Failure to Launch Syndrome: Ways Parents Can Help Their Young AdultNovember 4, 2020
The failure to launch syndrome trend may not be a trend, it may be the new reality. More and more young adults are moving in with their parents and never leaving after graduating from high school or college. A lot of this comes from a place of fear and rejection. Fear of failing in adulthood can feel crippling–and home is familiar and comforting.
Tips for how to handle failure to launch syndrome
Sit down and talk about it.
This is not the time to leave frustrations and worries buried deep down inside. If you believe your son or daughter is really struggling to take the big step towards adulthood, then address it. Despite the discomfort, sit down and talk about their fears.
Instead of accusing them of being lazy or childish, ask them how they’re feeling. To avoid an argument for example, “Instead of raising your voice, lower it, and speak more slowly.” If you talk to them as you would another adult, they will be more likely to respond like one. As another example of being considerate, if your young adult opposes college vehemently, ask them what about it makes them feel that way. Don’t come at them with any judgment, only open ears. This will help develop a flow of information between you and your son or daughter. It also allows you to have a more complete view of how they’re doing.
Offer financial support–but not unfettered support.
You’d be shocked how many parents hand over the credit card for free use to their young adult child. This is a mistake and enables failure to launch syndrome. Giving your child a place to live for free is one thing, but funding an entirely new wardrobe is very different. If they want extra spending money, they need to put in some effort.
If a job seems like too big of a step, look for more low-key options. Something like yard-work or a thorough cleaning of the house–something you’d usually hire someone to do, not just basic chores.
Enable job & school searches.
Many young adults that struggle with failure to launch syndrome had a tough time in school. The struggles may have been caused by undiagnosed learning differences or some other issue–nonetheless, it feels like a failure. This can make it hard for these young adults to take the steps into full adulthood out of a fear of failing.
Offer to help them find something that fits their interests. Sometimes going off to a 4-year school is too scary, but local community colleges are a perfect place to start. If they’re a recent graduate and they’re struggling to get out into the job market, begin with something small and part-time. Starting to take steps towards adulthood, even just small ones, can help tremendously. Some secure job search websites include: Indeed, Glassdoor, and ZipRecruiter.
Trails Momentum is here to help
At Trails Momentum, we help young adults, ages 18 to 25, who were previously lost and unmotivated find perspective, direction, and renewed energy to venture into adulthood. We strive to help our students acquire new skills that will aid them in achieving success academically, in personal relationships, and in other areas of life.
We help individuals learn to engage with their environment, strengthen their sense of self, set goals for themselves, and move towards independence.
For more information about how we help with failure to launch syndrome at Trails Momentum, call us today at (877) 296-8711.