Letter to those who are leaving for college: (and their parents)
Dear Young Adult,
You are about to embark on the most wonderful, scary, eye-opening year of your life. You have FINALLY gotten out of high school, you have chosen a college, you have your orientation papers and room mate and you are now packing (way too much) stuff to take into your new life of being a college student.
You’re excited/scared. You wish your parents would just leave you alone! After all, you are now an adult! You just want to hang out with your friends before you leave and don’t want to “look into the future” just yet.
Yes, you are about to take that step that takes you from home into adulthood. Please indulge me a moment - I want to give you some advise (I know, you have had ENOUGH advise - just chill and listen for two minutes).
1) You will take too much with you - don’t be afraid to send some things back home with mom and dad. You can survive without everything from your room.
2) You should spend time with your current friends right now, as you may never actually see them again. Sad - but true. Be sure to have Instagram, Facebook, text, photos, etc. of them with you at school. Like you don’t already have this done!
3) Mom and dad will NOT be with you daily now. No more ‘PAW’ (parents are watching). You can’t go to the kitchen and grab a snack - or guilt mom into doing something for you.
4) Mom and dad WILL be available to listen to you cry, share stories, hear your frustrations, and to cheer you on. Please let them in on what you are going through at school.
5) YOU WILL BE HOMESICK! and THIS IS NORMAL!
6) The first year of college is HARD. You will want to party (drink, drugs and sex will be present) (I know – ‘TMI’ (too much information)) and enjoy having no parent “spying” on you, no curfews, no one to tell you what you should and should not do, and you make all your own decisions.
7) Number 6 is the reason many many many students do not pass the first year of college and also the reason why some drop out of college after the first year.
8) Guess what? Being an adult comes with responsibility. Ugly word, I know. But, reality is, you are now responsible for yourself and all the decisions you make.
9) You will make mistakes. That isn’t the end of the world. Making mistakes is one way of growing stronger and smarter.
10) You, who have been a straight A student, may now get C’s. That’s ok. Just hang in there and keep working.
11) You may find you give into peer pressure because it just plain sucks to be left out. Remember your values (what your mama taught you).
Okay - Okay - enough lecturing. I’m beginning to sound like your mother. The reason for that is: We adults do have a brain and we have made (and will continue to make) mistakes - and we so desperately do not want you to make the same mistakes. We also want to protect you. After all, we have been protecting you for 18 years. We can’t stop overnight! We want you to be successful.
Young adult, this will be a time you will truly need to remember all the “God stuff” you have been taught through the years. Please take your Bible with you or, if you’re afraid someone will make fun of you having a Bible, put a Bible app on your phone. Read some of the following:
2 Sam. 23:10-13 for help
2 Sam. 2:1 for guidance
Matt. 6:9-13 Lord’s Prayer (you should know this by heart and USE it)
Josh. 7:6-9 for help and mercy
Judg. 13:8-15 for guidance
2 Cor. 12:8,9 for grace
1 King. 3:6-14 for wisdom
Ex. 15:13 for divine guidance
Luke 22:32 for strength
Ps. 18:3 for spiritual strength
Make time to pray and to read your Bible. It really will help you every day. And GO TO CHURCH. ‘IJS’ (I’m just saying)!
God is with you and understands what you are going through and most of all;
GOD LOVES YOU!
Never forget that.
Also never forget that your family is there for you and want to be a part of your experience - going out into the big wonderful world of adulthood. Your pastors are here for you, also. Feel free to call, text or Facebook us.
May God be with you and may this next school year be a positive exciting experience for you.
Pittsburgh Lutheran United Ministries (PLUM), 405 Kennedy Avenue, Duquesne, PA 15110 412-466-7773