How to keep parents who have zero chill happy
University is a transitional time in a young adult’s life, and it can be difficult to explore what kind of “adult” you want to be and ensure your parents are on the right track at the same time. While we’re not exactly still in our teenage angst phase, sometimes we may want to resist our parents because they seem “so obsessed with us.”
You deserve some space, but ultimately parents nag at you because they care that you’re going to be okay once you really get pushed out of the nest at the end of university graduation—when you’re not expected to eat KD every day, and actually have your life together. But, if you have parents that absolutely won’t leave you alone, here are some tips to keep them off your back and keep you all happy.
1. Set a reminder in your phone to make a call.
We’re in university and it may be the busiest time of our lives. Between hitting the books, working to pay off student loans, and hanging out with friends, it can be easy to forget that your parents need attention too.
I like to set a reminder in my phone to call my parents every two weeks (at least), to update them on what’s been happening in my life. This might seem like another thing to add to the endless to-do list, but phone calls don’t have to be all afternoon. Even a 15-minute checkup will keep the parental nagging at bay and keep the communication on a schedule that works for you (to avoid a poorly timed phone call from your mom during a first date).
2. Pull your weight, bro.
Not all of us live away from home. If you’re still shacked up with your parents mid-university, it’s okay, don’t be ashamed (you’re saving way more money than most of us anyways)! It’s nice of them to let you stay at home while you bust your butt at school, but make sure you return the favour.
Your parents are more likely to be down your throat if you ignore them at home and don’t help out around the house. Picking up your dishes and helping with the yard work (without being asked) every once in awhile shows your parents that you have initiative and that you really appreciate what they do for you. And, they’re probably less likely to ask you why you didn’t come home until 4 am last night if you’re doing something nice for them around the house (this part isn’t guaranteed).
If you don’t live at home, you can still pull your weight in other ways. You can send them letters or little gifts you know they need, and for the love of God don’t forget their birthday.
3. Make plans you both like.
Some people see their parents all the time, some only see them when they absolutely have to, but it doesn’t have to be a grueling experience. Skip hung-over Sunday brunch and make plans with them that you both can enjoy.
If you’re really into a band that’s playing, want to go to a book signing, or are super into a sport, invite them out with you. It might feel weird to have your parents cramp your style; however, they’ll really appreciate you showing them what you’re interested in. And don’t worry, they don’t have to tag along all the time.
If you don’t get to see your parents often and are feeling really ambitious, skip the hometown visit and plan a trip that gets you all out of town—a vacation to Mexico, a trip to a place you used to visit as a kid, it can be anything. This will always give you something to talk about when you phone them and will build your relationship by working towards a goal together.
Just remember that your parents care, even if it feels like they’re trying to still control your life from afar. It’s their job to have zero chill about us because they really love us. Our relationships with our parents are special so make sure you cherish them—but parents, please stop asking us when you’re going to be a grandparent already.