Saying goodbye to your child when a new term begins is hard to bear for many parents, who may find that they are not quite ready to cut the apron strings just yet.
Whilst pursuing an undergraduate course away from home is an exciting step towards independence for your child, you must do all you can to maintain your relationship from a distance and provide the support that they need to fulfil their educational goals. Long distance parenting is always difficult but with these top tips you can stay close and build an even stronger relationship with your child wherever they are.
Advise but don’t intrude
Whilst mum (or dad) always knows best, being a continuous source of advice for your children during this defining time in their lives means treading a very fine line. Provide advice and support without judgement or lectures and your child will be more likely to return time and time again for your knowledge.
Send care packages
As every student will tell you things can get a little difficult on the financial front during their time at university, however, encouraging your child to remain independent in this area is an important step in their development. Instead of sending money to fund their time at university consider sending care packages of food, treats and home comforts to help them settle in and thrive during their time at university.
Not only will sending care packages help your child to live and enjoy their time at university, it will also curb the homesickness that goes hand-in-hand with living away from home for the very first time.
Respect your child as a grown-up
Moving away to pursue undergraduate study is perhaps the first time that your child will feel like a fully-fledged young adult so show them the respect they need to thrive. Keep up to date with their personal and professional progress and celebrate their achievements along the way, all it takes is a few positive comments to give your child the respect they want and need.
Keeping the lines of communication open between you and your child doesn’t mean turning up unannounced at their student halls! Call, text message and email to check in with your child regularly. It may be worth establishing what both you and your child expect in terms of communication before they move away, whether this means calling once a week or keeping you up to date with regular emails. Try not to be too pushy though, some level of distance is needed to support your child on their path.