The Ultimate Guide for Parenting a College Student

This is a guest post by Elizabeth Nygard.

The time when you send your kid to college is the most difficult time of parenting. They say it’s most difficult when the kids enter the teenage stage. However, in their late teenage period, when they make it to college, there are lots of things you must deal with. Besides helping them find a course that they like and paying college fees or getting a scholarship, you also have the task of helping them settle in college. It would be difficult for you stay away from them. The days when you can’t see your kids at home are definitely not sweet.

This cannot be averted because what is more important is their education and what they wish to become in future. They will have to learn to be independent as making them stay at home will ruin them. Besides all these, you will see a change in your son or daughter in the first few months of college which will surprise you a lot. What should you expect from your college-going son or daughter and how to be the best parent? Read on to find the answers.

Give them the gift of let go:

Letting go of them is not a piece of cake. It needs a lot of trust, confidence and mental strength. Though you don’t want to do it, it is time for you accept the truth and you have no other option. Besides, your kid may also want to be away from home so that they can learn to live independently. Even if one stays at home while learning, they will have to move out when they start working. This would be more painful experience. Therefore, the best thing you could do is to let them go and explore the world of opportunities and learn from real life experiences.

Keep in touch:

It is important to keep in touch but not to do it too much. While the students are new to college, they can be easily confused at everything that is different from what they have been seeing. They will want to discuss it with you and so let them open up when they want to and not when you want to. They tend not to share much with you but on the inside, they would want to discuss their issues with someone trustable. Help them see that they can always trust you and you could give them the right advice no matter how bad their problem is.

Expect mistakes:

Your kid who was the best student in school and who always did the right thing may turn out to be an entirely different person in college due to number of reasons. Encourage them to speak out to you and at the same time keep track of the changes that affect their behavior and studies. Most important of all, expect them to make mistakes because it is by making mistakes that they learn. Any mistake made while they are students won’t affect their life much because they have not yet come to real life. However, look out for life altering changes in your son or daughter and help them get back on track as easily as possible.

Do Not visit often:

It is not wrong to feel that you want to see them but if you visit often, you will be seen as a control-freak who doesn’t leave them alone. Therefore, it is best to limit the number of visits to one per month and when you visit them, try to do what they would want to do with you rather than sitting with them and discussing their progression in studies the whole afternoon. Also, it is always good to call them beforehand and know if they have other plans for the evening or day when you want to visit them. Respect their interests and change the time of your visit but do not give up on visiting them if they plan something else at the time you suggest.

Dealing with tempers:

Students who have just entered college are likely to lose their temper soon, especially with their parents, because of the new found freedom. However, know that they are always your son or daughter and they will be back to normal when they are out of it. They may not choose to come to you when they have a problem but be sure to let them know that you are always there to help them if they mess with something. Always let them live the way they want as long as it is the right way and when they change lanes which could be dangerous, help them see why it is wrong rather than being an advice machine that always churns out advice.

All the four years of college life will have new surprises for both parents and students and you will have to be very careful with what you communicate to your son or daughter. Keep a check on your words and actions. Let them go and explore the world and when they graduate, they will be transformed into a better person. If you could give them the space they need and keep them informed of the better options available for them, then there is nothing like it.

About the author

Elizabeth Nygard, an educational blogger by profession, loves to share various easy Teaching Solutions NCLEX review and study methods. She has spent a lot of time in researching different things related to education.

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