Break-Up And Divorce – The children are growing up

Sometimes parents have problems coming to terms with their children growing up

A particularly explosive situation is when teenage stepsiblings fall in love with another. What happens when her 17 year old son falls in love with his 15 year old daughter and they all sleep under one roof over weekends? Many parents are often oblivious to this quite common occurrence.

Parents are entitled to their values and every person has the right to set rules in their own homes, but children over the age of legal consent need no-one’s permission to have sex.

Once they turn twenty one, one can ask them to respect rules out of to consideration, but they are adults and one can no longer prevent them. New rules, new boundaries and reciprocal respect are terms to be renegotiated when adult children live with their parents.

Case Study

A 25 year old young man enjoyed the privilege of still living in the same house as his parents. His girlfriend often slept over.

His mother complained to me she could not understand why the kids kept their bedroom door locked. In the morning she wanted to open the door to let the dog out, but it would be locked. “They are probably having sex,” I remarked. Her jaw dropped and her eyes grew large. She was stunned. She never considered that her son was a man, who actually had sex.


Adult children failing to launch often place severe stress on their parents’ finances. Developmental phases continue far beyond teenage years. Parents in their 50s are concerned about their retirement funds and basically deserve the peace of mind that they can reap the rewards of 30 to 40 years’ of hard work.

Young adult children failing year after year of university or young adults who do not search for and find employment are exploiting their parents’ goodwill and blind spots. Grow up. Get a job.