Factors to consider when leaving home

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Older teens with luggage and moving boxes

People leave home at different times: some leave to go to college or university or take up a job and others might wait until they start their own family as adults.

It is often hard on parents when their adult children leave home. This can be even more of an issue if their teen has had a transplant.

Your parents may worry that you might not be able to take care of yourself. Before you move out, you should be able to show them that you can be totally in charge of your care – remembering to take your medications on your own, getting your prescriptions filled or re-filled, remembering your appointments and getting to them on your own, doing your laundry and following any special diet and fluid guidelines (including buying groceries and cooking).

Your parents will always be concerned about you! But If you show you can take care of yourself, they will likely feel less worried as you move away from them.

Keeping in contact with your parents

It is up to you to decide how much to be in touch with your parents. However, they will appreciate regular contact. If you make a point of calling or seeing them regularly, you have more control over this contact than if they are chasing after you!

Preparing your own meals

Once you move out of your family home, it is very likely you will have to prepare your own meals.

Plan ahead by asking your parents to show you some recipes for your favourite meals so that you can prepare them yourself. Learn how to cook basic dishes and help in the kitchen to get used to the different kitchen appliances. If you are following a special diet, make sure you know all about it.

Grocery shopping

Preparing meals also involves grocery shopping. The easiest way to plan this is to make a day-by-day list each week of what you want to eat and what you need to buy. Include three meals and one or two snacks a day. Also think about where you are going to eat. Do you need something fast to grab and go? Do you have time and energy to cook?

If you are well organized and always have fresh food with you, you will spend less money and stay healthier, instead of buying prepared and fast food all the time.​

Deciding where to live

It makes sense for someone with a transplant to settle down somewhere rather than travel for years at a time. If you are Canadian, you have the huge advantage of having most of your health care paid for by the government. Don’t forget this if you are thinking of an out-of-country adventure.

People with transplants can live in big cities or small towns. Some people choose to live in a big city with an adult transplant program nearby so that they can easily access their clinic. Large cities can also make it easier to find services for non-transplant related health issues and co-ordinate these services with their adult transplant care.

Other people enjoy living in small towns because it fits the way they want to live their lives, even if it means travelling long distances to get to an adult care transplant centre.​​

Last updated: November 30th 2017