Relationships

30 Essential Rules for Parenting Adult Children

Follow this helpful advice and you may actually get to see them every once in a while

(Getty Images)

1. Never ask if/when they will get married. Because, really?

2. Always pay for the restaurant meal. This is not optional.

3. Act as if you totally agree they should live in the bad part of the city/fourth floor walkup/dingy studio apartment they have decided is completely cool.

4. Don't show anyone that adorable photo of them that you keep in a frame. They were ugly, horrific and disgusting at that age (or, for that matter, any age you might select).

5. Have room to store many items they do not currently need or want but can't get rid of. Part of the definition of "parent" is "free storage."

6. Never ever use an emoji in a text. It means you are out of touch while thinking you are in touch which is really the worst kind of out-of-touchness.

7. There's a 30/70 chance of success when you buy them clothes.

8. Don't suggest FaceTiming.

9. Never, ever spell anything wrong in a text to them. This demonstrates encroaching senility.

10. Please do not message them links to videos on Facebook. First of all, no one uses Facebook. Second of all, seriously?

11. Also never attempt to friend them on Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter or any other social media. You being able to see anything they post will ruin their lives.

12. They do not want to come sleep at home even if their apartment has no water, their heat has been turned off, there is blasting next door to their building or you promise to do their laundry.

13. Do not expect or think you should be thanked for moving them, paying their medical bills, helping them with groceries, buying them a new couch, or finding a friend of a friend who hires them. Because, obviously!

14. If they say it is a massive crisis, it just is. Make no attempt to downplay it or put it in perspective.

15. Avoid mention of birth control, sex or STIs (and please do not call them STDs because that is so '90s). Remember: Neither you nor your child has sex or knows anything about sex.

16. Reminiscing is something to do on your own time.

17. If you wish to be completely scoffed at, go ahead and mention grandchildren. Because, what are you, crazy?!

18. Tell them what to buy their grandparents for Christmas because how are they supposed to know?

19. Never, ever show up unannounced at their place. Ever.

20. If you think they're making a bad decision, gently ask questions but never come out and offer your own opinion because it's not relevant.

21. They do not need your help.

22. Until they do.

23. Your birthday generally creates a slight to medium inconvenience.

24. When you text them and they don't answer for 12 hours, you're not allowed to worry or think something bad has happened to them.

25. Always respond to texts from them immediately because otherwise you clearly aren't keeping your phone with you and that's just so old-school.

26. Don't buy their significant other a holiday gift because it's just not like that, even if he or she seems to come along every time you see your child.

27. Stop pressuring them. About everything. Don't feel like you are pressuring them? Well, you are!

28. You are on a need-to-know basis. When you need to know, they will tell you.

29. All of that wisdom and experience you have accumulated over the hard years of adulting that you put in is not something you should be sharing. Instead, just nod.

30. Things are different now. They just are.

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