Finally the day has come…the end of the first semester! Congrats you made it through the first of many semesters. Now what… well now it is time to go home. The only problem is you are not the same person you were when your parents dropped you off at the beginning of the semester. For the last few months you have been encouraged to think for yourself, try new things, and challenge the way you think. Arriving home 3 months or so later these ideals may not be equally embraced. Families are not expecting to meet a new version of you. A smarter you yes, but not a new you.
When you go home, be mindful that your family will only remember how you use to be. It may take some time for them to adjust to the new you. Here are some things that you should consider when going home. Try to consider ways you can alleviate your stay at home for a few weeks.
- Your Parents House Has Rules: at school you have rules too, but for the most part you do what you want to do. If you do not want to clean, you don’t clean. If you do not want to come home, you don’t come home. If you do not want to go to class, you don’t go to class. When you go home you have to change your new mindset and respect what your parent’s request. Consider these areas:
- Curfew- Do you have a curfew? Does it matter what time you come home? Does it matter if you come home?
- Chores- How will you be expected to contribute to the house?
- Expectations- How will your parents view your time at home? As a vacation, as more help, as bonding time, etc. Finding out what your parents expect will reduce conflict and feelings being hurt.
- Your Friends Missed you too: you coming home is exciting for your friends too. They want to catch up with you hear crazy stories from the semester. Sometimes you will have new friends mingle with old friends. Sometimes the new you will not be accepted by the old circle of friends. Be prepared for this and ready to accept that sometimes people just grow apart. Make sure you do not let your friends monopolize all of your time at home.
- Siblings need love too: Do not forget about your siblings (and pets). You will want to send time with them as well. They will want to know how life at college has been and discover what waits for them in the future. Talk to them about coming to visit and the fun activities you will have planned.
- Ditching Bad Habits: Be sure to leave your bad habits at school. As we mentioned, you going home a new person may not be received with open arms especially if you have picked up new habits. Your family may not be excited if you started smoking, if you use [more] foul language, or if are more apathetic. Prepare yourself and family by letting them know you have changed and the ways you have changed. See if those changes will be accepted at home or if they should be left at school.
Going home after semester one can be quite stressful, but it can also be fun. Using the above information as a guide can help your short time at home go smoothly. Just think in a few weeks you will be back at school. Enjoy your Winter BreakJ