Many people are moving back with their parents after graduating college. And, that causes a lot of tension.
These people are used to living independently for years, and now were back to “my roof, my rules”. Kids need to prove that they are still independent and can contribute.
Redditor Complex-Mushroom2934 encountered this very issue with her boyfriend’s mom. So she turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for moral judgment.
“AITA for refusing to pay rent to my parents?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“So, I (24F) have recently moved back into my childhood home after finishing my Masters, before that I was living in a city hundreds of miles away for 6 years.”
“I worked full time while studying and while I made every month of rent etc. I’m still pretty in debt from my studies (like, I’m perpetually at the bottom of my overdraft).”
“I quit my job and moved home because my mental health is really suffering and has been for a while; I hated my job, studying was so draining and I always felt so alone and removed from everyone else in my life.”
“So, I moved home and was unemployed for about a month and a half, and I’ve just started a new job part-time where I make just over minimum wage.”
OP started working again.
“I got back into work because I felt the need to go back to being productive and earning but I’m part-time because I want to still be able to take time for my mental health and self-care and all that shit.”
“I spend about half of my weekly wage on driving lessons at the moment, and I spend another ~£100 every month on storage, as my mum informed me when I moved home there was no room for all of my belongings.”
“So. Here’s the situation. My dad has just asked me to start paying rent, and I don’t think I should.”
“For a little bit of context behind my feelings, last year my mum received ~£200,000 inheritance after a close relative died and she has since paid off the mortgage.”
“She still works full time and is a manager at her job.”
OP has little money to spare.
“I’m spending over half of my earnings on driving lessons and storage while trying to save to pay off uni debts and buy a car and/or move out again, and my mum still has more than half of her inheritance, as well as a job where she earns about 7x an hour more than I do.”
“I get that it’s a respect thing, I live in her house and I should pay at least a little bit but I’m broke and I’m trying to get myself out of this hole but it’s tough enough as it is.”
“My argument is: lady doesn’t need the money, and yeah, I’m 24, but I’m her child and I just feel as though she shouldn’t be trying to make money off of the child she decided to have.”
“Super biased and one-sided argument here, I know, but please let me know if I’m expecting too much and, like, victimizing myself. Can’t tell if I’m the rational one here or not”
OP added some edits.
“EDIT: I wanted to add my response to what a few people asked in the comments: the whole time I was at uni my parents said I could come home whenever I want, it’s my house too, and they never liked the idea of asking me for money to come back.”
“So, I asked (just to be clear) before I did come home if they would want rent and they said they wouldn’t as long as I help around the house and get my own groceries etc.”
“I do both of these things – I’m not specifically opposed to the idea of helping them out, but what they’re asking is unaffordable for me, especially after I’m paying for storage and learning to drive as part of their wishes!”
“Also, I’m in CBT therapy at the moment, work between 25-30 hours a week and already help around the house :)”
Redditors gave their opinions on the situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors were conflicted.
“I think NTA. As a mother, this actually makes me sad along with a lot of the comments. Yes, OP is an adult but shit happens.”
“I will help my girls out as much as I can until the day I die.”
“My dad is the same way. I separated from my ex in 2011 and we had a young child, my dad helped every way he could. I’ll never forget it, I don’t know what I would’ve done without him. Your kids don’t stop being your kids just because they’re adults.”
“OP isn’t sitting around playing video games all day if everything they said is true, looks like they’re trying and doing the best they can. That’s all I’d ask for.” ~ Allyanna
“YTA. Here’s the thing – you are no longer a child. You’re not even on the cusp of childhood anymore. You are a full blown adult. Your parents are no longer obligated to support you. They didn’t even have to let you move in AT ALL, so the least you can do is help out with some expenses.”
“And you thinking that $100,000 is a lot of money shows that you really need to do some learning about finances, because that is not much at all. Your mom is likely saving towards retirement so that eventually SHE can take a mental break and take time off from working. She’s not saving that money to take care of her adult child.”
“I’m sorry to hear of your mental health issues OP, but you should start seeing a therapist and find ways to help out your parents. If you truly can’t pay, maybe offer to do jobs around the house to make it up.”
“Edit: after seeing OP’s edit my mind is not changed, the edit is a bit too convenient for me so I’m taking it with a grain of salt. Maybe they did at first with some caveats or a timeframe, but I feel like there’s information missing.”
“She also still has not stated how much they want her to pay (that I can see; i went through some comments), which may make a difference. If she making $600 a month and they’re asking for $400 then yeah – ESH. But they could be asking $100 as a show of faith. Not knowing makes it hard to determine what is an “affordable” amount. Just my thought, we can absolutely have differing opinions on this!”
“Regardless of the pounds vs. dollars thing, my point was that OP’s mother getting an inheritance does not have anything to do with her not having to contribute to the household. I also said in my post if she CAN’T help financially to offer other contributions to her parents. But saying “oh, so and so died so you don’t need my money” is entitled. Regardless of UK or US, you need a lot of money to retire. Again – we can differ on that. No hard feelings at all.”
“I love my kids with all my heart, and if they needed to move back home because of mental health I’d support that 100%, but they would need to show good faith of contributing in some way. Maybe not financially, but I’d want to have an open conversation with my child on what that contribution would be. If OP is just outright saying no, then they don’t look great here. Doesn’t means she’s a bad person by ANY way shape or form. She’s learning and growing and in a rough part of life. No hate to any of you who disagree!” ~ wrightiam
OP added an update.
“UPDATE: ok, thank you everyone for all the comments!! The main suggestion was, despite how simple it seems, to clearly communicate with my parents. I did 🙂 the main issue I had was that I came home under the belief that I would have a home here free of charge, as my parents always told me, including when I asked them about rent before I moved home. I spoke to my mum and I’ll pay a reduced amount of rent as I’m saving to move back out again soon and, hopefully, a car, so I can travel for work thus opening up even more career opportunities.”
“Just fyi, I really don’t mind being called the asshole, I get your point of view, fine, but please don’t shit on me for having mental disabilities! I’m really, honestly, trying my hardest and life is really tough. I’m not trying to use it as an excuse but it really does impair my life by no small amount, hence the mention. Anyway. Thank you for all the comments :)”
Whatever OP and her family decide, it has to be a conversation.