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The Empty Nesters
By Charlotte Marshall, September 3, 2010 02:40 PM
Check out this honest and completely relatable account of one woman's experience as a college student leaving her parents, and her own feelings that developed 37 years later after she dropped her youngest child off at college:
I spent months stewing in the sadness I would feel when I dropped my youngest child off at college. Then, when we rolled onto campus, and were welcomed by a crowd of vuvuzela-tooting kids in crazy costumes, I felt my mouth involuntarily assume the shape of a smile. After all, we were dropping our son off at a nice Northeastern liberal arts college -- not Afghanistan.
Colleges these days coddle boomer parents in a way that was unthinkable in the '70s when I went off to college. My husband and I received parent orientation schedules and maps at check-in, and were invited to a day's worth of events, including a barbecue and a big tent reception, before we were expected to say our goodbyes. There was even a post-goodbye session with members of the college counseling staff on "navigating the road ahead." At my college drop-off, my parents weren't offered so much as a cup of coffee.
Read the rest; it really is a bittersweet story.