Forty Going on 14: How to Live With Your Parents as a Single Adult

First Person

Forty Going on 14: How to Live With Your Parents as a Single Adult

Illustration: Shruti Yatam

I

was the quintessential Mumbai single woman living by herself. Envied by all, bound by no one. No questions asked if I skipped coming home one night. Alternating between maids, refrigerators, and microwaves for various meals of the day. Greeted every other evening by a Blue Dart courier slip stuck at the door, gently crooning “We missed you”. Yes, living alone sometimes makes you normalise behaviours that others would deem preposterous, but that is the point of living alone. You do what you want, when you want to, answerable only to yourself.

Then, two years ago, my parents returned from their longish stint in the Middle East to move back in with me. The party – or exile, depending on how you looked at it – was over. Ring out the eggs and maggi, ring in the idlis and paranthas. Slowly the questions started flowing in: How would it feel to live with my parents after eight years of living alone? Would we be locking horns over my life choice and my lifestyle? Would I have to change my routine drastically to fit in my parents? Most importantly, was that even possible after crossing 40?

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