If you've celebrated your child achieving a university exemption in their matric exams, things are about to get real.
School-leavers are gearing up to make the move to an independent life at university and this can be hard going for parents, especially if their kids will be studying out of town.
But ultimately our role as parents is to let our children go, says parenting expert Nikki Bush. And this is difficult because we can underestimate our desire to be needed, especially in the case of mothers.
We need to be letting our children go a little like letting out the strings of a kite, little by little by little.— Nikki Bush, Parenting expert
But what if they don't cope with the everyday implications of sudden independence, many parents will wail.
Bush suggests creating an agreement with your pre-university child which covers the following:
- Your wishes for them while they are studying away from home
- Your responsibilities and commitment
- Their responsibilities and commitment
- What you will pay for
- What they will have to pay for out of their allowance that you give them
- What extras they may need to fund that may require creating some form of income generated by themselves
- What will happen if they lose a cellphone or it is stolen
- What to do in the event of a car accident (whether they are a driver or a passenger)
Listen to the conversation on Weekend Breakfast with Refiloe Mpakanyane: