For all you parents out there, this might be a tough time of the year. Many fresh high school graduates are leaving the nest and moving on to college. Whether this is your first kid or your eighth it’s still not easy. You want to protect your baby and make life easy for them. You can actually do more than you think to support your children on their first year without mom and dad.
Take them on their first grocery shopping trip: Grocery shopping on your own for the first time can be more difficult than you’d think. Speaking from personal experience, college students feel overwhelmed when they first see the prices of food and start adding up in their head how much it really will cost. They tend to skip out on healthier foods and buy the cheaper junk food. Show them how to find good deals and maybe pay for their first batch of groceries so you can help your child get off on the right foot. Encourage them to eat healthy and to be active. Sedentary tendencies can easily lead to the dreaded “freshman 15” or worse, the ever more common “freshman 30.”
Send your student small gifts: Your child may act tough and say he or she won’t miss Mom and Dad, but the truth is, they will. Getting small messages from home means quite a bit. You probably aren’t close enough to just drop by and say hi. Send a small letter saying your proud and you love them and that’s great motivation for them. College can be a tough time and your student will need some motivation and you never know when they might need that extra push, especially during finals. Sometimes students forget small things like pens, pencils, paper, etc. I’m sure they’d love to get a little care package from home. Trust me, these small acts don’t go unnoticed.
Show your school spirit: Knowing your parents support you means a lot to a college student. Take a picture of you wearing school apparel of your students school. Get to know the sports at the university (if your child is into sports). It will be a great conversation starter and will bring you close. Even if they don’t like sports, take an interest in something they like and it will pay off. Having something in common makes a huge difference in your relationship with your child.
These aren’t difficult things to do and they make a huge difference. My parents did some of these things, and my friends’ parents did some of the others. None of us would trade these things. Some make great memories, all will benefit you and your child for the rest of your life.
Give them what they need. Support your children.