UK Telegraph 07 February 2008
A growing generation of “boomerang” children who stay at home into adulthood is straining family life to breaking point, researchers have warned. Some are students who return to the nest after university, saddled with debt, but others are simply unable to leave their domestic comforts behind and remain through their 20s and 30s. Family homes are being turned into battlegrounds as a result, with physical and verbal aggression rife as parents and children clash over drugs, alcohol and money, the charity Parentline Plus said.
… The number of children who suffer what has been described as “failure to launch” syndrome has increased dramatically. One recent study found that the proportion of young adults who return home after initially fleeing the nest has almost doubled since the late 1950s from 25 per cent to 46 per cent. Another claimed that 27 per cent of first time home leavers return home at least once, and that one in ten newly independent young adults move out and in again up to four times before they leave permanently.
The problem has become so severe that Parentline is drawing up a self-help guide for affected families. In its report published yesterday, entitled Will They Ever Fly The Nest?, the charity calls for more support for parents seeking to assert their influence and authority, particularly where drugs and violence are concerned. It also wants the Government to provide them with information about issues like housing benefits, grants and training opportunities.