Failure to launch syndrome is the inability to transition into adulthood. Along with adulthood comes independent living. Every year more and more young adults lack the necessary life skills to make this transition. This lack of skills can be due to a lack of desire or preparation to be independent and self-reliant. For many young adults the task of self-determination is overwhelming and debilitating. As a result, their behavior may revert to adolescence. Or they can fall victim to the escapism provided by electronics or substance abuse.
Parents can struggle when a child suffers from a failure to launch. Due to a sense of guilt and/or responsibility. Often parents wonder if they were the cause and could have done something different. In some instances parents have enabled their children but sometimes they did not. Trying to assign blame is counterproductive and does nothing for the problem. Because of this, parents must begin transitioning their child into adulthood. The first step is to stop supporting their behavior especially financial support.
The current times we live in contributes to failure to launch syndrome we are seeing. Today’s young adults grow up with the internet and it gives us instant gratification. This contributes to the sense of entitlement and narcissistic tendencies we see today. When end rewards are not immediately accessible young adults give up. When they give up it perpetuates the problem. The internet has provided escapism and a world where young adults can hide. Taking back control is something they need to do for themselves. Often, the best way to start this process is to disconnect them from familiarity. This disconnect can be done with a young adult program.
Sometimes parents have difficulty determining if their child has failure to launch syndrome. Here are some of the symptoms:
– Narcissistic tendencies and behavior
– No long term goals or plans for their future
– A lack of basic living skills such as: cooking, cleaning, or personal hygiene
– No motivation
– A sense of entitlement, that everything should be given to them
– Expectations of the way they should be treated but with no regard for how they treat others
– An inability to hold a job or poor work ethic
– Collapses in the face of the slightest challenge to their ideas
– A complete denial of any responsibility

Written by Penrith