By Guest Blogger Kristen Daukas
Raising teenagers can be a challenging experience! However, what if I told you that there is a fantastic payoff at the end that does NOT include grandkids, at least not yet? While I’m still struggling a little bit with being an empty nester, I’m here to offer you five reasons why having young adult children is much more fun than the teenage years.
1. They’re more independent and care for themselves
Adult children are more independent and can take care of themselves. When they are young, there was the need to help with homework or get dressed in the morning. But as they get older, they become more capable of doing things independently. Which is a big relief for parents, who may feel like they can finally take a break from their never-ending parental duties. Although, it is also a bit of a shock, as adult children often assert their independence in ways their parents may not be expecting. However, overall, it is generally a positive development when your kids become more independent and able to take care of themselves.
2. Young adult children are more mature and handle more responsibilities
Many young adult children are more mature and will handle more responsibilities than people think. They can juggle multiple tasks, work long hours, and maintain a social life. Most of them are also financially independent and have their own place to live. This means they are used to handling adult responsibilities such as paying bills, cooking, and cleaning. They also bear more emotional responsibility, such as being there for a loved one during a tough time or navigating sticky issues within their friend circle. They’re also a bit more willing to help you with a big project, or if you just need someone to talk to, chances are they will be more than happy to be there for you.
3. They are more interesting and fun to be around
One of the great joys of being a parent is watching your children grow and change. As they move from toddlerhood to adolescence, they gradually become more complex people with unique interests and perspectives. As they age, this should be a time of renewed connection and bonding as parents discover common ground with their children. And while every parent enjoys watching their children grow up, there can be something special about hanging out with your older kids. In many ways, they’re the perfect companions – interesting, fun, and full of energy. Who knows – you might have found someone to share new adventures with!
4. They’re finally off your payroll
Well, sort of. You’ll probably notice that your utility bills drop drastically when every light isn’t on in the house, and 30-minute showers are no longer happening daily. Grocery shopping bills go down as well as the frequency of visits. Filling the car up with gas 3 times a week running from activity to activity, is now a thing of the past. However, the texts and calls asking for a “little help” to get to the next payday will happen as they learn to navigate the world of budgets and taxes. If you’re not a fan of sending $50 thru Venmo, I’ve occasionally done a grocery shop with Shipt to help ease the paycheck shortage. On their own or not, I’m not a fan of my kids not having food to make meals with.
5. They remind us of our youth and how fast it goes by
This one can be a catch-22 – our adult children can remind us of our youth and how fast it goes by. It is easy to forget how quickly time passes when we’re in the midst of everyday adult life, but seeing our adult children can help us to remember those carefree days before WE had kids. Seeing them reminds us to savor our days and not take them for granted – and to remind them to do the same thing. There’s plenty of time to “settle down and make a family” if that’s a goal of theirs.
It’s not all bad, being an empty nester. There are many great things about it that you may not have considered. For example, now you can finally focus on your needs and wants without considering anyone else. You can travel wherever you want, spend time with friends and family without feeling guilty, or take up a new hobby. If you’re at this point, what do you love most about this new stage in your life? Leave a comment below and let us know!