Father with four daughters.

How to Love Your Parents Well

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August 3, 2020 by

Dear Future Yellow Jackets,

It is Abby once again! I love that I get an opportunity to share with you from the experiences I have walked through and lessons I have learned. Since I gave you a lot of insight into my life in my last letter, I thought I would give you a few additional fun facts about myself.

  • One of my biggest fears is roller coasters.
  • I have been to four countries outside of the U.S.! 
  • Goodwill is honestly one of my favorite places to shop. 

Now that you know me even more, I wanted to take time to talk about something you may not have thought about yet: how to love your family, specifically your parents, well during your transition as a college student.

I know from personal experience that there were great highs and lows when it came to starting out on my own. At first, I was full of excitement and adrenaline about this new season of life. My whole senior year of high school I felt ready to go to college, and the time had finally arrived. My mom gave me a tearful goodbye hug, and my parents pulled out of the parking lot. There I sat in my dorm room, wondering what I was doing five hours away from home where I didn’t really know anyone. In reality, everyone will walk through a season of homesickness at some point in their college experiences. Whether immediately after your parents drive away, or six months down the road when life feels complicated and you long to go back to the simplicity of home. It’s in this place that gratitude can grow for our parents and families, and it’s an incredible opportunity to love and honor our parents effectively. 

Here are a few things I would be aware of as you seek to love your parents well during this transition. 

  • Be sensitive to the needs and emotions of your parents. This is obviously a big life change for you, but it is also a major transition for your family. Whether you’re the oldest, the youngest, or an only child, your parents are adjusting to life at home without you there. Seeking to understand their side of the situation will help you to be gracious to them. 
  • Give them a call every once in a while! Even if you don’t feel like you need them, a quick check-in can mean so much. While you’re walking to class, call your mom even just to say “I’m here, I’m alive, I’m eating all my meals, I’m making friends!” 
  • Ask them for help when you need it! And I promise, you’ll need it. My freshman year, I really struggled to find a church home. Every Sunday after visiting a new church, I would call my dad, who is a pastor. I asked him questions about theology and different denominations as I discerned what kind of church I needed to attend. 
  • Thank them. For specific things: for helping you move in, for driving you to countless sports practices, for helping you through the first 18 years of your life. This is a simple but impactful way to honor and love your parents. 

This season of life will change the dynamic of your relationship with your parents as you seek to honor them. But for me, it’s been a change for the better. 

I know that you will seek to do this well, and I can’t wait to grow alongside you when you become a Yellow Jacket this fall! We are so excited for you to come. See you all soon!

Abby Burr | SGA Vice President

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