On the Today show this morning, Matt Lauer reported that sixty percent of baby boomer parents are offering some kind of financial support to their adult children. The piece hit home for me, since, after 10+ years of living alone, I'm considering temporarily moving in with my mom.
Whether you're young, just out of school and looking for work or older and suffering a financial setback, turning to your parents for help can be a complicated and emotional situation. Just because something makes perfect fiscal sense doesn't mean your heart, soul and ego are ready to accept it. After years of living autonomously, to ask your parents for a loan — or return to living with them — can be feel like failure, with a dash of embarrassment and defeat. If you've seen the movie, you know that returning home is considered hitting rock bottom in Bridesmaids.
But between unemployment rates, healthcare expenses, collegiate debt and housing costs, sometimes a step forward means taking a step back. And if 60% of baby boomer generation parents are helping out, that means — whether your friends talk about it or not — more people are getting some kind of financial support than you think. Still: We all want our parents to be proud of us, and there's nothing like that feeling of knowing you've achieved something on your own. So it can be heartbreaking to have to ask for help. Plus, as Matt Lauer points out, if your parents use their savings and retirement cash to help you out, what are they going to do when it's time for them to retire and the bank account is tapped out?