Does “Spring Break” conjure up visions of “Gidget Goes Hawaiian” or “Girls Gone Wild”? Whatever your vision or memory – this may be the first Spring Break for many of you. Our kids have worked long and hard this year and are looking forward to some fun in the sun!!!!! If you are lucky enough to have your kids come home, then I am happy for you. Some TLC and mom’s pancakes will be a great time for all. But if your kids are going to parts unknown, the beach, Cancun or somewhere in a large group I am sure you are worried.
We have confidence in our own kids, but we still worry about peer pressure and the possibility others around preying on college students. It doesn’t matter if you have a son or a daughter – you are going to worry. We want to “let go” and trust that they will make good choices. They have managed to make it almost to the end of the school year. So far so good. Now, to get through Spring Break. If they are going to another student’s house at the beach or out of town there is nothing wrong with contacting their parents. Don’t let them convince you that “they are too old for that.” Exchange a phone call, emails, something to make contact. And speaking of contact… we rely on our child’s cell phone almost entirely when they are away. Cell phone batteries die, and go into areas where there is no service. Make sure you have the cell number of a few of the friends they are going to be with. If you can’t reach your own child maybe you can reach their friend and vice versa. Exactly where are they staying? What hotel, what room number? “A house on the beach” is not good enough. What is the address? Is there a land line there, and if so, what is the number? Also, make sure they have their medical insurance card with them. Accidents do happen.
These are little things that are so easily forgotten when students are going on Spring Break. For interim they were given a checklist and were much more organized. For spring break they think they can get by with a swim suit, a pair of shorts, and a t-shirt. A bad sunburn the first day can ruin their entire vacation. Drinking – yes, they are underage but don’t be naive – they will drink. Talk to them about the reality of making sure they have a designated driver and someone to watch their back. You may not condone what they are doing, but be aware.
We prepare them the best we can and then send them out to find their path. Hopefully they will have safe fun along that route and bring back great pictures and memories from Spring Break 2012!!!!!!
If you’re looking for more advice about Spring Break, here is a link to an article called “A Parents Guide to Spring Break” that has some great suggestions about how to talk to your students and what you should talk to them about. Read “A Parents Guide to Spring Break” here.