That Boomerang "Child?" He May be Over 30

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With an Ongoing Recession, Baby Boomer Women are Now Housing Adult Children for Years, According to

“Today’s tough economic climate continues making the ‘empty nest’ a dream deferred, at least for Boomers,” said Stephen Reily, Founder and CEO of

A recent survey by (, the leading online community for women over 50, reveals that while mothers of adult children typically would be welcoming grown children home this season for holiday celebrations, many of those children are already living at home, with no anticipated date of departure.

For Boomer women whose adult children have moved back home, most say the recession is the reason. And they don’t see the situation ending anytime soon.

  • 86% expect their adult children to remain at home for six months or more, up from 84% in 2010.
  • 78% blame the economy. Of adult children living at home for economic reasons:

o 55% of the adult children have jobs but can’t afford living expenses on their own.
o 25% have graduated from college but can’t find a job.
o 12% were employed but lost their jobs.

Nor is this phenomenon about the immediate post-college years. Of Boomer respondents with children living at home, 28% said those “children” were over 30.    

“Today’s tough economic climate continues making the ‘empty nest’ a dream deferred, at least for Boomers,” said Stephen Reily (, Founder and CEO of “Thanksgiving and Christmas are no longer times for Boomer women to welcome their children and parents home for a visit; it’s just time to set the table (and pay) for yet another meal in her multi-generational home.”

The Boomer parents who aren’t providing housing for their adult children may still be covering its cost. In another recent survey, 30% of Boomer women respondents said they were paying some or all of the rent for their children aged 18-30. “The only way a Boomer mother may earn herself an empty nest today is by paying for it,” says Reily.

Managing a multi-generational household is stressful, and the Boomer mother is paying for this phenomenon in more ways than one:

  • 37% say the experience of housing her adult child has either strained or greatly worsened their relationship that child.
  • 71% report that living in a multi-generational household makes it harder for them to achieve their personal goals and 67% (up from 52% in 2010) admit it hinders the availability of their discretionary income.

“This new ‘Full Nest’ syndrome is likely to be with us for a while,” added Reily. “And Boomer mothers managing this new reality don’t have any easy answers or traditional standards. There’s a big, untapped market for companies that can support Moms trying to balance their own goals with those of their very big kids.”

About is the leading online community for Baby Boomer women – the place where they connect and support each other on issues unique to life after 50, including fashion, beauty, family, relationships, work, money, and health.

A trusted resource for women 50+, Vibrant Nation features a growing network of over 150 midlife bloggers, promotes offline gatherings, and publishes digital health and beauty content written by Vibrant women experts.

A strategic marketing partner, Vibrant Nation helps marketers understand and reach this influential and fast-growing demographic. It has managed online marketing campaigns for major companies like Pfizer and Coca-Cola, and compiled its ongoing research in a book, Vibrant Nation: What Boomer Women 50+ Know, Think, Do & Buy ( For more information, visit

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