Setting boundaries with adult children

Boundaries with adult children

As a parent, it is natural to have a strong instinct and desire to help your children, irrespective of age. It’s heart-wrenching when we see our children flounder, or even worse when they suffer. We tend to give our hands to help them are every predicament state, even, though if we don’t want to. ​​Setting boundaries with adult children may be quite difficult, particularly if they are manipulative, well-spoken, and capable of strong arguments. It is understandable to have the urge to step in and help your adult child when they are in a precarious situation. Perhaps they have lost their job and they need financial help. Maybe they are struggling with their mental health or any addiction or they need financial support or hunting to fulfill their own needs, but you are scared not to help because you have seen how bad things can get for them.


   Helping our young adults is frequently a positive and healthy way to show them love, support, and acceptance. Nevertheless, intervening can occasionally unintentionally slide down a slippery slope and cross the line from assisting to enabling. These limits are typically ill-defined, and well-meaning parents frequently breach them. But, going too far in favor of your kid’s independence and self-assurance can have unfavorable, unanticipated effects on both your relationship with your adult child and their sense of self.

why it is necessary to set boundaries with your adults?

  • To maintain a healthy relationship and respect for one another, you must set limits with your adult kids. 
  • Despite differences, win-win limits call for kindness, nonjudgment, and listening to one another.
  • When establishing and navigating new boundaries and the dynamics that go along with them, use patience and empathy.
  • There will be difficult circumstances that will force the parents to help their adults and that is when the adults will use their parents’ best efforts

Setting boundaries with adult children can feel daunting, but it’s essential to maintain a healthy and balanced relationship which eventually sets healthy boundaries and clear boundaries with your children. Here are some steps to help you.

​​Setting boundaries with adult children – S.A.N.I.T.Y

The mission of Six Steps to SANITY is to provide parents, stepparents, and grandparents who are facing difficult relationships with adult children who are frequently battling addictions with hope, healing, and liberation which also includes the repeated pain of your adult child in different aspects and situations. Hopefully, the family’s plan of action will also apply to the children’s lives. It is also known as the six-step program.

  • S = STOP Enabling, STOP Blaming Yourself and STOP the Flow of Money
  • A = Assemble a Support Group
  • N = Nip Excuses in the Bud
  • I = Implement Rules/Boundaries
  • T = Trust Your Instincts
  • Y = Yield Everything to God

Remember that you are never alone in the world, even when you embrace and care for your child unconditionally with heartfelt prayers. You will not be alone; God is in charge.

Rule out save the day Option

One of the most frequent reasons for conflict between adult children and their parents is disagreement over their own life decisions. When you witness your children making bad choices, it may be quite tempting to step in and correct them. You have years of experience making mistakes, you had a hard time and so your brain is accustomed to seeing patterns quickly. However, when you continually step in to save the day, your grown-up kids are deprived of that same experience. This disrupts the mutual understanding between adult children and parents.

It wears you out and damages your child’s independence and self-worth in addition. For them to truly comprehend the gravity of any unfavorable consequences, they must make mistakes themselves. Lessons are learned via experience, not by reading about them. Your child’s life or young adult’s life will create their journey. All that we have to do is to render our emotional support when they need us.

Quit giving them loans

Finance is among the most significant boundary concerns that parents of adult children may encounter. One of the most important topics these days between parents and adult children is financial independence where the flow of money from parents to adults should be under control. In the end, you should always be a resource for your kids; for some parents, this means providing for their financial needs without depleting their own. That might, however, leave you feeling angry and used as the parent because all of your hard work isn’t being acknowledged.

Being your adult children’s pillar of support will frequently provide them with an unearned safety net. They should be able to support themselves financially and only turn to you for assistance when they are truly stuck. More than money, self-respect is at stake in this situation. Instead of expecting that the labor of others will make their lives easy, they must learn to work for their lifestyle. 

Do not dig about career choices


Making career decisions can be a daunting task for young people. They want to make the right choices in their own lives from the outset, but the lack of clarity and uncertainty about the options can lead to indecision. Moreover, the absence of direction or purpose can make them feel wandering with blindfolds.

Choosing a career is one of the most significant decisions your adult daughter or adult son has to make, especially when they are trying to find the perfect match for their spouse, career, and lifestyle. These decisions can have a substantial impact on their future, including their economic status, social standing, way of life, and emotional well-being. If they are forced to make these choices prematurely, when they do not yet have a well-defined career path, they may end up regretting their decision.

These choices have a considerable influence on a person’s future, which is why it is essential to make informed decisions. Young individuals who are compelled to make these choices when their professional paths are still undefined may come to regret making them too soon.

With all these thoughts of adults and as a parent if you don’t support them rather than pushing or forcing them to lead a professional that you prefer is completely worthless!!

Everyone has their journey and own lives. It would be better for the parent to know their interest and guide them in the best way.

Open communication is a good therapy

Parents must be able to have respectful communication with their kids honestly and efficiently in loving environments. Parent-child interactions are a universal tonic and it’s a good idea to do the right thing at the right time before it gets too late. There is a saying ” Every little thing matters”. All the family members should benefit from honest and efficient communication, not just the kids or young adults. When there is excellent or open communication, the bond between parents and their kids is significantly strengthened. The probability for the adult to become a responsible adult is high.

   Communication with your young adult child can be improved via Actively listening rather than offering advice. It is indeed one of the most important ways to improve communication with your adult child. Young adults whose communication with parents is often hostile, monotone, or mostly non-existent may be struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues.

Adults Privacy 

It is a parent’s responsibility to guide their kid from birth through childhood, adolescence, and beyond. Parents often fail to realize that preparing their teenagers for adulthood requires allowing them to practice and acquire the necessary life skills. Developing proper privacy usage skills is essential to being self-sufficient, accountable, and prepared to leave the nest. The life choices of every adult depend upon the privacy that they need. That is when we try to find out their different needs or interests or find their reading time as well. There will be different results but how they find the ways of life by implementing those interests matters a lot.

Teenagers want greater responsibility and freedom as they become older. Compared to when they were younger, they want to be trusted to accomplish more. They also like to be regarded as grownups. They want your respect for their beliefs and preferences. Adult children feel more capable, autonomous, self-assured, and trustworthy when they are given space and solitude. Giving them the proper amount of privacy demonstrates to them your faith in their sense of judgment, good intentions, capacity to make decisions, and compliance with your regulations as responsible adults. It’s very important to talk to your children about what privacy means. Privacy isn’t just limited to their friends, possessions, online presence, room, conversations, and social or romantic interactions. It’s also about their body and who has permission to touch or see it.

However, it is important to recognize that wanting more privacy does not necessarily mean your child has something to hide. Instead, it is a healthy part of individuation.

Living Arrangements

When it comes to living arrangements, parents have the right to establish guidelines for where their children can live. Parents may expect their adult children to help with household expenses if they choose to live at home, or they may set limits on when and under what circumstances they can continue to live with their parents. It’s important to have these conversations to ensure everyone’s needs and expectations are being met.

An older youngster would do well to develop the habit of paying rent. The question of whether or not your child has to pay rent to stay at home may be seen from two different angles, in my opinion. Should the child be employed and the family require the money, he must contribute. It’s way too simple

Charge him for room and board even if you don’t need the money, then set it away and save it until you have enough for the first month’s rent and the security deposit on an apartment. You will then have his money when he is ready to move out. Keep the money close at hand. In this manner, he pays for himself and develops a habit of being responsible while renting and saving money so that he and the family are ready for his next move.

Young adults should know about life

Life involves moments of sadness and moodiness. Exams, arguments with family or friends, shifting schools, changing jobs, or various reasons can all cause anxiety and sadness in young people. 

Sadness can occasionally last for weeks or months and interfere with day-to-day activities. A young person may develop depression, a dangerous condition that affects people of all ages if they are generally down and have trouble motivating themselves. At this moment they will need a family home to feel safe and regain their confidence. But, this shall not continue forever they should be given a private practice about life either by encouraging them to read a good book or through professional help if it is a must.  

Time and Availability

Parents set boundaries with their young adults about time and availability. Parents of adult children may choose to share their availability for attending family events, assisting their adult children, and their need for personal time and space. It is important to establish mutually agreed-upon boundaries between parents and adult children, rather than expecting parents to always be available to meet their children’s needs. Even Such little things will encourage 60% of young adults to utilize their own independence in a better way and that is a positive thing for every parent. 

Engage in self-care.

Setting limits with adult children requires parents to be aware of their own needs and prioritize their own health and own feelings. Even though it might be a daunting and unpleasant procedure, practicing self-care regularly keeps you healthy and sets an example for your adult kid.


The moment when your young adult begins to care about her/himself they will care more about their best interest. They make poor decisions and also make poor choices but like the video games their life will not have an end. Your young adults will keep hunting, discover more about themselves, and find a real change in them.

Last but not the least – Professional help

Every time we can get things done all alone. At one point in time if you have persistent problems setting boundaries with your adult child and conflicts are unbearably constant, then it is mandatory to seek the advice of a professional(licensed mental health counselor). We can’t blame the young adult for their behaviors. To have a fine line between a better relationship, then as a parent, you have to make an effort to the max and leave then rest in god’s way.

Thoughts from Health and Wealth Mastery

Setting boundaries is like playing with the kites, with the string(boundaries). You can set your children free but when a lack of boundaries occurs the strings get cut and who knows the kite might end in bad shape. 

we never want anything to happen to our loved ones, especially to our children, we show them our tough love which will hurt them but it is for their good and they will realize it at the right moment. There are books related to Setting boundaries with your young adult children by Allison Bottke, and Carol Kent. Reading the book on setting boundaries will also be an eye-opener for a parent who likes to know more about their adults and find multiple ways to assist them in a friendly manner. Remember, “With the best intentions you can almost do anything you want for your children”

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