Living By Yourself At A Young Age – Pros And Cons
I’ve often wondered what it’s like living by yourself at a young age, and what will happen when I move out of my parents house and live independently. Will I regret it? Will I be able to cope? I’m getting to that age where I’m too old to be a child, but too young to be an adult. And although I think it would be great to just move out now, I couldn’t cope just yet without my parents. Even my four year old brother can work a washing machine, whereas I’ve just learnt how to cook microwave pizza. I’m just not a particularly practical person. However over the last seven months, I have been visiting my friends and partner at Towers House, which is run by Home Group.
Otherwise known as Stonham, the service provides support to vulnerable people from the age of 16 up to 25 years old, for up to two years. There are also two dispersed properties in the Derwentside area used as move on properties for the young people leaving Towers House. Stonham offer a “Client Promise”, including a home which meets the “home standard”, a safe place to live, reliable service, value for money and people who care. According to the website, Stonham’s support improves the lives of over 30, 000 vulnerable people every year. I know from my own experience that Towers House have cameras in each corridor, allowing staff to watch outside of the 12 flats for health and safety purposes. There are staff available 24/7, including support workers throughout the day and security guards through the night, so the clients feel safe and have the help there if/when they need it, however it’s still similar to living by yourself at a young age. To enter the building, visitors must firstly pass the entrance of the building, and then show ID to prove they are 16 years of age or older. They must then sign a log book for health and safety purposes, which must be done every time a visitor enters or leaves. In other words, the building is extremely secure.
I have watched many clients come and go, I have made new friends and I have experienced a journey with them. I have observed how they live, and found many pros and cons of living by yourself at a young age.
The first advantage is rather obvious to most teens/young adults – you can live by your own rules. However I have found this to be a disadvantage for some clients of Stonham, as they must go by a strict tenancy agreement, which some seem incapable of. This could be down to their past, which could range from alcohol and drug abuse, to domestic violence, to mental health issues. Although the service is specifically for vulnerable people, the tenancy agreement must be similar to what they will receive when they move out of Stonham as they need to know what to expect when living by yourself at a young age. And yes, a standard council house or house to let may be slightly different, but the rules must still be followed at all times, which can be a disadvantage for many young people as they may get carried away with their new found independence.
Living by yourself at a young age also allows you to handle your own money. Money needs to be budgeted well when living independently, which is a big struggle for many young people as we want everything. I know I do anyway.
A disadvantage of living by yourself at a young age is the living by yourself part. If you’ve grown up living with parents/guardians, moving out to live independently may be a struggle as a lot of young people don’t realise just how tough the process can be.
There are plenty of advantages and disadvantages regarding living by yourself at a young age. I’m excited to do so when I gain more independence, however scared of being independent. As long as the rules are followed and there is plenty of help and support when needed, everything will be fine.
Want to check out the Home Group website yourself? www.homegroup.org.uk
Do you know of any more pros and cons? Comment with your views.