One of the tougher parts of parenting college students

Admittedly I am not parenting a college student yet (hopeful ’27!), but one of the toughest things I see parents and families deal with is some of their anxieties related to their students’ college experience:

Will they have a good roommate? 

Will they find a major they like?

Will they develop a friend group?

Will they get involved on campus?

Will they get good grades?

Will they have issues with mental health? or alcohol and drugs?

Will they take advantage of all Wake has to offer?

[insert your worry here]

These are not just first-year family fears, BTW. Also, the list of worries varies from each parent or loved one to the next.

But it is really important for parents and families to manage their anxieties on their own – and not project those worries onto their students. Students – in every year of college – have enough things on their plates. They often flourish when left to do things on their own, even if you worry they won’t take care of important things. Push back against the urge to send them reminders/texts telling them to be sure to do X or Y because you are worried they will forget on their own. They need to do their own process – and occasionally learn from a mistake.

And to the question of Will they take advantage of all Wake has to offer?, I would rhetorically reply with “How many of us took advantage of all our college had to offer?” My guess is most of us did not fully take advantage, or did not do it as early as we could.

And we still turned out OK 🙂

No Daily Deac tomorrow. Wishing you all a very happy 4th of July!


— by Betsy Chapman ’92, MA ’94

Categories: the daily deac


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