Should You Date A Man Who Lives With His Parents?
Living with one’s parents, as an adult, has such a stigma. Especially for men. It’s not fair, but we all know that it’s true. Aren’t you a little bumped when you meet a grown man who tells you that he lives at home? Just or unjust, we all expect men to at the very least be able to provide for themselves, if not also for others. So when you learn that a guy isn’t paying for the roof over his head, it’s hard to see him as, well, a man. But if you meet a guy with whom you really hit it off, the fact that he lives with his parents doesn’t have to mean this interaction is over. There are a lot of nuances to that situation. Walking away could be a mistake. So, should you date a man who is living at home with his parents? Here are things to consider.
Is he just caring for them?
Is he perhaps just living at home to take care of his parents? Maybe they’re getting older, and need more help around the house. They’re not quite at a point of moving into a retirement community, and he wants them to get to stay in their home as long as possible. And perhaps this is all just temporary as one is very ill, but will hopefully recover.
That is kind and…all-consuming
If he is living there just to care for his parents, that’s very kind. It’s very attractive, even. It’s also his whole life for now. He’s their live-in nurse, dog walker, mail opener, grocery shopper, medicine administer—you name it. He will also just be distracted worrying about his parents. He may not be able to give a new relationship the attention it deserves right now.
Is he post-divorce?
Did his ex get the house in the divorce, and he’s just living with his parents until he finds a new place? That happens. It’s better to live somewhere for free rather than throw rent money away at a place he doesn’t like, while searching for a new permanent home.
How emotionally past it is he?
The question is: how is he, emotionally, since his divorce? If he’s very much still in the throws of this divorce, there are things you should know about getting involved with him—including the fact that his parents will probably be very protective of him.
Does he have plans to get out?
Does he have a game plan to move out? Life can get the best of all of us sometimes, and land us back at mom and dad’s house. That’s alright. But is he letting his circumstances bring him down so much that he isn’t making a plan to move out? Or, is he making an effort every day to make a plan to move out? If he keeps saying he’ll look for a place and doesn’t, that’s something to worry about.
Is this part of a grand financial plan?
Sometimes, people move back home as a way of saving money while they work on opening their own business. Starting a business requires a lot of capital and aspiring business owners can’t afford to bleed money on rent. If he’s a man with a grand plan, that’s attractive and admirable.
Is he taking the necessary steps?
Of course, it’s only admirable if he’s actually working on his business. It’s hard to be self-motivated. Do you actually see him getting up at a decent hour, writing up an itinerary for the day, and getting work done? Or is he sleeping in, playing video games most of the day, and working for, like, an hour?
What’s the architectural setup like?
The architectural setup of his parents’ house will make a world of a difference in this situation. Does he live in a guesthouse? Above the garage? Or some structure with its own entrance? Or do you walk through his family’s kitchen and greet his parents every time you see this guy? If so, it can feel like things get serious fast.
Are his parents laid back?
How do his parents handle him having a woman come through the house? Do they casually pop their heads up from the TV and give a wave? Or do they ask you to sit town for tea, tell them all about your life, and insist you two eat dinner with them? Feel that out, and see if it’s something you can handle. If not, that’s fine—but meet this guy away from his parent’s house.
How attached is he to them?
Watch out for a man who is becoming a bit of a mama’s boy again. Maybe it is him who wants to include them in everything. It’s easy, when a person moves back home, to start to fear leaving the nest again. It’s almost like leaving for college, all over again. If you notice signs of that developing, you may want to run.
Is he insecure about it?
How does he feel about it? If he’s cool and confident about it, and knows it doesn’t reflect on his ability to provide for himself, then you should be, too. If, however, he is very insecure about it, always apologizing for it, and even asking you to lie to others about his situation, things can get uncomfortable.
Is he using you as an escape?
You also want to avoid this pitfall: becoming his escape. Maybe he’s just dating someone so he has another home to escape to when he’s sick of his parents. If he starts spending a lot of time at your place, even showing up unannounced and hanging on the couch for hours, you may have just taken on a live-in son of your own.
Is he becoming dependent again?
Who is helping whom here? Is he helping his parents with errands and chores? Is he helping them fix things and keep the house in working order? Or are they doing his laundry, cooking for him, and organizing his mail? It’s not very attractive when a man becomes dependent on his parents again like that.
If it’s all on the up and up, can you handle it?
So you’ve determined that this man is emotionally stable and has a financial plan. How do you feel about dating a man who lives at home? You’ll have to tell your friends and family about it and face their judgment. Can you handle it? Are you secure enough?
How would you feel if the tables were turned?
Throughout this, just ask yourself how you’d feel if the tables were turned. If you were the one living at home, how would you want to handle relationships? How involved would you want your dates to be with your parents? Under what circumstances would you feel you could, or couldn’t date like that?