In 1999, a Japanese professor by the name of Masahiro Yamada came up with a term called “parasite singles” -- unattached adult children in their 20s and 30s who live with their parents and mooch the free housing, cooking and laundry service. It’s a term that has apparently become quite popular in Japan. But the phrase “parasite couple” -- married children living with one set of parents -- that one’s not as popular. Maybe it’s because few people are crazy enough to actually do it.
Enter us: The crazy ones.
My fiance and I have done the only thing more shameful than moving back home when you’re single. We have moved in with my parents. With less than five months until The Big Day, we should be blissfully shopping for our new home together, the place where he will carry me over the threshold to officially mark the beginning of our life together. Instead, he’ll be carrying me into my parents’ living room, and the ‘rents will be right behind us, lugging in all those towels and punch bowls and cheese graters we have no place to put.
But no, seriously, we aren’t mooching. Okay, maybe we’re mooching a little, but not because we’re lazy. And, no offense to the good professor Yamada, but I think our situation will be more symbiotic than parasitic. We’re more like those clownfish that live in the sea anemones: In return for a little room and board we keep those anemone-eating predators away. I’d much rather think of myself a cute little Nemo fish than the nasty bug that crawled into Chekov’s ear in that Star Trek movie.
Our end goal, the light at the end of the tunnel, is saving up the big bucks to afford a house of our own. If we’ve got to sacrifice a little privacy and dignity to get there, so be it. And maybe we’ll get a little insider knowledge on what it takes to make a marriage work. My parents have been married for nearly 30 years, so they must be doing something right. Maybe some of it will rub off on us...