Parents have lowered their expectations about when adulthood should begin, according to a recent Pew survey.
… The survey finds that today two-thirds (67%) of parents of children age 16 or younger say children should have to become financially independent from their parents by the age of 22—down from 80% who felt this way in 1993.
The increased expectation that graduate school will be part of their education may be partly responsible for this change.
Most everyone thinks young adults have it harder these days.
… Young adults themselves feel things are more difficult now. And middle-aged and older adults agree it’s much harder to be a young adult today than it was a generation ago.
Strong majorities of all adults say it’s harder for today’s young people than it was for their parents to find a job (82%), save for the future (75%), pay for college (71%) or buy a home (69%). In some cases, middle-aged and older adults are even more likely than their younger counterparts to say today’s young people have it harder.
With the exception of paying for college, I’m not convinced young adults have it harder today. Getting a job, saving, and buying a home were not all that easy for many of my generation. At the risk of sounding like a grumpy old codger, I believe many young people feel more entitled today than in years past. When it comes to “delayed gratification” today’s kids tend to think in terms of hours and days, not years. Is this the result of technology and over-attentive parenting?
All that being said, there’s a good possibility my oldest will return to live at home after graduating college and therefore will not be financially independent by age 22.