Growing up, whenever I got cheeky or sullen about some aspect of family life, from chores to enforced walking holidays, my mother’s retort was always the same. “While you’re under our roof, you’ll do as I say. When you’re 18, you’ll be on your own and can do as you like.”
This was only half true, since I was not cut dead financially or otherwise at 18. But that didn’t stop 18 – the age most of my peers and I finished school and headed off to university – from being a watershed. This was the moment we left home and stopped having to worry about parental authority or meddling.
What this translated into, of course, was being able to stay out all night, have one night stands, get up at noon on Mondays,...
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