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post #1 of 56
Thread Starter 
My wonderful attachment parented DD1 will be going off to college next year. About 6 hours away from home to a fabulous college that seems to be a perfect fit for her. I am happy about her choice but misty eyed about this transition. Has anyone been through this, or anyone see it looming on the horizon. Any wisdom or advice?

post #2 of 56
In the midst of it myself. We'll have his final school's decision tonight (they're posting at 5pm, but we both work 'til 9:30), and then he has to start deciding. Well... he has to start convincing his Dad. He has three to choose from (not including the one we hear from tonight) - his first choice has offered him enough FinAid for tuition & books & food. So it would just be housing to cover. Dad's first choice (also son's last choice) has given him a free ride plus more.

But yeah... it's going to be tough. He'll only be ~2 hours away regardless, so an easy enough train ride to get home.

What I continually remind myself is that this is what we raise our children to do - be confident enough in themselves to spread their wings and fly. It's a beautiful thing.
post #3 of 56
I have been through it now twice. She will be fine, it's you that you have to worry about. It is a giant shock to the system not to see and talk to your child every single day. I called them both too much in the beginning - checking to reassure myself that they were ok, just wanting to say hi. They adjusted to school so well that I got a little hurt when they didn't have time to talk or tried to talk to me and the 4 other people hanging out with them! The first time I also focused all that extra love and attention on my other child, who gently started calling me Smother when I went a little overboard.

Having an AP relationship with an adult child is a whole new wonderful experience.
post #4 of 56
DC1 is on the other side of the country, which for us means seeing each other only for the December/January break and summer . . . if he doesn't end up working out there. Hard missing him, but he's so happy with the fit that we're thrilled.

We're in touch a lot, all of it at his pace and request. I can't say enough good things about video calling. Some of my favorites are the cheerful, rushed cell call on the way to class or a function. Hearing them busy and happy is so heartwarming.

If it's comfortable / feasible for you, it may really help to attend whatever family activities the school has to offer. If your DD doesn't go on a campus visit, then maybe there's a local meet & greet for admitted students? (Or both.) We took turns going to orientation and family weekend and loved it. It's less like DC1 left home and more like we added a home, if that makes sense.

post #5 of 56
Thread Starter 
YES! Thank you all for your responses. We are actually going to a local dinner for accepted students on Tuesday and I can't wait. I also thought about it in terms of adding a home!

Enkmom I like thinking about it as an AP relationship with my adult child...that could be a topic on here all on it's own! Maybe there should be an Older Teens and Beyond category after this one in Ages and Stages?!

Mtiger, thank you, I will keep remembering too that this is what we raise them to do, I love that! Did you get the final school result yesterday. Has your son picked his first choice? Good luck with everything!
post #6 of 56
Originally Posted by Suzmama View Post
Did you get the final school result yesterday.
We did, and he didn't get in. Which was actually okay. That would have added a whole new layer of drama wrt his Dad.

Originally Posted by Suzmama View Post
Has your son picked his first choice? Good luck with everything!
It's complicated. His Dad is court-ordered to pay for college. Both our son and I have, however, been bearing that in mind (i.e. I'm not out to screw the guy!). His first choice will result in his Dad paying ~ $7k/year. Which I think is really quite reasonable. Plus, I intend to provide what assistance I can in terms of spending money, clothing, extra food, etc. Other choice will be free - but it's not where kiddo wants to go. So... we're in negotiations! LOL
post #7 of 56
Originally Posted by Suzmama View Post
Maybe there should be an Older Teens and Beyond category after this one in Ages and Stages?!
Ooh, I like that!
post #8 of 56
I've got an only who'll be heading off in the fall after a mostly successful gap year working, traveling, and studying.

She was AP/ home-unschooled until entering HS (her choice) and that transition was pretty bumpy. She felt so very different from her age mates (because of the AP/ homeschooling, on top of the fact that her HS is super competitive and she wanted to excel) that she adopted a lot of their behaviors to fit in, but at times ended up feeling alienated from herself. That dissonance caused some heart ache for her as well as me and our connection. It was rough.

The gap year has been a time to regroup, and for the most part has been good, but I'm not sure how this next transition will play out. Being an only has also been part of the equation, positive as well as adding to some of the difficulties. I'm trying. Holding loosely and letting (trying to!) her set the pace, but I think she feels conflicted about feeling so close to me when she sees that's not really the norm. So I'm probably needing more support than I have to give, but just wanted to say I'm in the same boat!
post #9 of 56
Originally Posted by Suzmama View Post
Maybe there should be an Older Teens and Beyond category after this one in Ages and Stages?
I would love this! The first step would be to have an ongoing thread here, and if it turns out that that isn't enough, we can ask for a subforum.

My daughter has been gone since August, but she's coming back for what would be her senior year, if she were in school. She's also planning a gap year, in part because getting a scholarship to spend a year in Russia wreaked havoc with her college prep plans, and she needs a year here to really prepare for that. For her gap year she's going to apply for a scholarship to spend a year in Germany, and if she doesn't get that she may be in Africa with me, and/or bum around Europe and work on some other language stuff, or something else may turn up.

Selfishly I hope she spends at least some time with me that year... I miss her.
post #10 of 56
Thread Starter 
Thanks Dar! I would love to see it become a subforum, especially as we get closer to August...I was looking at the photo albums and can't believe how fast time goes and how short a time seems to have passed since I was

Mtiger, I've been thinking about you and your son. I hope he gets to go to his first choice...good luck with the negotiations!
post #11 of 56
Ours is trying to find a way to stay out there for the summer, and DC2 is looking at away programs. Looks like maybe an empty nest dry run for DH and me!

We hate the idea of either of them being gone, but they've done about as much as they can here so we're trying to encourage it.
post #12 of 56
Shameless bump, and looking forward to hearing how things are going for the rest of you!
post #13 of 56
Originally Posted by Suzmama View Post
Mtiger, I've been thinking about you and your son. I hope he gets to go to his first choice...good luck with the negotiations!
We were at #2 today, and he has refused to go there. For good reasons, to be honest. He told me that he will talk to his Dad next w/e, but will take out loans if he has to to cover the difference.
post #14 of 56
Thread Starter 
He sounds like a mature and independent guy...hopefully his dad will be supportive! Let us know what happens.
post #15 of 56
Suzmama, how'd your meet & greet go?

Our 17 y.o. just got accepted into a six-week program hundreds of miles away and is absolutely thrilled!

I've noticed it's hard to find schools and programs / situations that do have a GD / AP climate. DH and I are so used to treating our kids in a free-range way that it's hard to see them find something with content that seems great but a set up "behavioral expectations" that clearly assume the students will be just horrible if given half a chance. There are schools with inspiring honor codes, though, that live and breathe respect, and it seems both our kids have found their way to something along those lines.
post #16 of 56
Thread Starter 
Absolutely, I totally agree. That's great that he got in, and we did both find places that continue our GD/AP lives.

It seems to get closer all the time and it is amazing how I can be so misty and thrilled for her at the same time! The meet and greet was great and made it more real to both of us. We went to dinner afterwards and talked. I want to know from everyone the special ways to celebrate the changing connection after she goes to college. I already thought of sending her packages, skyping, talking on the phone and e-mailing. Does anyone have any special things or traditions they have developed?
post #17 of 56
MM- Last summer, my daughter got a scholarship for a program that turned out to be really disrespectful towards the participants. It was truly awful - the first day, one of the counselors actually rolled her eyes at Rain and members of their group when they wanted to put their luggage in their rooms. Their cell phones were taken immediately upon arrival, even though the rulebook (which we had read cover to cover) explicitly said that they could have cell phones unless they were being "abused". One of the instructors physically shoved participant. Like I said, awful... and I was in Egypt, so we had a crazy week of me trying to get her home, because the program was halfway across the country from where I lived.

I am glad that I had insisted on having contact with her via email beforehand. At one point they told her that she could handwrite messages to me that a counselor would type into the computer and email to me, which was crazy censorship, so she worked out a coded message that I would understand... fortunately they decided that was too much work for the counselor so we got to chat on facebook.

Susan, since my daughter has been in Russia skype has been amazing. We use it for audio chat, audio and video chat, and just typing-chat. There are certain times of the week when we're both usually online, and if we leave the chat open it feels kind of like we're both together... and we occasionally write to each other for a few minutes, or ask a question.

Rain also loves getting mail, so I try to send her a letter or a postcard every week or two. It's a fun day-brightener, I think...
post #18 of 56
My son is at his Dad's and is apparently now "reconsidering" his #2 choice. He does know that it is to be a joint decision between the three of us, and has said that no final decision will be made w/o talking to me.
post #19 of 56
Thread Starter 
My fingers are crossed for him and for you! When does he have to make the final decision?
post #20 of 56
May 1.
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