How do helicopter moms let kids go (to college)?

It’s no secret, I’m a hoverer. Part of me wishes I was more like the mom who’s excited when school starts or can’t wait to be an empty nester, but I’m not. Despite that, there are two things have helped me send my kids off to college with nary a tear.

1.  “When your kids ask you a question that isn’t life or death, nicely ask them, ‘What do you think?’

We helicopter moms love our kids so much, it’s sickening (to our kids and most onlookers). The thought of them going to college literally pains us. Although my sensitive nature is innate and real, deep down I’ve realized part of me also wants to feel wise and needed. Another part of me also wants to shield my kids from pain. If I tell them how to do everything, it creates the (false) sense I can control that.

But our job isn’t to be Yoda, it’s to parent with the end in mind. Our children not only need to make mistakes to learn, they also need to become confident in their ability to make decisions.

Thanks, MaryBeth for teaching me that phrase.

2.  “Look for glimpses.”

When my daughter went from watching Finding Nemo to Friends, seemingly overnight, I doth protesteth. But the teen years probably aren’t the time to expect spiritual and moral perfection from our kids. It’s the time to ask God to provide glimpses that He’s still at work and in control.

Thanks, Nancy for that perspective.

How do helicopter moms “successfully” let go? By asking God and ourselves, “What does my son/daughter need today to help them tomorrow?” Often that’s meant pain, sacrifice, and tears for me (without them knowing), however, the best gift for Smothers like me in the end, is knowing my kids will be okay with or without me,

Thanks be to God.