'The Crowded Nest' publicity update
"A rapidly growing global trend dubbed the crowded nest syndrome is seeing more and more young adults living in their parents' home well into their 20s and 30s.
So universal is the trend that Hollywood has seized the theme for a new movie, 'Failure to Launch', to be released in Brisbane next month and starring Matthew McConaughey as a 35-year-old man still living at home and indulged by his doting mother.
According to family therapist and author on the phenomenon, Sue Jackson, more than a third of Australians aged 18-29 still live at home with their parents.
But it could be worse, she says. In Italy, 82 per cent of 18-30-year-old men live under the parental roof.
'There's a lot of reasons why baby boomers and the younger generation find themselves in this situation,' Jackson explains.
'Work is a lot more casural and vulnerable. In my generation, you left school and got a degree and then a job so you were able to be independent.
'Now with redundancy and down-sizing, university fees, casual, contract and part-time work, it's really difficult to set yourself up.
'And credentials take a lot longer to acquire. Some young adults would love to leave home but they're not in a financial position to do so...'
'That fear of ageing affects children as much as parents, says Jackson in her book, 'The Crowded Nest: surviving the new togetherness'(Lothian Books. $24.95).
'Kids see themselves as being young for longer... because there's a lot of environmental and other scarey issues they'll need to face as an adult so it feels safer to be in that adolescent world,' she says.
'For parents, when their kids live at home for longer, there's a perfect anti-ageing device - a live-in best friend whom they socialise with, shop with and go to the gym with.'"
One of the other interesting experiences I had in the last week was an invitation to talk on an ABC radio programme that is broadcast to Queensland, WA and Victoria. I'd made a pact with myself that I'd accept all promotional invitations, but this one was a real challenge - my time slot was 4.15 - 5. Sounds okay I know, until I tell you that was a.m. The odd thing was that everybody else - Anne Marie, the presenter, the producer and all the callers sounded fresh and alert. The guest speaker, with a croaky voice and lapses of concentration, seemed to be the only one in the least fazed talking about loaded issues on air in the middle of the night.
Next week I'm scheduled to speak on ABC Tasmania - luckily in the day time- and for that gig have to record in the aptly named 'Tardis' booth at the Southbank studio. And of course Thursdy 6th is the Big Night - the Melbourne launch at Retro Cafe in Brunswick street.