to say yes it was. Were we judged for “living in grandma’s basement” after graduation? Oh, you bet!


u/udbq Sep 25 '22

Not at all weird in India and most of the south east Asian countries at least. Your parents looked after you when you were kids, you look after them when they are old.


u/aoide12 Sep 25 '22

Very real. People will expect you to move out almost as soon as you're in a financial position to do it. If you don't have the means to move out then it is expected that you improve your finances to do so. I lived with my parents until my mid 20s and they considered that fairly late, they only tolerated it because I spent a long time in uni and was studying at the time. They were quite clear that they wanted me to leave soon. It was a combination of wanting me to be successful and also wanting to get on with their lives.


u/[deleted] Sep 25 '22

Depends. In some communities, probably quite high. In some immigrant communities, like the Mexican America community, there’s no stigma at all.


u/scoobydad76 Sep 25 '22

These days with rent so high it probably didn't do bad. If they have no reason to better themselves work a crap job not do good. Stay home play video games all day same.

Now with that part about the well off kid. His or her issue might be they don't know how to support themselves and live on their own could be a bit turn off.

But if they are trying to move out of their parents have to live there because they are doing the best they can or taking care of a ill parent then I think it's OK.

It all depends on the situation here too.

I probably wouldn't mind dating someone living at home so long as they were not playing video games all day or part time job playing video games. If they act like a normal functioning person I would consider dating them if I was single m


u/dycentra Sep 24 '22

I'm Western (F, Canada) and loved living with my mom, tolerated my dad. When I was 22 they sold our house and moved away.


u/Dizzy_Sprinkles_9294 Sep 25 '22

It's worse than having flat mates.


u/[deleted] Sep 25 '22

In Mexico you get married, have kids, raise kids, and then inherit the same house you grew up in.