One day you’re bringing your baby home from the hospital, and the next thing you know, they’re preparing to go off to college. Although it doesn’t happen that quickly, eighteen years go by faster than you think. Chances are you’re experiencing a variety of emotions as “college day” gets closer. However, as you focus on coping with this bittersweet moment, don’t forget to check in on your teen.

As you’re likely already aware, teenagers tend to hold back on what they’re feeling. Part of them feels as if you’ll never understand where they’re coming from, while the other part doesn’t want to burden you. Be that as it may, it’s not something you want to ignore. Transitioning to college is an exciting yet scary time for teenagers, and they need all the support they can get. How do you help your teen cope? Below are some suggestions.

Talk About It (Without Talking About It)

Going to your teen and simply asking them how they feel about moving to college likely won’t warrant any real answers. If you really want to know what’s going on with your child, you have to learn how to bring up the subject without getting too deep. Perhaps you could discuss shopping for dorm supplies (or something related to college) and see how they react. If they appear sad, switch the subject, or disengage from the conversation, there’s a chance that they’re struggling emotionally.

Start Prepping For New Responsibilities

You know that you’ll be by your child’s side every step of the way as they go to college and transition into adulthood, but you must prepare them for what’s ahead. Your teen will be taking on more responsibilities, and you want them to feel confident that they can manage. Now is the time to talk about credit, budgeting, financial management, finding a balance between their studies and social life, and more.

If you haven’t done so already, help them sign up for a bank account. Enable them to take the front seat when dealing with doctor’s appointments and health-related issues. Teach them life skills like cooking, household cleaning hacks, and doing laundry. Finally, sign up for self-defense classes so your teen can learn how to protect themselves.

Spend Quality Time Together

The moments you share will get both of you through the times when being away from each other gets challenging. Do what you can to spend quality time with your teen and create as many memories as possible. Plan dates where it’s just the two of you and engage in activities your teenager enjoys. Whether you’re watching movies in your pajamas, eating snacks, or shopping at the mall, it’s time you’ll be glad you spent with your child. Remind them that no matter how old they get, you will always be there and willing to do things together no matter how old they get.

Give Them Space (But Pay Attention)

Although your teen may be having a hard time transitioning to the next stage in their lives, you don’t want to smother them. Though you’re just trying to help, focusing on the topic too much can cause them to isolate further. Give your teen space and allow them to go through their emotions. However, ensure that you pay attention.

If you notice a change in appetite, sleep issues, social isolation, mood swings, or dramatic alterations in their appearance, step in to find out what’s going on. Similarly, if you believe your teen is coping with abusing drugs or alcohol, seek help from a Los Angeles addiction treatment center before things worsen.

It’s common to assume that you’re the only one struggling with your teen going off to college. However, this milestone is bittersweet for both of you. As you find healthy ways to cope with your emotions, don’t forget to assist your teenager. Although they may not say it out loud, they too are worried about transitioning to adulthood and adjusting to college life. Knowing that you care can make all the difference and help them step into the next phase with more confidence.