Driving away while your teary-eyed freshman stands in front of the dorm waving goodbye is tough and embracing the change of them being away from you can be even tougher.
Your new college student is now a young adult out on her or his own, probably for the first time. There’s lots of support at CIU, of course, but you still play a pivotal role in this exciting time of change.
Your heart will tell you what to do. But here are some ideas that might help.
Say your hardest goodbyes in a quiet moment before you arrive on campus. At that point, they’ll be separating from you anyway. Pray together and tell them you love them.
Leave a little surprise in one of their bags or boxes. A gift card, some extra cash, a note telling them you’re their biggest fan. (Care packages are always welcome later on, too!)
Lend an ear while they tell you about roommates, schedules, coursework and the cafeteria. Encourage them to talk with their faculty advisor or professor to resolve class-related issues. Ask them how they plan to resolve those other issues. You’ll be surprised how close they are to the solution already.
Stay in touch. You probably know this already, but texting is how most Millennials communicate these days, but your college kid may still agree to email, too.
The discussions about majors and career goals are going to get deeper and more complex as your child’s college career advances. So are their more personal choices. Listen, advise, trust, and don’t pry. Encourage praying together over the phone, and let God guide you both.
Keep your sense of humor and watch them grow!
Watching young people grow into adult learners committed to a life walking with Christ is a joy for us here at our CIU. We’re here to help your child make that transition from life at home, but your pivotal role continues alongside us and long after our work here is done.