Parenting Part 2

Mary W. Quigley, a journalist and author, has written two books about motherhood and work. An NYU journalism professor, she is the mother of three adult children, and blogs at www.mothering21.com

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What Will Retirement Look Like for Our Adult Children?

For decades, the three-legged stool was the metaphor for funding retirement: Social Security, pensions and savings/investments. Because of the recession and drop in pensions, the stool started to shake. That hasn’t escaped the notice of our adult children as they watch parents head into retirement. The upside of those watchful eyes is that many millennials have begun saving for their own retirement. At an unprecedented age of  22, some 70 percent of working millennials are socking money away, according to …

Millennials Are Spending Less and Saving for a Rainy Day

While waiting in line last week at Starbucks, I realized that I was the only “guest” ordering black coffee — not a grande, no-foam macchiato concoction — and the only person using cash. The mostly millennial customers were flashing a smartphone app or swiping credit or debit cards. The way our adult children spend and save money is very different from their boomer parents. “I want it fast, and I want it now” is the millennial mantra when it comes …

How Adult Children Cope With a Sibling’s Mental Illness

Over a lifetime, the longest relationship typically is not with parents, partners or children, but with siblings. Research focused on these family ties identifies five types of sibling relationships: the intimate, the congenial, the loyal, the apathetic and the hostile.” But when a sibling suffers from a mental illness, the relationship can fall outside those norms. Indeed, the Alliance on Mental Illness noted:  It is now understood that mental illness in a family creates a ripple effect that can capsize …

Millennials Create Their Own Expressions of Religion

At Passover seders and in Christian churches this week, families will gather to observe the religious holidays. While some adult children will join in, many will do so out of a sense of obligation rather than practice. More than one-third of all millennials say they are “religiously unaffiliated” today, the highest percentage ever in Pew Research Center polling. It’s not just a rite of passage. Both Gen X and boomers were significantly more religiously affiliated as young adults. So why …

The Cost of Perpetual Parenting of Adult Children

For many boomers, the empty nest seems more like the empty bank account. After college, kids boomerang home for a few months or years, driving up monthly household expenses. Even when they leave, they often return to the “Bank of Mom and Dad” for help with costs from new cars to camp for the grandkids. All those added outlays are impacting millions of boomers, causing many to delay or modify retirement plans, according to a new study by Hearts & …

Move Aside Millennials, Make Way for Gen Z

First the boomers were nudged from the media spotlight by millennials, the largest and most diverse generation. And who can argue that our adult children have made an indelible imprint on how we live, work and play. But now millennials are about to get some competition. Here comes Gen Z. Although the starting date can vary, Gen Z encompasses newborns to teens, beginning with those born in 2001. Demographers and marketers alike slice and dice the U.S. population in generational …