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Articles > Life January, 22, 2014

Post-Uni Struggles: Young, unemployed & living with my parents

Sophie Bichener
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4.62 / 10

The one thing most university students have to face after slogging it out in the library, desperately trying to complete a dissertation in the final throws of their university course is moving home.

The thought of moving back in with your parents can put the fear of God into some after tasting the sweet, sweet delights of living alone; eating and drinking what you like, rolling home in the early hours of the morning, falling through the door and burning a pizza by falling asleep before it’s cooked.

I love my parents and we do get on really well (60% of the time we get on all the time). However, most parent and sibling combos (mothers and daughters in particular in my case) will know exactly what I’m talking about when I say there are always clashes… Having your heels thrown at you from the bottom of the stairs because you’ve left them in the middle of the hallway for the fifth day running was commonplace in my house and uttering the words ‘Muuummm, I’m hungry’ was met with an extremely steely gaze.

So, here are five things every student dreads or is dreading whilst moving home to live with their parents…

1. No longer living with friends.

If you’ve raised your nimble fingers to comment on this point ‘my parent’s are my friends’ then stop typing and walk away from the keyboard. Yes lots of parents are very lovely, I’m sure. But nothing is quite like living with your best friends. The gossip, the in-jokes and the freedom to do whatever you want with people you love hanging out with is something that every recent graduate will certainly miss.

2. Having to de-slob yourself.

Many students will fondly recall those days where you’re too tired/hungover to function and simply stay in your PJs, no make up, neglecting any sort of personal hygiene whilst snuggling up and watching TV or a movie with your flatmates. These days were great. However, when the parents are around, the judging gaze that falls upon your unwashed, lazy, not-getting-out-of-bed-at-all day, look is almost unbearable.


Photo by Mislav-M

3. Not crawling in at 4am.

Falling through the door, kicking off your shoes and throwing some greasy food in the oven or inviting nearly everyone you know back to yours for a very loud after-party could easily be done at home whilst your parents are asleep upstairs. However, you might not have a home to sleep in come morning.

4. Chores.

Shopping Line

Photo by BalalM

At university cleaning your room could be put off until the mold began to set in. At home, this is not the case. You must clean, cook, shop, tidy, garden and many other things in order to earn your keep.

5. Eating habbits.

Photo by Corie Howell

Whilst at university you can head to the local shop and fill your trolley with all sorts of delights. I had a slight obsession for grapes and chicken goujons with potato smiley faces (no, not at the same time). However, upon heading home your control over your pallet decreases significantly and as my friend Alice puts it “If you moan they’ll tell you you’re ungrateful”. Well said, Alice.

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  1. Lisa Ball

    I am currently applying for university and will be staying on campus. I believe living away from home is part of the university experience and it gives you the chance to gain independence. I am sure that living back with your parents after being at university could be challenging at times.

  2. Shannon Warren

    I’m still thinking whether to stay at home with my familey- or going into a halls this year. I don’t drink alcohol or any fizzy drinks really- so it may be best to stay at home on the first year- until a meet some mates 🙂

    • Daniella Mee

      I had this point of view when I was applying to uni. I’m currently living in halls and I’m grateful to my college friends, who are mature students, that encouraged me to move into halls. You cannot experience uni as much as possible if you commute. I’m not sure how far away your first choice uni is away from your home, but mine is a 45 minute train journey away. A lot of my course mates have missed out on a lot of socials as they meet in the evenings and don’t live in the area. It is also hard to organise meet ups with them as they have an additional hour’s time to factor in for travel.
      I don’t go home much due to finances but my parents come up every few months to see me. Halls has given me a lot of independence and the chance to realise that this is my time to myself. This is my first time living away from home, but I love it and I’m currently looking for a house to live in with the people I live in halls with.
      Even if you are quite close to your university, I would suggest moving into halls for the first year, and when it comes to thinking about the second year, think about whether you would prefer to go back living with your family or want to live your friends.
      I was contacting the people I’m living with now through Facebook before we moved to halls (the university had a page specifically for Halls of Residence). This helped me get to know them before I moved and it is also got rid of the problem of having that initial awkward meeting.
      I know this message is lengthy, but you have to consider all point of views as well as the finance side. I got more money from deciding to live in halls, but it would have cost me more to commute everyday.
      You’re never going to have your first year at uni again so make sure you don’t regret it. Some of my current friends, that commute, hate it that didn’t use/couldn’t have the opportunity to live in halls.
      I hope you get into your first choice uni and I wish you luck with exams (if you’re sitting any, I got into uni through a purely assignment-based BTEC) and you’re first year at uni 🙂

  3. Jenna Lawrance

    I’m really excited to go to uni and don’t plan to go home that much. When I do it won’t be for long . I think going home shouldn’t be about going out every night you should see family and old friends!

  4. iqrah gul

    I prefer living at home with my parents at least I don’t have to cook!

  5. Gamuchirai Bera

    Im a little scared with all this things people are saying poeple are saying i mean whats true and whats not

  6. Chelsie Bolton

    I dont think we should judge EVERY student to have a lifestyle like this. As not all of them do, even though the majority do. I have reapplied to go to a different university, as i was finding it hard commuting to my previous uni, therefore i return in september to finish my degree elsewere. Im 19, and i have lived in a house with my partner for 3 years. I do everything for myself, and is in business which i plan to continue after my studies. However, my friends who do live the student life seem to be undependant and rely on others too much! i really think students should act more like adults at university and start preparing for the world ahead of them 🙂

  7. mariya abdulali

    cant wait for uni:)

  8. Hannah Daly

    I can’t wait to go to uni, but I’m hoping to stay at home, not ready to leave yet haha!

  9. Daniel Daines

    Despite the emphasis on having to eventually come home, this article will raise the excitement of those enthusiastic about their chances of leaving to university init

  10. Dan

    After reading this article I have learn’t that there is more to life after University and that i need to work hard in order to not waste my time spent at Uni.

  11. Sujan Sivakumar

    Thank god I came across this article. Now I am 17 and going to go university this September. So after seeing this article I think I am going to save up money to buy my own flat . Problem solved. 🙂

  12. Aadil Chati

    Both ways either staying at home or living away if beneficial. Staying home you save money and get a job. Staying away can get you experience in order to be more independent

  13. amy mayor

    Living away whilst studying at university is all part of the growing up experience. You may save thousands of pounds but you will regret how much you missed out on socially, and eating and drinking whatever you want whenever you want without being judged!!

  14. waqar Muhammad

    i think stay home with parents but also find a job and this is how you can help yourdself and your parents in income. you can live independently and happily and also no tension ofexpenses.

  15. Martin Owens

    Despite the emphasis on having to eventually come home, this article will raise the excitement of those enthusiastic about their chances of leaving to university.

  16. will

    There is actually scientific evidence that suggests that we are heavily influenced by those around us, people get happy together, fat together, follow trends and as this article highlights lifestyle habits together. Hence living with our parents after independence is not only difficult at times logistically (if that’s the right word to use!) but can also be detrimental to the freedom of thought and general state of consciousness we experience. Many university leavers will have adopted new individualized and arguably evolved ways of thinking and attitudes to life, which may be threatened by old routines, habits and even beliefs of the previous generation which dictate home life.

  17. will

    I really like this article, no criticisms at all, well written, maybe you should try be a writer, see if that pays the rent!! : )

  18. Emma Collins

    people say that you should live at home for as long as you can, but i want to have my own independence, and i think a lot of people do at my age, but even though i will be moving out for uni, i will accept that after 3 years i may have to move back in with my parents.

  19. Mairah Ali

    I think you should spend as much time as you can living with your family because once you start your own independent life, life shows you all the different colour which we don’t see but our parents do. When i start university this year I’m going to stay with my family 🙂 everyone wants to live there own life and want to move out for university but when they get the chance they want to go back to stay with their family.

  20. Alanna Doherty

    Not living at home I’d the best thing I have done I have a sense of freedom to do what I want when I want x

  21. Amy Worboys

    After spending time living with your friends having the time of your life partying and not giving a care in the world moving back in with your parents will always be strange but something most people have to do due to money! You just have to remember that it won’t be forever!

  22. Lauren Orton

    I can not wait to go to university and for fill my career i have always wanted. Ive had my fair share of late nights out clubbing etc and am so excited to just get my head down and study and learn about the career i want.

  23. Seonaid Hume

    I leave home for university next year, and i cannot wait to be soley independant. However, I do think living with yout parents sometimes can keep your feet on the ground, so to speak. We need our family around us. I can’t wait to move out, but i will always appreciate what my parents do for me.

  24. Kayleigh Graham

    In the first year I am studying at home, then possibly in the second I’ll be moving in with my boyfriend. I start next year but yes this all seems very true, I’m lazy now and when I’m older in Uni it will be more of a problem. I can’t wait to have more freedom to do what I want 🙂

  25. lucy lunn

    in my opinion there should be more jobs available for students, not just in the summer time so that they can earn a living while getting into debt.

  26. Ross Walker

    Moving away to uni will cost a lot more than it would staying at home.

  27. ronald ho

    Never want to get back home haha dont tell my mum 😉

  28. Sadia Khanom

    You save a lot of money when staying at home and going to uni

  29. Jennifer McQuade

    I think that living at home can help save money however living away from home can help with independent skills you will need when you have left university.

  30. jamilla stapleton

    my opinion is if your not used to being independent it can be hard as a student having to manage and make sure u have the right equipment and food to survive a student life

  31. Gulsen Ahmet

    I am planning to stay at home while at university but I think university life staying on campus is about your will-power. You have to be strong and restrict yourself from eating a load of junk as it will not benefit you when it comes to studies. Personally I find that eating lots of junk food makes me feel tired and have no energy at all.

  32. Zhan Tao Fang

    After reading this article, i must say there is now more of a pressure on my a-levels and university :O

  33. katy Davies

    I love living with my boyfriends parents as they make me feel so at home. I can’t wait to go to university though and be more independent.

  34. Miya Overy

    It’s so daunting leaving home and your parents and siblings and I can imagine that the feeling of moving back home is very similar after being away for a while

  35. Taboka Habvane

    save your money stay at home and get a job if you want extra money

  36. John Wadeson

    In my opinion, moving back home with your parents is never going to be enjoyable after having three wonderful years of doing what ever you want with friends. but you have to agree the money you will be saving from not having to pay accomodation cost will be worth it. save up your money and when you have enouh for a deposit find a flat to rent and then you can start having fun times again. I currently rent a house off my parents so when i go to university im hoping that i will be able to carry on renting this if not i will jsut have to move back home with my parents.

  37. matthew woolley

    Im really excited about going to Uni, Just hope i get the grades. I can imagine that all of what you said is true haha.

  38. Riana Juma

    I can’t wait to go to university to be more independent. Its preparing you for your life when you have your own home. You have to do stuff by yourself and your parents is not always going to be there for you.

  39. Safiya Rehman

    I think that after being in the habit of everything being given to you for so long, if living away it can be quite difficult but then again you get used to being independent and if your wise you would save up and also prevent yourself from buying uneccessary things. It would definately help by getting a job firstly and anything will do to keep you going! 🙂

  40. Kate Spalding

    You have more freedom in university and no one judges you. I agree with everything said above.

  41. Sumaiya Khanom

    I think staying at home and going to uni is better as it can help you save a lot of money and will be able to spend money on other things. Also, you could get a part time job and pay back money for the university. however, being away form home can help you with your independent skills and can give you an insight of the outside world.

  42. Oluwaseun Oladipo

    I don’t know if I look forward to moving back home after uni, but one thing that I look forward to is my family looking after me when I’m ill. However I do agree with most of what you’re saying but living at home means much lower costs so that’s a massive plus too.

  43. Hugh Masuku

    That’s the whole process of growing up and going to University because it teaches a lot of life lessons e.g being an adult what it’s really like. It’s because as children we thought being an adult was the best thing ever because you can do anything you want but when you’re at University you really find out what it’s like being an adult. Rent, food, clothes etc.

  44. Ahmed hamza saheel

    my opinion is dont bury your heads in the sand and take time and apply to places that may either prove to be relevant to the course or something unrelated yet enjoyable.

  45. ellie broatch

    sometimes it feels too early to move from home, especially at 18; you still feel like a child. but being pushed straight into uni helps us to learn the basic living means and skills that the parents would normally do for us

  46. Mohammad Zubair

    My opinion is to go to the college or university library so it cuts down costs for students, this works especially for students who don’t have jobs or a source of income. Also it is much easier when you go to uni in the same city, because traveling is very inconvenient for students.

  47. Thomas Coull

    There is no need to move back home in the first place, it is a crucial part of the university experience to be able to support yourself in living, and you can’t do that then frankly your not as grown up as you quite think. Part time jobs are all over the place at uni, if you don’t mind bar work, which i don’t at all.

  48. Lena Adams

    My opinion for this is just to stay home and do Uni related coursework there. It cuts down on a lot of the fees that you could be facing in student accommodation while concentrating on your course rather than having to get a job or even a second job to finance your lifestyle.

    Another reason why i wouldn’t move away is the safety. University accommodation is probably thoroughly checked by the staff but anything could happen while you live independently or with a group of students. This could sound a bit paranoid but as a young woman i feel quite vulnerable when i am on my own and i like the reassurance of someone close like family to be there. Well that and i would get quite homesick.

    Staying in flats does have a positive point as you can gain independence and live the way you want to but only if you feel ready to.

  49. Ken Tan

    Wel, the sesh is a very big part of uni life. Seshing nearly every night is essential to get the banter and the lyk.

  50. gloria mathew

    I agree, moving away from home to university does help you to become Independant. The best thing is to get a part time job so you can keep up with the spending. It helps you to evaluate your lifestyle.

  51. Shohid Ali

    Its better to look for a part time job while studying in University rather than remaining home with parents. The reason for this is that each university student will have to pay back their debt therefore, it is wiser to ensure that they are working and collecting their money so they can easily owe the money that they took out.

  52. Megan McCormick

    I definitely think that that is all part of university life, and is a necessary lesson to learn — fending for yourself and sometimes moving back home can be a reality check as to maybe how some of your habits are unhealthy.

  53. Maria Majid

    I must agree! there is that ‘feel good’ factor of moving away, you get to experience a whole different world, as you are becoming independent.
    Few people like staying closer to home, I feel sometimes we should try stepping out of our comfort zone and try something different

  54. Maria Majid

    I will be going off to university this September and I’d like to stay near home. I do agree that there is that feel good factor of moving away, you tendtto

  55. Oliver Sivins

    I couldn’t do with living with someone messy, I’m undecided as to whether to apply for single or shared accommodation, single because I can clean up my own mess but then would I be missing out on the experience of living with new and different people ?

  56. Emma Fray

    That’s the student life tho, I see it all as a learning process. some peoples familys are very strict so when the young person gets to uni they go all out as they have never had freedom like this. I knew alot of students that got jobs in clubs and pubs.

  57. Andy Tang

    I heard there is a lot of people have a problem with roommate being very messes in the house, and I am very worry it happen to me when I go out and live wit the others. What should I do if I meet this type of problem???

  58. Rachel Haxton

    For my first couple of years at Uni at least, I have to stay at home anyway… Looking forward to experiencing all these in the future haha the drawbacks of staying with parents is also the lack of privacy…

  59. Hope Acton

    I totally agree with all of this. However, I am currently not at uni but have applied. I moved out of my parental household almost 5 years ago when me and my partner decided to move in together. We now have a 2 year old daughter together. I can totally relate to this post. Even when we stay over for a night (e.g, new years eve, for a party) I ended up getting up at stupid o-clock in the morning to clear up after 3 hours sleep!! I would never have done this in my own house!!

  60. Hazel Johnson

    Surely you should be now be independent, so whatever you do shouldn’t bother your family, you’ve learnt how to look after yourself and you can’t just stop doing that because you’re at home! 🙂 You could also get a job to avoid doing chores for money

  61. Sumira Hussain

    I’ve taken a gap year, to work and save some money and I thought it’ll be fine but boy was I wrong!! I’m exactly what the title reads ‘young, unemployed and living with my parents’ I can honestly say it sucks albeit I haven’t started university yet

  62. ANIEKA

    I think there should be more jobs out there for students to do while studying, so even after getting a degree you’re still earning/ can move out and have something to live on till you find a job in your choosen area…