Your son or daughter heading off to University is a change for you as well as for them. No matter how well organised this process is, or how well you believe you've prepared yourself it's natural that you may feel a variety of emotions as you adjust to this new chapter in your son or daughter's life. You may experience...
You may be overwhelmed with the pride and joy of your child having been accepted at, and now attending, the University of their choice. Their attendance is not only a reflection of their academic success and perseverance but also the support you've provided to them (a well done to you too). On a separate note, you may also be looking forward to enjoying more peace and quiet, more space at the family home... particuarly if this is your only child/last child to leave home.
Equally, you may feel saddened that one of your offspring/your offspring have ‘flown the nest’ and the end of an era with regards to their childhood in the family home has come to an end.
Saying goodbye is never easy, however this is not forever, in fact the first term will likely be over before you know it and they will be back at home again enjoying the luxury of home cooked food and assistance with their washing. You may be wondering about your life now and what to expect for yourself – what do you do now? What is your role in their life now? Again, this is something very natural and likely felt by all parents at some point. Although the essence of your role may change, your role will always remain that of their parent and as such, they will always turn to you for support, love and guidance.
Concern about what support to offer?
There may come a time when you receive a call from your child that highlights that they are missing home, not enjoying an aspect of University, or are worrying about finances. As the parent, it is hard to assess how much support to give them on the basis that becoming increasingly independent is all part of the student experience. Sometimes it may be necessary to give your son or daughter space - to let them resolve the issue they've encountered themself and in doing so learning valuable life lessons and gaining in confidence. At other times, it may be that you need to step in and support your child and guide them towards the best options available for them at that time.
The first couple of weeks of University are perhaps the most demanding, due to Fresher’s Week, student's moving into their new accommodation, meeting lots of new people and a perceived sense of pressure to establish a large group of friends. All of this, the daytime and night-time events, can begin to take their toll on new University students and this can result in a an emotional phone call or two to Mum and Dad. Give your child time to settle in and adapt, let them contact you and update you on their new life experiences so far. It can be difficult at first and they may also find it hard, however the majority settle into their new place in no time and quickly learn to love their course and University experience. Remind them that they opted to go to University for a reason and should take each day at a time initially.
Student Homes work hard to support the students we house in a variety of ways - see what support we provide.