Many families feel that their son or daughter has “changed” when they come home from college, whether it is for a break or holiday. You may not know how to directly point it out, but they are different. This change captures many college students, and has been baffling families and friends for years. What is this “big change/difference” in your student?
Your sons and daughters are still the same people, but they are beginning to grow, mature, and gain a personal sense of independence. Not only are they on their own for the first time, but they are responsible for everything they do and happens. For example, college is voluntary and expensive; if you do not want to go to class, you don’t have to but it is on your dime. In high school, students have a school day that commonly consists of eight or nine classes each day. However, college you get to make your own schedule; you can have no classes one day, or classes all day, it is up to you. As a college student, you have to find a way to balance classes, homework, friends, and extracurricular activities like sports and clubs.
As you enter college, you don’t really think about upcoming changes, but rather all of the new freedom you will have. In college there are no curfews, chores, dress codes, or parents tell you what to do. The first few weeks of your college career, these new personal freedoms are the “best thing ever!”, but as time passes you realize how much easier it used to be.
The change that everyone notices in their students, is maturity. We are learning how to be an adult, how to live on our own, how to manage money, and much more. Our new personal freedoms we gain as student are shaping us into the adults we need to be. The reason this change confuses so many, is because no matter what you are always a child or baby in your parents’ mind.