Good news! Young people with ADHD aren’t the only ones who are delayed in becoming independent from parents.
Clark University has been surveying emerging adults (18 – 29 years old) and their parents for many years. Professor J. Arnett, who is leading these studies, reports that about 74 percent of young people in this age group are receiving some type of financial support from parents! If you are giving money to your “emerging adult” with ADHD, you are part of the new normal. Over 50 percent of parents also have some daily contact with their adult children. Parents continue to give emotional support and advice to these “emerging adults.”
The extended dependence of emerging adults is helpful for our adult children with ADHD in several ways. Our adult children with ADHD need more time to mature on a social and emotional level. Now, they will not feel so different from peers if they are living at home, receiving financial assistance, only working at a part time job, or still pursing an education. Many of their non - ADHD friends are in the same position. These friends are also seeking the advice of their parents, and maybe even taking that advice! Your young adult with ADHD may feel less isolated from peers and have less resentment toward you. The economy and changing demographics are not under our control.
As a parent, you now have friends who are continuing to support adult offspring. You don’t need to feel different from your social group. You have a normal family! As a matter of fact, you likely have more experience at helping your young adult in ways that maintains their dignity. Share your expertise with other parents. What are some ways that you help your “emerging adult” children?