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New Trend: Parents Move to College Towns So They Can Live With Their Kids

Posted by on Jan. 6, 2015 at 10:23 AM
  • 26 Replies

New Trend: Parents Move to College Towns So They Can Live With Their Kids

It's never easy for parents to wish their children farewell and drop them off at their college campus for the first time. So some parents simply choose to never do so. Instead, there is apparently a growing number of moms and dads who can't let go and are following their children to their college town, where they are renting or buying property -- and sometimes even living with their kids off-campus as they embark on their college careers. One mom and her daughter recently made headlines when they appeared on a Fox News segment to rave about how fantastic it is that they are freshman year roomies. And while their living arrangement might be ideal for them, for most parents, this is a recipe for disaster.

Kudos to the young lady who was interviewed and said she was pleased to be living with mom at age 19 -- I don't know many teens who would say the same. College is the time in a young person's life when they are finally able to take all of the lessons they've learned in their 18 years at home with mom and dad and apply them to the real world -- or the semi-real world, I should say, since real life doesn't generally include 24/7 opportunities to party at someone else's expense.

Parents who follow their children to college are fooling themselves if they think they are doing it for their kid's benefit -- the reality couldn't be less true. It seems what most are doing instead is sacrificing their child's development in order to satisfy some need they have to continue parenting because, maybe, they feel they need more time and didn't accomplish all they had hoped.

I can understand that desire to keep nurturing and protecting our young, but at some point, we have to throw our hands up and say, I've done a lot; it's up to you now.

College is that time.

My parents offered me the choice to move away for college, but I had no desire to leave New York City, and given how close my family lived to my university, it didn't make sense for them to pay for a dorm. As much as they promised me my independence, no child is independent when there is always a hot meal waiting for them, should they decide they don't feel like cooking that night.

My parents are very loving and slightly helicopter in their parenting approach -- not that there was a term for it then -- and not the types who would let me be uncomfortable for even a second for the sake of learning a lesson.

I spent my junior year studying abroad in London. It was my first real time away from home -- and I flunked at life in every way imaginable. I ate yogurt for every meal, stayed out until all hours, failed to take advantage of the many positive, enlightening academic experiences that were at my fingertips, squandered a whole ton of money on crap, and (deservedly) wound up sick with walking pneumonia, which lingered for about two months. 

Granted, there are kids out there who are far more mature than I was -- who won't try and burn the house down when they're finally alone, just because they can.

Regardless, the message we're sending to our children when we don't let them go is that we don't believe they are capable of handling the big, scary world on their own. It takes quite a few years for sheltered kids to realize that they are just as strong as everyone else and that they actually won't be eaten alive the minute the umbilical cord is cut. As parents, the best thing we can do is give them the opportunity to fail, succeed, and grill a cheese sandwich all by their lonesome.

Would you move to your child's college town so you could be closer to him or her?

by on Jan. 6, 2015 at 10:23 AM
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Replies (1-10):
atlmom2
by Susie on Jan. 6, 2015 at 10:47 AM

That is totally insane.  Some parents today just can't let go.  No wonder some kids are at home till they are 30 and 40.  Parents want it that way.  They are not doing their kids any favors.  My dd is 7 hours away.  She loves it.  We text or talk about a couple times a month.  That is the way college should be. 

Sydel
by Group Admin on Jan. 6, 2015 at 11:35 AM
1 mom liked this

I know a mom who was actually telling me that I should MOVE with my dd when she goes to college. Her dd is going into the Air Force to be an air traffic controller. She will have to do 3 years of training. The mom said once her dd is set up she plans on moving. The mom is a nurse and said she has a skill that allows her to move.

Her dd is her youngest. She did not do this with her other children. They don't live in the state. I'm assuming they tried to run from her. Had this lady talked to me PRIOR to my helicopter recovery I may have given it serious consideration. I am so glad that I NOW know how crazy that would be.

atlmom2
by Susie on Jan. 6, 2015 at 11:44 AM
1 mom liked this

I can see moving by kids once you retire and they have grandkids.  We won't be doing that because we will live between Indiana and Florida.  Our one dd will be moving around with the Marines.  Our oldest I have a feeling may end up here in Wisconsin forever, ugh.  I have a friend who's dh is going to retire in a year or so.  Their 3 kids are in 3 different states.  They are thinking of moving to Texas where their most stable child lives.  The others seem to move so that wouldn't be good to follow them around. 

Msgme
by Gold Member on Jan. 6, 2015 at 12:10 PM

I can sorta understand it.  On one hand having the parents move to where the child wants to attend school will provide the child the ability to go to the school they want while still living at home there for saving some money. 

I am excited for my older teens to start that stage of thier life but I'm equally dreading the day my dd moves out. My son thankfully wants to stay close to home for school and get an apartment so i'm not dreading it as much.


Maime13
by Silver Member on Jan. 6, 2015 at 12:11 PM
1 mom liked this

What a way to stunt a child's transition into adulthood! No, I wouldn't consider it though I have at least once kid who would probably honestly love it if we did.

College is a time to negotiate the tricky business of having too much time on your hands and very few eyes upon you. It's a safe place to make mistakes and to live your life without your parents knowing every little thing that happens.

diaperstodating
by Queen25Princes on Jan. 6, 2015 at 12:15 PM
I've heard of this. My coworkers best friend is an only child, when he (my co-workers best friend) went to college his parents moved to be closer to him. They sold the house, and packed everything they had to be closer to him.
atlmom2
by Susie on Jan. 6, 2015 at 12:17 PM

Even my niece and nephew live 30 minutes away on campus and don't live at home.  Just because they are close doesn't mean they don't get to live away from parents and enjoy campus life.  They don't even come home much. 

Quoting Msgme:

I can sorta understand it.  On one hand having the parents move to where the child wants to attend school will provide the child the ability to go to the school they want while still living at home there for saving some money. 

I am excited for my older teens to start that stage of thier life but I'm equally dreading the day my dd moves out. My son thankfully wants to stay close to home for school and get an apartment so i'm not dreading it as much.



diaperstodating
by Queen25Princes on Jan. 6, 2015 at 12:20 PM
I won't be moving to be closer to my boys when they go to college. I would move to be closer to my grandchildren.
Msgme
by Gold Member on Jan. 6, 2015 at 12:35 PM

But there is nothing wrong with students who choose to stay at home and go to school.  It really depends on the student.  My dd would be mortified if I moved to where ever she ends up going. My son would not mind at all. He originally wanted to stay at home while he went to school but i've been encouraging him to think about an apt or campus life.  The independance will be good for him and he's starting to get excited at the prospect.

Quoting atlmom2:

Even my niece and nephew live 30 minutes away on campus and don't live at home.  Just because they are close doesn't mean they don't get to live away from parents and enjoy campus life.  They don't even come home much. 

Quoting Msgme:

I can sorta understand it.  On one hand having the parents move to where the child wants to attend school will provide the child the ability to go to the school they want while still living at home there for saving some money. 

I am excited for my older teens to start that stage of thier life but I'm equally dreading the day my dd moves out. My son thankfully wants to stay close to home for school and get an apartment so i'm not dreading it as much.




atlmom2
by Susie on Jan. 6, 2015 at 12:39 PM

My dd lived at home because she just went to massage therapy school.  Also some stay home 2 years at community college, then go away the final 2 years.  I agree on saving money.  I don't agree living at home because Mom and Dad won't let you move away.  That is too controlling. 

Quoting Msgme:

But there is nothing wrong with students who choose to stay at home and go to school.  It really depends on the student.  My dd would be mortified if I moved to where ever she ends up going. My son would not mind at all. He originally wanted to stay at home while he went to school but i've been encouraging him to think about an apt or campus life.  The independance will be good for him and he's starting to get excited at the prospect.

Quoting atlmom2:

Even my niece and nephew live 30 minutes away on campus and don't live at home.  Just because they are close doesn't mean they don't get to live away from parents and enjoy campus life.  They don't even come home much. 

Quoting Msgme:

I can sorta understand it.  On one hand having the parents move to where the child wants to attend school will provide the child the ability to go to the school they want while still living at home there for saving some money. 

I am excited for my older teens to start that stage of thier life but I'm equally dreading the day my dd moves out. My son thankfully wants to stay close to home for school and get an apartment so i'm not dreading it as much.





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