Home from College – Deja-Vu All Over Again

summer-beach-graphicHas your son or daughter arrived home from college for the summer and quickly slipped right back into their “old” high school ways? Down deep you know they have matured because they made it through on their own this past year. They know they have grown too, but something about returning home can sometimes set them back. To avoid a “deja-vu” experience, try these five tips to helping your student continue on the path to maturity. Don’t worry it doesn’t mean they don’t need you just as much; it’s just in a different way.
1. You haven’t really seen their new maturity in action and your old habits can often get in the way. Don’t assume they are the same person they were when they left last fall and try to encourage that new maturity to come out.
2. Set some structure to the summer….it doesn’t have to be boot camp structure but giving them some responsibilities is a good thing. Just remember to get their input before “assigning” jobs. Review and adapt household rules that fit that new maturity.
3. Respect their schedule and their privacy. Treat them as the college student they are and not the high schooler they were.
4. If you want to encourage communication and/or keep those lines open then don’t multitask when you get them alone. Stay off the cellphone and really listen to what they have to say. Just be aware that they may not be into sharing at all.
5. Don’t solve their problems, they just want to be “heard” they don’t need you to solve things for them. After all, they have been on their own for the past ten months and made it through.
The summer will fly by if the drama is kept to a minimum. These are some of the last summers you may spend with your child so focus on the good things and enjoy the ride. Let me know how you’re coping on my Facebook page.

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