For some, saying "goodbye" is the hardest part about starting their lives at
college. Leaving friends and family can be truly overwhelming; it can be
especially difficult for those who have never spent a significant amount of time
. It can be just as hard for those who are staying behind. There
are, however, some things that can be done to help ease the transition on both
Make the most of the time
before college begins. Once school starts (even if school is close to home),
you're probably not going to have as many opportunities to spend quality time
with friends and family. Take the few weeks prior to the start of school to go
out to dinner often, attend a baseball game or other sporting event, or take
part in whatever other hobbies you might have. What you do isn't as important as
that you do it together, taking time to talk and enjoy each other's
If you plan far enough in advance, you might be able to
take a vacation together. Vacations are a great way to be able to spend quality
time together while escaping the responsibilities of everyday life. Summer
courses, internships, and other distractions might make planning future
vacations difficult, so take advantage of the opportunity now if you have it.
Keeping In Touch
Make some kind of a plan for keeping in touch
once school begins. If you have an idea of how you'll remain connected with
friends and family, it'll be much easier to make it play out. If you're going to
school relatively close to home, you may have an easier time connecting with
your friends and family. Plan on taking time on slow class days or weekends to
head back home. You might choose one day per week to spend at home, trying to
hang out with someone different each time.
Being farther from home
doesn't have to mean that it'll be harder to stay connected. Thanks to
technology, there are many ways for you to stay in touch. Set aside some time
each week to call up friends and family members and talk to them for a while.
TIP: Take advantage of new technologies like
webcams. These allow you to have face-to-face conversations with someone, even
if he or she is on the other side of the world.
Finally, plan out the times
that you will be home. For example, spring break could be a great opportunity to
reconnect with people. Planning how you will use that time will allow you to use
it efficiently. If you don't plan, you could miss people because they already
have plans of their own.
Even if you take these steps, saying "goodbye"
to your friends and family is still likely to be difficult. However, you'll be
less likely to feel as though you wasted the time that you did have. You'll also
have a plan for seeing everyone again, which can let you start college feeling
more confident that you'll stay connected to loved ones.