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Parents Moving To College With Me. Help!

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Replies to: Parents Moving To College With Me. Help!

  • nvb123nvb123 Registered User Posts: 151 Junior Member
    @BrianBoiler I've tried the 'compromise' thing on them too, but they always ask me "what's the difference between 30 minutes and 2 hours"? They don't understand that college is my way to be completely away, not having any physical support. Even though it sounds tough, it's a great experience.
  • nvb123nvb123 Registered User Posts: 151 Junior Member
    @GoatGirl19 Wow.. thanks for all that insight. I think the 'global learning experience' is something really valuable that I can talk to them about. Until now, it's just been a really strong emotion that college is my time live away, but I haven't had a concrete reason to explain that. This is a really solid way to explain this emotion to them and help them understand why I really want to live far away. Thank you so much!
  • BrianBoilerBrianBoiler Registered User Posts: 614 Member
    I think it is great your parents care for you this much. You can't force them where to live or more specifically where not to live. You can make your feelings known, which it sounds you have. You can offer compromise, which you have.

    You state you worry you cannot stay away if they are near. I challenge that. At the end of the day, you can choose to act in a way like they are 2 hours away. You can choose not to share your schedule. You can choose not to answer the phone when they call except during agreed up on terms. You can choose, to do your own laundry at the dorm and eat at the dorm with friends. You can choose to fill your social time with your new friends. You can say "sorry, I can't come over this weekend, I'm studying, going to an event, chillin' with friends, traveling to my friends home to meet their family." It sounds as if you are the stronger party in this disagreement. If it ends up that they move with you, be loving but firm that your life is a greater priority. Don't forget them completely, but budget the time like you would have had to if they weren't near.

    I've two children in college. One is in DC and the other in Chicago. We live north of Philly. We only see either kid on Thanksgiving in the Fall and when they determine they need to do something in the area, we try to make it work to see each other. At the beginning of the year, lay the rules out. I'll be home on these weekends if I can afford to miss studying and I'll call you 3 nights a week. I'll respond to brief texts with brief answers (ie. How's it going? ans. Pretty Good). Make it clear that they made the choice to move close to you, against your wishes. Make it clear that they agreed to let you be independent and to set rules of engagement. If they start to push the boundaries push back.
  • RedLariRedLari Registered User Posts: 105 Junior Member
    Just let them know that you are an adult now, you will call them if anything comes up and you’ll come home for a visit between semesters. It’s not like you are going away forever and will never come home. Most parents I know were elated when their kids finally left the nest because it gave them more time to take care of themselves. Less smothering+more independence= better adjusted as an adult.
  • LindagafLindagaf Registered User Posts: 8,575 Senior Member
    There are a fair few colleges that will allow you to do your first semester abroad at a satellite campus. Northeastern comes to mind, and I know of others. That could be an option.

    I'm sorry to hear this, but your parents are having a hard time with the idea of you going away. I would let it rest for a while, say 6 months, and then say gently but firmly, in no shrouded language, that you love them but you want to be independent and would prefer that they not move to wherever you end up. You can further explain that studies show that students who immerse themselves in college life do better all around and have better experiences. It is very unusual for parents to move to the student's college town, and there is a good reason for this. A young adult at college doesn't need parents in the vicinity in order to thrive. You can also bring up to them that if they really want you to be nearby, you can live at home and commute, which I suspect is not their idea of what you should be doing. Stand firm.
  • yourmommayourmomma Registered User Posts: 1,159 Senior Member
    When we visited the kid's school during the application process, we noticed our old house was "available." We told him it would be a "great idea" if we bought it and moved down there. He looked at us in horror and said "if you do that, I'm transferring." At least we get parents weekend. :)

    So you can do that -- threaten to transfer. I would definitely look at schools in urban environments -- you could be a block away in distance, but in two different worlds. There will be more distractions for them and you'll be able to "hide" better. And pick somewhere cold. :) Your hope is after a semester or two they will realize their silliness and move to a local that suits them better. Good luck.
  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 36,036 Senior Member
    I’d tell them it is fine if they want to, but you expect to be quite busy and living independently on campus. Maybe say you’ll try to set aside a couple hours a week to get together for dinner or lunch or something, but during crunch times like exams it might not always be possible. Tell them you plan to take care of your own “chores” - laundry, haircuts, etc as much as possible regardless of whether they move or not. Also that you expect to live on campus to start with, and with other students (not at home) if it is normal to move off campus eventually. I wouldn’t fight with them - but just set your boundaries out now. Maybe they will come to their senses, or maybe not. You probably can’t control this.

    Also, not sure of your major, but you may end up with summer internships or research not near your campus. Not sure if you want to bring this up or not, but something to keep in mind.
  • tsicklestsickles Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    What kind of "chores" are they talking about helping with? The "chores" I had in college were doing laundry, washing my dishes, tidying my room. Do they plan on coming to your dorm to do those things? Also, if they are telling you that others can mess with you and change your life, does that mean they intend on meeting all of your college friends and acquaintances? That doesn't sound like them just being nearby in case you need them, and only being available whenever you want.

    I completely get what you are saying, and why you want to be on your own. My parents lived in PA, and I went to college in WI for the same reason. I wanted to be on my own and gain independence. I knew of I went to school nearby, I'd be running home all the time. Luckily, my parents understood. I'm not sure how to help in your case, since your parents don't seem to understand that they're being overprotective. Maybe have them look up Helicopter Parent, and have them explain exactly how they would be one if they followed you school. When they can't, maybe they'll start to "get it."
  • melvin123melvin123 Registered User Posts: 1,378 Senior Member
    I think @happy1 has a point about what happens during your vacation time if your parents move.

    Your parents provided you with a terrific foundation of their love and advice (which you are taking forward with you in your life), but your parents also worked hard to provide you a good community for your childhood. That community of friends and neighbors is also an important part of your foundation. Your parents want to provide you with a nest to come home to whenever you need it, but if they move the nest it just won't be the same and you'll miss out on a lot of things that the community that you grew up in provided you.

    I like the idea of talking about how the foundation they provided you is enabling you to undertake this global education, but it would be most helpful to you if that foundation remains intact for now while you are taking this big step forward in life.

    I'm also thinking about what kinds of "help" your parents might be thinking about, and whether you can allow your parents to set up some kind of a structure and let them pay for the help, so they can feel good about providing this for you. Maybe you can let your parents find a laundry service for you and let them pay for it? If you stay in a dorm your other needs should be provided for (no need for grocery shopping or cooking, or hopefully bathroom cleaning). The other concern that almost all parents have is, what if you get sick? Maybe your parents have a relative or friend that live nearby, and your parents can ask them to help in an emergency, and take all of you out to dinner so you can have proper introductions.
  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn Super Moderator Posts: 37,402 Super Moderator
    You don't have to rely on your parents, even if they're close by. I went to school 20 minutes from home, and my dad was one of my professors! But I managed to avoid him whenever I wanted to. I actually cried when they dropped me off at college, because I felt so far away! I went home occasionally, but I never took laundry home or stuck around for long.
  • WWC4meWWC4me Registered User Posts: 200 Junior Member
    You might try asking your parents to sit down with you and a family therapist to facilitate you sharing your concerns and asking them to respect your space.
  • bjkmombjkmom Registered User Posts: 7,535 Senior Member
    This sounds like the plot to a Lifetime movie.

    If they insist on following you across the country, there's not much you can do about it-- particularly if they're paying the bills. But I would make it very clear that I would be calling once a week-- say Sunday afternoons. And I would stick to that schedule. In the absence of an incredibly difficult crisis, I would avoid calling for any other "help."

    You sound like a very level headed kid, and I suspect that you'll do just fine without all that additional help.
  • collegemom3717collegemom3717 Registered User Posts: 5,828 Senior Member
    The biggest worry I have is that when my parents are 30 minutes away I will 100% depend on them more

    So, I'm going to take a slightly contrary approach: give it up now. Let them do what they like.

    You have to learn how to walk your own path anyway, and they are (indirectly) giving you that opportunity. You are afraid that if they offer you the temptation of making life easy for you, you will take it. If you aren't familiar with the Marshmallow test, Google it. Basically, this will be a big-kid version of the Marshmallow test.

    ps, don't forget that you can get summer internships in other towns/states/countries (depending on your field), and of course there is study abroad.
  • bopperbopper Forum Champion CWRU Posts: 12,468 Forum Champion
    edited July 2018
    Some thoughts:

    1) When you get to college, talk to a counselor in the Counseling Center for ideas.
    2) Set up how often you will contact them...I would suggest calling once a week like all other college students do.
    3) Make a point not to ask them for help with minor things.
    4) This may be the "price" you have to pay for them to pay for college...after that you are on your own more.
    5) General Douglas MacArthur, a 5 star US Army General, ended up in a similar situation...his mother moved to be near him at West Point (the US Military Academy). He turned out fine.
    6) I have friends who don't want their daughter to end up back in our expensive state...so they have retired and moved to Colorado to enjoy skiing etc while they still can and will move nearish to her once she settles down.

  • houndmomhoundmom Registered User Posts: 214 Junior Member
    One anecdote - I watched my neighbors do this to their son about 10 years ago. I live on East Coast. Kid went to college on West Coast (not in small part to get away from family drama). Since he appeared to be doing so well, the rest of the family packed up and moved to same city/town ... it did NOT work as they planned and the family moved back after one year leaving their son to complete his education and have his own experience.

    You can't control what your parents do, only how you react to them.
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