All bloke’s leave home at some stage whether to go to university, start a new job or just to get on with adult life. However, the act of leaving the protective shell of the family home can feel like a thing to be feared or regretted. We should not let these fears cloud our appreciation for what is a real opportunity to enjoy independence, freedom and responsibility unlike any we can have under the shelter of our family roof.
There is a growing trend in Australia and globally, for young people to stay home for longer and longer, even into their late twenties. While there are legitimate financial and family reasons that make up a portion of this trend there is also a resistance amongst young people, and even parents, to allow life to take its natural course and for young blokes to try and strike out on their own.
This has the dangerous potential of arresting the development of our young men and putting their lives on hold. How often have we heard the saying that the 30’s are the new 20’s. While young people these days have different sets of challenges to face than their parents, from exorbitant housing prices, longer periods at university and what can be a difficult job market. It is still important to continue our life’s journey in an enthusiastic and optimistic fashion.
What young blokes need to do when thinking of moving out is realistically ask themselves some important questions:
- What mental, physical, social and financial advantages and disadvantages are there to moving out?
- Is this a move that will have a positive impact on my future?
- Will the place I move to be a safe and healthy environment?
- Am I being realistic about my expectations and what I can afford?
- Have I got my family’s support?
If the answers to these questions are positive, it’s time to start planning. Planning for the practical matters usually comes first, such as when and where to move, what appliances and furniture to get and who if anyone to live with. However, it’s important to acknowledge that leaving home for the first time is not easy and there will likely be feelings of anxiety, homesickness and loneliness along the way and that needs to be planned for as well.
Ways to deal with this are to have the practical details planned well in advance to reduce stress, but also to plan for your emotional wellbeing. Try to resolve any arguments you may be having with your parents and be sure you aren’t moving out prematurely simply to avoid conflict. Make sure to schedule time to visit home, or at least call often and keep involved. Importantly try to make the new home feel like a proper home to you, whether that be by bringing your own mementos from home, or by creating a similar routine.
The choice to leave home involves many uncertainties but can be rewarding because it exposes us to opportunities for personal growth. Take the time to enjoy this exciting new chapter in your life journey.
Jaxon and the Team
The Regional Men’s Health Initiative delivered by WMH (Inc.)
PO Box 768, Northam WA 6401
Phone: 08 9690 2277