What you can do next
While many kids transition from school to work relatively smoothly, some struggle. With older teens and twenty-somethings, the parents' role becomes more nuanced. Express your concern with a nonjudgmental approach, says Jay Boll, LMSW, vice president of Laurel House, Inc., which provides mental health resources to people coping with mental illness. Lashing out often shuts off communication. If verbal communication becomes too heated, shift to emails, letters, or text messages.
At the same time, try not to make it so easy for your young adult to remain in place, rather than working toward independence, Boll says. If he or she has returned home, assign responsibilities, such as paying a modest amount in rent, or handling dinner several times a week. If they're struggling to make ends meet, help them establish and live within a budget Opens in new window.