Leaving the nest: Young adults move forward in big numbers to test the job market

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 2 2013 7:25 p.m. MST

The young people who are in the most frequent contact with their parents are the least autonomous and least capable of regulating their own lives, psychology professor at Middlebury College Barbara Hofer and co-author Abigail Sullivan Moore found.

In their book "The iConnected Parent: Staying Close to Your Kids in College and Beyond while Letting Them Grow Up," Hofer and Moore wrote that self-regulating young adults are more satisfied with their social lives, professional careers and overall life experience. These students tend to go further in life than their parent-regulated peers.

Parents should avoid getting involved in unprecedented ways, such as excessive involvement in the ups and downs of a child's romantic or social life, getting involved in a child's ordinary conflicts by contacting roommates or friends, or expecting to hear from their child every day, Hofer and Moore wrote in their book.

Children should not be dependent upon their parents for any mundane tasks such as organizing an apartment, sorting laundry or boiling spaghetti, Hofer and Moore wrote.

"Be mindful of who is initiating communication: Let your child take the lead. If your child sounds annoyed when you call, back off," Hofer and Moore wrote. "Know how to recognize and respond to venting. Listen, but don’t rush to problem solve."

"This is my time to prove to (my parents) that I can do this," Martin said. "They have the privilege of watching their hard work as parents pay off."

Rachel Lowry is a reporter intern for the Deseret News. She has lived in London and is an English graduate from Brigham Young University. Contact her at rachel.lowry@gmail.com or visit www.rachellowry.blogspot.com.

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