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December 27, 2011

Comments

"expensive diamond engagement ring"

Ha! True, but not the main thing.

It's the downpayment on a house that will take some doing to get together. That and trying to dig out of student debt (and other debt) before trying to become a provider.

I dunno, I think young women are way more militantly rebellious against their parents.

These are all good points, but one thing to realize that it was the period where young single people got a decent job right after graduating from college (or high school!) and moved into their own quarters, with money earned by that job, was the anomaly. The historical norm was several generations under one roof.

And the reason it was otherwise in the U.S. in the late twentieth century is that the U.S. was really, really, rich and a good part of that wealth got down to the proles. Both are unusual by historical standards and neither are true anymore. Many cultural habits that the culture developed when you could expect most people to be middle class are going to have to be unlearned.

What I described is not a good thing. Since I was part of Gen X, it took me an unreasonably long time to get a decent job after graduating college (I graduated during the early 1990s recession) by the standards of previous generations, but I was still able to find one and live alone as a single adult male in my twenties and thirties. So I got a taste of what the Boomers enjoyed but can completely understand the situation many Milleniels find themselves in.

Have you read Emmanuel Todd?

He has quite a lot to say about cohabitation of married children with their parents.

I'd like to see numbers on children who are 30+ and boomeranged back to mom and/or dad's house. Yes, there's some murkiness -- are the parents providing a roof for the kids, or are the kids taking care of the parents -- but I'd expect more females than males to be living at home.

I recently dated a woman (31) who lived with her mom. And she did not drive. And she lived in Southern California. And she did not get around to mentioning these things until our second date. Girls, or women I should say, can get away with it if they're attractive. She did however join the Peace Corps, spent her junior year abroad in Australia, and otherwise attended schools thousands of miles away. She lives at home because she's paying off student debt.

Meanwhile, I spent my early 20s living with Mom and Dad so that I could come out of school debt-free.

Women are more likely to leave home because that's their time to seize the world, their peak years of attractiveness. They migrate to cities because that's where they can find the most successful men. Makes sense. Men are slower to develop and need to do some nest-building.

Yes, it's a double-standard, but no one ever said nature plays fair, a truth that does not dawn on many XXs until they're 35 and running out of options.

This is partly what OWS is all about. It's not whining to be upset that you no longer have the opportunities others enjoyed just a generation ago. Things have changed in America and not for the better.

Global free trade has become a sacred principle of modern economic theory, a sort of generally accepted moral dogma. That is why it's so difficult to persuade politicians and economists to reassess its effects on a world economy which is changing radically. GATT, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade reshaped the US economy profoundly in the early to mid 90's but it's effects are now being realized. Much of this was predictable too.

"...I believe that GATT and the theories on which it is based are flawed. If it is implemente­d, it will impoverish and destabiliz­­e the industrialized world while at the same time cruelly ravaging the third world..."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PQrz8F0dBI&feature=related

Sigma

Can anyone actually imagine that a kid, who always lived in a typical suburban home, will move straight to the ghetto (the housing the kid might afford, or not even that) just because he/she turned 18?

[HS: I can imagine it because there are some hipsters living in the ghetto. But not many.]

@ BrunoBrazil

The main reason kids move away from their parents is so they can have sex with whoever they want. People are content to be impoverished so long as they get laid.

Living with Mom and Dad isn't necessarily a bad idea for twentysomethings of either gender. Not only is it generally cheaper, but there usually are fewer responsibilities (Clean the donicker? Mom does that. And they'll make sure that the perishables in the refrigerator get used prior to becoming Level 5 biohazards.)

As for social stigma impairing one's dating market value, as more and more young people live with their parents the stigma gets less and less significant.

"As for social stigma impairing one's dating market value, as more and more young people live with their parents the stigma gets less and less significant."

Unfortunately, male dating value is on an exponential scale. So even a "less and less significant" loss of it still hurts bad.

The Inductivist showed a steep decrease in home-living for men between the 1970s and the 2000s:

1970s 24.2
1980s 21.9
1990s 13.9
2000s 13.4


http://inductivist.blogspot.com/2008/08/losers-living-at-home-its-been-my.html

[HS: Fewer men are getting married, so when you look at a big age group like 25-40, then the average age in this group has probably increased over the years.

Also, the idea that men who live at home are LOSERS probably gained prominence during this time period. I don't think this was the case fifty years ago. Both of my parents lived at home until they got married, at which time they moved into their own apartment which was only a few minutes away from my my grandparents.]

Another thought: most young people have heard stories about roommate troubles, or have experienced them themselves. Especially past age 25 or so the idea of sharing an apartment gets less and less appealing.

I agree with Conquistador. However, the "LOSER" stigma from living at home with one's parents comes from cultural expectations that were shaped during the long boom years. Alot of people older than fifty don't get how much the economy has changed, and their expectations shape the culture.

In other countries, where the boom mentality had a weaker hold, one night "love hotels" exist that allow young adults living with their parents to, well, mate. My future wife, who was living with an older women, like most women her age in her country, took me to one when we were dating.

I think Conquistador has it right. I can remember from my late teens and early 20s, nearly all the females that didn't go away to college were trying to get their own apartments - primarily, I believe, so they could have a private place to "entertain" their boyfriends (who all lived at home).

Who gains from this push to make single people leave the home as early as possible? Apartment builders! Seriously, it is quite smart to stay home an extra year or more, and save money if you can. Why give $9K to $15K a year away? Or have the son pay rent and buy a bigger home, which will benefit the family at least. We've all bought into this idea that we need to run out as young as possible and give our money away to random apartment managers and it's silly.

I looked at how much I had spent on apartment rent years ago and it made me sick. Just one example, was three years at one place equaling over $25K. Would have loved to bank that money.

Why isn't the NYT worried about everyone on welfare. Who cares if someone lives at home.

There just aren't the opportunities that there were in years past. I don't know what the answer is. It's depressing really. Lately, I've been thinking a lot about the false promises of the higher education system, which makes me really mad.

I may have linked to this article in a comment to a previous post. If so, I apologize for the repeat, but I think the prescriptions listed here are a good start to fixing the problem and getting the education system aligned to the needs of the market.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/on-innovations/college-needs-a-consumer-warning-label/2011/10/24/gIQAok1t9N_story.html

Living with your parents means that people are limiting their jobs search to what is in commuting distance from their parents house. I guess that works in NYC or Boston but probably does not work in most of America.

@conquistador

""...I believe that GATT and the theories on which it is based are flawed. If it is implemente­d, it will impoverish and destabiliz­­e the industrialized world while at the same time cruelly ravaging the third world..."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PQrz8F0dBI&feature=related"

excellent video!

If you're 26+ and living with your parents, you probably are a loser. Yes, in the past it was more common for kids to live at home before they got married, but that was when (1) People got married at a younger age and (2) per-capita incomes were lower.

For a 1950s woman to live at home until she was 24 and then get married to live with her husband was OK. If you are a 29 year old man who lives with his parents today, I think the social stigma is appropriate.

What about a guy who is 28, and is a computer programmer making $110k, has about $350,000 in the bank, and is still living at home b/c he wants to buy an apt/house with a huge downpayment? And yes, does his own cooking and laundry. LOSER?

I'm 27 and I live with my parents. It causes me an enormous amount of anxiety, because I do feel like a loser.

Yet at the same time, I am in a vastly better financial position than almost all of my debt-ridden friends, who live alone in often really, really atrocious slum-level apartments.

What's unclear to me, however, is what my next goal is supposed to be. I hear such wildly contradictory things regarding the value of home ownership, and, ironically, for all this talk of social stigma, renting, where you're just throwing money at some jerk landlord in exchange for nothing tangible seems myopic and wasteful.

So I don't know. One thing that is worth noting, however, is that many suburban boomers, such as my parents, own enormous houses. Creating basement suites or attic suites for the kids to live in with a high degree of sovereignty from day-to-day family life is something that's quite new and unprecedented as well. "Living with your parents" doesn't necessarily mean eating your cheerios at the kitchen table with mom and dad in your feetie pajamas.

****Both are unusual by historical standards and neither are true anymore. Many cultural habits that the culture developed when you could expect most people to be middle class are going to have to be unlearned.****

This truth is the heart of the issue. Personally, I look forward to more young men and women being forced to live at home - it may lead (as implied in another thread) to the resurgence of more traditional sexual behaviour as parents are more able to control their childrens' sexuality.

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