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Operation Ivy Offline
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Advice on moving out and living on my own - June 21st 2018, 08:10 AM

I live with my mom and dont have any other friends/family to live with. My girlfriend lives in a different part of the country now and I have mentioned moving in together, but not a serious talk and I don't know how we would do it anyways. I am almost done with college and have never had a job. Other than school I basically just stay home all of the time. I want to change and the only real way I can see it happening is by moving out. I'm not having any serious problems with my mom but I just feel like I can't be myself around her anymore. I also just want freedom. But the problem is I have no idea how to do it and its been stressing me out for almost 3 years. I can do all the basic things but don't know how to do any of the bigger things like all the legal and financial stuff. I don't know how people did it in the past and definitely have no idea how anyone in the modern day can do it. Like if my mom just died or I got kicked out right now I wouldn't have any idea how to survive really, I would just find a way. Even with a job I don't know how I would actually find somewhere to move to and do it. I don't know how to do anything like get insurance, do taxes, buy a car etc. I never had anyone in my life that taught me how to do things like this and it stresses me out. I know this is all probably a lot easier than it seems but it has been stressing me out for years and I never got around to actually getting help until now.
   
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Re: Advice on moving out and living on my own - June 28th 2018, 03:45 PM

I'm wondering why you feel that the only way to change things is to move out? It's natural that as you grow older, you would want and seek independence and it's also understandable that if you haven't had someone to guide you through things, you'd feel lost.

It might help to break things down into small steps. Most of the time, moving out would require you to be financially independent, so perhaps your first step could be getting a job? It's okay to not have had a job before as not everyone works while attending college. If you're concerned about not having enough experience in the workplace, you can try volunteering to gain experience.

Even though you feel you can't really be yourself around your mom, maybe you can ask her about financial/legal things like insurance, tax etc? If not, you can always try to figure things out for yourself e.g. look at car dealerships/estate agents online and just get used to terminology they use (or look things up if you are unsure of what they mean). It might not make sense when you start reading, but when you do eventually decide to move out or get a car, it will make more sense when you go through the process. And there should be people on hand if you have any queries with form-filling whether that's your employer, a lawyer or just someone at customer service. It's okay to not know how to go about doing these things as you are still young and with time you will learn.

Would you be comfortable talking to your girlfriend about the possibility of moving in together, whether a serious talk or just a theoretical discussion?

Whatever you decide to do, remember that it's okay to feel a bit lost. Perhaps talking to your mom, your girlfriend and making friends will help you to realise that you aren't in this alone


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Re: Advice on moving out and living on my own - June 28th 2018, 06:06 PM

I think you need to ask yourself how you plan to afford to move out if you don't have a job, have never had a job, none of your friends are looking for roommates, nor have you had a serious discussion with your girlfriend about living in together. Loads of people our age still live with their parents well into their 20's because no one can afford to live on their own - well, lots of us make it work, but bills are super tight.

I think the responsible thing to do would be to start factoring in how much it costs to live - find out how much an apartment would cost in the area you live, maybe email those places and ask how much utilities cost, as people you know (e.g. your mom) how much they're paying for internet and groceries, and start a budget so you can see how much you'd need to live. Depending on where you live, it could be anywhere between $1,500 and $5,000 a month.

Next, you need to find a job - let's assume that your mom isn't loaded and that, even if she is loaded, it's not her responsibility to pay your bills for ever, particularly once you branch out on your own to live alone. Now, if she can afford to help you out and is willing to do so, that's great, have a conversation, but let's assume you have to pay the majority of your bills alone and you probably need to be making $2500 a month, conservatively, bearing in mind that that's only $30,000 a year and once you're done being taxed, you're not left with very much money (e.g. you probably won't be able to afford a car, nor would you be able to afford trips, you probably won't be saving much (if any) money for unexpected expenses, you probably cannot go out for dinner very often and you probably can't afford a nice gym membership or sports). Shall I carry on?

I understand why you want to make a change. I left home before I was even 18, thank fucking god. Now, my parents were able to help me out financially when I was in school, making it possible for me to leave home so young. I totally empathize with why you'd want to leave home; even if it's not the only way to be a "real" adult or whatever, it's kind of nice to not be accountable to a parent. Even though I am 26 now, my parents still kind of treat me like I'm a kid who needs guidance and their opinions for everything, which is fine, but I'd definitely hate it in close quarters. BUT if you cannot afford to move out, then don't. There are other ways to do feel like you're growing up or branching out or whatever you need while still being practical.

I would start with getting a job, for one. After all, you can't realistically expect to pay your bills if you're not working. Even if you had roommates, their not going to just pay your rent for you. Hell, even if you were married, unless your partner was making enough money that they could comfortably take care of everything without your income or if you were a stay at home parents, you'd probably still need to be working.

Lots of colleges have career centres, so I'd go there straight away if you haven't yet. Have them help you with building a professional resume that highlights your skills and take their advice about networking and volunteering. Networking IS a big deal, by the way. 80% of jobs are filled before they hit a job board so, seriously, get on that one. Volunteer to show that you're building your work ethic and skills outside of an academic setting; employers like to see hands on skills. And then start applying for jobs. Even if all you get for now is some crappy part time retail job, save that money and find ways to use those skills to leverage into something bigger.

Maybe you can't move out right away, but at least with something like getting a job, no matter how shitty, you'll be building up to something and will be getting your affairs in order to move out when it is practical to do so.
   
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