A parent’s job is never done. Even when your kids are grown up and moved out and have lives of their own, you’re still their parent and they’ll still look to you for guidance and support.
Here are 25 important rules to help you do your best at parenting your adult children:
1. Stop asking when they’ll get married. Seriously.
2. Always pay for the meal at restaurants.
3. Support their choices – if they’re happy living in the weird part of town in a dingy studio, act as though you love it too.
4. Don’t embarrass them by pulling out awkward childhood photos.
5. Be ready to become a storage facility for at least some of their unused stuff.
6. Don’t use emojis in text unless you really know how to use them. It just looks awkward.
7. There’s a 70% chance that clothes you bought for them without them being there won’t fit.
8. Let them be the one to suggest FaceTime. Don’t surprise them with it.
9. Stop messaging them video links on Facebook.
10. If they don’t want you on their Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, etc., respect that. Honestly, you may not want to see some of it anyway!
11. Even if they’re having a tough time (heat turned off, noisy neighbors, etc.), don’t force them to come sleep at home. Let them know you’re here for them, but let them try to resolve things themselves.
12. Don’t be mad if you don’t get a “Thanks!” for helping them move, covering some groceries, buying furniture, or landing a job interview. Being a parent is a thankless job, and you already know that.
13. If they say something is a huge crisis, act like it is. Don’t try to downplay it.
14. While there’s nothing wrong with being sex-positive and helping your kids make better choices, don’t go overboard either. Even as adults, no one wants to talk to their parents about their sex life.
15. More often than not, your trips down memory lane are best kept to yourself.
16. Much like marriage (see Rule #1), don’t pester them about having kids.
17. Always help them with shopping for their grandparents. They have no idea what to get.
18. Don’t turn up to their place unannounced. You’ve been warned.
19. If you think they’re leaning towards a bad decision, gently question it, but don’t go too hard one way or the other. Ultimately, it’s their decision to make.
20. Your adult kids don’t need your help – until they do.
21. They may not always remember your birthday. You must still never forget theirs.
22. If they haven’t answered your texts for a little bit, don’t freak out.
23. Unless there’s a ring on it, you don’t need to buy their significant other a holiday gift. It may backfire if a “casual” friend (kids these days) gets the wrong idea.
24. Be comfortable with the fact that you might be on a need-to-know basis when it comes to their lives. Don’t worry, when they really need you, they’ll come to you.
25. Stop pressuring them. You’re probably doing it even when you think you aren’t. Stop.