This is it! It’s finally time to cut the umbilical cord and spread your own wings. Learning how to become more and more independent and less dependent on your parents can be a very difficult and awkward time in life. But it doesn’t have to be painful or stressful. It can be a very rewarding experience and can even lead both you and your parents into a better relationship with one another.
Here are some great tips that can help you ease into the process of becoming more independent.
Remember Your Roots
Try to understand how hard it is for your parents to let you go. You’ve been under their care for all your life and they love you more than anything in the world. So be as sensitive as you can while spreading your wings and flying on your own.
Independence is a lot of fun and the first taste of it will be one of your greatest memories, but don’t forget who got you to this point: mom and dad. Keep them in the picture as much as possible. Call and/or write on a regular basis. If once a week works for everyone, do that. If once every two weeks is better for a phone date, then do that. Figure out what works best with your schedule and your parent’s needs.
If you’re the first child to fly the coop, they’re going to want to stay in touch a lot! If you are the youngest of the bunch, your parents are more likely to give you more slack. Just feel your way through the process and try to be sensitive to what your parents need. Be patient with them; they will gradually get used to the idea of their baby becoming independent.
You Don’t Need Permission
Practice telling your parents what your plans are, rather than asking for permission.
For example, if you are going to spend the weekend at a friends house, it’s a good idea to let your parents know your plans and where you will be. Do it with a kind and respectful attitude, but don’t feel like you have to ask for permission.
You are becoming an adult and are learning how to make your own decisions. If you parents think something is a bad idea, they will tell you.
You Do Need Advice
Ask for your parents’ advice. If something has come up that you aren’t sure how to handle, your parents are a great source of advice. Plus, they will be totally honored that you considered their input. This will not only enhance your relationship, but will help build your parents’ trust in you as an adult rather than a child who is still dependent upon them.
One of the characteristics of a responsible adult is that he or she is willing to weigh other people’s advice before making decisions. A great way to show your parents that you are becoming responsible is to ask for their advice, and follow that advice as much as possible!
Don’t be a stranger to your home town. Go home once in a while, but not too often. If you go home every weekend, your social life on campus will suffer. But if you never go home, your relationship with your parents will suffer.
Surprise your mom for Mother’s Day or plan to bring some friends home for Thanksgiving. Your parents will know that you still want to make them an important part of your life, but they will also get used to the idea of you living on your own.
Keep Your Door Open
- Invite your parents to come visit your campus and have lunch with you.
- Introduce them to your professors and friends.
- Show them around campus and take them to your favorite places.
This will put their minds at ease a little, as they will be able to put faces with names and will be familiar with all of the things you talk about on the phone. The most important thing to do is to let them know that they are still a vital part of your life, but that you are becoming a responsible adult capable of taking care of herself.
You just might find out that you grow closer than ever with your parents if you follow these simple tips.