I'm nearly 30 and living at home

...and actually I have it made - so why is living with my parents causing a total life crisis?
Publish date:
July 19, 2012
It Happened To Me, living at home, recession, living in london

So yeah. I’m 29…30 in 7 months, and I live at home. Just typing the words makes me want to hide in the cupboard under the stairs.

Happy days on my single bed!

Yes…we have a cupboard under the stairs, it’s a decent size house; much more decently sized than anything I’d ever be able to afford to rent. In fact the sad truth is that I actually can’t afford to rent anything in London at the moment. And yes – I have considered selling my body/ dirty knickers/ actually getting a ‘proper job’. For the record I’d like to make it clear that I haven’t lived at home my entire life (I’m not that fucking weird).

I went to uni and then rented for a bit, but since going freelance a couple of a years ago I’ve been back under the familial roof impatiently awaiting my big break/ lottery windfall/ bagging of a rich husband.

As you can imagine (and luckily for most of you, you have to imagine), moving back home was tough…like really badly cooked cheap steak tough. Although my parents don’t place any restrictions on my movements, I still feel like my independence has been castrated.

It’s not just that I can’t bring boys back, take random duvet days, and leave things in the sink until other things start growing on them – i.e. all the usual things that first world twenty-somethings do and take for granted as the standard perks of young, free and reckless pre-kids life.

But, when you live with your parents there’s no avoiding the fact that there will be times when you feel like you’ve reverted to being an 8-year old - and that massively sucks.

Worst of all, with no advances in the big break/ lottery windfall/ bagging a rich husband situation, it can be hard to visualise an end point, which can feel like starring into the black hole of ultimate loserville (no one will EVER love meeeeeeeeee).

Me at the kitchen table office

All of this was bad enough at 27, but as the big wanky (yes, I’m that mature) 3-0 approaches I fear that living at home pushes me into the biggest-fucking-loser-in-the-world category, along with the 40-year-old virgins and people who throw birthday parties for their pets.

And here’s the ironic part; despite my situation being horrifically embarrassing, the reality of living at home is actually totally cushtie. For one, it’s free. Yes free. Thankfully I don’t have those weirdly authoritarian parents who charge their kids rent because they think they’re teaching them some important life lesson (I know how much things cost, and I can’t afford them – that’s why I’m living at home, duh).

No, I’ve been blessed with endlessly patient and generous parents who are happy(ish) to have their nearly-30 daughter still living under their roof (most of the time).

Secondly, it’s always clean and warm, and there’s always food in the fridge. This would 100% definitely not be the case if I were, A. living in a shared house, or B. on my Jack Jones.

The always-full fridge

Thirdly – it’s always clean and warm, and there’s always food in the fridge, and I don’t have to do anything for this to be the situation. Yes, I know I’m now going to sound like a giant, spoilt, lazy, useless, adult brat child, but it’s true. My mum is Queen of the house and has the whole situation on lock.

Apart from cooking a couple of times a week (which I happen to love), and giving my room the occasional once over with the hoover, I don’t have any other chores of responsibilities around the house. Yes – I’m living in the archetypal hotel of mum and dad.

So in short, I have it made, which leaves me wondering why I feel so deeply ashamed about the situation and anxious to get out.

Residents of the Hotel of Mum and Dad

Is living at home really as god-awfully horrific and embarrassing as I think, or am I just feeling shit about myself because yet again I’ve failed to meet the one-size-fits-all life targets we all measure ourselves by?

In Italy for instance it’s quite common for people to live at home until they get married (although they also elect porn stars as MP’s and drive everywhere like they’re in a police chase).

When friends are stressing about rent or moaning about nightmare housemates I can’t help wondering whether given the current economic situation I should just relax, enjoy my time at home, and thank god I have parents with a spare room living in London?