The Generation Waiting Game: Responding to Gen Y's delayed lifestages

Jason Mander

A generation in waiting

Popular culture has long played on the idea of the grown-up teenager reluctant to fly the family nest or sever the financial support strings with their parents. But for some time now, this has been a trend in flux – it's no longer just teens looking for prolonged forms of familial support; many 20- and even 30-somethings have been relying ever more heavily on their parents (and wider family) as Gen Ys grapple with challenging economic, housing and employment markets and are forced to play the Generation Waiting Game.

Anecdotally, of course, most of us will have probably come across evidence for this phenomenon already. The graduate who returns to the family home after university. And who doesn't then leave. The 20-something constantly borrowing their parents' car because they can't afford to run one of their own. All those invitations to marriages where the spouses are on the other side of 30.