When it comes to raising kids, there is no telling what sort of challenges you might face. The fact is that every child is unique and will have their own set of strengths and weaknesses. They will need different levels of support from you at various times throughout their lives.
However, when a child reaches their teenage years, the entire game seems to change. They arrive at the stage in life when the expectations of them switch, and they begin to seek out more independence. The road to adulthood is getting shorter and shorter and, for many teenagers, the prospect of attending college is a fast-approaching life change.
Going to college can be a difficult situation for teenagers and young adults in this day and age. Many find themselves unprepared not only for the practical realities of living on their own and managing their own schedule but for the emotional aspects of such a change as well.
If your teenager has been applying to or even accepted to the college of their dreams and the day when they will leave home to start the next phase of their education is only several months away, here are a few things that you can do in order to help them prepare for one of the biggest changes in their lives so far.
Prepare Them Emotionally
There are going to be many things that you hope to teach your teen in the months leading up to their departure for college that pertain to the practical aspects of living a more independent life. However, it is vitally important that you don’t underestimate the emotional challenges that they will be facing as well.
Far too many teens and young adults struggle to find success at college due to the mental and emotional challenges that they are up against, especially in those early days. Things like anxiety attacks are more common than you might imagine, and some teens even experience a general failure to launch due to their emotional and mental struggles.
If at any point you think that your teen would benefit from some additional support in this area, you should consider having a conversation with a Life Adjustment Team to help set them on the right path for the next chapter in their life.
Go Over the Basics
When your teen goes off to college for the first time, you can find yourself looking to cover as many bases as possible when it comes to preparing them for the practical aspects of living away from home. It is important to remember, though, that so much about living independently will simply come with time for your teen. Go over the basics with them, but try to avoid overwhelming them with too much too fast.
For instance, instead of trying to teach them how to cook a myriad of recipes and dishes, start with something simple like how to scramble eggs. Give them the tools they need to get started and the space to let them figure things out as they go.