5 Lessons to Teach Your Child Before They Leave for College

5 Lessons to Teach Your Child Before They Leave for College

Adulting is hard work. But when you’ve been doing adult-type things for years, it’s easy to think of them as common sense. Doing laundry may be an intuitive process, but everyone needs a lesson so they don’t put the towels in with the delicates.

Laundry is one of many things you should teach your children before they leave for college. This list covers the basic lessons your child should learn before they leave your nest.

Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

1. Be prepared for emergencies

Your kids likely always relied on you in times of crisis. When they’re on their own, they won’t always have this luxury. Teach them to pack an emergency kit in their car and keep it well stocked. If they ever get hurt on-the-road, they’ll be glad you gave them this guidance.

You may also want to counsel your kids to keep some cash and emergency phone numbers on hand in case of emergency.

2. How to handle bullies

Unfortunately, your kids may still have to deal with bullies in college. For some kids, bullying gets better in college, but it gets worse for others. Teach your kids how to handle bullies by giving them the tools to recognize and report bullying in the classroom and online. If they feel threatened in any way, it’s crucial that they talk to the authorities. And let them know that they can still come to you.

3. How to handle their finances

Like it or not, your child may be able to get their own credit card in college. Prepare them for the financial responsibility by teaching them how to manage their money.

Teach your kids about the importance of maintaining a good credit score. They should understand that the decisions they make today can affect their lives for the next seven years or more.

If you have some time before your child leaves for college, consider setting up a joint bank account where you can help your child manage his or her own money.

4. The importance of eating healthy

When your kids are home, it’s easier to instill healthy habits. But cooking for your kids doesn’t always translate to healthy habits in college. When you’re on a budget and have limited access to a kitchen, it can be difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle. The stereotype of college students living on ramen noodles holds some truth. Still, it’s important to try to make healthy choices.

Talk about the importance of filling their plates with vegetables, and review some healthy options they can easily make on a budget.

5. How to maintain a good self-care routine

Parents typically keep the responsibility of scheduling doctor and dentist appointments until their kids leave for college. And then things tend to fall through the cracks. Teach your children the importance of regular checkups and preventative maintenance. This includes simple things like brushing their teeth and exercising to stay healthy. They may party it up at times, but they should be grounded in reality. We all get one body to care for while we’re alive. It’s important to take care of it.

When our kids leave for college, it’s always a little bittersweet. You’ll miss having them around, but you also want them to grow into responsible, self-sufficient adults. The good news is that it’s not completely out of your hands. Teach your kids some valuable life lessons before they leave, and they’ll remember them as they learn and grow on their own. And of course, you’ll always be there to help out when they need to get back on track.

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