General Question

M_Deluge's avatar

Is it better to be homeless than live in your parents' home?

Asked by M_Deluge (8 points ) April 24th, 2012

Would anyone choose homelessness over living in their parents’ home?

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21 Answers

FutureMemory's avatar

Some would, but I think only if the home environment was extremely toxic/abusive.

Generally speaking I think people should try extremely hard to work out their differences with their parents..being homeless is really a pretty horrible solution.

Plucky's avatar

It depends on who you’re asking. Some people may choose to be homeless rather than live with their parents. The reasons for doing so can vary greatly.

Whether it’s better or not really depends on your perspective of both situations. And, of course, the situations also vary greatly.

There is no absolute answer to your question.

lillycoyote's avatar

Are you kidding? Much, much better to live at your parents’ house. If you are asking this, you have never been homeless.

Though maybe you have been homeless. I shouldn’t assume you haven’t been.

But it seems to me like a no brainer to me.

Better to live with your parents than to be homeless. Being homeless is a very, very tough road to hoe.

Edit: I don’t know if you are asking this for yourself, or about someone else. These things can get complicated. I have some experience with this. My brother is homeless. He is schizophrenic and has serious mental health issues. Simply choosing between being homeless and living with my parents was an incredibly complex issue, for him and for my parents.

JustPlainBarb's avatar

If someone was abused by their parents… some might prefer to live on their own in any environment other than that.

poisonedantidote's avatar

I’m 29 years old and I look younger than my 18 year old homeless friend. It is not an easy life having the shit kicked out of you by a gang in the park for no reason while you try to sleep in a thunder storm without shelter with an empty stomach.

Think carefully about what you do next.

Blackberry's avatar

The way some people treat others for living at home, it would seem plausible some would.

seekingwolf's avatar

Depends on who you ask.

For me, no. My family life may be a little weird but I’d rather not be homeless. Being a woman, there’s a good chance I’d get raped or something and that terrifies me. That sort of life is hard on everyone though, men and women.

filmfann's avatar

I have a niece who has spend a lot of the last 5 years severely drugged or drunk.
She chose to be homeless for the last few years, rather than live with her mom, and her mom’s rules.
She is trying to stay sober now, and is back home, and trying to get to know her son, who has been living with his grandparents for his 2 years.

Seek's avatar

I would live in a cave before going back to that hell hole.

SuperMouse's avatar

When he was 15 my husband opted for homelessness over living in his childhood home. He was fortunate enough to have a support group and rarely went without a roof over his head. I find it incredibly sad to think there are people who feel as though the choice is a no brainer – homelessness is better than a terrifying, toxic environment.

As for myself and my kids/step-kids, we have one grown child living with us right now rather than having to live in his car. I am happy that we are able to provide a safe place to stay until he gets back on his feet. I plan for it to always be this way when it comes to our kids.

Personally there is not a time during my life where I would have been forced to chose homelessness over staying with my dad. The old man is quite a piece of work but he is good with the big stuff and I know he would be there for if my kids and I needed him.

wundayatta's avatar

There was a time not too many years ago where the idea of being homeless felt very attractive to me. I was miserable and depressed and unhappy and thought maybe that would be a way I could die.

My wife wouldn’t let me go, though. And they call me crazy! I was miserable to her. Angry. Hateful. Unfaithful. All, I guess, as part of an attempt to become homeless without actually choosing it myself. I think that if she had kicked me out, I would have felt like I deserved it, but I couldn’t do it on my own.

Now I’m glad she didn’t kick me out. I’m very grateful. I still don’t really understand why she didn’t. Maybe it was for the kids. Maybe it was because she didn’t want to lose her husband. But I don’t think she could have truly wanted me—not the way I was treating her. Although perhaps she was able to forgive me that since I was sick.

I was kicked out of my parents house when I was 22 or so. There was no warning. We had a fight one evening and boom! Gone within the quarter hour. I got a friend to take me in that night, I think. The next day I took a dishwashing job. On the basis of that, my parents took me back and we made a plan so I would move out as soon as I got a few hundred dollars together. Then I moved to NYC and haven’t ever needed their roof again.

As a result of these experiences, I vowed I would never turn away a friend or a relative in need. I put up my brother when he needed a place. He didn’t even bother to ask our parents.

I can not imagine turning away my kids if they need us. I have put up crazy friends of mine when they were homeless even though my wife didn’t approve. I just cannot let someone I know be homeless. Although I don’t know if I would feel the same if they were doing drugs or stealing from me. I’d probably kick them out. Even a child, I guess, if they were behaving that way.

But if I were homeless now, and my parents offered me a place. Wow! I don’t know. I would hate living with them. I would hate being dependent on them. I know it would mess up my head. I think I’d almost rather be homeless for a little while. But I think I could find friends who would put me up, so it probably wouldn’t come to that.

JLeslie's avatar

Depends how bad the homelife is. I would say the majority of the time staying home is better with a good plan to get the hell out if it sucks. Take advantage of your parents paying for the roof over your head and save money to help you move out in the future.

It also depends if the person asking is an an adult. Anyone under 18 who is just annoyed with their parents rules, but not in danger of physical harm, or extreme psychological harm (and, it would have to be pretty extreme for me) from their parents just should stay put, and wait until they are adults. The world outside is much more risky and complicated than young people think. If it is really bad the first option should be living with a relative, not homelessness.

mangeons's avatar

It would be better to live at your parents’ house, unless the home environment was extremely toxic or abusive, in which case homelessness might be preferable/safer.

jerv's avatar

That depends on the family. I would have fairly little trouble living with my folks, but would have issues living within 1,000 miles of my in-laws. At least the wounds inflicted by a random beating usually heal, but the damage her folks did…. sometimes, homelessness really is safer.

Bellatrix's avatar

As has been said above, it depends on ‘the family’. There are some young people who just cannot live with their family because of violence and abuse. I can see why they would rather live on the streets. Sad that this is their better option though.

AngryWhiteMale's avatar

I agree with others here: if there’s abuse or an unsafe environment in the home, it’s probably better to leave. Otherwise, no; being homeless is not a wise choice. I spent a thankfully! brief time when I was young without a place, and let me tell you, the midnight missions, the streets, etc. are not the same as “camping out”.

However, some who couch surf at various friends’ places are also homeless (I think too many people equate homeless with “living on skid row in the the gutter”, and don’t consider that there are different kinds of homelessness…). While this isn’t great, or ideal, it’s better than physically having no place to go. While some shelters and midnight missions are safer than others, on the whole they’re not great, which is why you see so many homeless opting for the streets rather than being inside.

Unless you’re being beaten, molested, raped, or otherwise seriously abused (emotionally, psychologically, etc.), I would stay put until the first opportunity you have to take off and get out.

Bellatrix's avatar

And sadly @AngryWhiteMale if people are ‘couch surfing’, while they really are homeless, it gives the authorities an out in terms of finding them accommodation. Welcome to Fluther by the way.

prasad's avatar

How is your relationship with parents?
Can your parents afford you living with them?

In India, we live in a joint family. I live with my parents; right now, though, I live in other city for work. Parents, grandparents too, live together. The reason is financial. But now IT industry has changed scenario here a lot, especially in metro cities.

AngryWhiteMale's avatar

Thank you, @Bellatrix. :-) Still getting my feet wet, sort of…

boxer3's avatar

Not for me, It’d certainly be a change of pace- but hey I get along with my parents, and it’s a roof over the head. I’d take that route.

Saucy1962's avatar

My 18-year-old son has chosen the homeless route over living with his dad or with me. There is no rhyme or reason, we’re supportive providers with few rules or expecations beyond reason: go to school, maybe get a part-time job, graduate, do some chores and above all – be honest. Maybe that’s too much? NOT!!

He finds that lifestyle attractive and tells me that his homeless friends are “the smartest bums ever” in that they know how to survive the streets. Mind you, this is a small beach town that provides for the homeless in abundance, it’s not Los Angeles where these “smart bums” would not survive one night. I’m bewildered about his choice, but I hear I’m not alone.

Having experienced homelessness briefly myself, I see it as a “free willy” opportunity to party with each other unsupervised until it starts getting uncomfortable. When winter finally sets in and they start stealing each other’s blankets and socks, the local warming centers are full and the rain soaks the only clothes they have, we’ll see just how “smart” theses street kids who have a choice are.

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