HomeFamilyLife just got awkward

Life just got awkward

Girl Ninja and I are super stoked about our move to Seattle. Unfortunately, we wont be moving at the same time. The transfer required I start work up there in April. Girl Ninja is a teacher and has a commitment to her school through late June. That means, for two and a half months, I’ll be living in Seattle, while she stays down here in San Diego. Wanna know what’s more awkward than living two states away from my spouse? Moving back in with my parents!!!

Yeah, that’s right, I’ll be moving back in with Mom and Dad Ninja (never thought I’d be saying those words again). The only other alternative I had was to rent my own place, but that does not appeal to me for two reasons: 1) I don’t want to live alone. 2) Renting my own place is exponentially more expensive than mooching off my parents for a few months.

Fortunately, my parents are pretty cool people, so it shouldn’t be too bad. That is, unless they decide to give me a bedtime or curfew again.

Not only will I be living rent free during that time, but we managed to find Girl Ninja a place to stay down here (neither of us were too fond of her living alone, in our current place, for 2.5 months). The couple who lead us through premarital counseling has been gracious enough to open their home to her. We haven’t really hashed out all the details yet, but I imagine they will let her live with them for free. I, being a stubborn male, will refuse their generosity and demand we pay at least a couple hundred bucks a month.

Queue personal finance tie in….

Since I will be living rent free, and Girl Ninja will be living almost rent free, we have an AWESOME opportunity to bank some serious cash. We’re talking an instant $1,500/month savings. Plus, you know I’m gonna be raiding my parents fridge/pantry every night after they fall asleep. Oh and did I mention, no more paying for laundry! All in all, I think we’ll be able to pocket an extra $5,000 over those three-ish months.

Obligatory disclaimer so Girl Ninja doesn’t punch me in the face…

As excited as I am about saving some mad coin (I’m talking like jumping out of my seat excited), I would much rather live with Girl Ninja, than away from her. As a joke, I suggested when she move home she should live with her parents and I with my parents so we could save for a down payment. Let’s just say she didn’t think that joke was very funny. Probably because it was about 10% not a joke 😉

Even though life is going to get a little awkward, we are excited about our future in the pacific northwest. We like to think of it as a short term sacrifice for a long term gain. When’s the last time you lived with your parents? If you were in my situation, would you live on your own or at home? What’s the longest you’ve been away from your significant other (military peeps feel free to tell me to quit whining)? Anyone’s living arrangements going to be more awkward than mine?



  1. I was in exactly the same position around 2 and a half years ago. I had a new job starting close to my parents, and my other half had to stay at his job for another 5 months to finish training. So I moved down to live with Mum and Dad until he was in a position to follow, and we could move in together. I paid them some rent, but not as much as I would have been paying if I had moved into a place on my own. I couldn’t have afforded that! There were times when they drove me crazy of course, as I was used to just doing my own thing, and not being accountable to anyone, but it was really nice to reconnect and spend some quality time with them.

  2. I just went for the holidays visiting my family back east and 2 weeks is enough. I have been 2000 miles away for 16 years now … I got accustom to it. My dad and I are pretty stubborn and exactly the same so friction kicks in after the initial reunion …

  3. When I started grad school, DH had to stay in a different city to work and support us. This lasted for about 18 months-nothing compared to the sacrifice that military families must make, but no walkinthe park either. The interesting wrinkle is that I had to move away 4 days afterwe got married. It was tough to live apart both relationship-wise and financially. I moved to a city where I knew noone, so we had to support 2 households during that time-cha-ching!

    It’s great that you and GN have found safe, comfortable and affordable accommodations during this transition. Congrats on the move BTW-though it may not be the popular choice, it’s what right for you two and your families. It will be great to have family close by when you start producing baby Ninjas!

  4. I think it’s fine if it’s a temporary arrangement. I moved back in with my mom for the last year of college and we’re actually thinking of combining households again someday by getting a place with an in law suite. For now, we both value our privacy and freedom, so we’re still doing things the original route with 2 households.

    2 months is nothing. You’ll probably be scheming your new life, hanging with old friends and learning the new job that the time will fly by.

  5. Last time I lived with my Mom, I was 22 (moved out at 20, and back 2 years later when she announced she was moving back to Canada); then she hooked up with my now Step-Dad, and moved back to her hometown (Montréal) a year after coming back to Ontario. Dad moved in with us (me and my sister)… that was at times awkward, as my parents split up when I was 11, so we weren’t used to having a male live with us full-time! That lasted 2 years, and I moved out for good at 25. Hubby did the move-out-move-back when he was 25 (we’d just started dating), and moved in with me 11 months later.

    Hubby’s parents offered up their basement when we got married (full kitchen, full bathroom, no rent), but we declined because I’ve never felt 100% comfortable in their home, and the entrance from the garage is right in the basement’s kitchen. In their culture, it’s quite normal for kids to live with the parents after they get married, but I wasn’t raised that way. When Hubby and I got married, I hadn’t lived with parents in over 10 years; my privacy and own space was worth more to me than not paying rent… but that’s me. If my Mom lived closer and she had offered up free rent for same set-up as my in-laws, we’d probably have taken her up it. Ninja, given that you’ll only be back home for a few months, you and Girl Ninja be fine… will MomNinja make you walk NinjaBoxer and NinjaPugs? LOL!

  6. I haven’t lived with my parents since before I was married which makes it ten years. My wife and I lived apart from March to the end of May nine years ago. She lived in our townhouse and I moved in with her Grandparents. It was only a six hour drive so we saw each other a few times a month usually. Be careful though because my wife ended up pregnant soon after we moved back together. 🙂

  7. Hubby and I did this for 15 months between Toronto and Ottawa. On one hand, it was awkward and not the most pleasant way to live. On the other hand, he really enjoyed moving back in with his folks. He hadn’t lived at home for 15+ years, and he got the opportunity to spend some time with them and help out as a grateful non-teenager. Helping his dad with the snow shovelling, grabbing M&Ms for his mum at the store, pitching in with dinner, etc. They’re both getting older (70+) and it was a rare opportunity to really spend some quality time.

    You’re lucky you know exactly when it will end- ours was open-ended, and it was really stressful.

    • Er, this is sad, but hubby just had to remind me of *another* forced separation. we lived apart for 3 months while I was posted to Afghanistan. That one was easier in some ways, because we had a pretty good idea how long I’d be gone, and we had a clear goal in mind for my salary, but it was harder for obvious reasons (namely that it was the A-stan).

      Time to go make him dinner to make up for *that* memory slip! Oops!

  8. I moved home for about 3 months after my undergrad because I was about to start working overseas. I’d been with my BF for about 4 years at that point, and he was REALLY wanting us to live together and frustrated that I was going to be gone many months to a place with no reliable internet. That time was hard, but I think it was harder on him because I was actually doing something exciting to take my mind off feeling lonely, whereas he was living his same routine. Sounds like both you and Girl Ninja will have lots going on in your lives, and that should make the time apart liveable. Living at home was no major challenge, as my parents are very chill people who really love having their kids around and are totally fine with our independance, being very independant people themselves. In fact, after saving all that money, it was even harder than before for my BF to convince me that we should move in together when I got back (which I did, and we’ve been living together for the last 3-4 years).

    It’s funny you bring this up, because I’m looking to apply for an overseas contract (again) that would take me away from my partner for about 6 months – 9 months. He is VERY not keen, but in my mind, these are just months in a long life of MANY YEARS together. For sure I’d miss him, as we have spoken pretty much every day since I was 19 (baring my previous time overseas), but I guess I view it as a challenge and not a hardship.

  9. I know of a few multi-generation households, they are quite wealthy. Take advantage of the short opportunity and stack some cash for that big downpayment. Also, I would highly suggest that you take a real estate class to get a license and pocket that big commission when you buy that future home.

  10. I moved home from overseas about 3 years ago with no cash, so I moved in with my mom. I figured it would last 3 months top. Turns out I haven’t moved out! I’ve been able to pay off debt on a piddly grad student salary which is awesome. We’re both super busy, so we can help each other out with things like cooking, taking care of the dogs, etc. . I pay a few of the bills and get random groceries and give of my time to help out. The extra money I would use for rent I use for airplane tickets to see the BF I honestly never thought it would work out this well!

  11. I applaud you for taking this in stride. I would be a little more upset by moving in with mom and dad. I just really value my independence and am willing to pay for it.

  12. My Husband and I just moved in with his parents after he finished graduate school and it hasn’t been so bad. After him being in graduate school and being so far away from any family its kind of nice. We are talking about potentially spending some time apart after he gets a new job. I just got hired at at a national company location were his parents lives to bring in some extra money. I was hoping when he got a job (which could be anywhere) I could just transfer, but i found out training could take up to 6 months and I might not be able to transfer once training is done. So we are discussing the possibility of living apart for awhile. It might not even happen, but it might. I would hate to live so far apart…he is so useless without me.

  13. OK Ninja peeps, let us remember that mom and dad Ninja Rock so 3ish months at home will be an honor for DN.

    DN, I don’t see curfew in your future but I do see a transfer of the honey do list to ninja do list so mom and dad ninja can just chill when we get home.

    We lived apart for 7 months when dadninja had to go to California for work and he moved back in with his parents so we would not have to pay rent.

    I think you bigger concern should be bro ninja and having to share a bathroom with him…and don’t forget dog hair bring a HUGE lint brush….

  14. Well Ninja, at least your moving in with your parents under good circumstances. Years ago, midst a career change and dire financial circumstances I moved my family in with my mom for a few months. I love my mom but that was not fun. It was real motivation to quickly get a decent income again and get our own place.

  15. My boyfriend and I are both in law school, but I am a year behind him. For his first year of school, I lived and worked in the town where he goes to school. I knew I wasn’t going to be able to get into his school and the only other schools nearby were not well ranked. I ended up going back to my home state, knowing it meant a three year separation (maybe two, if we got lucky – we haven’t yet). We’re about halfway through it. It sucks, but I know that I would have been unhappy and had much worse job options if I hadn’t gone back to school or if I’d gone to a sub-par school just to be near him.

  16. We had the same situation when we moved to CT. I needed to move in January for school, and Hubby’s transfer wasn’t official yet. So I moved by myself, and Hubby moved back in with his folks for 3 months. We didn’t save any money because I had rent on our new apartment. It probably cost us more because on the travel expenses when he would drive up to see me for the weekend.

    It was hard once Hubby moved back with me. I had gotten used to living alone. It is amazing how quickly you learn to adapt to a new situation. I was working a full time job, a part time job, and going to grad school…. and loved the quiet of the house, and not picking up after someone else. So once he was there…his stuff, him… he was in my way. It was an adjustment.

    As for living with his folks, he was fine with it. He continued to go to work, socialize, etc. No biggie. He hadn’t lived at home for about 4 years at that point.

  17. We have been apart twice in the last seven years due to the same situation. Hubby gets a promotion in spring and I stay behind to finish out the school year. It feels odd at first, but both times have ended up going by quickly and you try to make the best of it. The first time I stayed with a college girlfriend whose husband was also away, we had a blast. The second time was sort of weird because I was pregnant…but I rocked it and got away with taking 3 hour naps every day after work and eating cereal for every meal:)
    Also, the last time I moved home was after college and it was a nice time to enjoy my parents and sister since we knew it ~most likely~ wouldn’t happen again. And saving rent money is always bomb.

  18. I don’t blame you man, save some dough. Won’t you have to pay a fee to break your lease on the SD apartment though?

  19. So in March of 2009, I got laid off from my job. We were living in a tourist ski town, so work wasn’t all that plentiful. By the grace of God, I got laid off on Friday and started work on Monday, at a previous employer, for 25% MORE than I was making before. Awesome! Except- it was 4 hours away in the bay area. So I moved back in with my parents. It was supposed to be very short term, as we both decided we were going to pick up and move to a new location. Yeah, wasn’t as easy as we thought. We finally moved back in together in November of 2010- so roughly 20 months apart. In the time between- we each got promotions, so our decision to move swayed, we had health and family issues, etc. Plus, finding a job in this economy was difficult! In the end, he left his dream job, in a location most people only visit for vacation, and moved down here to the Bay Area. ISometimes I wonder if it was the right move (not to mention the 35% pay cut he took, though I would have had to take closer to 50%) but it is all worth it to be living together again. It was TOUGH, especially since the time apart was open ended, but we made it through. During that time period, my mom lost her father and got a divorce, so it was good to be there for her. We didn’t pay her rent, but we didn’t end up really saving any money either (the gas driving back and forth each weekend was killer! We also ended up spending a somewhat unexpected 4k on auto repairs and maintenance between two cars, and spent more on dining out, taking small trips, etc. when we could be together.)

    What an awesome opportunity for you guys- that time period will go by so quickly you won’t even notice it.

  20. My parents call me the boomerang child, ’cause I just keep coming back! Haha, really I just move in for 2-3 weeks every year or two, usually a transition stage between apartments or countries. I don’t especially like living with my parents because my mom’s a little- shall we say- possessive when I live there and doesn’t like me leaving or doing other things. Takes a huge hit on my independence! But I grin and bear it because it’s usually just transitory and it helps me find the apartment I want (and they do really like having me around…. just a little TOO much).

    I’ve done a lot of long distance. I guess it comes with the traveling lifestyle. JZ and I have our last bit of long distance coming up from May-December this year and then I have put my foot down- we WILL live in the same country permanently! It’s in our long-term best interest to do this bit as we both have good jobs halfway across the world from each other, but to put it simply, long distance just sucks (and is pretty boring too).

  21. I lived with my in-laws while my husband was in basic training and his A school. About 6 months in all. Thank God they are some of the most amazing people ever and I was sad to leave them. Enjoy the extra cash while you can!

  22. A few years ago I was living with my then boyfriend (now husband), who was financially supporting me as I went back to school. Then he lost his job and had trouble finding a new one, so we ended up planning (at ages 25 and 30) to move in with my parents and little brothers. Now, this ended up working out better than anticipated, because at the same time a family member was hospitalized out of town, and my boyfriend and I were able to care for my little brothers and run the household so that my parents could take turns being at the hospital and making medical decisions. (It was a good trial for our relationship and future plans to have a family, that’s for sure! Also, he continued going on interviews during this time, and was offered a position shortly after the hospital situation was resolved. So life did work itself out nicely in that instance!) But STILL, it was humbling to have to explain to people that we were grownups and having to move in with my parents again . . . good thing they’re awesome 😉

  23. I’d totally live with my parents again if I was back in the area for a bit and my gf wasn’t going to be there with me. Good move, and I still think Seattle was the way to go too.

  24. A couple of years ago I was finishing college in Virginia and my husband got re-stationed near Seattle (since you’re from there I can say that he got stationed in Bremerton and you’ll know where that is). Then he got sent to Iraq. I was facing a move with a 4 month old by myself to a city that was 2 hours from home, where I knew no one, so I moved home. It was a loooong 7 months, I won’t lie. But it was worth it. We saved money and I didn’t have to be alone.

    When there is an end in sight it’s much easier.

    Unless you have unlimited calls between phones, anticipate your phone bill going up. Or get Skype (you probably already have these things but I’m new here and have no idea).

    One thing I struggled with a lot was feeling “entitled” to go and spend money on stuff I wanted because I was lonely and saving money by staying with my parents. I had to check myself several times…my attitude could get out of hand so quickly!

    Enjoy the time with your parents. We had so much fun playing games and reminiscing. It really was a great temporary solution for us.

    Love the blog, btw. I’ll have to come back and read more sometime when I’m not getting ready to leave the next day on an international flight (with two kids under 4)…

  25. I went to boarding school when I was 16, then to college for 3 years after that, which was out of state. Then I studied overseas for two years, came back to my home country and studied at my old college for my final year (I was in a twinning program) before starting my first job in 2008. I now live and work in a diff state, have nvr moved back to my parents (except for hols when I’d bum arnd and do nothing for a couple of weeks).

    But I might be quitting my job at the end of the year because I plan to move to the US next year to be with my BF (soon-to-be husband if all goes well), so in btw that, I might just move back to spennd time w the parents/family. Not sure how it’ll go since dad and I are pretty stubborn and thr has always been friction whenever we live together. Since I left home at 16, it would take max two weeks before dad and I start arguing.

    I love my parents and being around them,but they also have expectations which I would hv to follow/fulfil since I’d be technically living under their roof.

    Well, we’ll see what happens!

  26. The lawnmower is in the garage and the dog pooper scooper is just inside of the side yard gate.
    Trash goes to the curb every Tuesday night.
    Welcome home!

  27. Wow… I definitely couldn’t do that. My parents drive me nuts when I spend the holidays with them. I spent a month and a half with my father’s side of the family away from my SO out west once… that was the last time! I’m glad you’re going to save money though.

  28. A couple months should be fine. I’ve been living with my in-laws for a year and it drives me nuts. Mind you, I AM BANKING serious cash. But the trade off is my sanity. There’s a fine line. Anyway, you’ll survive and save a ton of money in the process.

  29. My parents was in a bad situation and moved it with us when we first got married. It did not work out at all and they left after a year or so….
    It’s tough living with parents again.

  30. […] on your life when it’s all over. In a recent post over at Punch Debt in the Face entitled Life just got awkward, Debt Ninja describes the situation he’s in where he will be moving back home for a few […]

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