Parasite Singles: A Millennial Trend

Jennifer Lawrence does it. So does Taylor Lautner. And now, a new report says more people in their generation are, too. A new Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data shows that 36 percent of the nation’s young adults ages 18 to 31 were living in their parents’ home in 2012. That’s the highest share in at least four decades.

(Photo Credit: MingleMediaTV/flickr)

MTV reported as late as April 2013 that millennials Lawrence, Lautner and Demi Lovato are among the celebrities still living with their parents. The MTV piece  quotes the stars as liking the emotional support network of family as one reason. Clearly, money probably isn't an issue for these movie stars, but it is a primary factor for the millennials who are crashing their parents’ digs. The Pew analysis cites three driving factors for the higher share of Gen Y’ers living at home: 

Declining employment. The percentage of 18- to 31-year-olds with jobs dropped from 70 percent in 2007 to 63 percent in 2012. 

Rising college enrollment. The percentage of 18- to 24-year-olds enrolled in college rose from 35 percent in March 2007 to 39 percent in March 2012.

Declining marriage. The percentage of 18- to 31-year-olds who were married dropped from 30 percent in 2007 to 25 percent in 2012.

So how long is too long to live at home? A Coldwell Banker Real Estate survey of 2,000 Americans showed that Americans disagree. Respondents to the survey ages 55 and older think it’s just fine for adults to live at home with parents for as long as three years, but 18- to 34-year-olds answered it’s OK for five years, according to CNNMoney’s report on the survey. This Coldwell Banker infographic shows more opinions and a psychotherapist’s tips for parents and adult children living together.

Analysis by online salary database PayScale revealed that millennials should pursue math and science if they want to earn the big bucks (and avoid living at home as adults.) These Gen Y Job Stats provide insight into other top-paying jobs for this generation. Or check out these “20 Job Rules for Millennials” by 

Tell Us What You Think

How old is too old to live at home with your parents? Share your opinion or experience on Twitter or in the comments section below.



  1. 9 Klaus 10 Feb
    What can be done when the wife countermands every attempt by the Father to get an adult Parasite child (Aged 42) to vacate the parents domicile, find her own place and for once and all move all of her belongings (Property, Furniture ,etc) out? The argument by the Parasite child is "I do not have enough money to afford my own place"....! My answer is so what? You have been an Adult for the past 22 plus years! Get on with your life;...MOVE OUT!
  2. 8 twist 07 Nov
    i worked with a millenial who had terrible work ethic, demands for a huge salary, the expectation of martini lunches and international travel. he lied about his work history, work accomplishments and even his education. then, being unqualified but able to "talk" his way into the position, i ended up having to take on a lot of his workload.this seems to be a trend with millenials who were told from the start that they were all "special". what we have now ended up with, in the work force is a bunch of entitled babies who aren't able to conduct themselves in an adult, let alone professional manner.
  3. 7 Itsteh weed 29 Oct
    Wake up people, I have yet to meet one of these kids that didn't have pot pipe glued to their lips. As an employer not in a million years.
  4. 6 Jenny 24 Oct
    I think this question could only be asked in the West and only in recent generations. Extended families are common throughout much of the world and no one questions them, and such extended families have historical roots. I live alone, but I would love the support of my family, and I can see the benefit of living as a family group on many levels. The stigma should be done away with. It should always be okay for extended families to live together, no matter the age, as long as all the able adults are sharing equally in the responsibilities to the best of their abilities and as circumstances allow.
  5. 5 Shatteredmace 18 Oct
    While I do agree that some of the issues James Igoe raises (above) are indeed true, I fear that most folks in general refuse to "Just Say No" to credit cards. Furthermore, there is plenty of financial aid available for those individuals who choose to go to school to better their lives.
    The problem I see is that many choose to buy into the sales pitch from the private College Recruiter "Learn anything you like, study for your dream job, etc. etc." and four years later the young person is left with a Bach of Art in Basket Weaving (or something just as frivolous) and a six-figure student loan debt and no job prospects or hirable skills.  Don’t get me wrong, art is important so if one has talent, they should work it, but also learn a skill that pays the bills meanwhile.

    As a Gen-X'er, I went back to school for a Bach of Science at the age of 35 while working full time (plus a part time on the side) while supporting my family. At 39, still have 1.5 years to go to complete but its getting done.

     As a member of the generation that had to raise its own parents (Cause after the party of ‘69 was over many Gen-X’rs had to watch while the “Baby Boomer” moms and dads sobered up, overcame drug addiction, and dealt with the violence and anger involved with PTSD from Vietnam), I do not agree that we parents should toss our kids out in the streets at 18 like many of ours did.

     I do believe we should support a strong foundation for the next generation’s future. So yes, house them as they get their feet on the ground and stable in their careers. Yes, provide true encouragement as to what is available to them and what is out there to be accomplished (but no more pie in the sky cloud castles). Furthermore, explain the realistic expectations from future potential employers (and cut back on the “express yourself” attitude). Finally, it probably wouldn’t hurt to throw in the whole “don’t get married –or have kids- until your at least 25 years old” conversation. Unlike what FIFI had to say (above),
       ----NOPE IT IS NOT WIN - WIN.  
      -----I raised you, JOBS DONE!
    If you are adult enough to whip it out,
    then YOU DEAL with the consequences and
    and IF YOU CANT, THEN DON’T!!!!!
    Keep your button flyed!

    Furthermore, if you want to express yourself:
      Paint a picture or write a poem…
    nobody else cares for your self mutilation expression; sorry, we all have our own baggage to “express”… getting offensive facial and neck tattoos and extreme piercings just makes you look like a jackass. 
     4” Slugs in your earlobes? Seriously!?! If your highest aspiration is to work as a latte barista for the rest of your life, then sure; but most quality employers will not want you representing them and the people that work for their company so don’t bother applying unless you like wasting your time and scaring the crap out of receptionists.  
    And don’t blame that on societies lack of understanding… even in nature, the abnormal (wolf, lion, buffalo, chimpanzee, etc.) gets kicked out of the pack… blame it on a natural order of things.   

    Needless to say that while I believe in support from the parents; the Younger-Gens need to take a bit more responsibility for own actions and stop pleading victimization.
    Grow the F-Up.
    In the words of Dennis Leary:
               "Life's Hard;Get a Helmet".
  6. 4 Chelpumeme 22 Sep

    My opinion only, middle aged thirty year old so called kids living at home because they are irresponsible, half addiction problems, taking advantage of parents generous gift of love.  These kids have no plans to support their parents financially or emotionally. Check the situations today's of how any kids care about their family members in nursing homes abandoned!!!!

  7. 3 Fifi 19 Sep
    In any case, who says the nuclear family is all that great? Mother and Father live alone in one state or nursing home, kids scattered to the 4 winds chasing jobs.
     Many of us parents who are empty nesters are now wishing we had built that mother-in-law studio apartment when we had the chance - we would probably have one of our very great kids staying with us a bit longer .  This your home vs my home idea is very Western, people of other cultures very often find it quite normal to live at home with parents. The support system works both ways- the aging parents have a strong arm, back wrist to help with some things; the child/ren have a place to live at relatively low cost; if there are in-laws and  grandchildren there are built-in baby sitters (grandparents) and built  in lawn mowers (adult son).
    It is very often a WIN-WIN situation.
  8. 2 james igoe 13 Sep


    I am offended by your sentiment.  I am not a millennial, and I think that income inequality is significantly impacting peoples' ability to become independent. Additionally, the credit economy harms the less-than-affluent, creating booms and busts. The political calls for governmental austerity, the lack of social mobility, and the lack of concern for the lesser in society has created an environment harmful for most below the top quintile.


    Blaming individuals, although there might be some traits common to the live-at-home, misses the bigger picture, the context that explains the causes of the problem.

  9. 1 Hannah 08 Sep

    Confession: I am a Millennial. I lived at home with my parents after college. And I am grateful that I did.

    I think there is a misconception about Millennials living with their parents for a bit of time. Yes, this is different than generations before; we were very rarely told by our parents at age 18, "I love you, you're great, now leave!" The thing is - many of us recognize this advantage that we have. Millennials living with their parents aren't playing video games all day and relying on mommy and daddy for their futures. Many Millennials living at home are either working three jobs, taking unpaid internships, or networking on a regular basis. And, all the while, we long for that moment we can land a great job and MOVE OUT. 

    I am one of these people. I graduated with a heap of private school debt. I had no idea what I wanted to do, so I had a conversation with my parents. They let me move home so I could follow my passions. I worked two unpaid internships, networked like crazy, and also worked a part-tome job and volunteered on a regular basis. Now, I am financially independent and working my dream job.

    I work for a company that studies and speaks about bridging generational gaps in the workplace. Yes, Millennials are different. We grew up in a different time, had different parents and entered the "real" world in a different way. But no generations is wrong or right. We're just different. The beauty is that when we accept each other and celebrate our differences, we're all happy. And happy people (statistically proven) make for better work and better home lives.


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