As your son or daughter adjusts to the unique
challenges of college, he or she may have mixed feelings about sharing
their experiences with you. Many students report that a major concern
for them is disappointing their parents. Sometimes students avoid
talking to parents about problems or concerns because they don’t want to
upset or disappoint their parents. As parents you may be unsure how to
be helpful and supportive while also encouraging independence and
growth. Here are some tips:
- Be a good listener and encourage your son or daughter, to share his/her excitement, fears, and concerns.
- Reassure your student that feeling initially overwhelmed by new experiences and a new environment is normal.
- Try to always convey acceptance and understanding. Remind your
student that making mistakes is part of the learning process and that no
one is perfect.
- Try not to take it personally when your student brushes off
your advice. Understand that it is important for young adults to learn
how to make decisions for themselves and to have a sense of power and
control over their lives.
- Try to encourage your son or daughter to find his or her own
solutions to current problems and challenges rather than offering
advice. For example, asking “What are your ideas about making things
better?” may be a better response than “This is what I think you should
- When appropriate, encourage your son or daughter to seek out university resources to assist them.
- Although TAMU-CC prides itself on being a safe campus, it is
nevertheless important that students be conscientious about their own
safety. Keep residence doors and windows locked. Lock vehicles. Avoid
walking alone after dark or late at night or in deserted areas – walk
with a buddy or call University Police for a campus escort. Report any
suspicious or threatening behavior to University Police at (361)825-4444
or if on campus extension 4444.
- Do talk to your student about drugs and alcohol. For tips
about how to broach this topic, see Talking to Your College Student
About Drinking: A Message to Parents.