How to Survive the Homelife Until September

Ok, relax, just breathe. You’ll be back at school in…30 days.
This mantra grows increasingly ineffective the longer I am forced to live under the same roof as my mother. If you are lucky enough to have left behind your home home for your school home, then God bless you, throw a kegger in your living room (on a motha effing TUESDAY!) If you, like me, have yet to escape your personal circle of hell, I’ve compiled a small guide to maintaining your sanity as well as familial relations for the remainder of this short (but dear Allah, oh so long) stint back home. Because, let’s face it, being disowned would be counterproductive if your parents still pay the majority of your tuition/rent/medical bills and whatnot.
Scenario: You come home from a bar crawl, unhappy matriarch/patriarch up and awaiting your return, toe tapping a Morse code slew of disapproving comments.
Solution: Passive Aggression. Outwardly, bow your head and accept the berating and “Not under my roof” nonsense. Avoid eye contact, showcasing your humility and apologetic demeanor, all the while making easier your inner thought process: “Haha! You are merely projecting your jealousy onto me because you can’t go out till 3 am! At school, this is an early night! Mwahaha!”
Immature, yes. But engaging dear old Dad in a heated debate about your rights as an adult probably won’t go over so well right now. At a more convenient time, explain to your parents that you have successfully survived (insert number of) years away from home by employing your own methods of sustenance, safety and–ahem–entertainment. They will respond to your rational explanation and hopefully won’t impose some bizarre curfew on you. Throwing in a few compliments to them (“You’ve raised me to be responsible, mature, whatevs”) can’t hurt either.
Scenario: Waking up at 6 am, according to your parents, is the normal and productive lifestyle you should be leading.
Solution: Evasive Action. Sleeping in is usually encouraged by not having a job, which may be the real reason your parents have a problem with you getting your much needed rest. If you do have a job, though, or it doesn’t require that you wake up at the ass crack of dawn to be a good employee, throw on a sleep mask, get some ear buds and lock your door. When you do eventually begin your day, your parents will inevitably assume you’ve been sleeping and begin to criticize you. At this point you can a) craft an elaborate excuse as to why you invented your own Do Not Disturb signs (composing a symphony, welding, extremely detailed pedicure) or b) inform your parents that they are being unreasonable and inconsiderate of your needs as a growing girl. The next time you drift off, picture yourself back at college, where napping is seen as a necessary daily component and not a source of ill will.

Constant pestering about your grades, career, health, love life, bank account, etc.,
Solution: Rationing and Regulating. Ah, college. Land of cheap beer, philosophical discussion, hot guys and occasional phone calls to and from home. A few times a week ( if that!), you call home to brag about a great paper grade, tell a funny anecdote, or occupy yourself on your way to class. This serves the purpose of assuring your parents that you are alive, well, and not on Girls Gone Wild (not that you couldn’t call home if you were on GGW, it would probably just be a much more interesting conversation). It also enables you to control the amount of information your loved ones can wield against you during arguments about whether you’re “on the right path” (yeah, my family is probably dysfunctional.) I see no reason not to employ this tactic at home as well.
While you cannot simply hang up in the middle of a face to face conversation–I’ve tried it, trust me– you can change the subject to highlight an area of your life that is slightly more appealing to the fam’s best interests. Don’t lie or ice your parents out, this will only backfire; just casually ease off the topic of boyfriends (or lack thereof) and explain (in great detail) a theory you learned about in class. They love knowing where their money’s going, and showing off your fancy schmancy improved I.Q. should go over well, you genius, you.
While I understand that these situations are the very least of the conflicts you will confront after moving back home (at least in my case they are), many of these solutions can be applied to other issues. The bottom line is, moving back into your parents house for the summer may cause you to revert to your 15 year old self in their eyes. The key is to show them that you are not the moody and irreverent teen they’re picturing. You are a mature young woman who deserves their respect and trust. Now go hang out by their sweet pool, help yourself to their fully stocked fridge and crank that AC up allll the way baby, because those perks are definitely something we’ll miss come September.
What problems have you run into Mom and Dad-wise, now that you’re back at home? How do you deal?
[Photo courtesy of]

G8 Summit: A Disappointing Disaster or Smashing Success?
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