Your college student is coming home for their first real visit since heading off to college. You’re excited — but also a bit nervous about what to expect. You know that they have probably changed — increased independence and responsibility are goals of the college experience. But you may not be sure how this increased independence will affect your relationship. Your college student is probably nervous, too. They can’t wait to come home to show off their new found independence, but they’re not sure how they will fit in with the family now.
The first step in a successful visit with your student may be simply anticipating that things will be different, and possibly awkward. You will need to get to know some new aspects of your student. You may need to negotiate some ways of behaving and some expectations. As has so often been the case throughout this process, brushing up on your listening skills and your patience will go a long way. Here are a few suggestions that may help to ease the experience for everyone.