The other Sunday I was over to my Mother-in-law’s house for lunch, one of my brother-in-law’s asked me “Why Americans don’t let their children live with them, and force them to move out on their own?” This is from a man who has his son and his son’s wife, plus the son’s wife’s sister and his 2 Y/O Grand baby, all living with him. More so, he has his grown 24 y/o, college educated, unemployed daughter, (Yes, I paid for her schooling that she has yet to use) still living there at home, plus my favorite person, his 9y/o daughter or my niece, Shay-shay.
This question is from a guy who earns less than P1, 500.00 per week. Granted his son has a fairly good job on Subic Freeport and contributes to the house. Plus his wife works at my house a few hours a day and makes P1, 200.00 per week. But that’s still a lot of people in a small house.
I asked if he was referring to my girls, who no longer live with us, or all Americans in general? He wasn’t quite sure, but I think it was about me.
Our oldest girl married her College sweetheart, who is from a well to do family, and she moved to her husband’s house, where they have a separate apartment to themselves, they never asked if they could live here with us. My daughter always knew that she could have, if she wanted to. Chris and Hanna have been married 9 years, they are still very much in love and I am happy and proud of them both. Chris is a great son-in-law.
If you’ve read any of my past articles, than you know our youngest daughter Ymir Thea is living her “Big Adventure” in Singapore, and it would be most difficult for her to commute from our house to work every day. Then I explained that when she worked on the Subic Freeport for five years, she did live with us, and I asked nothing from her in payment to do so. We just loved still having her here, and she knows she can come back anytime; her room is the same as she left it, and her damn cat is still here.
I think he misunderstood the “Kicking Out” part. I explained that I was raised to be an independent man by my parents, who provided me and my siblings with every tool required to be successful in life. It was I, who chose to go into the Navy vice college, though two of my brothers went to college, and we all knew that we could live at home, until we were ready to venture out on our own. (I did finish college in the Navy and on the GI Bill).
The “Rock” our parents provide to us, meant that we could go forth and live our own life, yet we all knew that if need be, we could come home with our tail tucked between our legs, and start again. But it just never happened. Now it’s my turn to be the “Rock”, and our girls know that we are here to help in anyway, and will bring them home if the need arises I don’t care how old they get to be.
It was never a parent’s job to support you forever, while one lies around watching TV and eating their food and vegging on their couch. When I was finished explaining that this is how we American’s raise our children that our kids go off on their own, seeking fortune and adventure. And hopefully we gave them what they needed to fulfill their dreams. I think my brother-in-law understood, albeit, he does not fully agree with it. To aid him, I pointed out that we all grew up subject to our local culture norms, and that there is no right, as well as there is no wrong way. It’s just who we are and where we’re from. If he ever moved to the U.S. he would be free to follow his culture and bring up his children in his own way, and never be forced to adapt to neither mine, nor me to his. As I’ve said before, if we were all thought the same, they’d only have made one type of car, and wouldn’t that be a boring place to live?