How to Tell Your Overprotective Parents You're Moving Out

Depending on your personality and how rebellious you are, breaking the news will vary from excruciating to just picking up your stuff and taking off without looking back. Chances are though, if you're looking online for advice, you're nervous about confronting your parents.


Be Sure of Your Decision

Nothing is worse than setting off the parent bomb without thinking things through beforehand. Be sure that you are able to move out and that this is what you really want to do. It'll only make things worse if you end up having to come back at a later date because you weren't able to make it.

If you're moving in with a friend or boyfriend/girlfriend be sure that they are trustworthy and someone you can function with and be around most of the day. The point of moving out and being on your own is to improve your quality of life and to experience new things. You don't want to move from one negative situation into another.

One piece of advice is to have spent a few days alone together, in a hotel, at a family member's house and see how everything goes. Is your potential roommate clean? Were they courteous with their space and did they look after themselves?

If you need some sort of an excuse to test the waters, try finding an event that is a distance away from your house so it will force you to stay with your potential roommate. A film festival, a band, a mini vacations, etc.

Experiencing roommates in College dorms is also a good way to not only familiarize yourself with living with someone else, but it will also allow you to visit your parents (on school breaks), and the act of your going to college may also help alleviate their fears.


Don't Break the News Alone

If you're moving in with a roommate or a boyfriend/girlfriend, having them there for support will show a certain level of commitment that you're not alone in your decision to move out and might help remove some of the fear that you're parents will be feeling.

It's also nice to be able to talk back and forth and show your parents that you've thought about potential job offers and what you'll be doing to accomplish your goal together and how you'll have someone to support you.

Have a Plan and Be Ready to Defend Yourself

If you're parents are like mine, as soon as I broke the news to my dad, he immediately said "No, you're not." In which case I had to defend myself and tell him what the plan was, who I had talked to and that I would still have the connection and support of people in my creative industry. It was a risk that I was taking, but I was prepared and willing to see where the decision would take me.

When planning to move out, is your job going to be a permanent one or is it merely a step toward your dream job? Be sure to think about how long you want to commit to wherever you're staying.

For me, my move's time was limited to one year. Same with my internship. I gave it one year to do everything I could (build relationships, networking, finished projects for my portfolio), then I would move on and continue pursuing my career.

This helps avoid getting stuck in a dead end situation and also gives me a driving force to complete what I want to accomplish in a set time.

When you told your parents you were moving out, when did you tell your parents?

  • Before I told friends and other family members
  • After I told friends and other family members
See results without voting

Break the News to Your Parents Last

This might seem a little odd to some people, but for me, I found that it was easier and a little less daunting after talking to my friends and family before confronting my parents. You'll be able to talk about what you want to do, without an air of disdain or disapproval.

Ask for advice. Your friends and family will be able to tell you how it was when they left the house and hearing it from them will encourage you to make your decision.

If you're like me, someone who hates conflict, this is going to be a scary and new situation for you. You'll be glad to have the support and love of people you care about before you step into the ring with your parents. There's comfort knowing that you have the support of friends and family, especially if you know that your parents are not going to support your decision.

Other Factors to Consider

  • Boyfriend/girlfriend - how serious is the relationship? Can you trust him/her? Are you ready to commit to living together? What would happen if things go wrong?
  • Any animals you need to find homes for - do you need to find a home for pet? Who will take care of it? Are you taking your animal with you?
  • If either of your parents are sick at the time - if leaving at the moment is the right choice? What will you do if things get worse with them?
  • Leftover junk - how much stuff are your parents going to let you keep in the house if any?

Tell Mom or Dad First

If you're closer to one of your parents, it might help to tell one of your parents before the other so that you can test the waters. You might also be able to ask for help from whoever you're closer to on how to tell the other.

Have Realistic Expectations Before Confronting Your Parents

Ideally, you want to tell your parents with plenty of time so you can say your goodbyes and get your affairs in order. However, avoid any kind of unrealistic expectations in your head. If you have any past experiences with mistakes, you should have a general idea of how your parents will react.

Were they mad for a couple months the last time? Will they support you or give you the silent treatment? Will there be screaming and is there a possibility they will kick you out of the house?

Preparing for the worse will help keep your resolve strong. As much as I wanted to still be friends and have my mom like me, I knew that telling her that I was moving out, across states (and with my boyfriend to boot), would make her furious. Knowing this, I was prepared for the silent treatment and knew that my name would be mud for a couple months.

If you are moving in with a roommate, it's a good idea to bring them by the house for your parents to meet so they at least will know what sort of company you'll be in.

Understanding Your Parents' View

As much as you want to move out and no matter how it goes down, remember to look at it from your parents point of view. If you're the first child to move out, or the only one, it's no doubt going to be harder for you to break the news to them. The same is true if you're a girl, if you're moving in with a boyfriend/girlfriend or moving across states.

Make an effort to alleviate their fears by having a plan and thinking things over before you act on your decision. Be sure to let them know that you still love them and they're welcome to come by and visit.


Advice I Would Give My Past Self

Don't wait as long to tell your parents. The anxiety and stress I had, could have been reduced significantly if I hadn't waited so long. It's better to not picture every possible horrible outcome then just getting it over with.

Have a better relationship with my parents. Growing up, I never felt close to either of my parents or that I was able to talk to them about big life decisions. I found more comfort and support from my friends and boyfriends' family and parents. As such, I don't feel like I picked the right words to express why I wanted to move out.

Good-bye Sentiments

  • Leave a picture frame with a good picture of yourself inside
  • Write a nice letter when you leave expressing how you'll miss them, if you're better at writing than talking about your feelings, this may be a good way for you to express your emotions
  • Buy a webcam so you can Skype
  • Promise that you'll keep in touch.

The Aftermath

After you finally move out, there's a possibility that one or both of your parents will need a little bit of a "cool down" period. Let them have their space and when you feel like you've given them some time, remember to try to be friends after the situation.

You can't choose who your family are, but they're important and are your biggest support system. And as annoying as it is, being overprotective just means that your parents care for you. It's a big life decision, not just for you, but for your parents as well.

What's Your Moving out Story?

How were your parents when you broke the news? If you have a story, feel free to share it below. How you approached the situation may help someone else.

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Comments 44 comments

CarlySullens profile image

CarlySullens 3 years ago from St. Louis, Missouri

This is such a thorough job and touches on all the emotions that will naturally arise when moving out. This information is so valuable for both young adults and their parents. It would be stressful on both ends. Way to go! Voted+

pinto2011 profile image

pinto2011 3 years ago from New Delhi, India

Definitely this way of straightening fact is going to help both ends. Very nice idea.

Nemetos profile image

Nemetos 3 years ago

This would have been some good tips for when I moved out haha, great hub!

Vacation Trip profile image

Vacation Trip 3 years ago from India

Great hub with good tips. Voted up and useful. Thanks for sharing.

noellenichols profile image

noellenichols 3 years ago from Denver Author

Thanks for the feedback, everyone. I'm happy it was useful.

kthix10 profile image

kthix10 3 years ago from IL

Woohoo! I just saw this was pinned by Hubpages - hoping you gets lots of traffic!

LensMan999 profile image

LensMan999 3 years ago from Trans-Neptunian region

The hub is very wonderful. I should have known these tips when I was too young. However thanks a lotfor sharing the hub!

Sundeep Kataria profile image

Sundeep Kataria 3 years ago

Very nice and point wise presentations. Thanks for sharing your views.

mathira profile image

mathira 2 years ago from chennai

Parents sacrifice their life for the well being of their children. But the grave mistake they commit is not to realize that their children are individuals who want to lead their own lives. Excellent hub about a sensitive matter.

noellenichols profile image

noellenichols 2 years ago from Denver Author

Mathira - Thank you for the comment and kind words.

gmwilliams profile image

gmwilliams 2 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

Excellent article. While many parents are happy that their adult children are moving out of the nest and establishing their new lives, overprotective parents view the independence of their adult children to be an affront to them. They still view their adult children as children, not adults. They want to infantilize their children or at least keep them in a dependent, subordinate status. The average overprotected child oftentimes do not have the wherewithal to separate from their parents. It takes a stronger natured overprotected child to state that he/she is an adult, quite capable of making adult decisions. I voted this hub UP.

Xyro 2 years ago

This information helps me a lot. Thanks for the support.

My moving out story is a bit complicated. Bit of a Drama. Where you might give up on yourself and just thinking about moving on and support yourself through life and provide things for yourself with needs that you need to improve, like your "Quality of Life".

Sorry I can't say no more than this.

Thank You HubsPage.

nicoshaguerra 2 years ago

Good topic! It took awhile for me to move out own my own , but some how my boyfriend who is now my husband gave me the courage to actually tell my mom why I'm moving and its about that time to be out own my own anyway . Good post ! Hope to see more post like this soon .

Erin Jade profile image

Erin Jade 2 years ago from South Australia

You made some really good points here. My parents were fairly strict too and it led to a lot of conflict! Looking back I wish I had made a much better plan such as having full time work to support myself and move out once I could buy a house rather than being a student and share housing. It would have saved years of heartache bouncing from rental to rental living with people who turned out not to be the nice people I had always thought they were!

Avril 24 months ago

My parents are very traditional and old fashioned. My boyfriend has asked me to move in with him and im terrified with the idea of asking my parents to move out! Reading this helped me think things over clearly... thank you so much

Emma-May 23 months ago

I'm 17, and my parents seem to think that I won't make it alone like I'm going to live with them for ages. I've been offered uni an hour and half away from home, and they expect me to drive that everyday. My friend has also been offered uni and at the same place, we are trying to organise living together in that town. But breaking the news to my parents? Since I left school it has been hell! They have been yelling at me for things that arnt my fault. I live in a town where getting a job is totally not easy, in this new town it would be different but yea. Anyway so I want to go on social security so I have some money cause atm I have none, they won't let me do that, they won't let me go for my p's when I have all the log filled in and done. They used to be happy with me being the one that wants to move on sooner (my brother is 22 and still at home) but now it's like an issue, I'm planning on telling them about my plans to move out soon some time soon. And I know it will be an argument. I just don't want to leave with bad blood, but atm it seems like the only outcome. :/

Brenda 21 months ago

This was very helpful. I am a week away from my 21st birthday, and wondering how to break the news to my parents that I'm moving out. Although I am a bit older I have very strict parents, this has caused a lot of conflict for me. And because my older brother is 26 and still at home my parents see it as me still being a child. No to mention that I am the "baby" and there only daughter. Gonna stick my ground..thank you for the advice.

Marie 21 months ago

Moving out from the overprotective parent nest is always easier the first time. The next time you live with your overprotective parents, the harder they may try to hold onto you, and the less they will be able to tolerate you as an adult. Although you may move out again (and again), you risk ruining your relationship with your parents.

Sammy 21 months ago

Just broke the news to my dad over email, mum is 100% on board as I have a full time job, flat mates and a house already sorted, also a good weekly budget. I'm the only daughter and I've had a touch history with mental health so he is a bit over protective and I'm worried that he will not support me. Also, I would totally stand me ground, but I work side by side with my dad, and I don't want to lose my job or make work awkward. But seeing your dad for 9 hours straight and then living with him is hard! Wish me luck for tonight...

Kelah 19 months ago

This article was really helpful for me. It seems like the older I get the more overprotective they get (I'll be 21 in August). As a result my friend told me I can come stay with her over the Sumner until it's time for me to go to my new school in the fall. I've always had a decent relationship with my parents but they've been getting more and more difficult to talk to lately and ever since I've made my decision to move I've been really nervous about sitting my parents down and talking to them. This makes me feel a little better and a bit more prepared because the author's situation is similar to my own. Thank you for this post :)

Marie 18 months ago

I started working in the adult industry a few months ago, and I know that I can comfortably support myself so I just got my own apartment. I move in 2 months, but my strict Asian parents have no idea about my job so I honestly have no idea how to tell them... They'd disown me if they knew. I know I'm in a tricky situation. I still want a relationship with them though, so I think I'll just tell them that I got a great office job in the next city... Wish me luck.

Juan 18 months ago

I am somewhat ready to move out but currently I am helping my parents with some bills. My dad only works and my mom stays home. I don't want to take away the money..

Ryl 18 months ago

Still Planning how to starr the conversation , i quit my job because of the apartment my sis got, we are paying it together but its too much for me, i can't tell her that i want to stop paying and move out.,

p.s. she always says that she can py the apartment alone...

Sam Stephens 18 months ago

I am actually planning this while I am still young because I share a close bond with my mom, and once the day comes I move, I know it will be painfully hard. I want to start a band with my friends, and if we are good enough to be signed, I will be able to visit them frequently. If it doesn't work out, I'm a saver, not a spender, so I can still visit, call, text, and skype.

sarah 16 months ago

im 18 and decieded to move out in two weeks with my best friend due to extreme tension and arguments with my mom. im scared to tell her but i know i have to. i just dont know how to break it to her. ive thought about it in my head but still cant find a good way to tell her (might just be me avoiding it) please help me

Mandela 16 months ago

Im 20 years old. Turning 21 in December. I get my apartment key in one week and i still didn't tell my parents i'm moving out with my friend. They're old school and overprotective. I plan on telling my dad first since he's easy going. But it won't be easy. I'm growing up and i've decided it's time for me to go and see the world without them.

noellenichols profile image

noellenichols 16 months ago from Denver Author

Hi Sarah,

I know how tensions can get with parents! Just be sure you are your friend are able to support yourselves. The worst case scenario for moving out is not being prepared for what's to come and ending up having to move back in. I would recommend not just leaving without saying something. Keep your cool, even if she does get mad. Sit your mom and tell her. Even if it's hard. "Mom, I've given this a lot of thought over the past xxx weeks. I have a job and know what I'm getting into. As you know, I'm 18 now and I want to take the next step in my life. I'm moving out....." ----- Something like that as a starter. Be sure to get some advice from friends and family too! Good luck!

I can tell you all from experience that it DOES get much better after breaking the news to your parents. Sometimes it does take some time, but my relationship with my dad is great. Some parents just have a harder time letting go. Like they say, time heals all! Growing up (and moving out) is inevitable. Just be smart out when you move out/who you move in with/and how you handle the situation.

viviana213 profile image

viviana213 16 months ago from California

I need help with telling my dad that I’m moving out. I'm 19 years old and have already made living arrangements with my aunt who I’m going to be staying with till I have a stable job and find my own place, I’ve already told my mom who I’m closer to and she has known for a year now that I’ve been wanting to move out, but I don't know how to break it to my dad since I already have a feeling of what he is going to say. I don’t want him to take it the wrong way either and have been stressing out so much about this. I”ve thought about writing him a letter and letting him read it so he could let it sink in because he wouldn’t let me explain everything if we were to talk. All of my other family members support me and even some friends that I’ve told support me too. I plan on leaving in august and just want them to know how serious I am about moving. Even though I’m the "baby" of the family when I tried to talk to my older sister she thought that I was overreacting because she hasn’t moved out and she’s 21 years old. She even thought that I was too prepared because I already found places that are hiring, a car to driving while I’m living over there, and things I need like insurance, my phone bill and other necessities.. If anyone could possible help me with any advice it would be a huge help. Even though this article has helped me I just need other opinions.

India Terry 15 months ago

Thank you for this article. I'm moving out of state to be with my girlfriend. My mother doesn't accept gay relationships/marriages because she is a pastor. I don't know how to stand up to her face to face so the "writing" option is my only way to express my feelings. I know if I have an argument or talk to her, she will bribe me with something I love. I know because I have done this plenty of times. If she keeps telling me "if you're going to leave, do it!", does that mean she wants me to leave or does that mean that she will care once I leave.

Laura J. 14 months ago

Im 24, and i want to move out.

I left when i was 18 in bad circumstance, i made the decision and just left while everyone was out and didnt say a word. I regret doing that.

But now i want to move out. Im stuck in a toxic situation where my insecurities areused against me in arguments. Where things i did years ago are somehow relevent in every argument and im made to feel that im priveledged to have a room in this house for two thirds of my wage [which is a full time job at £7 an hour]

She wants a months notice, but i just know that that month will be living hell because she'll be stressed and shoutier than ever.

I have multiple options of friends who would be happy to let me live with them and share the rent... hell i could afford my own place...

I just dont know how to approach the situation. At all...

justine 13 months ago

How late is too late to tell them that youre leaving? I leave to move back to my home state 850 miles away in a little over a week but just found out yesterday. It feels wrong to only give them a weeks notice but I didnt know before yesterday so its the best I can do I guess.

veronicaadams profile image

veronicaadams 12 months ago from Mobile,AL

Don't you hate it when your parents tell you to grow up but that still treat you like a child?

guest2 12 months ago


Its a nightmare trying to persuade my parents to let me even go to a good college that has a program I'm interested in. 23 and want to be out before 25 (that means not living within bus distance of them).

I've let my dad know and I won't give up this time as its important to me I can do school without them. I want to apply to the school before the end of this month and definetley before November & will do so even if they don't support me as they can't control me forever like they for the past few years. I will do residence next year, make the jump from being with them, to feeling comfortable on my own. I have already done college close to home on their wishes but it can't always hold. The last time I was apart from them for a week it felt great they just don't get it. Maybe being female and the oldest doesn't help but I won't let that stop me this time!

Mary 11 months ago

So, theres this college that i want to go to out of state, and my parents seem okay with me going there, because of the college experience that ive had with a college prep program I'm in. What they don't know is that I want to move to the state with my boyfriend (the city the college is in is his home town), and get an apartment.

I'll be 18 in February, and he'll be 19 next month in December. I'll be the third child to move out, but he's the oldest and will be the first.

I don't know how my parents will react, but it's possible that they may just act like the conversation didn't happen and will be the closed-minded people that they normally are.

His parents aren't extremely Catholic, but still up there, and two people dating living together is a bit of a no-no. He had a cousin who lived with his (now ex) girlfriend, and it seemed as though his whole family was furious. I don't want them to hate him or anything because of me. However, things are different because we'll actually have jobs, be going to school, I've had plenty of experience living away from home, and his family seems to really like me (apparently I'm all his mom talks about).

We're looking at 2bedroom apartments, and we're more focused on going to college than what their fears of us living together probably are (both of us are virgins not interested in that stuff).

We were planning on telling out parents at the same time...

Any tips?

noellenichols profile image

noellenichols 11 months ago from Denver Author

Hi Mary,

It sounds like you and your boyfriend are quite prepared for this move. When I first moved out of state with my boyfriend (we had been dating for over a year), my dad flat out said "No." which of course I was ready for. Just be sure to have your resolve and really stick to it. Either of your parents might think this is a mistake, but really in life we all have to make our own journeys.

Have either of your parents met one another's parents? If not, I wouldn't consider maybe telling one set of parents at a time, not together. That would just lead to a lot more stress, I would imagine. That's how me and my boyfriend did it. Otherwise parents start thinking you're asking about marriage, etc, and already be in a bad mood.

You could start off telling your parents you'll each have your own bedroom and this is more of a roommate situation. It's always great to have a good support system as well (aka your boyfriend) when going to college, so maybe throw that out there as well. I would just make sure to state that you'll be focused on schoolwork as well.

Other than that, just remember a big change takes some time for everyone to adjust. So don't be too worried if you ruffle some feathers!

Mary 11 months ago


Our parents have met, my boyfriend and I have been dating for a year, so our families have interacted quite a bit.

Thank you for the advice! I'll make sure to bring it up to him!

Irish Shrew profile image

Irish Shrew 11 months ago from Midwest

Very well written and concise Hub. If I may- I would like to also add (as a parent) that parents consider their child's personality as well. My older girl I knew wouldn't venture far but was independent enough and also exhibited streets smarts to the point of full survival. My younger daughter is very smart but naive to a fault. She trusts everyone and takes them at their word. We parents know our children. Granted, we also have met some shady people in our lives along with being sticklers at news watching! It is very hard to see them walk out the door when we don't feel comfortable that they are fully equipped to tackle all that may land on their doorstep. Maybe I would add one thing to the list of dealing with parents? Make sure to tell them you hope you can call for advice any time it is required-even though you have no intention on doing so. At least you have left that door open!

Lilly Marple 9 months ago

I told my mom first and she told me to go for it. My dad on the other hand wasnt to happy, we had a screaming match. It was hard on me though because i didnt think he loved me anymore. But then again i was only 17 when i moved out. My birthday is January 16th and i moved out on January 2nd. I am now living with my boyfriend and i love it, its so quiet and i dont have to worry about all the screaming and yelling in the house. Yes i miss my parents and yes i still love them but i just couldnt take it anymore. I was the one blamed for everything and got in trouble for everything, so i think moving out was the best thing i ever did with my life. Im glad i told my parents i wanted to move out because if i didnt i would still be thinking that question "what if ?" So yes moving out was the greateat thing i ever did. Thank You for letting me get my thoughts out and that is the end of my experience.

Emily 9 months ago

Hello. I'm in a sticky situation. My boyfriend(brown) and I(chinese) have been going out for a little more then a year. Im the youngest of three and the first one to be in a relationship.

My mother had known about us since the firstt date. But she never accepted it. I've asked her why she hates my boyfriend so much, and she says she doesnt need tk explain why. She just hates him.

So to this day she still hates it when I go out with him. My mother is one of the most over protective parents ever. I am turning 24 this year. And I still have to be home before 12. I've never had a close relationship with either of my parents.

I want to get a place with my boyfriend by the end of the year. This is going to be really hard to do since my sister (28) and my brother (26) still gladly live at home. Whenever I mention my boyfriend, my mom starts yelling at me and gives me the silent treatment afterwards. I can only imaine how telling her I'm going to get a place withy boyfriend will go...

Any advice will help

Tori 7 months ago

My family is moving to Florida and I want to stay in Georgia. I'm 20. I want to move in my friends house or move into a apartment with my friend . I've discussed in some with my parents before and they are not okay with it. They are very overprotective in my opinion and scares me that they'll cut me off. I would have job and split expenses equally. Jobs like cleaning, shopping, etc. would be shared equally. I could still go to school. My parents think I won't be successful at all. When I talk to my friends about it, they are completely supportive. My dad doesn't want me to have a job. I would save up money. They treat me different than they do my brother who is same age as me. I'm an adult but they treat me like a child.

Any tips or advice would be helpful.

guest81 7 months ago

I have a very very hard time talking to my parents in person but for some reason I can write it down easier than telling them in person. I told them about 4 months ago but I'm still at home & my boyfriend keeps asking me when I'm moving in. Is it okay to write them a letter?

Hannah 5 months ago


I am nineteen and i go to college an hour and a half away from home, but every month for the past five months my mom has gotten into fights with me about stupid things and the worst fight of all just occured. I am scared to live home for the summer so I want to move into a rental house with my boyfriend where his parents agreed to let us stay if we pay utilities. My mom is not talking to me and if she does, it is violent yelling and name calling while i beg her to stop, I dont know how she will react or how to tell her, my dad is caught in the middle but i feel like they wont let me leave, or will kick me out. How do i handle this?

Emile 2 months ago

My boyfriend and I have been together for 3 years this past week.

Despite this my parents act as if we are both still a couple of pre teens.

We've had a lot of trouble with boundaries, especially with my mom.

My mother refuses to change her attitude towards me. The amount she respects my thoughts and actions hasn't changed much as I've grown.

I want to tell her that I plan on joining my boyfriend and his roommate in their two bedroom apartment within a few months. But I am worried about dealing with the fallout in person.

On the other hand, were I to wait to tell her, I'd have to continue dealing with this built up anxiety over the matter.

My boyfriend is working full time (at a temporary job, until he can find a position in linework, for which he is certified).

His apartment is closer to my college and not too far from my work.

I've always felt my parents put far too much value in the opinions of others and unfortunately I have inherited that trait from them.

I worry so constantly about how she will treat me after I tell her that I have paralyzed myself.

It will likely be 2-3 months before I am ready to physically move out, as I have some cleaning out of clothes and things to do.. should I tell her now and deal with her barrage of arguments (attempting to change my mind) or should I delay it so she can cool off with me out of the house..and deal with the stress of bottling it away.

Any advice is welcome..

Cassie 5 weeks ago

Did i write this? Because this is my exact situation...Thanks for the advice! :)

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