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          Breaking the Cycle of a Family Freeloader

          October 29, 2003

          If you’re living with an adult child or other able-bodied family member who is overstaying his or her welcome, it is possible to change the situation.

          You must first remember that you are not doing your relative a favor by making it easy for him or her to continue to live at home. Most likely he or she is stuck in a pattern of inertia, unable to break a pattern of lethargy and apathy. “You get into this comfort zone where days turn into months and then years and before you know it, you’re 28 and living at home,” Dr. Phil tells Jeremy, one of the guests on Family Freeloaders.

          Dr. Phil suggests that parents who have adult children still living at home should give their kids 30 days to move out of the house and then change the locks. “You are not being mean by requiring them [the children] to grow up,” Dr. Phil says. He reminds parents that pushing their adult kids out of the house actually helps them begin healthy, successful lives.

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