Read any article about Millennials online and you’ll probably get the same rhetoric from a Baby Boomer writer blaming our generation for all the world’s problems, regardless of the fact that they’re the ones that actually screwed a lot of things up. “Millennials are lazy, Millennials are spoiled and entitled, Millennials are leeches that live off of their parents and bleed the world dry.” We’ve heard it all.
And for some reason, they seem to focus on American Millennials when they say this…after all, there was that U.S. Census survey from last year that showed that 15% of adults ages 25 to 34 still live with their parents, and that study set the world of bullshit anti-Millennial rhetoric on fire. 15%?! That means ALL Millennials are lazy, stupid drains on society! THE WORLD IS COMING TO AN END!
You think we’re bad? That’s nothing. Take a look at our neighbors to the East (Note: Not actually our neighbors) in Europe. A recent study from the European Commission showed some staggering numbers about adult children still living with their parents. Slovakia boasts a mind-boggling 74% of adults ages 18 to 34 who still live with their parents. 74 freaking percent. So that means a little over a QUARTER of young adults are somewhat financially independent.
You think the youth numbers skew it? If you take out college-age/early 20s numbers, Slovakia still has 57% of their 25 to 34 year olds living with mom and dad. And they’re not alone: Romania’s coming in low at 46%, Bulgaria’s a little over .500 with 51%, Serbia’s coming in hot with 54%, and Croatia comes in at #1 with a whopping 59% of adults age 25 to 34 that still suckle on the family teat. And numbers are trending upwards: The percentage of adults living at home shot up 10% in Slovakia, and 40% in Hungary.
Still want to tell me that Communism was a good idea, Mr. Stalin?
Granted, this phenomenon didn’t just occur in former Soviet Bloc nations. Countries hit hard by the 2008 recession and the ongoing Euro crisis, such as Italy and Greece, saw increases in the number of adults living with their parents. But it’s uncanny how this is occurring in nearly all the nations that lived under the yoke of Communism until the end of the Cold War.
The cost to live outside the home just doesn’t match up with the living wages of young people. According to the New York Times, in the poorer areas of Slovakia, small rental apartments go for about $300 a month, but the average entry-level salary for a young person is around $550 to $650 a month…if you can even find a job. So it’s not uncommon over there that even if a young person is working, they can live with their parents until their late twenties and early thirties, even through marriage. By the way, the median age of marriage in Slovakia went up 6 years for both men and women, from early-to-mid twenties to waiting until their late-twenties, early-thirties.
So the next time your parents complain that you’re too old to be living at home, tell them that it could definitely be worse. They could be living in Eastern Europe and having to deal with you until you’re 35. This will likely lead to your mom telling you that you’re getting fat and asking you to take out the trash and walk Skippy, you lazy bastard..
[via The New York Times]
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