Nearly one in five young men still live with parents

It’s no surprise that, in a recession, more young adults would opt to share a home with their parents. What is a surprise is this week’s news from the Census Bureau that a full 19 percent – or nearly one in five – men between the ages of 25 and 34 report living at home with their parents.

Back in 2005, pre-recession, the number was 14 percent.

But get this: That’s still higher than the current number of young WOMEN living at home. In 2005 that number was 8 percent, and now, it’s 10 percent.

So why do nearly twice as many young men cohabitate with their parents as young women? Well, the Census Bureau doesn’t get into that.  It does, however, note that the recession isn’t the only reason for the increase.

“The increase in 25 to 34 year olds living in their parents’ home began before the recent recession, and has continued beyond it,” said Rose Kreider, a family demographer with the Fertility and Family Statistics Branch, and author of the new Census Bureau study (which can be found by clicking here: America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2011).

As for the younger crowd, more than half of those between the ages of 18 and 24 are currently living with their parents: 59 percent of men and 50 percent of women. This, too, is an increase since 2005 – but these numbers also include all the nation’s college students who are currently living in dorms.

There’s lots more statistical information to be gleaned from the study, such as the number of children 18 and YOUNGER living with two parents (remember, this is this year, 2011, we’re talking about), and that sort of thing. But you’ll have to read the study for yourself if you want a more exhaustive analysis.

I’ll leave you with one interesting item, though: In 2011, there are 74.6 million children in the United States under the age of 18. That’s a lot of young-uns, isn’t it?

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Growing up is hard for even grown-ups to do

I set the carton box on the counter and waited my turn.

“How are you doing?” asked Linda, proprietor of Post Net, the postal store on Reserve Street in Missoula, when she finished with the customer ahead of me. She knew when I came in with a package under my arm that chances are it was addressed to one of my two daughters. And that meant they were not here visiting. And when they weren’t here visiting, I was battling breakdown. Fighting back the tears. I was doing a mighty job of it today.

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Weighing which delivery details to share with expectant mom

Seems like ever since school got out, I’ve just been too busy to blog. Here to bail me out, local writer – and mom of grown children confronting their own kid issues – Kathleen Clary Miller shares this column. Enjoy!

Should I tell my daughter childbirth is a bear?

When I answer the phone Kate is breathless.  “I’ve decided on the theme for my baby!  Winnie the Pooh!  It’s gender neutral!”

I blink twice.  First, to understand that babies now are thematic.  Second, to process the term “gender neutral,” then glean that she is referring to Winnie being appropriate for either girl or boy rather than the baby being neither girl nor boy.

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Why I don’t let them grow up

As the date of my stepson’s wedding in Texas approached, the travel plans commenced. Brad and I began to map out the journey we would undertake in the fifth-wheel from Missoula to Austin, and our three other adult children handled their own arrangements, since they each live in a different state-Arizona, California, and New York.

“Tell her she should get a rental car,” Brad offered as assistance while overhearing me on the phone with Kate, nearly 26 years of age, in Phoenix. I had just suggested she contact her sister-in-law, who would have access to one of the betrothed’s cars to see about a ride from the hotel to the wedding and back again. Not to mention all the occasions surrounding the actual ceremony. Logically, Brad insisted that having her own transportation would be more efficient.

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Finding balance with God and whole grains

Kate calls me regularly to vent. She rants to me from her kitchen while Skype allows me the visual thrashing of her arms and gnashing of her teeth. My daughter’s life, like most of ours, is stressful. She has just begun a new school year in a classroom brimming with hopeful and hopelessly dependent first graders, and on top of that she and her husband bought a new lab puppy over the summer. I tell her that no amount of Prilosec is going to assuage the acid reflux she suffers as long as she cannot quiet her mind.

We discuss how, in fact, medical science has determined that one cannot separate mental and emotional health from physical well-being. Each of us has suffered the bodily reaction to stress, for instance; most everyone has felt her heart race while enduring a panic attack running late to an important meeting at work or a promise to a small child waiting on the curb. She understands it while racing home during her meager lunch hour to let little Abby out of her crate or when facing a parent whose child cannot control himself in the classroom.

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OCD may run in the family

You can stop compulsively channel surfing; on the heels of “The Biggest Loser” and “Hoarders” hails the latest in intervention reality shows, “Obsessed” – this one splashing on screen the sorrows of sufferers from OCD, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

After my husband and I witnessed a commercial for the June 28 debut, he appeared unusually pensive.

“I may have a touch of that,” he hesitatingly confessed. “I count when I walk. But I don’t have to,” he added as an important distinction. I know of what I speak, being the mother of two daughters who for over five years have relied on prescription medication post therapy to keep them from ruminating in never-ending circular thought patterns.

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Exercise addiction shared by mother, daughter

“Mom, have you seen the infomercial for the Mari Winsor ACCELERATOR Pilates tape?” my toned and trim daughter asked me on the phone.  “I was tempted, and I knew you would be too.”

I had heard of the new addition to the collection of Pilates DVD’s this wonder woman developed.  But I had decided, quite practically, that it involved extra equipment and was too complicated; I was entirely satisfied with the Advanced Circle Pilates set.  I have accepted my body, just as it is—supplemented, that is, with a staggering heart rate and muscle toning routine, daily.  My name is Kathleen Clary Miller, and I am a workout-aholic.

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Grandbabies? No, grandpuppies

“The mama dog is pregnant!”  My daughter sang out with glee.  Our daily phone conversation that links her evening commute along the streets of Scottsdale, Arizona and my dinner preparation in the Huson, Montana kitchen was exceptionally celebratory.  At last, the anticipated puppy purchase was nigh.

“It’s my pretend baby girl, you know,” she pointed out—a psychological transference I’d already intuited since she has been married for nearly two years and visibly drools every time she so much as sees an empty stroller, let alone an infant in it.

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Walk, ski, snowshoe?

“I really want to try cross-country skiing!” pleaded my daughter moments after she’d picked up her bag. We were heading toward the airport terminal ladies’ room to change clothes so we could hike to the “M” and reward ourselves with sweet potato fries at Hob Nob on the “hip strip” in downtown Missoula.

I was game, having downhill skied throughout my lifetime, albeit not adeptly. I’d recently announced that I would never ski that way again. I’d been feeling my age and had sworn off virtually everything but walking, fishing, or pumping an elliptical trainer. Balance and coordination have never been my forte, but outdoor desire burns bright, I’d struggled with acting it out all my life, and now I imagined cross-country to be less harrowing a winter endeavor for one in her, ahem, late fifties. If I experimented with the technique-or lack thereof-with Katharine, I’d be safe from the embarrassment of falling and flailing in front of my peers who had heretofore invited me to come try it. This way, I could grow comfortably seasoned before next ski season!

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A mother’s marital advice

As a mother, I take great comfort in the assertion that my youngest – and rather dramatic, I might add – daughter has found her partner for life. Chris is patient, loves her unconditionally, and is truly her best friend. When they were dating, I watched for all the red flags; no worries, she is herself when they are together—no pretenses, no pretending.

Katharine and I are close. As is the case with her sister, we confide in each other like some sappy situation comedy series about a mother and adult daughter. I am well aware of the pros and cons to exercising such candor, and was reminded of just that when I answered the phone—rather late at night for our usual chat, it occurred to me as I lifted the receiver to my ear. Where was Chris?

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