Your precious baby is 18 now and is “all grown up” and is now ready to face the world as an adult. Though you’ve done your best to instill the right morals, values, and qualities in your child, life will now take the lead as their educator and influencer. Although the concept of raising your adult child has come and gone, they will still require a lot of support from you as they get older.
While you don’t want to be enablers, nor do you want to financially support your children for the rest of their lives, you do want to make sure that you’re a source they can turn to as needed. Below are some words of advice on how to remain a positive support system for your adult children:
Be a Listening Ear
One thing you can almost bet on is your adult children coming to you with experiences they’ve been through. Instead of casting blame or even providing your input, it is best to just be a listening ear. Listen to their concerns completely, and if necessary, then respond in a manner that will help them grow.
Be the Voice of Reason
Though getting too involved in your adult child’s life can cause a strain on your relationship, if you notice they’re headed down a bad path, there is nothing wrong with speaking up. For instance, if you see that your child is in an abusive or toxic relationship, there is nothing wrong with telling them they deserve better. Should you see signs of drug or alcohol abuse or addiction, don’t be afraid to come to them with resources like Above It All drug & alcohol treatment to help kick the habit.
Give Sound Advice
Young adults who have a great personal relationship with their parents will often come to them for advice. When they do, it is imperative that this advice not come from a place of negativity or overprotectiveness as a result of being their parent. It should be sound advice that is backed by facts and personal experiences that will help improve the life of your adult child.
Give Financial and Housing Assistance Within Reason
It isn’t uncommon for adult children to need a little help from their parents sometimes. Life, as you know it isn’t easy and it also isn’t cheap. While no parent wants to see their child down and out, it is imperative that you lend a helping hand within reason and with boundaries.
If they need a loan because they’ve fallen on hard times, you might provide it to them, as long as they can prove their ability to repay it. If they needed a place to crash, you might welcome them into your home, but only if they pay rent and follow certain rules, and have a goal of how they’ll relocate within a predetermined time frame. Getting things in writing can help keep things in line.
Give Them Space
Whether they live in the home with you or live on their own, it is imperative that you give your adult child space and freedom to make their own choices and live their own lives as adults. Mistakes will be made, and consequences may follow for their negative behaviors, but it is a fact of life that they should learn early on.
Whether they’ll admit it or not, young adults need a lot of love and support from their parents. You were their first example of what it meant to be an adult, and they will always come to those they feel most comfortable with for help. As a source of support in their lives, it is important to be positive, consistent, but also willing to allow them to spread their wings.