Home for the Summer
Going home for the summer after your first year or so of college can be experienced as anything from a welcomed change to see old friends or a dreaded transition. A lot can happen and change while you are away at college, and it can be hard for some students to know how to cope with that transition. Here are a few things to think about when exploring how to navigate this change.
Check-in with your family
Sometimes parents or other family members may not expect some of the changes that occurred during your time at school. Talk through what their expectations and your expectations are for the summer prior to returning home. This may help decrease the number of possible conflicts or misunderstandings that can occur.
- Ex. Your sibling may expect that you will be around most nights to hang out and chat, while you may be planning to catch up with old friends most nights.
- Ex. Parents may not be used to you staying out late during weeknights and may be unsure how to adjust to your new independence.
Check-in with yourself about your expectations of summer
You may find that you are not the only one that has changed while you are away since everyone at home has had to adapt to you not being around. It is not uncommon for relationships to feel slightly different or for some rooms in your home to be rearranged. This doesn’t mean that you don’t belong at home anymore, but this may be a time where you get to choose what you want from your relationships with your parents and friends from home.
Give some thought of how you want to use your time during summer
For some, you might be exhausted after the school year is over, and need to find some time to relax and rejuvenate. You might consider how hiking, meditation, or yoga might be a nice way to increase your relaxation over the summer. Others may feel that going from more structure to less structure can be hard. Finding a job, internship, or a volunteer opportunity can help you save some money, have something to add to your resume, and/or can help you meet people over the summer.
Here are a few links that might help you find some jobs/volunteer opportunities over the summer:
Give yourself permission to ask for extra support if needed
Because conflicts can naturally arise when you move back in temporarily with your family or things can just seem “different” when you go home, allow yourself to explore ways you can get extra support.
- If it is comfortable, share with your parents about how this adjustment has been hard for you.
- You may also have some friends around who may understand or might be having a hard time with this adjustment too. They may be relieved to have someone else bring up this issue.
- Most communities have counseling options if you would like to meet with a psychologist or professional counselor to get some extra support.
- Here is a website that can help you find therapists in your community:
Psychology Today- Find a Therapist