COLLEGE: STAY AT HOME OR GO AWAY?

The choice of whether to stay at home with your parents or go live at a college some distance away may not be an easy one. If your budget only allows for one of the two then indeed it will be easy. If you can afford both choices then you might want to sit down and have an honest and grown-up chat with your parents about this. Here are some things you might want to keep in mind during this important conversation:

1. You are now a grown up. They will need to suddenly start treating you very differently from how they might have treated you the day of your high school graduation, and this may not come very easily to them, or to you! Likewise, you are going to have to rise to the occasion and show them that you deserve and have earned being treated as an equal. You will need to display clear and reliable signs of maturity, responsibility, reliability, independence, consideration for their interests, respect for their opinion and a self-started initiative when it comes to solving problems.
2. They are just a couple of adults living in their home. Your parents have probably worked very hard to have what they have and they are entitled to enjoy it whichever way they wish. So their home will need to be respected as you would like your own home to be respected. When one becomes an adult staying at the home of another adult one needs to strike a fine balance between carrying one’s own weight while helping with the communal weight and getting out of the way of the owners of the house. Ask yourself how you may contribute to the needs and expenses of the home you might all share.
3. Are you delaying the inevitable? You may be leaning towards staying out of apprehension for the unknown. If that is so then there is on point in delay the inevitable. Delaying it will just make the shock worse. If you are 18 and you may be hesitant to leave just think that most of the people you meet in college will also be 18 and will be facing the same issues as you.
4. Take life by the horns! Sometimes it’s better to dive in head first and soak up the experience in full! So ask yourself if perhaps you might be better off in the long-run by diving in instead of repetitively dipping the toe in. Remember that living and studying in college will make the experience that much more profound and eye-opening.

In the end, realize that whatever the decision you make is, it should feel natural and right. There is nothing wrong living at home while in college.

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