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Helpful Tips for Parents

  • Recognize that feelings of ambivalence about your child leaving home are normal. It’s common to feel sad that your child is leaving the nest, but also try to look forward to having more quiet time, etc.
  • Allow yourself to feel whatever emotions come up. Talk about your emotions with your family, friends, clergy, or whoever is a source of support for you.
  • Make overall wellness a goal for yourself. Especially during stressful times, it helps to get enough sleep, eat healthy meals, and get adequate exercise. Spend some time engaged in your favorite hobbies. If you are feeling good, you are more likely to have the energy to help your child and be a good role model.
  • Remember, for your child, going to college is a tremendously important developmental step toward adulthood. This is the time when your hard work will show itself in the form of a framework that your child will use in making independent choices.
  • Find a new, creative outlet for yourself --- especially if this is your last or only child which has moved away. Taking on a new challenge is an excellent way to manage and channel your energy and feelings. Have you ever wanted to make a quilt? Volunteer? Make a list of all the things you intended to do while your child was growing up, but never had the time to do. Now is your chance!
  • Keep in touch—through e-mails, letters, phone calls, and visits. Let them go, but keep up good communication. Know what’s happening in your child’s life.
  • Arm yourself with information. Attend pre-orientation programs in the summer and learn where your son/daughter will reside on campus . Know what courses your child is taking and who their advisors are. Ask questions about their roommate, their Resident Assistant (RA), their professors, etc., and know what resources are available for your child in case he or she has any difficulties.
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