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Growing up and leaving home


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I had the great opportunity to go to college in undergrad and grad school living away from home for almost 8 years. Living with people I never met before, living at 6 different apt/dorms, 13 different people, experiences and incredible freedom. I visited home maybe 2-3 times a year for a few days.

 

Last November, I moved away from my g/f and her parents apt after living w/ them for 1 year (my ex's idea). i felt so restricted living there. they spoke a foreign language 99% of the time so i didn't understand what they said, they didn't really speak english, they got upset that i didn't go to sleep early (i was just quietly play online games in my room), that my room wasn't perfectly clean, that i played video games all the time, that i had quit my job without looking for a new one. i felt like i could do nothing right there. then i got 2 very good job offers: 1 in Los Angeles (where i was living) and 1 in San Diego (where my mom and relatives live). i chose the latter as a way to move away. i moved home w/ my mom.

 

i thought it would be okay. i thought moving away from my g/f and her parents would give me freedom. but i really traded one prison for another. my mom wants to buy a house. when i first moved back, she wanted to go see new houses all the time. she wanted me to buy a new house with her since i made a lot of money at my new job. if you know anything about house prices in california, you know they're ridiculous ($500k+ for like a 3 bedroom condo). i was very much considering doing this. i think some parents are better than others at transitioning to how they treat their children. i will be forever 10 yrs old to my mom. "why did you buy this measuring tape online? i could have bought it for $1 at a store" ... "can you wash the dishes? can you wash the dishes? hey, can you make sure to wash the dishes?" ... "why are you playing games on your computer? why don't you go and do something with your life?" ... "why don't you go buy a present for your cousin? it's his b-day, you should go buy him a present"

 

basically, sometimes when i get home from work, i just sit in the car when i see my mom's car home. i just sit and prepare myself mentally to go in. and on weekends when i wake up, i use to lie in bed if my mom was home. just lie there waiting for her to leave. i know what everybody's saying "LEAVE!". it's easy to say, but my mom is a very needy/clingy/whining type of person. i just feel bad for her because she's had such a tough life. had a horrible husband, raised 2 teenage kids herself, got a bachelor's degree in her 40s, came to a new country, learned a new language and culture. really inspirational stuff to most people. it's just she needs so much from me because she has few friends and i just want to be left alone. i think i'm like the highlight of her day when i get home. i just hates how she tries to manipulates me. "i have so little money, can you give me some?" "oh, we need to buy your brother a new car, it'll be cheap" ... "you need to wake up for work, it's already 8am!!!" (in reality, it's like 7am)

 

anyways, my g/f cheated and broke up w/ me and i lost meaning in life 2 months ago. i realized i needed to move out. i needed to find new meaning in life. my cousin who is the same age as me who lives about 20 min away had an open room and he's offered it to me before. i told him a few days ago i would take it. and last nite, i told my mom i was moving out. she was sad and upset. she had asked me to go out and buy some groceries, i asked her why she couldn't do it or ask my bro. she said "my 2 kids are useless". then i said i was moving out. it was like some moment from a movie. then i told her i would go buy the groceries after i took a shower (it was 10:00pm, i was in the middle of eating dinner and i hadn't taken a shower since i had worked out after work). and my mom said "no, i'll go" and she left...

 

just so much guilt from leaving home. there's one obligation to help my mom and another to myself. i know if i was a parent, i would want my kids to take flight and live their lives independently. but my mom pretty much wants me to live with her forever, and i think part of this is from culture. it's just more expected in chinese cultures that kids take care of the parents. i just feel conflicted. as someone who has lived here since he's been 3 yrs old, i guess i'm a mixed culture person. i feel like i get the worst of both cultures and that i don't really fit in anywhere (don't speak chinese so i can't really relate to my relatives and i never had that many friends in my life so i don't feel like i fit in here... heh, this is probably for another post). anyways, i just felt like writing this down. ](*,)

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Is your mom completely helpless in her home? Is it a must, as far as physical needs are concerned, not emotional, that you need to be there? As you stated your mom doens't have that many friends, so I am sure she does get lonely at times. But you're not even 30 yet, and you feel you must stay home. I can understand cultural reasons, but you also have to think about yourself. Could you live with yourself if you decided to stay home with your mother? You've lived in that house for over 20 years...isn't it about time you started what you wanted to do? I am sure your mother would get over it, once the pain is all gone.

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my mom is physically fine. she's in her 50s, has a steady job, makes enough to live on.

 

we live in an apt. we've actually lived in like 6 different houses (relatives)/apts in San Diego since my parents got divorced when i was in jr high. i've had the lucky opportunity to call 21 different places "home" for various amounts of time in my life. i don't even bother unpacking when i move, it's only a matter of time until i'm forced to move again. there are boxes lying unpacked in the apt in the living room from when i moved in 9 months. this is due to a) the before reason, b) there is flat out not enough room in the apt for my stuff. i live in a 1-bedroom apt with my bro (who just moved back from school last month) and my mom. my bro and me share the bed like we did when we were little kids and my mom sleeps out on the couch.

 

there's really no reason for us to live like this because we make enough to afford a larger apt, but i've been reluctant to move to a bigger one because i really just want to move out away from my family.

 

anyways, i'll probably start moving my stuff slowly to my cousin's place over the next 2 weeks before i finally move in. i think i miss living with people my age like in college. being able to do whatever i want without constantly getting nagged and getting asked ridiculously, annoying questions all the time. sometimes living with my mom i feel like i'm living with a 2 yr old child because she's always asking me questions ("why is the sky blue"-kind of questions), looking at what i'm doing, asking what i plan on doing today, asking if we want to get cable tv, asking if we want to go rent a video (i swear my mom cannot make a decision by herself, her indecisiveness drives me insane). there's absolutely no privacy... like i said, i just feel like i need to leave

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Then leave. If this is driving you crazy, and your mom is perfectly capable if living by herself, than get out of there. Although it is smart as you're doing to transition yourself. But you need this growth more than ever. If you feel that you can never permanently live somewhere, than hopefully this will make better of that.

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