I love Dad’s wallet: The curious case of home loving Boys & Girls

Strange title I agree. But what propelled me to even consider this a subject as worth pursuing, was something I read many moons ago about Italians and their love for home stays. Not like the home stays when travelling by yourself, but the ones that mean staying with folks simply because you just so love the comfort. An excerpt from GUARDIAN, UK went like this, “More than 50% of Italians aged 18 to 34 still live at home with their parents. This state of ­affairs has prompted one minister to call for a new law forcing “bamboccioni” – mummies’ boys and girls – to leave the nest at 18.” Since it emanated from a European culture, I found it quite surprising, though Italians particularly are known to mirror some Asian family values.

And that implored me to introspect on our Indian culture…to merely observe whether with changing times, much had changed. And with mixed emotions I realized that there was no revolution. At least not in the last decade. There was really no need. WHY?

Our upbringing has always taught us the significance of ‘ma’ and ‘pa’:

Matru devo bhava (Mother is akin to God)

Pitru devo bhava (Father is akin to God)

When such high values are ascribed to parents, how in heavens name will young ones ever believe that they can be a burden for these god-like souls. And just like we all demand our best, worst, most incredulous, most selfish wishes from God, so do these home loving boys & girls. Who believe that parents become their earthly gatekeepers to all their hearts’ desires. Isn’t it obvious then why home stay is inevitable for years to come?!!

Not for a moment am I denouncing this relationship. As much as this chemistry is special, there is a strong ‘guilt-pacifier’ driver that keeps this bond intact well into adulthood. And often young ones as teens and even adults, use it to their advantage for a variety of reasons.

1. Convenience: Home is haven where unconditional love and zero expectations prevail. The world outside surely is cold, mean and a slave driver.

2. Confusion doesn’t cost a penny: It’s ok to be lost and marooned. Because not only is one found, but any price to be paid for the mess caused is taken care off.

Birla Sun Life: When passion rules, only money talks

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3. On-demand lifestyle: A change in voice, soft emotions, playing Mom to get to Dad etc is all the effort one needs to take to get whatever is needed without much ado. Does the outside world even care?

4. Generous Dad’s bank balance: Unstoppable force. This is where the ‘guilt-pacifier’ really shows up. It has been the after effect of consumerist & liberalized India. One of the biggest reasons that keeps young ones, home loving.

Lenovo: Exaggerated to prove its obvious selection, but the real world has it easy

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Having said all of the above, I must add that this necessarily doesn’t make them irresponsible or immature. Just smart, selfish & self-centered. Often.

In contrast to this is the breaking free of norms & patterns that young ones do exhibit as they walk down a self-created path. I can’t help but mention here that it often does take one extreme, where ‘breaking away’ is marked by a visible transformation that includes shunning anything old. Including what is perceived as dated, that is often showcased by home & the practiced values.

Royal Enfield Thunderbird: ‘Leave Home’

Having said that sometimes I must admit, I have seen independence shine through without having to shun home or family. Where economic security served as the release & home loving boys and girls truly enjoyed and respected being around their parents. They would as they move into the next life stage, just as gracefully and casually move on too.

HDFC Life

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So what’s evokes a curious-ness about this after all!??!!! I agree. It’s really quite simple. And on that note I’d like to share one of the sweetest commercials from times of yore. Where staying back at home could be for reasons quite delectable really. Enjoy.

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2 Comments

  1. Double like it !! love the various facets of a parent- child relationship covered in the Indian context; especially the line – It’s ok to be lost and marooned. Because not only is one found…

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