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Midlife Crisis: Moving Back In With Parents

Associated Press 03.23.08



After being laid off from her job as an events planner at an upscale resort, Jo Ann Bauer struggled financially. She worked at several lower-paying jobs, relocated to a new city and even declared bankruptcy.


Then in December, she finally accepted her parents’ invitation to move into their home — at age 52. “I’m back living in the bedroom that I grew up in,” she said.


Taking shelter with parents isn’t uncommon for young people in their 20s, especially when the job market is poor. But now the slumping economy and the credit crunch are forcing some children to do so later in life — even in middle age.

5 Things You Need To Take Care of Your Elderly Parent

Amy Jeanroy | 02.03.09



I had a great conversation with mom yesterday about what she would change about this house if we won the lottery. You know those talks, we have all had them: All the money in the world at your fingertips, what would you buy?


I started thinking about what we should have done before bringing mom here, that would have made life a little easier for all of us. There are plenty of professional tips for preparing your home for an elderly parent, these are my thoughts, straight from the trenches.


Here are my top 5, literally off the top of my head:>> More



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Moving Mom


More parents moving in with kids

USA Today | 9.23.08


In the 1990s, your family came for dinner. Now, they're moving in.

According to US Census figures, this is up 67 percent, to 3.6 million.

The number of parents under 65 in these households increased by 75 percent, and those 65 and older were up 62 percent. Both groups outpaced the increase in the number of people in family households overall, which is up 6 percent since 2000.

>> More

Another Good Book!

Dutiful Daughters: Caring for Our Parents As They Grow Old


We moved in with my mother-in-law; seems like a bad idea now

Berkely Parents Network | 09.07


I am hoping someone will have some great ideas about managing the increasingly difficult relationships with my nearly 80 year old mother-in-law, with whom my husband, daughter and I live. We recently moved into my mother-in-law's house with the intent of helping care for her. She has emphysema, lives in a somewhat isolated area and suffers some of the expected difficulties that come with aging (can't do some of the larger household tasks like taking out the trash, feels vulnerable, is hard of hearing, is losing some cognitive function).


Now that we are living here, it seems like a bad idea, but one that would be difficult to extract ourselves from. In the few months we have been living with her, it has become increasingly clear that my mother-in-law needs the extra care we are providing. But her impact on us (me?) is exhausting. I am having difficulty with the lack of my own living space. We are in my mother-in-law's house, so it is her domain, and I find myself living almost exclusively out of my bedroom. I have worked on my own patience, on appreciating my mother-in-law while she is still here, on understanding the vulnerabilities and difficulties of aging, but I’m starting to feel like The Incredible Shrinking Woman. >> More



Moving In Together



Bringing Parents Into Your Home Or Moving In With Them


When Parents Move in With Their Adult Kids

Multigenerational households save money but endure conflicts

Emily Brandon | U.S. News & World Report |10.06.08


Twenty-somethings who move back in with their parents after college are often lamented as "boomerangs." But increasing numbers of seniors are moving in with their adult children and grandchildren as well. Over 3.6 million parents lived with their adult children in 2007, according to recently released U.S. Census Bureau data, up 60 percent from 2000. "It's a return to much closer intergenerational ties than we saw through much of the 20th century," says Stephanie Coontz, a professor of history and family studies at Evergreen State College and author of The Way We Really Are: Coming to Terms With America's Changing Families.


A trouble-free arrangement? Not so much. Here's how to navigate the potential land mines of multiple generations sharing the same home. >> More


Parents Living With Children In Old Age

Joseph Roundtree Foundation

Policy Studies Institute, UK | 11.97


This in-depth study of 24 families where frail, older parents are living with their adult children examines why and how the decision is made to share a house and how they feel about the arrangement. Here are a few highlights. The full PDF is available for download below.


The parents in this study were mostly very old and frail widows with poor health and limited mobility who had moved to live in a daughter’s household.


The move to live with family was usually precipitated by illness and the family had little time to consider the implications.


These daughters and sons were motivated by a strong sense of duty to care for the parent, and although most wanted to carry on, nearly all found the shared household arrangement stressful. None knew how long family care would continue: a few children saw it as a stage before institutional care, others for as long as they could manage, while most expected it to be until the parent died. >>Download PDF

Finding a Good Home

Christine Larson | U.S. News | 11.19.06


Soon after Jeanne Erdmann's father passed away in 1995, it became clear that her mother, then 85, would one day need a new home. Although her mom, Florence Greco, was still in relatively good health, "she didn't like living by herself anymore," says Erdmann, 53, a science writer who lives in Wentzville, Mo. So six years ago, Erdmann and her husband invited Greco, who lived in a nearby county, to move in. "She didn't like being here at first," says Erdmann. >>More