From time to time, we like to review some of the books available for parents of college students. There is a wealth of literature available to help parents cope with the transition to college and the changes that occur throughout the college years. We’ve offered some lists of recommended reading, and there is something for everyone. Visit our Resources page for suggestions of important books for college parents and their students.
Adulting Made Easy: Things Someone Should Have Told You About Getting Your Grown-up Act Together by Amanda Morin provides the perfect bridge for students into their adult life. Although many college students may think they know what they need to know to make life work, this book will show them how much they still have to learn. And fortunately, Amanda Morin provides enough humor, practical tips, and stories about her own failures that students will keep reading. For those students who already know they don’t know enough about how to survive in the “real world,” this book will be a welcome guidebook.
Adulting Made Easy covers so many topics we probably don’t think to talk about with our emerging adults. Sure, we may touch upon how to find an apartment, cooking a few foods, some money management topics, and how to find car insurance, (But they’re in the book in case you missed that discussion!) but we might not think to cover topics such as how to register to vote, what to do if you lose your job, how to zip up a dress if you live alone, or how to find the right fire extinguisher for your new apartment. Some of us who have been around for a while could use some of this advice!
This book would make a wonderful college or high school graduation gift. The sooner that students begin to work on these adulting skills, the better prepared they will be for those unexpected moments that will inevitably occur. Having this reference book on the shelf will give your student confidence. Whether your student needs help stocking their new kitchen, or whether or not to friend their new coworkers on social media, the answers are here.
This book shouldn’t substitute for the important conversations you and your student should have as they launch into the world, but it will give both of you a guide for some of the topics you might cover. And Amanda’s sense of humor will keep you going.
About the author:
Amanda Morin is an author, speaker, parent advocate, and former classroom teacher and early intervention specialist. She is Associate Director of Thought Leadership & Expertise at Understood.org, a social impact organization, where she teaches about using empathy as a tool to understand difference and embrace inclusion. Amanda has written for and served as an expert resource for numerous outlets, including NPREd, Education Week, Associated Press (AP), The Atlantic, Washington Post, Parenting Special Needs Magazine, and more. She is also the mother of three children, including a college student and a twenty-something who are learning about adulting as they navigate the world. Amanda lives in coastal Maine with her family.
What the author has to say about the book:
“I didn’t write this [book] because I did such a good job raising adults. And I’m definitely not writing it because I’m so good at adulting. The truth is, when I first hit adulthood, I was terrible at it. So terrible at it that it should – and will – serve as a cautionary tale.
We spend much of our childhoods yearning to be adults, to get out into the world and make our own decisions. We want to eat what we want to when we want to; we want to buy what we want to when we want to; and we want to be in charge of our own lives. Being an adult and in charge of your own life seems so exciting until you realize it’s really a weird mix of daunting decisions and mundane details that need equal attention.
The good news is, you get to learn from my mistakes. I’m laying it all out here so you can adult with the best of them. By the time you finish this book, you’ll not only know how to sew on a button, but you’ll also know answers to some of adulting’s most baffling questions: What exactly do you say to the doctor’s office when you need to make an appointment? And why does laundry have to be separated and done so often?
I promise I’ll keep telling you stories of how badly I failed at adulting so it can be easier for you, and you can feel good about yourself! But I’m also going to sneak in the stories of what I’ve learned to do well over the years, because I need to feel a little bit better about myself, too.”
What others have to say about the book:
“When I heard [Amanda Morin] wrote a book, I was eager to purchase it for my college-age kids. It met and exceeded expectations — it’s well written, practical and a perfect guide for any young adult heading off to college or a first job. Without question, I wish I had similar advice when I was young.”
“I originally bought this book for my eldest who just finished his freshman year of college. Before giving it to him, I started flipping through it. Amanda’s down-to-earth, approachable, and funny writing drew me in and the next thing I knew, I ever had learned a couple of things! I bought a copy for myself and my younger teen now because there are so many important life lessons included in these chapters. I can’t imagine how many fewer mistakes I would have made when I was first on my own if I had this book!”
“A lot of this book focuses on money management, and that is often cited as a major barrier for some young adults. Keeping track even loosely is a challenge for many people and sitting down and thinking about how to take one’s paycheck and not spend it all before the bills come the following month is critical to having autonomy in doing things that one cares about.”
“This is THE BOOK for any launching young adult, and especially those who struggle with any sort of executive function challenges like staying organized or keeping track of things or making a plan to do things that fall into the “non-preferred tasks” category but are an absolutely essential part of being an independent, autonomous adult. Adulting Made Easy truly touches upon all the things emerging adults need to know about and in a completely accessible way. Honestly, the younger version of me is jealous of today’s generation that they get to have Amanda as their guide and step-by-step practical guidance on so many things I either a) didn’t know I needed to know about or b) learned lessons the very hard way.”