Date of Conferral





Human Services


Scott Hershberger


Many young adults lack independence and parents are supporting their children in into adulthood. There are parents who feel frustrated, taken for granted, and alone while providing for their dependent children. A lack of resources led a population of parents to find support through private social media groups. No research that examined the perception of the experiences of parents of dependent adults and the perceived benefits of online resources was found. The purpose of this generic qualitative study was to understand the parenting experiences of those who chose to join a private social media group and fill the literature gap regarding vulnerabilities of parents whose children are delaying transition to adulthood and social media support for parents of adults. The lens of the emerging adult theory was applied to address changes during young adulthood. Identities of the participants were protected in various ways. Ten members volunteered to allow their previous posts to be qualitatively studied using Thematic Analysis. Their data were analyzed with no follow up interview. The themes were indicative of unhealthy relationships regardless of the details. The parents believed the enabling of their children led to the problems they identify now. The parents in the group reported behaviors and thinking that are consistent with over-parenting or helicopter parenting. A study of the same population measuring a relationship between variables of those who identify as over-parents and the amount of money that parents spend on an adult child’s monthly basic needs. The results could be used to raise awareness to human service professionals, specifically in financial education. The findings may contribute to social change by offering a perspective of the maladaptive outcomes of over-parenting styles.