I love when friends and itsafullnest readers come across a story, article, news clip, or funny tweet – related to multigenerational families and in law dynamics. They think of me and forward the information.
[So that means you can send multigenerational/in law stuff for me to check out, too. Thanks!]
I was reading NPR’s article Home In a Home As Families Live Together Longer this morning, sippin’ on my green smoothie, and getting my feet rubbed on The Sharper Image foot massager. Yes, a great way to start my day.
It’s was also great to learn builders are noticing multigenerational trends and creating homes that support this living situation.
I was intrigued by the various layouts this article mentioned. Having common areas and separate living space is a great idea. Separate entrances or smaller, stand alone buildings – on the same property – is also appealing.
But on the other hand…
I have to be honest and admit I read many articles, about multigenerational family trends, with a bit of skepticism.
Many of the articles do a fine job explaining this trend exists and it’s a throw back to post World War II America. What the articles do not do a fine job of explaining or exploring is how this multigenerational trend is positively impacting families who opt in.
Yes, I know aging parents and “boomerang kids” are real factors. I also know certain ethnic groups lean toward multigenerational dwelling – I happen to be in one of them*.
Examples from this article:
The number of so-called multi-generational households — where adults are living with their elderly parents or grown children — has jumped since the Great Recession forced Americans to rethink living on their own.
“It’s not the nuclear family, the American dream family that we see all the time…”
“Although extremely popular within the Asian culture, (multi-generational living) is also something a lot of other people are having to deal with,” she said.
Builders say the tendency to live together longer comes down to a matter of economics as families of varied ethnic backgrounds cope with the wake of the recession and the needs of aging parents, who may have seen their retirement savings depleted in the downturn.
“We see so many families that are living like this,” said Jeremy Parness, Lennar’s division president in Las Vegas. “There’s so many different reasons, all driven mostly by economics.”
OK, so maybe I’m overly sensitive here since I enjoy and benefit greatly from my multigenerational living situation.
I’m hoping the reporter was trying to shed some informative light on this multigenerational trend – but at the same time – why all the buzzkill language?
In order to consider a multigenerational household, do you need to have a combination of the following…?
- no job
- unable to launch from the family nest
- non-vibrant and able to care for themselves parents
Other than my sensitivities – I’m wondering if other people and families decide not to “opt in” to the multigenerational lifestyle because the current resources don’t paint a balanced or kinda pretty picture.
Readers – what do you think?