What I Learned About Moving Home at 23 Years Old
I never thought I would end up moving home after college. While I was attending college, I lived independently and supported myself away from my family. My school was five hours away so I couldn’t see my family too often. Of course, I visited them and spent a couple of semesters at home, but I enjoyed my independent lifestyle and would always look forward to returning.
However, when it came time to graduate and time to plan moving home, I had no idea what it would have in store. Would it be an adjustment for me? How would I handle living with my family again after so long of total independence? While these questions all occurred to me naturally, it wasn’t until after I had been home for some time that new questions began arising. Questions such as ‘Am I a failure for moving home?’ or “Should I be at another stage in my life?’ Thanks to social media, I could see my friends from high school moving into their own homes, getting engaged, and moving to exciting cities for their careers. Yet here I was, living with my parents after attending a top university in Florida with a part time job. It’s safe to say I felt inadequate for moving home.
I struggled with these emotions for a while, and still do. I’ve just gotten better at handling them and understanding my situation. After a while, I realized that there was no point in comparing where I was in life to where my friends were. We had led completely different lives with completely different experiences, why would it make sense for us to be at the exact same stage in our lives? I had to learn how to accept that I was doing my absolute best and be okay with that. It certainly wasn’t easy to do, especially with how much exposure we receive daily into other people’s lives. However, I have learned to appreciate what I have done so far and what I am currently doing.
I feel that this issue is something that a lot of people struggle with. With today’s prevalence of social media, it’s easy to compare yourself to other people and feel inadequate about your own life. It’s important to understand that not everyone moves at the same pace and is living their lives separately from others. I had to come to terms with this fact after I began feeling terrible about myself for not moving into my own house or starting a career, like so many people I knew. Everyone is going through life in their own way and is doing their best. I had to learn to accept that my best was okay.
In the end, adjusting to moving home wasn’t as big of a deal as I thought. I adjusted to my new situation rather quickly and learned to accept I was no longer living independently. Regarding that aspect of the move, I feel I did fine. What I didn’t anticipate was how I would handle these unexpected feelings associated with moving back in with my parents. I learned a lot about myself with how I dealt with those feelings of inadequacy and comparing myself to others based on their lives through social media. It’s important to understand that life goes on and to know that it will get better.
“Always remember that your present situation is not your final destination. The best is yet to come”
Alexis Lopez is a recent graduate from the University of Florida where she graduated with her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. She began interning under Amanda Landry at Caring Therapists of Broward in April 2017. Her interest in Counseling Psychology began during her time at UF when she took a class titled Intro to Counseling Psychology and has admired the field of counseling and therapy ever since. She hopes to one day become a Licensed Mental Health Counselor herself and is in the process of applying to graduate school. She looks forward to working with Amanda and her team at Caring Therapists of Broward and is eager to learn all she can during her time here.