I won’t make them move out
Trina Eliassen-McDonald has three of her four children living at home — and wouldn’t have it any other way. She is passionate that Alessandra, 24, Colin, 21, and Savannah, 19, who all study full time at university and work for the family business, not leave home until they are ready. “They’ve never moved out, not even for a day. I have a cosmetic surgery company in Thailand and they help me with the business.
They don’t help out much around the house and come home and say ‘where’s dinner’, but they help me ... they’re not kids flopping around the house.
It’s wrong to make them move out by 20, that’s my generation’s idea. So many kids are pushed out; sure it might make them strong but they carry a lot of angst and baggage too.
I want my children to make a difference in this world and they can’t do that until they know who they are.
We have a lot of fun, but they respect me a lot, which is important. I may spoil them in some ways by supporting them, but there are certain things I am very strict about — there’s never any fighting and I make sure we all work as a team.
If they were taking advantage of me it would not be the case. But they have to go to uni and help out with the business. I’m not going to raise a child who does nothing and if they didn’t work they would only stay here for a short time, there are expectations on them if they want to live here.” Trina Eliassen-McDonald with her children Alessandra, Savannah, Colin and family dog Pedro. Photo: Bob Barker