My 18 year old daughter will be leaving for college in August any advice?

Amanda - posted on 05/17/2009 ( 51 moms have responded )

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Looking for Advice for a mother sending her first child off to college, her first child is a a daughter.

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Tonya - posted on 09/02/2013

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My only daughter is now a sophomore in college. She worked as an RA this summer at her school, which means she did not come back home to stay. I am struggling because she is doing everything right, but the pain and disconnect that I feel on a daily basis is crippling at times. It has just been she and I since she was 3 and we've been very close....until now. She has her own life, friends, job, college and seems quite happy, only I am not included. I am struggling so much with what to do. I miss her so much and we were best friends. Because I was a single parent, and basically worked, (unless it was something that involved her) was not able to really develop many outside relationships, so I am very much now on my own. Little to no family close by. What do you do with all of these feelings?

Brenda - posted on 08/14/2009

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Getting ready to drive our son to college tomorrow. He will be 2 hrs away. Almost cried going to work this morning thinking about it. But hopefully we've taught him what is right and what is wrong. The hardest part for me is letting him go. I'm going to miss him.

Susan - posted on 07/27/2009

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I am getting ready to do this very same thing this Friday. I have been crying for the last 2 days on and off. I know that I am going to need lots of kleenex. My prayers are with all the parents sending a child off to college. I know that God is going to keep him in his hands. I have to let him go and put him in God's hands. I raised him in the Lord and I have to trust that he will make the right choices.

Kristin - posted on 08/13/2009

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My daughter is now a junior in college. I remember the people at the college saying at orientation that we would not recognize her after the first year and I thought, "what" I don't want that to happen. I remember the day we dropped her off and turned to leave I thought I would be a basket case, but I felt so good about the school she had chosen and who she was that for some reason I was actually peaceful and calm. It ended up being her younger sister, who was usually "mad" at her for something, who cried all the way home. Anyway, the college was right. We watched her blossom into the most beautiful person we know. She is responsible, kind, compassionate,etc. She usually was anyway, but college just brought all that through even more and the space helped me appreciate her more as a person( and see her for the adult she was actually becoming because when they are home we tend to see them as still too young for everything) and helped her appreciate me more as a person instead of just mom. It helped me feel better about myself as a parent and it helped our friendship grow even deeper. Remember God is in control and always watching out for her and loves her just as much as you!

Jannie - posted on 06/12/2013

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help me please
my girl went away to school last year. took a nosedive so badly, couldnt focus at work, had to stay home for a while. Is that normal?

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Bemum - posted on 10/28/2013

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After years of studying, researching and saving up, the day has come when your child has finally gone away to school. So now what? How can you stay supportive without being too intrusive? Don’t worry, Empty Nesters, we’ve got you covered!

Read on for some helpful tips on how to stay connected with your college kids:

1. Lend an ear – as grown up as your children may feel, they still want you to listen as they vent about their messy new roommates, their tough course load or their demanding professors. They may not want you to step in and solve their problems for them like you did when they were younger, but they will take comfort in you being around to listen.



2. Send them treats – after trying the campus dining hall food, your kids sure would appreciate a delicious care package. If you don’t have the time and energy to cook yourself, just order online from College Cookies and your child will receive a dozen freshly baked, hand-made cookies and a personalized note.



3. Go social – your children may not always be able to talk on the phone, but they will mostly likely be available online. Connect on their favorite platforms like Facebook, Skype, WhatsApp and Instagram. Just remember to respect their space. Just because you can communicate with your children almost 24/7 doesn’t mean that you should.



4. Step into their world – spend some time walking on and off campus to help your kids feel more comfortable in their new surroundings. This is also a good chance for you to get to know some of their friends while exploring. Take them (and their friends) out for dinner around the campus; visit spots that get the best reviews on Yelp or Foursquare.



5. Invite them home – besides holidays and semester breaks, invite your children home for a random weekend. Let them do laundry and enjoy a favorite meal. They may not always admit to being homesick, but they truly will appreciate the love and support of family. To make them feel extra special, greet them with a “Welcome Home” sign.



For more tips, check out the Guide for Parents presented by the NYU Langone Medical Center

Roberta - posted on 08/12/2012

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OMG...,my baby girl (actually my first born but only daughter) is leaving for college in Pennslvania ( we live in Floria) and while I know she has family near her I am NOT dealing with this well I know I raised her to be indepenent and she has exceeded all that a mother could ask for but how am I going to leave her in PA!!!! She is my world and I know I should be happy for her ( and I am ause she is off to an amazing life) but ohhhhh my heart aches with just the thought of her not being here at home!!!

Morissa - posted on 08/16/2009

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My daughter is 18. She started college last year. She came home for the summer but is now packing to go back in a few days. You must realize that one day, they will be on their own. I tell my daughter never to trust a person by face value. Use your judgement and always listen to that inner voice. They will party and have as much fun because this is a new form of freedom for them but I let her know that this is not your main focus and the reason you are going to college.4yrs of college education equals many time for fun when you're done! I call her at least three times a week. Also, they learn to be adults quicker when there're own their own because, college is a survival thing.

Meggy - posted on 08/12/2009

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I know how you feel. My oldest daughter is also going to college beginning of September to the East Coast (we are living in the Midwest)!! She is independent, curious, and strongwilled. I know she will do fine. We will stay in contact via Facebook and Skype. I will miss our conversations a lot, she always shared with me what was going on in her life. I do believe though it will give my younger daughter and son the opportunity to get more one on one time with me. We have already booked her flights back for Thanksgiving and Christmas!!! Good luck and always remember we want them to spread their wings and fly!

Diane - posted on 08/12/2009

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My daughter (first child) will leave next week for college. I just keep reminding myself that though I will miss her, this is what I have wished for her and try to focus on the excitement of this new phase of her life. She is my talkative child, so I will miss the conversations and elaborate stories she always shared at the end of the day. My son - an upcoming senior - is terrified that he is going to have to have an actual conversation with me now. He is more comfortable with the art of the one word method of communication.

User - posted on 08/11/2009

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Love her. Listen to her and be there when she needs you. My daughter & I cried for 3 hours on our 5 hour trip back home and she asked me for months why we made her big brother go away to college? All I could answer was "one day you too will go away and leave home and I promised that he would come home to visit" and he called regularly. At the time he left for college his little sister was going to 2nd grade. He is now an incoming Junior and she is going in the 4th grade. She still has a hard time with him spending time with his friends, but is getting her mind ready for him to leave again. I also pretty much cried the couple of times we went out to visit for football games, and I am getting better every time he leaves. I know he is having a great time, and trying to figure out who he wants to be when he grows up.

Leanna - posted on 08/01/2009

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I too will be sending my daughter off to college in about three weeks I am so glade she has her cell phone, even if she is only going to be an hour away I find myself already missing her. My advice is just keep the doors of communication open and let her know you are there for moral support and stress the importance of good choice making as there is always a consquence for poor choices.

Lynn - posted on 07/31/2009

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My only daughter left for college 2 years ago. I missed her terribly but I worked very hard to give her space. Her first semester was very difficult for her. She wanted to come home all the time. I encouraged her to stay at school and make friends. She was very social in high school but found it tough in college as the partying and drinking thing was not for her. She finally found her group of friends and it has been smooth sailing since. I have been available when she needs me, supportive when I can be and visit only when convenient for her. We are still very close and look forward to time together.



Texting is great because she can choose to answer when she has time.



My daughter will be heading to London for her fall semester, so that will be a change for us.

Maria - posted on 07/30/2009

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I have a set of twins that will be off to college soon. My daughter will be going to a local University, but she insists on living on campus (She wants to do the whole college thing), her twin will also be going to a local college but will be living at home. I will learn with you. My twins both have added me as a friend on facebook, so I can sort of keep up with whats going on in their lives.

Jan - posted on 07/29/2009

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Quite possibly the HARDEST thing I've ever done! My daughter will be a junior this year and it does get easier each year but that first year is ROUGH. Just remember there are so many worse places she could be on her way to! (jail..LOL) That's what my mom kept telling me. Send her lots of mail, even little stuff she will love. Get ready to cry but be proud! Cherish the holidays that she is home and if the encounters home sickness try to talk her through it instead of the quick fix of going to get her. She will be wonderful and you will learn to adapt!!! Good Luck

Donna - posted on 07/29/2009

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I'm in the same shoes, Our daughter is going off to school in 3 weeks and our son is moving off with his wife an hour and half from where we live. I will be bringing plenty of tissues. Just love and support them ( let them know how you feel, and that she can always talk to you no matter what comes up) I have used this with both my children and so far it works for us.

Kimberly - posted on 07/27/2009

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I was there 5 years ago I thought the world would stop.I still had a almost 16 year old at home but my first baby was leaving me my mother also passed away the month my daughter graduated so it was a bad month but I soon discovered God prepares you for what comes in your life.I soon adjusted and am so proud she graduated and is working on her masters degree is married to the most wonderful son in law anyone could have and they have a beautiful 11 month old. God Is So Good!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Shannon - posted on 07/25/2009

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Our 18 year old just left for Lincoln Tech in Indianapolis this month. We live in Michigan, so it's definitely not right around the corner. We were worried that he wouldn't know what to do in so many situations, and we were holding on to the hope that he was still going to need us to do so many things for him. He called us a few days ago and said that someone had broken into his car to steal his rather expensive stereo, speakers, and some other things that are crucial to the existence of an 18 year old boy. It was kind of funny, though, because he didn't call us to have us "make it all better" for him. He called for advice on how HE could make it all better. It's so wonderful when your children realize that they really can do things on their own, but still know that Mom and Dad might have been teenagers at one time or another also, so maybe they might have a clue how to deal with certain situations. They grow up, but no matter how old they get, you are still Mom. You will always be the one to call when your child needs that special Mom advice. Just think- since your daughter is going off to college, you must be doing something right! Keep doing what you're doing- support her emotionally, listen to her, and love her. That empty nest feeling will be gone before you know it. Pretty soon you'll be hearing the pitter-patter of little feet belonging to grandchildren, and as much as you'll adore them, there will be times you'll long for that empty nest! Good luck, MOM!

Rebecca - posted on 07/23/2009

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Two years ago I left my 17 year old daughter on a sidwalk in Center City Philidelphia, PA. She attends the University of the Arts. We live in Stone Mountain, GA. Needless to say I cried most of the 13 hour drive home. Thank God my husband held it together or I am not sure how we would have gotten home. Getting in that car was really tough, but 2 years later she is on the Dean's list at school, has developed a wonderful network of friends and is laying the foundations for what will be an amazing life. We were always close, but now we seem to have grown closer. She now knows why I taught her somethings and would not allow her to do things that all of her friends were doing.... She will be 20 in November and I can say I really like and admire the person she is becoming. In three weeks her younger sister will be leaving for school and although she will only be three hours away, and I am sure I will miss her terribly as well, I am looking forward to watching her grow and mature as well. She is so excited that I am allowing myself to get caught up in her excitment. We went together to open a checking account, we go together to buy supplies a little at a time, so that we can spend time together before she leaves. Now as for you, enjoy the moment as much as possible. Keep in touch via text and cellphone (but not every hour of the day :) ). and prepare yourself, because the next child in line will now see an opportunity to get more of your time. If this child leaving means that like me you will have an empty nest, start planning what to do with all the time. No more car pools to dance classes, no more cheerleader booster clubs and friday night games. No more mandatory PTA. What ever will I do??? Maybe take up golf!!

Dolly - posted on 07/19/2009

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When my daughter left for her first year of college, i had no doubts she'd be fine. You have to remember YOU raised your children to be smart and self sufficient. We packed the car, went out the day before and stayed at a motel near the college and drove around the town a bit. The next morning we went to the school, got her room set up and then looked around to see what else she may need. We explored the area together, finding the stores that she would have to go to when I wasn't with her, and got her everything she thought she'd need (and then some). At least that way, she knew a little about what was where! We had a nice dinner together and I left her knowing she'd do great! I was sad, but didn't let her see it, and i was confident in her ability to succeed.



Visits are always a highlight for the kids, 'care' packages are loved by all the kids - have to throw things in for their friends too! One thing i always made her do was open the package while she was on the phone with me, that way it was like i was there with her, and could hear the reaction. They can contain anything from a little stuffed animal to a huge box of cookies, microwave popcorn and raman noodles - for some reason, college kids love them!



This is a great time in your child's life, As hard as it seems to let them go, it's a great experience for them. They are reaching out into the adult world, but not too far. There will still be limitations and restrictions. So, while you still have a couple of weeks, sit down with your child, discuss what you expect and tell them that you love them and trust you have taught them well, as they were growing up, to make solid decisions and make you proud of them. Remind yourselves of the fear and worries you had when they were first born and you didn't think you knew what to do - well you did great since they are heading off to college!



By the way, she didn't bring her car right away. She brought it out the second semester. That gave her time to find out about parking and all the different rules and regulations the college imposed on the students. Just a quick tip - She did have a problem with it during her second year and i called the university police and asked them which garage would be the best to take it to. They were very helpful.



She graduated 2 years ago, stayed in the area and just bought her first house.

Clara - posted on 07/16/2009

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My youngest is moving 5 hours away in 3 weeks so I am right there too! The only thing that keeps me from panicking is that we can video call each other and "see" each other when we want to. Have any of you ever heard of SKYPE? I heard about it on Oprah and checked into it. Skype is a free download and it is free to use, but you can have video calls to each other free of charge!!! All you have to have is that both have to have a webcam. You download the program, both get user names, and then you can "see" each other and talk at the same time! It is AWESOME!!! The closest thing to being there!!! My oldest son lives about 2 hours away and they just had a new baby. We have been using it for the past month and I have been very pleased with it.I get to see her everyday and talk to her. That way I don't feel I am missing out. Check it out! I think you will like it! Good Luck!!

Janet - posted on 07/14/2009

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Join the parent association at the college. Even if you don't go to all the activities, there's usually a website or newsletter that will help you stay connected to the school and give you peace of mind about all of the things we moms worry about.

Teresa - posted on 07/14/2009

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Oh how I remember my first sons sr. year of high school. I think I cried all year long. The day we delivered him to college, I heard the word "helicopter parent". I looked at my husband and said what is that.....a hovering parent....lol. I did very well while helping him set his room up and when my hubby saw the welling up of tears he found a reason for me to run to WalMart. I cried hard for 2 miles up, did what I needed to do, and cried hard for 2 miles back. Got it together, did what I needed to do, was so proud of myself for the 3 hour ride home, laid my head on the pillow and just SOBBED. Got up the next morning, 5 of my closest friends took me to the beach for the weekend.....had a blast......love when my son comes home on weekend, holidays and summer, but then looking at watch and thinking.....shouldn't you be going back....LOL.

It is tough, but I would not trade the new chapter in my relationship with him for the world. We have so much fun together....we go to country concerts together, we hang out at home together, we have a lot of fun together on a totally wonderful different level.

My advice is cry when she is not looking, be there when she calls and is home sick, encourage her to go out and make friends, join groups.....but don't "hover", be a strong parent, I have seen tooooo many parent jump in their car and bring their child home...

Hope this helps.

Mary - posted on 07/13/2009

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My daughter will be heading off to college in the middle of August and one thing I have been told is to give them their space and not expect a phone call right back when trying to reach them. Send them letters, they love to get mail. Or even a package of some homemade cookies. I will be crying for sure when I have to leave her there. She will be going to a university 4 hours away. The nice thing is that it is close to my sister and she is only 20 mins away. If anything should happen I can depend on my sister to make sure she is taken care of. That is why I am not scared to death of her going that far. But she is like my best friend and will miss her!! Good luck!

Debbie - posted on 07/12/2009

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wow. it was really hard leaving my first child at college a girl also. she had worked so hard to make the grades to get into her college of choice and all the right doors opened for her to get in. i was dreading the day, it finally came. she was excited and upset too (but she did not let me know it.) all, i can say is learn to talk alot by cell or instant messaging that first year they will call you alot at first , sharing all the excitement and things going on. school, boys, friends. It really did help her and I that first year.
now she is in her 4th year with 2 more after this one. Believe me i love my summers with her and dread the move in day (yep she still needs us for that cause she still lives on campus. I know that maybe in another year she will be trying off campus living and will not need us so much. Also just know as the years go by in college she makes friends and then communication slows down alot ( 3rd year for me). But i still managed to go visit at foot ball games and come up on a weekend she is free her choice for dinner. oh yes, don't ever go up unexpected, that way you know she will have made time for you.
But remember take your tissues for that first drop off, it's a hard one. i cried alot of the way back home. But i just kept in touch, kept my self busy with my mom and work, and my son still at home another teenager. Good luck, its fun watching that little girl you dropped off grow into a beautiful young woman with a career they have chosen, going for their dream. Make lunch or dinner dates on holiday vacations when yes they come back home for a little while most of the time. God bless you and your daughter on this big step in your life. I did not think i would make it, and you won't either but you will trust me. Just stay close.

[deleted account]

I agree with those who answered before me: have tissues on hand, get proficient at texting, be her Facebook friend but not too much, and I would add, find stuff to keep you busy.

When our son left home, the day after my birthday 2 years ago, I wandered around the house a lot and was sad. But then I got into beekeeping, and that gave me plenty to learn.

When our daughter left home last year, I had just started a new job as a substitute teacher and we had been adopted by a kitten so it wasn't quite as bad. Still sad, but at least I didn't have a lot of time to sit around weeping.

[deleted account]

This isn't my first one to go, but it's the baby who happens to also be my grandchild that I raised. Remember that millions of us survive every year. I've always been very involved in her activities and it will probably be harder for me than her. She told a friend recently, "All my life, even if I just walked across the stage saying nothing, Mimi was always there to watch me." She knows that emotional support will not go away. I'm not a fan of texting but realize it's the communication tool of choice for that age group. She's on the college dance team, which has given us opportunities to go back and forth to her campus (abt. 150 miles one way). Summer is turning out to be our "cut the cord" period with her having more freedoms and more lenient curfew. She's a good girl, usually makes good choices and everyone tells me they know she'll do well. A lot of wisdom and experience come from making bad judgments. I expect some wing spreading and risk taking from her, but based on her behavior throughout high school, I think she'll be fine. Encourage your daughter to get involved in campus activities and to take advantage of all the services (social and educational) that are available to her.

Even if you don't very much like her new friends, don't let her know. It'll be a lot easier now for her to keep things from you, so you want to keep the door open between you.

Marianne - posted on 07/01/2009

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I will be sending my first born off to college in august as well.. 8 hours away... How am I handling it? By recognizing that she is God's child first and that He will take care of her. Having been a caretaker of her for 18 years, I trust that I have done the best job that I could and that the foundation that we have built with her will support her through this major transition. Of course I will miss her so much, but I can't give her wings to fly and then clip them, can I? Well, can I???

Kathy - posted on 06/22/2009

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Get a college checking account that you can link into to deposit money if she needs it. We did this for our daughter and were able to track her college spending money. She has her own private acct. but this acct. was set up so we could get money to her for college expenses or emerengies if needed. If she is taking a car make sure she knows
basic car maintence. Have insurance on cell phone and computer. Have all contact info on her roomates families. There is alot more but for now that will get you thinking. Its hard to let them go but its good to set they up for safety and success, it makes it easier knowing they are prepared.

[deleted account]

My son will also be going off to college in Aug.... not too far but he's still planning on living on campus... My sisters advice (her son went 2 yrs ago)... Lock yourself in the bathroom and don't watch them leave... :(

Not helpful... just amusing.

Kim - posted on 06/09/2009

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At least yours came home for the summer. Mine has worked at his college ever since he started. I'm glad he has a job, but I miss him. He has become a visitor now. He no longer lives here.

Beth - posted on 06/09/2009

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Tissues! Tissues! Tissues! While my husband and I were very comfortable with her college choice (Marist College), it was still very difficult to leave our oldest in her dorm and make the two hour drive home last August. However, she was fine. She handled everything with a responsible head and came home a strong, independent young lady. We are very proud.

And even though this August won't be the first time, I expect I will still cry. But this time with tears of pride, not fear.

Kim - posted on 06/09/2009

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My son will be starting his Junior year in the Fall. He left for college very scared. Mainly because he wasn't going to know anyone. He chose to go to a college 3 hrs away from home when most of his high school friends chose to go to the local college. I informed him that he will not be the only one who doesn't know anyone, just about his whole Freshmen class will not know anyone. I also told him to get involved on campus and see what is available to him. That was going to be his new "home" so he needed to investigate it. He got very involved and ended up working there the following summer and he is also working there this summer. He has realized that he can stand alone and didn't need his high school buds there with him. He has met the love of his life his Freshmen year and they are very much in love. I wasn't ready for him to become a visitor to my home. He hasn't come back home to live since he left his Freshmen year. So, tell her, enjoy everything there is on campus and make it her home. Also, get involved. My son was a resident advisor his second year and will be this year also. It pays for his room and board and he also gets a paycheck. He tells me all the time that he is so glad he went away to college and didn't stick with his high school friends.

Susan - posted on 06/09/2009

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My oldest daughter left for college 5 days after my mother passed away. Hopefully your daughter leaving will not be that traumatic! Give her lots of hugs, love, and understanding this summer. Enjoy your time together and try to carve out special days with just you and her. Open your lines of communication, if they are not already, so that she will let you know what is going on next year. My daughter and I have a WONDERFUL relationship that I would not change for anything! The hardest thing I had to tell my daughter when we left her at college was that she could not come home until Labor Day weekend!! I cried all the way home (2 hours) and now as she starts her Senior year this fall, she tells me that was one of the best things I have ever done for her. It is definitely hard to let go, but we all have to do it at some point.

Brenda - posted on 06/04/2009

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My daughter is going away to college too. She has told her friends that she is ready to go but she wishes she could take her mom with. I pray that I have provided her with enough knowledge to make the right choices. Keep tissues close. My prayers are with you.

Bev - posted on 06/03/2009

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My son started college last fall. I knew he would do well, however, I also knew that he would need to study. He never brought a book home during K-12 unless it was a library book. He always maintained A's though. In college he found he needs to study but still maintains A's and B's. Shopping for college we started early,...whenever there were sales on things he would be using. Informed my son that everyone in the house will be washing their own clothes...this taught him to wash his own clothes...also assured him that if he had any questions he could always come to me....same with checkbook, cleaning etc. You always want to reassure the college student that you are there for questions. I got him a cell for graduation and put my number in at the top so he knows where to call for help. Rarely did he ever call for help...he learned to figure it out but knew I was there. It was harder on me than on him I believe. After 2-3 weeks I felt good about the whole situation.

Wendi - posted on 06/03/2009

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Shed your tears behind closed doors as it will make it more difficult for your daughter to leave and we don’t want that we want them to be happy and let them know we are there for them no matter what. I have a 21 year old daughter and a 19 years old daughter both in nursing, and another daughter who is a senior this in HS this fall with my baby girl (14) not so much baby anymore becoming a freshman in HS. Letting go and doing it without pain and a hole in your heart will be one of the hardest things a mother has to do but you can do it! It’s all a part of life and now that this chapter in your life is closed look forward to many more exciting and new ones to open:) Keep the doors open for communication, ask lots of questions without being too “snoopy” and text, call and get on Facebook as much as possible to stay in touch. Something I started when my girls started leaving home was every night before I went to bed I would send a quick text that says “sweet dreams I love you” every single night and I do not miss one night...well one time I did and it was only one night and my 21 year old caught and said, mom you didn’t text me last night...this is just something we started years ago and it’s my way of letting them know I am here and I love them even when I don’t talk to them that day:)

Wendi - posted on 06/03/2009

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Shed your tears behind closed doors as it will make it more difficult for your daughter to leave and we don’t want that we want them to be happy and let them know we are there for them no matter what. I have a 21 year old daughter and a 19 year old daughter both in school for nursing, and another daughter who is a senior this fall in HS and my baby girl (14) not so much baby anymore becoming a freshman in HS. Letting go and doing it without pain and a hole in your heart will be one of the hardest things a mother has to do but you can do it! It’s all a part of life and now that this chapter in your life is closed look forward to many more exciting and new ones to open:) Keep the doors open for communication, ask lots of questions without being too “snoopy” and text, call and get on Facebook as much as possible to stay in touch. Something I started when my girls started leaving home was every night before I went to bed I would send a quick text that says “sweet dreams I love you” every single night and I do not miss one night...well one time I did and it was only one night and my 21 year old caught it and said, mom you didn’t text me last night...this is just something we started years ago and it’s my way of letting them know I am here and I love them even when I don’t talk to them that day:)

Karen - posted on 06/03/2009

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If she will let you on Facebook, keep in touch that way. Also, the first year we sent our daughter off, I wrapped several small gifts for her to take with her. Everytime she got really homesick or missed her family, she was to open one of the little gifts. They had things like paperback books, small knicknacks, favorite candy, ect. They need to be discouraged from coming home until at least fall break. They need to settle in at college and develop their routine. The biggest thing is to trust them. You have gotten them this far, it is time to let the little bird try it's wings

Diane - posted on 06/02/2009

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I expect my daughter, 18 today, to be too busy to call home. But I will text and will try to resist commenting too much on her facebook. Remember this is what we raised them for. I check back on August 1st -that's her first day.

Jennifer - posted on 05/24/2009

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OMG!! Have plenty of tissues with you. I was fine until they made the announcement that all parents had to leave the campus by 3. When I went to give my daughter a hug bye and tell her I loved her I started crying so hard I could hardly breath. I did so much worse than her. It was awful, but honestly it was a wonderful year for her. Brittany was a totally different girl at the end of her first year, she grew up so much and was now a young responsible adult. Thank the good Lord above for cell phones and text messaging, not 1 single day went by without a phone call or atleast a text message. Just prepare yourself it will be much harder on you than it will be your daughter. Good luck!!!

Lana - posted on 05/24/2009

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Hi Amanda,
Breathe!! Just remember to breathe....

Two days after her 18th Birthday, I put my daughter on a plane heading 2000 miles away to her college of choice, We had only seen the campus online, talked to the staff a few minutes by phone or on a online chat. One of my customers had a step child that lived by the campus and highly recommended the campus, she had visited it twice. I was terrified, (almost asked her not to go but decided against it-found out later that she would of stayed if I asked.)

We keep an open communication, we talk on IM's, cells and phones. I am now on My Space and Face book, we even email and send cards to each other. I try to leave her a message or send her flair everyday but not always. I know what she is up to by her profile on Face book, I see her pictures on Face Book and her photo bucket. I send her "care"packages for Halloween, reading week (the week before finals), I have one of her friends that goes to Walmart and gets her a Valentine presents for me. There are also Easter baskets for both her and her room mate.And a Finals box full of nutritious goodies to help concentrate on studying.With the final boxes I sent coloring book and crayons to help de-stress she had a coloring contest with her floor mates it was a big success plus everyone felt better!
My advice to you is to remember that she is still growing up and will change on you as she finds her independence.Just know that you have done everything you can to prepare her for this step in her life and be there when she needs a shoulder to cry on or wants a little praise or a bit of change for coffee.


Friday I got up at 6, ate breakfast and climbed into the truck to drive the 180 miles one way to the Boise Airport.15 minutes after I got there I was greeted with a huge smile then biggest hug and kiss. It melts away all the sorrows, worries and tears.

On July 11 we will be at Portland Airport 300 miles away putting her on a plane heading to Townsville, Australia so she can study abroad until Nov.23.I traded her birthday with Thanksgiving!!
I know that I have done everything in my power to raise her to be a strong independent young lady. She has learned more without me being right there. I am so proud

Sherry - posted on 05/22/2009

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I sent my only daugther to college in August of 2008. She was very excited and I think the easy part was I prepared her before she went there of what to expect. I helped her with managing her money and also opening up a checking accout with her. I also spoke with her about safety and the importance of always letting someone know where she was going and letting them know when she came back. I bought I big plastic bind and put it in the hallway outside of her room and everytime things went on sale that we needed we put it in that bind. It was just a reminder of the adventure we were about to embark on. Our children are more capable than we give them credit for. They carry the values and things we have taught them at home with them. My daughter had a great freshman year. First Semester made the deans list with 6 A's. She is home for the summer and I am so proud of the young lady she has become.

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My daughter just completed her Freshman year at Viterbo University in La Crosse, Wisconsin. The best advice I received was from the Dean in his speech to parents at her 'welcome weekend' event. 'Don't stop parenting now; these are crucial years'.

Anne - posted on 05/19/2009

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Hi Amanda, My husband and I have two daughters that moved away from home to go to college three years ago. We live in MI and our youngest was 18 at the time and moved to San Diego, CA to go to a small Nazarene University, Our oldest was 22 at the time and she moved to Charlotte NC to go to Johnson and Wales University, in their Culinary Department. These young ladies were and remain the best of friends. Did I mention that they left 3 weeks apart? WE went out to CA to take our youngest to college, but we were not able to go with our oldest. We did however go to the Parents Weekend in Oct. of that year. Over the years we have found that because we were close before they left, (although that summer our oldest had moved out of the house in a huff causing a major riff between her and myself, Thank GOD and I do mean GOD our relationship has been healed and in some ways we are closer now than we ever were) we remained close. I agree with the advice about texting, cell phones and friends on FB. My daughters and I are not friends on FB they think it is creepy. We also just found a wonderful web site called SKYPE, both parties need high speed internet and web cams. At this web site you can down load the free program that allows you to talk face to face. You can also buy a phone number that is said to be cheaper than the regular home phone. We have not done that part. Our youngest has been in South America this semester and it has been so wonderful we were able to talk to her on her 21st. Birthday earlier this month. Our oldest ins now 25 and graduation from college on May 23. She will spend 3 weeks in Singapore and one week in Taiwan during July of this summer to really finish up her schooling. At time when I have not heard from either of them for several days because of their busy lives I try to remember something I heard when they were growing up. WE are NOT raising children but Future Adults. Now they are the adults we were raising all of these years. I hop this helps. Feel free to add me to your circle of moms if you want to chat further. OH on Skype their is a chat feature that is much like Iming but more private.

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Hello Amanda, I know exactly how you feel since my 18 yrold daughter and first child is also going away for college in september. I guess we can't help feeling sad, but on the other hand I try to look at this as the best reward for the effort we've put bringing them up. I feel really proud that I was able to raise a girl mature and confident enough to want to go away to study. I love that she'll be independent. We've always had a very good relationship and that also helps because I know we'll keep in touch when she's gone. Let your girl know you'll always be there no matter what. Becoming her FBook friend is a good idea but keep in mind you have to be very aware as to how much you comment on her life.
Best of luck and if you want you can add me to your circle since we're on the same boat together!! xxoo

Mel - posted on 05/17/2009

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Become her Facebook friend, send her money and offer advice. That's the best I can offer. Good Luck...



Mom of Sophomore in college.... Mel

Diana - posted on 05/17/2009

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As a mother of an almost 22 year old going into her senior year of Bible college, let me tell you it won't be easy. I suppose it never is when 'our babies' leave the nest. The only thing that saw me through that first year was knowing that I would see her in 3 weeks when I came to a ladies' conference held at the church where the college was at. I could handle 3 weeks. That was the longest she'd been away from home. She had traveled abroad the past 2 summers and there was no way to stay in contact with her. That was rough. But, nowadays,with e-mail and cell phones it's a lot easier to communicate with our college age children. Also, I might suggest that she take pictures and them to you. Get to know her 'roomies' and new friends. Sorry this long. If you need any more advice, get in touch. I'll help any way I can.

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Have your tissue ready! : ) I have two sons one in his second year in college and the other a junior in H.S. Just instill in her to use her best judement and remember the reason she is going to college..for the education not the parties! The first year is new and eventful....fun, parties, new friends etc...It's there first year all on their own. Make sure you keep in contact with her but don't smother her either. Is you daughter going to a college far away from your home?

Anne - posted on 05/17/2009

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Oh no I too am doing this in 2 weeks :( My 2 sons before her have (1 not gone onto college) 2nd one is in college staying home with us driving. She has decided to go out of home my first of 7 :( She is asking me to help get her "home" ready. I am so not ready it came to soon to fast. What happened to my sweet baby ? She's ready to go I am with you 100% I know my new mantra is just let go just trust you did right. Good luck I am in your camp the next month. Lots of tears!

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