Originally Posted by Acting Like Godot
Important to also realise that it's about interdependence - mutually helping each other.
I don't see old people in my country being leeches on their adult children. Until they are really frail and ill and physically weak, they are still very interested in contributing and helping the family. The most obvious area is in looking after the grandkids.
In the USA, you would instead send your kids to a daycare centre or hire some teenager off the street to act as your babysitter. This really doesn't sound like a very attractive part of "independence" to me. Instead of depending on your own grandparents, you are depending on a daycare center or a teenaged stranger to look after your kids.
Secondly, I also don't typically see adult children living with their parents as leeches, because these adult children also contribute in their own ways. Typically they will give their parents some money every month, or they will take on the responsibility of paying for certain bills and expenses, eg power bill; water bill; groceries etc. If they don't do the housework themselves, they will pay for a maid to do the job.
There are many practical advantages, big and small, in living near each other, even if you do not actually live WITH each other. For example, once when my daughter was a baby, she fell ill and had to be hospitalised. My parents were of great help to me then, as they immediately stepped in to look after my son, while my wife and I camped at the hospital. Another kind of help that I give my parents - when they are away on holiday, I go to their apartment every day to walk the dog, feed the dog and water their plants. These are small things that just can't be done if I were living faraway from them.
One might say that in the USA, we would send the dog to a pet hotel. We have those here as well, but it just isn't the same. It's like sending your child to a daycare centre, instead of having family members to care for him or her.
I think you are seeing the whole world, through your OWN eyes, when in fact, reality is far different.
Ok, as far as grand parents. Well, a lot of people are grand parents at 40 years old, and up. That's still working age. So, everyone you are saying is a bad person for sending their kids to day care or having a baby sitter, doesn't have retired parents to take care of their kids for them. My dad is 65, so it's different for him, because his adult children were pretty much in his house till their 30's, and never had their own lives until they move out. So only now, does he get to take care of grand children, once he's actually retired.
And adult children. I don't remember my brothers contributing very much toward the household. Either way, it wasn't so much co dependence. They didn't cook or clean anything. If they paid for food, then that doesn't help the household. That just helps themselves. And these were mature people by the way. Not leeches like you'd normally see from adult children living at home.
In countries where it's the norm, things are different tho. Not only are you shamed into not leaving the house, you'd be shamed by being lazy. Parents are guilt machines. You can't leave because they'll make you feel guilty, yet you feel guilty staying. And that's exactly what it seems like you are doing. Making us seem like horrible people for wanting to be further away. I believe in being independent, before you should ever become co-dependent. But, in most of those countries, you're usually married off before you ever become independent. They have no clue what independence even means.
You see advantages in living in the same house, or close, yet a lot of us see disadvantages. You have a great relationship with your parents. That's great for you. Not everyone does. Only recently have I even wanted to be near my dad, but living with him was horrible, mainly because of my step mom.