It may not be inevitable, but it is common and it is normal. It’s two weeks into your college freshman’s first semester, (or three weeks, or one week, or five weeks) and you get the phone call. It may be three o’clock in the afternoon, but more likely it is midnight. Your student is miserable. He hates school, he is overwhelmed academically, he has no friends, he hates the food, he’s ready to come home. As a parent, you panic. This was all a mistake, he should have gone somewhere else, or stayed home, or commuted to a local school. You are ready to leave home immediately and go to school to collect him and bring him home. At the very least, you are up half of the night worrying about him.
But wait, you are not alone! Understanding that this phone call may be a normal part of the adjustment to college for many freshmen may help. Being prepared for the situation, while hoping that it never arises, will help. Here are some suggestions for what to do if you get that phone call from your miserable college freshman.