You need these 100 survival solutions with college kids if you’re unexpectedly cooped up and about to lose it. You’ll build memories and pass the time.
Parents of young adults who are navigating this pandemic fall into these three broad camps. Which describes you?
- Some have kids who could not or chose not to return home.
- Others have kids at home, and are loving the time together.
- Many have kids at home and are losing it.
Guess which group is largest?
If you fall into one of the first two groups, you will still love this list of 100 Family Activities With Young Adults. But if you, my dear friend, are in the growing third category, this list very well may save your sanity.
Trapped With College Kids?
Many of our college-age kids just had their lives uprooted. Their graduation was postponed or cancelled, they are miles away from their posse, and they can’t eat from a buffet anymore.
Much has been made of the psychological and emotion upheaval Gen. Z is undergoing during this pandemic. But, what about us?
most people complain about the ordinary until they no longer have it.The Atlantic
As happy as we are that our kids are safe, many of us have a simmering anger just under our smiling veneer. A vast number of parents are transitioning to work at home, or worse, not working at all. We are checking on older family members and navigating new tensions in our marriage.
On top of it, we thought we’d have a couple more months before they came back…
If you’re new to the Empty Nest, you may feel you just started getting the hang of having coffee with friends and setting your own schedule. Perhaps you were loving the freedom to streak down the hall or have a rendez vous with your husband. All that came to a screeching halt thanks to the fallout from Covid 19.
Survival Solutions With College Kids
My informal research yielded several behaviors that many parents are finding unacceptable in their new “roomies”.
- Weird sleep/wake routines
- Ignoring social distancing
- Expecting parents to be a concierge service
- Not taking online classes seriously
- Unhealthy eating habits
- Staying on phone/ignoring family
None of these behaviors is unusual for young adults, nor should we be surprised by them. But the stress and tension we are each facing as the spread of the virus continues can make even normal behaviors unbearable.
Dr. Phil talks to a teen who doesn’t think they need to stay in during Covid 19.
Check Your Expectations
As disappointing as it may be, our young adults haven’t become magically compassionate just because there’s a pandemic. Although my kids have been checking on their grandparents regularly, I’m lucky to get a text acknowledgement.
Need a pep talk? Get these 30 affirmations right now.
I realized the other day how angry I’d become at my kids’ lack of interest in keeping connected with my husband and I. After all, the YouTube families look so happy!
Moms and dads, while this is frustrating and upsetting, there is a reason teens behave this way.EmpoweringParents.com
Amazingly, as soon as I put my finger on my emotions, I was better able to manage them. Even though I’d love to feel closer to my kids each day, it may not happen as I’d pictured. Removing this unrealistic expectation helped me appreciate what they are doing.
Clarify Your Bliss
Once you’ve identified unrealistic expectations, it’s time to clarify exactly how things need to change in your four walls. If you are married or live with another adult, put your heads together.
Keep your list for survival solutions with college kids basic. Setting up a loose daily routine may help the most. Consider “chunking” time into morning, afternoon and evening and setting up activities or chores accordingly.
If your young adult sleeps until one in the afternoon, the morning chunk might be your alone time. Instead of insisting they get up with the birds, savor the quiet. Recharge, get work done, exercise or binge-watch the shows you alone enjoy.
Afternoon may be a good time for straightening the house, face timing relatives, and computer tasks. That leaves evening for a family activity, game, or time apart. Whatever works for you.
Get Their Buy-In
When they were little, our kids responded to chore charts and consequences. Now that they’re young adults, the tables have turned. In truth, we can’t make them do anything-and they know it.
Best Summer Checklist for College Success
But just because they have a mind of their own doesn’t mean we’re accommodating their dormitory lifestyle. Start by getting their buy in. Acknowledge frustrations, tell them how things need to change, and ask what they believe is a fair consequence for falling short.
Even if she expresses herself poorly or seems unreasonable, it is still important to be respectful and acknowledge her need for autonomy.rtor.org
This approach may be a total flop, but at least your kid will know you are trying to respect their autonomy instead of treating them like a child. Be careful not to let this deteriorate into a blame game or shouting match. If it helps, remember you are the one with the fully-developed frontal cortex…
After many confrontations, one of my friends ended up moving her daughter to an apartment in the same town. Although the family doesn’t see as much of each other, they’re all happier.
The Survival List
This list of 100 Family Activities With Young Adults will get you started. Keep it as your secret weapon or share it with your young adult. With 12 different categories like In The Kitchen, Spa, and Reflection, there’s something for every interest.
The list includes unusual games like Toast, One Word, and What’s In Your Phone. Just click on the links above for instructions.
Use these ideas however you choose to transform this time of confinement into a positive. Maybe you’ll rotate picking an activity each day or choose a theme for each day. You can even use many of these ideas with kids who are far away.
Get control of your day with this Weekly Schedule printable!
My thoughts and prayers are with you right now. We will make it through, hopefully with our sanity in tact! And, who knows, we may even learn some coping skills that will pull us a bit closer as families.
Comment and let me know which of the ideas you used and how it went at your house!
Great suggestions Shannon. I am so glad I am not alone! We all love each other but taking away college kids independence all of a sudden and trying to keep an almost 16 year old social distancing (what 16 year old and college kids don’t love hanging out with their parents all the time!) is a challenge for sure!
Thanks so much, Jennifer! I get it. As if this parenting season wasn’t difficult enough…