“You’ll me miss when I am gone!”
shouted The Daughter at her brothers. “No we won’t!” they replied in chorus. The Daughter, currently a junior in high school, was looking ahead at moving away to go to college. This exchange made me wonder if after completing college, she’ll move back as a boomerang kid. According to this report from the Pew Research Center, the economy, the housing crisis, and demographic shifts are causing a shift toward multi-generational households, with Asian-Americans leading the way.
Immigrants, particularly from Latin American and Asia, who are from cultures where extended families are not unusual, are cited as one reason for the increase. I have written about my brother-in-law who lives with my family and occasionally makes our furniture disappear (interestingly, that arrangement does not meet the study’s definition of multi-generational) . Before my brother-in-law, the Wife’s parents lived with us. When The Wife and I got married, my mother invited us to live with them (not so unusual for Filipinos), but The Wife didn’t think so highly of that idea, to put it mildly. Often a multi-generational household happens because of the need to care for elderly parents. Indeed, the study points to data that says that older people living with others are generally healthier and happier than those living alone.
How would I feel about The Daughter boomeranging her way back home? To be fair, I lived with my parents for a few years after graduating from college, mainly to save money. Her cousins did the same before moving out. My feelings are mixed. Especially after years of dealing with teenage craziness, I hope she can make it on her own, but I know how the rough the economy can be.