Wednesday, August 26, 2015

My Child is Leaving Home!

     At this time of year millions of parents are taking their children away and not bringing them home. Yes, it's that time of year when College starts up and children leave our home for the first time.

      Martha at Ploughing Through Life posted about attending an open house. My neighbor across the street has been worrying for the last year about her son leaving the nest.

     We have our kids for 17 or 18 years. We do the best to raise them so that they become responsible and independent adults. However, that process can not happen with the snap of a finger. Growing up and maturing is a process that happens over a long period of time. It's not finished at 17 or 18 years of age. For some the process is faster and an end or plateau is reached where they become responsible adults contributing to society and raising their own children. For others it's a much longer journey. For me, it was the much longer journey. I was sidetracked many times and had to try things that were just plane unproductive and destructive.

    When we leave our kids out there, there are many things they have not experienced. Peer pressure goes to another level. They are entering a whole new world and want to be accepted. Anxiety can rise and kids become vulnerable.

    On the other hand when we leave kids somewhere for the first time, the learning curve is very steep. They're on their own and can't fall back on familiar supports.

    Parents have a tough time to drop kids off and leave them. It's a major change in the family. It's a loss and we all know that a loss is a challenge. We love our kids and don't want to see them leave.

    Kids put on a brave face and want to leave and have many reasons to give for "getting away." But deep down they are just as anxious over being dropped off. I was very homesick when I was dropped off. I'd only been in a city half a dozen times. I came from a one room high school. I was dropped off in big time and had to sink or swim.

    So I hope that everybody has the best parting possible. Both parents and students will experience growth in the process. The first weekend they come back will be joyous. When they go back and the house is quiet we will heave a sigh of relief.

     My kids are 43 and 45 and I still remember them leaving for the first time. I didn't like to see them go.

    Do you remember being dropped off? Or did you leave on your own time?