Four Reasons why Living with your Mates is a Great Idea
There comes a time in everyone’s life when you or your child will start to consider moving out of the family home for the first time. For a person with a disability or parents of children with disability this transition can sometimes seem especially daunting.
To help give you the confidence to make this new transition, here’s four reasons why living with your mates is a great idea!
Being compatible with your housemates is crucial to your overall wellbeing and happiness when living in a shared living home.
Before moving into your supported independent living home, you will go through what’s called a compatibility assessment to determine whether you and your housemates are compatible to live together. This will be decided by assessing your interests, individual support needs, abilities, likes and dislikes through a number of meet ups and sleepovers.
However, if moving in with a group of friends, you’re already part way there! You will likely already know your housemates really well, and probably know if you could all live together comfortably. This reduces the need to complete complex compatibility assessments making the process a lot less daunting and, in some instances, shorter. We still may need to do some meet ups and sleepovers, however, knowing you will be surrounded by people you already know, offers you and your family peace of mind.
2. Having good company and supports
When moving out of home for the first time, naturally there will be some concerns as to whether you or your child will have the right environment and supports to thrive and live independently. Both the support staff and the friends you live with play a vital role within your supported independent living home.
Support staff will be able to assist you when needed for daily tasks such as cleaning, cooking and personal care; and you will always have choice and control over the type of supports you need.
The added bonus of living with your mates, means you will all play a key role in each other’s lives as well. We know friendships are an important part of our lives for our physical, emotional and mental wellbeing. These types of social connections act as a safety net and can provide you with benefits such as:
- Increased sense of belonging and purpose
- Boosted happiness and reduced stress
- Improved self-confidence and self-worth
- Comfort during stressful and hard times
Knowing you will have the right company and supports to live independently is a key factor in giving you and your family the comfort and confidence you need to move out of home.
3. Being yourself
One of the many benefits of living with your mates is a sense of belonging – meaning you simply feel included, just like you would in your family home. When we feel a sense of belonging, we are more comfortable to open up and be ourselves. You might even discover new things about your mates, like shared interests, or a willingness to try something new together.
4. Moving out of home – it’s a part of life!
For a parent, the idea of your child moving out of home for the first time can feel daunting. Moving out of home is a major change for anyone, especially for a person with disability and of course the parents of that child. But it should be an exciting time, a time filled with new experiences, and sense of approaching adulthood. We want to make this milestone an exciting, memorable and safe experience for everyone involved, and to help with this there are a few things you can do as a parent to plan ahead.
- Start the conversation early: Start to talk about what moving out of home might be like. Where would they like to live? What type of house would they like to live in? Who would they want to live with? Starting the conversation early helps you to understand what is important to your child in a new home. This includes everyone in the process and helps to uncover any concerns or hesitations early on.
- Set a goal: Speak to your support coordinator about setting the goal of moving out of home and building your / your child’s independence. By setting this as a goal in your plan your support coordinator can request that you have ‘Supported Independent Living’ (SIL) funding in your next NDIS plan.
- Think Long Term: Moving into a supported independent living (SIL) home can be a long process. We recommend starting conversations with service providers (like Unisson) early. We can talk you through the process and help you get everything underway. Your support coordinator is also someone who can help. In most cases it can take six to twelve months to secure the perfect home and we will support you through each step during that time. As mentioned earlier if you are moving in with your mates this will reduce the time somewhat, however, we want to ensure everything is taken care of and we have the right home for you before making the move.
At Unisson, the support we offer is flexible and can adapt as your needs change. Together, we’ll work with you through every step as you progress towards your new living arrangement and ensure your home reflects who you are with the support you need.