College Blues: How to Prepare for College

college student in a library

Kids grow up too fast. It seems like it was just yesterday when you can hold them in one arm. Now, they are flying the coup.

College can be a wonderful time for both the student and their parents. As a parent, you would need to make adjustments. This would include emotional and mental preparation from you and your child.

It will be overwhelming. But you will be thankful that you have time to prepare for the monumental step. Your child will be grateful to have your support as they prepare for their next phase in life.

If you are not sure what to do next, you must listen to us carefully. This article will help you and your child prepare for college.

Being on Their Own

Once you start looking for student accommodations, it would mean that somehow you have accepted the fact that your child is already an adult. The bigger question here is whether your child understands the implication of this.

Once they move into their dormitory or apartment, it would mean that you are no longer there to give immediate assistance. Of course, you would still support your child. But the distance will make it difficult for you to help them in a blink of an eye.

You and your child need to prepare for this circumstance. You have to enhance their problem-solving skills. We are not talking about math problems. These problems are the ones that we face in the real world.

You need to instill upon your child the steps on how to solve their problems. Knowing what to do will prevent them from panicking. Here is a shortened version:

  • Know the Problem
  • Deliberate on at least three possible solutions
  • Give out the pros and cons of each of this
  • Choose one
  • Do a dry run on the chosen solution

Knowing these steps will help calm them. They are more confident to face the world.

Dealing with Emotional Stress

Your child may have the intellectual capacity to handle college. But are they emotionally ready? According to the American Psychological Association, they reported that 61% of college students were stressed.

It is encouraging to know that students seek out counseling. Sadly, the counselor-to-student ratio is quite overwhelming. Small educational institutions report that for every counselor, there are 750 students to cater to.

You need to teach your child how to cope up with the feeling of disappointment, anxiety, fear, and other negative emotions. You may teach them these techniques.

  • Calling you
  • Reaching out to a friend
  • Writing on a journal

These are a few ways to manage their stress. It will prevent your child from turning to addiction to cope with their anxieties.

college students studying

Safety Tips

We have the wrong notion that the school campus is safe. A 2017 data shows such a belief wrong. It is our duty as parents to impress upon our children that their safety is in their hands.

Yes, college officials try their best to keep the students safe. But your child takes safety concerns seriously. Here are a few tips for teaching your teenager:

  • Wear a whistle – The whistle can help prevent a crime and can alert authorities of one.
  • Be alert – Remind your child to be vigilant when outside of their dormitory or their classroom.
  • Lock doors – Once they are inside their car or room, they must immediately lock their doors.
  • Emergency number – Your number should not just be the number at the back of their IDs. But they should readily dial your number if there is an emergency.
  • Emergency exits – Teach your children to always look for emergency exits. This should be the very first thing that they look at once they enter a place.
  • Watch your drinks – You should teach your children to always guard their drinks. They should not let anyone get their drinks for them.
  • Go with a friend – If they go to an unfamiliar place, they should always bring a friend.

These techniques will go a long way in keeping your kids safe. Knowing that they practice these tips will give you peace of mind.

Your child may legally be an adult. But we will always see them as our babies. Coddling them will prevent them from growing up. When you go through this list with your child, you start to accept the truth that they have grown up. This will help you cope with the empty nest syndrome.

Going through this list with your child will assure them of your continual support. It will tell them that you always have their backs.


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