3 Things to Remember When You Come Home for the Summer

By Amanda Cohen on May 27, 2019

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It’s that time of year… you’re packing up your dorm room or apartment or house, you’re hitting up all of your favorite drinking and eating spots, and you are saying goodbye to the college town that you’ve called home for nearly nine months. You’re leaving your nine-month-long home for the place that used to be your permanent home: your childhood home. After just finishing finals and scrambling to get ready to leave while saying all your goodbyes, you probably haven’t had much time to think about what this three-month-long hiatus from school means for your emotionally, physically, academically, or socially. As someone who graduated from college a year ago, permanently leaving the place I called home for four years, I have some tips on what you should know before leaving for home this summer. Read on so you are prepared!

Image via. https://pixabay.com/photos/farewell-say-goodbye-bye-road-3258939/

First and foremost, let’s talk about your friends. Even though there is a chance you won’t see some of your best friends all summer does not mean that you all won’t be ready to pick up right where you left off once you get back to school in August or September. However, you can’t expect things to be exactly the same unless both you and your friends put in the work to maintain your friendship.

Now, this isn’t like spreadsheet work, but make sure that you all check in on each other, ask how life outside of college is going, and be there for them via. text, FaceTime, phone call, social media, etc. It’s not going to be as great as it would be when you could be with each other in person, but it’s something. Some friendships can withstand months without communication, but, just like any relationship, most friendships need some sort of contact for things to remain the same. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t enjoy your time with your home friends, it just means that you have two different groups of people in your lives (home friends and college friends) and they both require you to put in some sort of effort.

Image via. https://pixabay.com/photos/drinks-alcohol-cocktails-alcoholic-2578446/

Next, just because you’re now a college student, regardless of your year/age, doesn’t mean you are too good for everything you loved about home before you went to college. Oftentimes, when people go back home, they think that they are too cool for the fun high school get-togethers that they all used to enjoy before they experienced house parties, bars, and mixers of all sorts. Home parties are never going to be the same as college parties regardless of where you live and regardless of where you went to school—it’s just going to be different.

When your friends host gatherings or you make plans, it’s great to catch up about college, but don’t only let your college experience dominate the conversation. Ask everyone about what they did in school, how they’re liking it, and ask them about just about anything else. If you oversell your college experience, your friends may think that you don’t want to hang out with them. It’s great to say that you’re loving college, but also remember that not all of your friends may be enjoying college as much as you are, so also try your best to be empathetic to their different situations.

Image via. https://pixabay.com/photos/conceptual-wooden-decorative-letters-1280533/

Lastly, your parents missed you; make an effort to spend some time with them. I’m not saying that your entire summer has to be dedicated to them, but try your best not to skip every single family dinner, go to family gatherings with extended family, spend the day with your mom or dad or both if they ask, make plans with some, and so on. You have at least three months to party with your high school friends and catch up with them, be there for the people who raised you and helped you through life.

Some of your parents may be your mom and dad, but this can apply to any sort of guardian, older family member, or guardian. They love you and you love them; you aren’t in your middle school angst phase anymore, so show it and tell them that you love them and show that you love them by spending time with them in whatever way you choose. This rule also applies to your siblings, whether they be younger or older. However, I guarantee if you have younger siblings that will want to hear all of your college stories, so don’t brush them off. Hang out with them, tell them about your life, and show them that you missed them.

Coming home from college is bittersweet, but please, if you want a great summer, remember the three pieces of advice that I gave above. Keep your college friends and home friends close, spend time with your family, and remember that college, regardless of how fun it is, is not your entire life. Have a great summer and congratulations on being done with finals! Oh, and don’t forget that you’ll be back in school before you know it!

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I am currently a junior at the University of Michigan.

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