Hello! So I am a student, but I was hoping that some parents might be able to offer more advice on how to communicate with my parents.
So to start with, I love my parents. We've always been close, and I have so much respect for them. Also, I am a first year student, on an accelerated track (yes it is my first year of college, but i'm looking to graduate undergrad with in the next 2 years). I am a huge planner (some times to a fault), and I'm trying to focus on my career and getting where I want to be. With that being said, I am out of state at school, the only times I was able to go home/see my parents in general since college started in August was for Christmas. I have been offered an amazing paid internship this summer, which is going to take me across the country for the entirety of the summer (meaning I will leave after my spring finals, go to said inernship, and return from said internship just in time for fall semester). The sad part is this means that I won't be able to see my parents until christmas, a year after I saw them last, at the earliest (but even that is in question, I had a wonderful research experience with a professor over spring break, and there are talks of us doing another trip over christmas). Of course, neither I nor them are made of money, so I can't afford to fly home to see them for a brief time, but at this point It is very realistically that I won't be able to see them (or my hometown for that matter) for over a year.
So for the first 17 years of my life, I never spent more than a weekend away from my family (parents and siblings), and now I saw them once in a 6 month time period, and am unsure of when I'll see them again. Of course this upsets them, and me too, but at this point I have a responsiblity to myself to be a functioning self-sufficent 'adult' (gosh that feels strange to say). How can I make them understand that I still love them and care about them, even if I have to move on with my life? I try to call them multiple times a week, and be supportive to my younger siblings, and I know being the oldest, it is my responsibility to set the standards. I know they are proud of me, but I can also tell that they are upset at how quickly their little high schooler has moved away from home (and I absolutely refuse to move back in with my parents, I established that quickly, that I will never 'live' with them again, but only visit).
So to reitterate my question, is this normal? for me to feel some pressure in my relationship with my parents to be both self sufficent, but also stay close with them? and how can I make them understand that I am trying to do what is best for myself, and them? of course I still love them, but undoubtively we have grown apart some simply because we are so far apart physically. any advice appreciated