DS/DD off to Uni? - Empty nest support thread

(1000 Posts)
rustybear Thu 31-Aug-06 20:09:19

DS is off to Warwick in October - anyone else feeling old? Or are there any old hands with advice ?

mumof3teens Thu 31-Aug-06 21:35:54

A friend lent me a book - "What every parent should know before their child goes to university". I think it was by Jane Bidder? I found it very useful with lots of practical tips. Re contact - we agreed on 1 email (Fridays) and a phone call (mondays) as a minimum, which seems to have worked well throughout the year. It was quite hard at first not to ring to check he was OK, but we let him settle in first.

PretendFriend Thu 31-Aug-06 21:40:01

How far is Warwick from you, rb? Our first chick went to Leeds, which is about 1-1¼ hours drive from here which is reassuringly near but not too close!

It was 5 years ago and I can't remember what we did about contact, but IIRC there was some every week although not by appointment; also she would text her sister more regularly than us so at least we knew she was OK!

rustybear Thu 31-Aug-06 22:10:00

About 1.5 hours I think. I suspect I'll get to hear more from DS via DD than directly - but at least if I'm on MSN I'll see when he's online & therefore not dead in a ditch somewhere - even if I don't actually talk to him!

mumof3teens Fri 01-Sep-06 10:09:35

I know it may seem trite but I think it is at this stage that you really realise that your DS & DD aren't with you forever - end of an era - but also very exciting for them (& you). It is great to hear how they are getting on. DS sent us a copy of his first 6 week timetable, which helped. I have also found that the three of them are much better friends with that bit of distance between them...

rustybear Fri 01-Sep-06 10:46:45

Yes I remember I suddenly started getting on a lot better with my sister (18 months older & we fought like cat & dog for most of our chilhood!)after she went off to Uni.
I'm now wondering when we'll get the letter confirming the loans - I think some of Ds's friends have it already, but we're a different authority from many of them & we did put it in pretty much at the last minute, as it took ages to get some financial details.

tallulah Fri 01-Sep-06 11:07:25

DS1 is off to Strathclyde in a couple of weeks. As we are in Kent he couldn't have gone much further if he'd tried

He is our second to go, and it doesn't feel quite so bad as when DD went 2 years ago. I think it got to me more when we were doing the visiting rounds and I had a sudden panic of "I don't want him to go". It'll certainly be odd when he's gone, but we are waiting to see if the food/ fuel bills go down!

Judy1234 Fri 01-Sep-06 21:12:24

It's not so bad here - 3 at university, but one living at home and 2 much smaller ones with another 10 years at home so doesn't feel anything like an empty nest and sometimes I wish they didn't spend 50% of the year at home.

Flutterbyzz Sat 02-Sep-06 08:27:27

My eldest daughter is off to uni in two weeks. I'm obviously really proud of her and want her to go off and be independant, have fun etc BUT I dont want her to go, I'll really miss her. She'll only be an hours drive away and we've organised to chat on MSN, she'll send me texts and phone etc but I feel as if my little girl is leaving and when I see her again she'll be different and my little girl will be gone

Frizbe Sat 02-Sep-06 08:34:22

On the one hand you have my sympathies (on the other hand you can have one of my little ones come and stay if you like ) it must be soo hard seeing them go off into their new lives, but look on the brightside and enjoy it whilst you can, you'll be able to go and stay with them now, visit lots of nice new exciting places for free as they move around for the next 10 years or so, and it also means that grandkids could be in the offing if they meet a 'nice young man' so bar you having to fork out for the expensive wedding after uni, you'll soon have a house full of little cherubs again, only this time ones you can give back
On the downside, they may well ring you for cash, say 'NO' or if you do say yes, do not make it a habit, or else when they finish they'll be back home with a vengance (my auntie had to physically downsize her house to get rid of her youngest son, who was 32 and not leaving....)

Lilymaid Sat 02-Sep-06 18:43:33

DS1 going into 2nd year at Nottingham (DS2 doing GCSEs next year so he will be leaving 3 years down the line). I did miss DS1 a little, but remembered how I felt when I went to university and wanted to cut free from my family a little. So we didn't contact him more than once a week by phone and only e-mailed when we had something specific to deal with (usually money).
However, when DS2 goes, I expect I'll feel very much the empty-nester even though I know that they must take their steps to independence some time.

mumof3teens Sat 02-Sep-06 18:58:21

LilyMaid - DS1 and DS2 must be in the same school yr as yours, so we will also be going through "losing" DS2 in 3 years. However we have DS3, who is just going into yr9, so we have 5 years before we have a totally "empty nest" (although DS1 may be back home by then!) I am not really looking forward to DS3 leaving, but I'm sure lots of new challenges/adventures will come along.

redsky Sun 03-Sep-06 02:24:00

Ds originally wanted to go to university in Melbourne Australia (we have family there) but I vetoed that as too far. Next choice was St Andrews!!! (Not quite as far as Aus but not very practical from Surrey)
I'm thrilled he's off to Nottingham soon - only 4 hours away!

Judy1234 Sun 03-Sep-06 15:10:55

My second one is at Nottingham too. She's really enjoying it. When her older sister left for university it wasn't such a huge wrench nor the next one and in September the third one partly because I work full time and the girls were very independent and often out on their own. Hopefully when my 7 year olds leave for university in 11 years I might be a grandmother.

gillymum Tue 05-Sep-06 10:59:43

Any advice about getting through the trip to leave DS at uni without making an eejit of myself and spoiling his street cred in front of new friends?

He's off to gb and we live in ni, so no jumping in the car if he's in diffs. I'll miss him so much I just cry every time i think about it.

I know all the stuff about how much he'll enjoy it as i just graduated myself a few years ago as a v mature student - but the emotions overwhelm me - which is probably partly due to hormones. Would rescue remedy help??

mumof3teens Tue 05-Sep-06 19:24:00

Gillymum - The time I felt most tearful last year was when we had helped DS1 unpack and were driving off. He looked so small and vulnerable (he isn't really - he's over 6ft!) I think you should try to arrange to keep busy and give yourself a treat just after he has gone - the tearful feeling didn't last long, although I still don't look forward to him going back after hols etc. I think it helps to talk to someone in the same boat (friends or MN).
I would ask him to email or ring you 2 or 3 days after he starts - it will give him enough time to have made a few friends/settled in a little.

Btw the Sunday Times is doing a Uni survival guide next week (running for 3 weeks I think)

Lilymaid Wed 06-Sep-06 15:16:44

First year students are generally reasonably well looked after in halls of residence. 2nd years move into grotty student houses in dubious areas - then you start worrying!

gillymum Wed 06-Sep-06 21:00:43

Thanks for the advice. I'm not really worried about him as such as I know that there's a v good support network where he's going.

I think it's just the moment of parting. It's been a bad year for us with illnesses etc. and this is the last straw. Also, everyone keeps saying 'Oh - you're going to miss him so much!' I know I will!!! Please don't mention it!! I think I'll get a sign printed and hang it round my neck.

Will get the Times and will let you know how it goes.

Many thanks

karen8 Thu 07-Sep-06 09:17:48

I can really sympathise here. I am just looking at Uni's with my 17 year old DS and it is making me really sad. Of course I am happy for him and know that this is the next step etc etc, but I also feel really tearful every time I think of him leaving home and know I will miss him like mad. I feel like my home will be a sadder place without him, which it undoubtedly will.

I have a 6 month old DS too, so it's not like I'll have an empty nest, but somehow that isn't helping at the moment. I guess it's just something I'll have to get through but it's goodd to read other people's thoughts and experiences on here.

gillymum Thu 07-Sep-06 11:31:52

Thanks Karen8. It's great to know that others feel the same. I feel exactly like you. DS is calm and laid back with good soh - I can have a relaxed conversation with him without all the repeating and explaining I have to do with DH!

I've been looking at all the activities that the student assoc at his uni have lined up for fresher's week and I'm really cheered to see that they'll be partying every night! I'm also looking at cheap flights for the Christmas break so that gives me a timeframe.

It'll be OK once he's gone - it's just the parting

mumeeee Sat 09-Sep-06 15:13:37

Hi everyone.
My eldest DD is 19 and starting her second year at uni at the end of September.
She really enjoyed uni and made a lot of friends in her halls. Tell your Ds to prop his door open when he first moves into halls, that way he won't cut himself off from others. Alsomake the most of the freshers week and sighn up for any activities he is interested in. This will help him settle into uni life and make more friends. I did fel a bit said when she went but soon got used to it. It helped that she was only a short way a away. She went to Cardiff Uni and that is where we live. It was her choice to go into halls and I think it was good for, she has matured a lot in the last year.
She is now sharing a private house with 4 friends from Uni, she moved in last weekend as they had to start paying full rent from the 1st September. I found it strange her moving out again and was a bit tearful last weekend. Because as Lillymaid said they are looked after in halls and there is always someone on site if anything goes wrong. She now has to sort everything out herself ,although the landlord is only a couple of streets a way from them.
Anyway she is having a great time. Already spending money on her roomand her student loan has not even gone in yet! She bought an arial for her TV which she needed and a freeview box that she just wanted! She has also biught some curtains as she doesn't like the blinds that are already provided. Oh well Sshe is doing some extra hours at work so she still has some money in the bank.

Lilymaid Sun 10-Sep-06 15:51:31

Recommendation for first day - they will be worried about making new friends. As Mumeeee said, tell DS to keep his door open as he unpacks and to say hello to anyone passing. I provided DS with a chocolate cake and DH gave him a bottle of Vodka (perhaps he shouldn't have done but ...). Both were consumed by him with his new friends on the corridor on the first night and friendships developed from there!

mumof3teens Sat 16-Sep-06 18:52:08

Feel v sad - just back from dropping DS1 back at Uni. He is in a house this year (chosen by him and his 6 friends last Jan) and it looks awful - dirty carpets, mould on the walls. broken tiles etc etc. This is what makes me sad. I couldn't believe my eyes (or nose). Wanted to give it a good clean, but DH said leave it. DS1 seemed surprised at my reaction.

Lilymaid Sun 17-Sep-06 16:31:04

I dropped off my DS at his student slum earlier this week. Not too mouldy, but smelt rather musty. As he too is sharing with 6 other boys, I can't imagine that much cleaning will take place. Still it had a microwave, freezer and central heating - which is more than I had in my student house.

WhereDidTheYearsGo Tue 19-Sep-06 11:06:20

Hi. I dropped my dd off on Friday. I am happy for her and know she will be fine, but even today suddenly found myself bursting into tears. I'm not a bad mum, but can't help regretting every time I was "too busy" for her and wishing I had made the most of every moment. I have 2 younger children so it's not really an empty nest, but this has hit me harder than I imagined.

ellceeell Tue 19-Sep-06 11:30:00

DS goes back for his 2nd year on Friday. He was in halls last year but is sharing a house with 4 others this year. They have booked a weekly cleaner to clean the shared areas - living room, bathrooms and kitchen (but she doesn't wash up). So, he just has to keep his own room sorted - although having seen his attempts at home I think that will be interesting.
MSN is great for keeping in touch. We got some cheap webcams which really helped dd2 age 4 - she missed him terribly but enjoyed having him talk and wave to her most weeks.

phillja Tue 19-Sep-06 12:13:09

Hi, just dropped my youngest off on Saturday. Surprised by the lack of online chat on this subject, was thinking about starting my own!! (If only I knew how!!) Grateful to have found this site. Feeling pretty sad and tearful!

ellceeell Tue 19-Sep-06 13:13:43

It's a shock isn't it? I remember last year knowing logically that ds was going and coping rather well - and then once he'd gone it hit me emotionally and I really felt it was the end of an important stage in our lives.

mumof3teens Tue 19-Sep-06 18:31:11

I know how you all feel. Even though DS1 is now a second year, it doesn't seem to be any easier him going back (and I have DS2 & DS3 still at home). I think it really hits home that they are only with you for a short time when they go to Uni. It seems slightly illogical me feeling this way, as he absolutely loves his course and has made some great mates. Guess I just miss him.

WhereDidTheYearsGo Tue 19-Sep-06 19:30:27

So glad I found this site - nice to know Im not odd for feeling tearful! ellceeell I know exactly what you mean about knowing logically it's the right thing, and perfectly normal for them to fly the nest - but still finding it hard. That's how i feel.

karen8 Wed 20-Sep-06 10:36:20

I just know I will be the same next year when DS1 goes off to Uni. I feel sad already at the thought even though I am pleased for him, as many of you say, logically.

Empathise so much with those of you feeling sad and tearful at the moment. I hope it gets better for you soon.

gillymum Wed 20-Sep-06 19:33:18

Hi Everyone

Just to let you know that we took DS to Scotland just over a week ago and managed rather well. We sailed over from NI on the Fri in glorious weather, which helped. Halls were better than the ones we saw on open day but we were first there.

On Sat we went to family welcome session and came out expecting DS to be going in to his own session. No sign. We found him attached to two flat mates, totally laid back and ready to wave goodbye.

Sat night we went to a restaurant and I got tearful looking at the empty chair - now only 3 of us - but got over it OK.

Sun - called in before leaving and took DS shopping - he got 2 bed at 3.30 am - always a good sign.

This is week 2 and he's fine - has used laundry and was being cooked for by a GIRL Has teamed up with 4 others from his flat and is joining in everything.

To all of you - it'll be fine - it is an emotional shock - even DH was tearful in privacy of own home - but it wears off.

I just think - some mums are facing life without their sons/daughters due to illness, accident and even murder, so we should be glad that ours are well, smart and safe.

Group hug to you all.

Lilymaid Wed 20-Sep-06 19:37:58

It is sad to leave them but it is good to see them fitting in and moving on to the next stage in their lives. I remember university as some of the best days of my life (a million times better than school) and I hope my DS and other students can enjoy the experience as much as I did.

phillja Thu 21-Sep-06 08:33:15

If it's your last who has gone off, what is everyone doing to fill the space? Does everyone have jobs, or has anyone, like me, been a stay at home mum? Glad your trip went well Lilymaid.

Lilymaid Thu 21-Sep-06 14:09:53

I didn't have the epic trip - it was Gillymum! I merely have to take DS 100 miles - takes 2 hours each way.
I work almost full time now but have worked for varying hours (not at all when DS2 was small) since DS1 was born.

mumof3teens Thu 21-Sep-06 15:51:12

I'm the same as Lilymaid - work almost full time lately, but varying days (freelance). Must be particularly strange for you phillja as a sahm, I suppose it's a time to think about all of the things you have wanted to do but couldn't due to family commitments? Just had DS1 on the phone to give me the feedback he has just received from his SSC - v happy. Also told me about the Medics pyjama pub crawl through MCR tonight (15 pubs I think) which makes me much less happy
It's so good to hear all of their news. He had the landlords managing agent round yesterday who was "appalled" by the condition of the student house (slum) and promised to get something done- not holding my breath.

rustybear Wed 27-Sep-06 23:01:19

Ironic that I called this the empty nest thread. Our nest is now piled high with DS's belongings, kitchen stuff etc all waiting to be packed into the car on Saturday still bet we've forgotten something vital....

mumof3teens Thu 28-Sep-06 08:53:34

Good luck for Sat Rustybear

Lilymaid Thu 28-Sep-06 19:35:26

Don't forget the chocolate cake (with or without the bottle of vodka) so DS can entertain/make new friends on the first evening!

MamaDucky Thu 28-Sep-06 22:34:22

I'm British but living in Germany alone with my 2 dd's 15 and 4. I'm separated from German hubby who has not wanted to see children in 2 years. Just took DS (still only 17) to London last Saturday to start at UCL, living in Halls in central London.He's doing 4 years Engineering with Computer Science, but said he may change to medicine. I miss him soooo much (it's not even a week yet).His little sister (4) misses him much more than older one.He has a phone in his room but he never seems to be there! I want more contact! I know its freshers week and so much to sort out, but how much contact do other mums get during the 1st week? Just wondering as I reckon he thinks I'm mummying him too much when he wants to be independant.Am I too persistant? He's only just turned 17 and 2 mins walk from Tott'Crt Rd. Am I over anxious?

Joolstoo Thu 28-Sep-06 22:39:28

my empty nest pang lasted all of about half a day - the half day we returned from delivering our youngest to his halls of residence. Next day i was fine.

Actually took ages to get rid of the blighters, they were always back at our gaff until we moved 90 miles away

we're a very close family actually.

rustybear Fri 29-Sep-06 10:49:59

MamaDucky - does he have a computer in his room? I had the 'don't want to harrass you but do want to know you're still alive' talk with DS and we agreed that he'd send me a message from time to time when he's on MSN - but you can set it so that you get notified everytime he comes on line.

Lilymaid Fri 29-Sep-06 14:20:01

I had nil contact in Week 1 (last year). I often e-mail DS as I feel that is less intrusive than telephoning. His brother has some contact via MSN Messenger. DS has now acquired a skype telephone but I think he uses that to talk to his girlfriend who is over in Berlin for the next 6 months as part of her course.

rustybear Sun 01-Oct-06 16:22:06

Have just got back from dropping DS at Warwick & have already had a text asking for his medicl details - knew we'd forget something!
He's got a nice room, with brand new furniture so it looks nice & bright & he was getting to know people on his floor when we left.

kilmacthomas Sun 01-Oct-06 22:00:16

Have just got back from Bristol and yes I am very sad/happy/estatic/worried!! Just need to say that really. I am sure that my daughter is having the best time but I wish that I could be absolutly sure. Will she remember to get up for breakfast tomorrow at the right time? Is there anything I have forgotten to take? To tell her?
I feel a failure as I am sure I have not done everything but I am not there and I can not put it right!! She will be home next Friday but that is not soon enough.

Am I the only one who feels so useless and redundant, I never thought I would say this but thank god I have got my undervalued job in the CPS.

Judy1234 Sun 01-Oct-06 22:37:10

I just dropped off my son. He is the third child I've dropped off at university in three years so not quite the same novelty and it will be 11 years before I drop off the youngest but still it's a bit sad, particularly for his little brothers. In effect he's been their father in so many ways over the last 3 years in the absence of the children's father.

gillymum Tue 03-Oct-06 19:20:18

I hope most of you are getting used to being without ds and dds. We didn't hear from ours much at first, but I'm now getting queries about how to remove stains from clothing without actually washing the whole garment! See - I knew he'd miss me!!

We still have 14yr old at home so it's not so bad. Have told him to take up nursing so he can look after us in our dotage - he says he's going to become rich and hire someone, so we'd better be good to him or he'll get someone cheap

Lilymaid Wed 04-Oct-06 14:12:16

The stained garments will come back to you when he visits/end of term and you will then be expected to perform magic. Most stains appear to be from gruesome cocktail mixes (in DS' case the cocktails had been served in a wellington boot!)

Judy1234 Sat 07-Oct-06 19:17:31

The youngest of my 3 at univerity came back today without washing. Said he'd been doing it. I suppose that's good. I thought coming home after 2 weeks better than one however. His younger brothers are pleased to see him.

themoon666 Sat 07-Oct-06 19:43:49

DD just started her 2nd year. All you mums wondering why they don't contact you..... don't worry, they will after they've run out of their first lot of money!!!

WhereDidTheYearsGo Tue 10-Oct-06 08:53:51

I get phone calls asking me how long to cook things for! It always cheers me up to hear from her, and it's rather nice to be able to help!

themoon666 Tue 10-Oct-06 10:32:59

DD has rung... apparently she has filled her student loan forms in wrong, so her money won't come until end of November and can I sub her until then. Great.

Judy1234 Wed 11-Oct-06 16:42:01

Mine haven't called for money. I pay by standing order weekly so they can never say they've run out really.

redsky Wed 11-Oct-06 17:06:46

Oh dear I think I'm STILL making a mess of this parenting thing! I phoned ds every day in his first week! Actually I don't think he minded, and I didn't phone before 1pm cos I knew he was out partying every night. After a bit of a shaky start sorting out modules/timetables etc he is now loving it. Best of all he is coming home to see us this weekend. YIppee!

mumof3teens Thu 12-Oct-06 16:36:42

DS1 rang Tues to say he was coming home for a couple of nights (2 free days) so here he is. Bit suspicious as to why - he said he wanted to see us! (hmm) Anyway, lovely to see him. DS2 went up to see him last week also.

Judy1234 Sun 15-Oct-06 21:52:16

Mine came back for one hour to collect his suit for a ball!

mumof3teens Sun 26-Nov-06 20:44:18

How are all you "empty nesters" getting on? I hope your DS & DDs are enjoying their courses/uni. Minimal contact from DS1 - always sounds slightly irritated when we ring him!

Lilymaid Sun 26-Nov-06 21:04:27

I've only had mimimal contact with DS1 for last three weeks (we took him out to lunch plus supermarket trip at the end of October).DS2 is not looking forward to his return as DS1 always brings back nasty coughs and colds and DS2 ends up in bed!
If anything were wrong or he needed money he would contact me. Otherwise, I'm giving him a bit of space.

oxidisedteddy Thu 30-Nov-06 23:37:02

DS came back for long weekend - probably more to see gf than us! Also saw him at FIL funeral
We talk on MSN from time to time though

torontogirl Thu 14-Dec-06 09:25:25

DD1 went off to Birmingham in Sept and I promised myself a treat to cheer up. Gave her a chance to settle in then visited her, on my own, leaving DP and DS at home, at end of November. Booked self into nice hotel and treated DD to early Xmas shopping and non-student restaurant meals. Great fun and very reassuring to see her confident in new surroundings. A bit of a treat, but recommended.

mumof3teens Fri 15-Dec-06 20:35:41

DS1 back from Manc today. Nightmarish journey - it was a 6hr round trip (only 124 miles in total). DS has just found out he will be based at Preston hospital for 3 years from next Sept - just when I was getting used to the trip to Manc and the various shops, restaurants, coffee shops etc
Think he will really miss the gigs/friends there.

Changes the dynamics in the family really doesn't it when they return from uni?

gillymum Sat 16-Dec-06 15:05:53

DS returning tonite for C'mas break. Am all excited but I know he'll spend tomorrow in bed while I hover outside.

Know what you mean by the slightly irritated tone when you ring - I get that too. I suppose we're just sad old things who never have anything exciting to report (how true)!

Enjoy the holiday season everyone and remember how nice it is to have them home - even when the washing is piled high and you've had to buy them presents to give to Gran/Siblings!

Lilymaid Sun 17-Dec-06 12:12:48

DS back from Nottingham on Tuesday (has visited girl friend over long weekend after the end of term). Looking forward to the strange smell of fermentation at the bottom of the dirty linen. I think I shall ask him to sort his washing into piles as I can't face the job myself (particularly the turning the socks the right way round etc bit).

WhereDidTheYearsGo Wed 10-Jan-07 23:26:41

lol gillymum about buying the presents for granny and siblings - we had that, and also having to pay to send granny's presents Special Delivery cos dd had waited till she got home to get me to post them so she woudn't have to pay the postage...!

Just got used to dd being home and she's back off again on Saturday!

mumof3teens Thu 11-Jan-07 09:27:24

Yes, DS1 back to uni on Saturday. He has been a bit annoying this holiday - "treating this place like an Hotel" (DH). All the same I will miss him. Don't think he can wait to get back and see mates/girlfriend etc.

mumof3teens Mon 14-May-07 15:49:48

Well, DC will soon be back home for Summer - the year has flown by. Got a call from DS1 a couple of weeks ago to say house had been broken into. His mate was in the house and was punched and left with black eyes by 7 or 8 thugs. DS1 was punched, but thankfully not injured. They stole DS1s camera and mobile phone and damaged his computer. They took his mates Computer and various other items . Thankfully though neither of them were seriously injured, as the thugs had knives. Be glad when he is home .

Lilymaid Mon 14-May-07 20:36:39

DS1 will be living next year in the most burgled street in Britain. He told me this as a matter of pride (almost) Having read the last posting I am getting even more worried.

Lilymaid Sat 30-Jun-07 13:14:10

Well the little darlings should all be back home now - or at least they will have dumped their belongings in the hall and disappeared to somewhere more congenial. I have had to wash a phenomenal amount of clothes and bedding. DS (end of 2nd year) has an internship in London for the vacation and is coming with me on the train each morning. Amazingly, for a boy who rarely got up before lunch time at University (or at home) he is now pushing me out of the house at 7.30 each morning.

lilymaid-is he going to leeds? dh lived on that street!

Lilymaid Sat 30-Jun-07 14:59:39

Nottingham! The University's Press Office even noted it in its press round up last year:
"Nottingham Evening Post 25/4: Kimbolton Avenue in Lenton, Nottingham, has been dubbed Britain’s most burgled street in two national newspapers — several of the residents, including University of Nottingham students, are unhappy at being misquoted."
Leeds must have lost its pre-eminence in the "crime ridden town to send your child to university" league table.
I pay his contents insurance!

aaah-times have changed! it used to be hyde park road in leeds! they were burgled 3 times in about 6 months and then they disturbed burglars breaking into next door and the burglars came back next day and set fire to their shed! they moved out that day!!!

AttilaTheMum Fri 13-Jul-07 18:48:18

Can't believe it's almost a year since I started this thread - I've changed my name and everything...
DS had a great time in his first year - he's currently somewhere between Amsterdam & Berlin with some of the friends he'll be sharing a house with next year.
I really don't want to think about what they might have been up to in Amsterdam...

mumof3teens Wed 05-Sep-07 10:03:33

Just about to set off to take DS1 back to uni for his 3rd year sad. Doesn't really seem to get much easier. Didn't help that he didn't have his confirmation that he could move into his house until yesterday pm (after heated telephone discussion between me and estate agent). Starts uni tomorrow, so cutting it a bit fine. Only gets 2 weeks at Xmas and a week at Easter and only (!) 6 weeks next summer. This summer has flown by.

Lilymaid Thu 06-Sep-07 17:01:40

DS soon back to university for 3rd year too. He's been doing an internship in London over the holidays so is now getting really grown up! He needs more curtains for the new student house, so I shall have to take up a box of old ones - black outs were requested so they can sleep the days away!

mumof3teens Fri 07-Sep-07 09:13:51

So I don't suppose you saw much of him this summer then Lilymaid? What is he studying?

Lilymaid Fri 07-Sep-07 22:04:35

He's studying economics and though I saw less of him than in previous years I have seen and smelt his washing as much as usual! Well, to be honest "studying economics" is not quite accurate - he is registered to do an economics degree, but stays in bed most of the day and DJs by night then spends revision period mugging it all up - and (damn) gets a good result. I reckon he could have taken a degree and worked full time if he had wanted to.

mumof3teens Mon 10-Sep-07 17:27:29

Saw DS1 yesterday. All settled into his nice(for now) house. He is having another hmmfreshers week, organised by year 4 & 5s - obviously this involves much alcohol consumption. He will be doing 9-5 & some 12 hr shifts, so a real shock to the system grin

WhereDidTheYearsGo Thu 20-Sep-07 23:38:16

DD1 is back now for her second year and dd2 has now gone too. You'd think I'd be used to it this time, but no....

Still have ds (15) at home though.

DD1 has spent freshers' week making the most of all the freebies given out - the first years are too polite compared to the "old hands" when it comes to freeloading!

mumof3teens Sun 23-Sep-07 19:22:58

Oh dear wheredidtheyearsgo - We are currently looking at Uni's for DS2, who will apply next September sad. I am not looking forward to him going also. I still have DS3 at home - he has 4 years to go grin

Lilymaid Sun 23-Sep-07 19:27:54

DS1 went back today - freshers week, no lectures but he will be involved in DJing at a few parties. He got up at 10 am and started packing then. When I was a student, I did my packing over several days - he nearly went off without any underwear, but his decks, amps and keyboards were all he thought about. There were a few books amongst all the electronic stuff, fortunately.
DS2 will be applying next year (or planning gap year). Then the house will be empty and we will be able to eat grown up food every day!

karen8 Sun 30-Sep-07 10:40:54

I posted in this thread about a year ago. Settled DS1 into Uni yesterday for first time. I am feeling as bad as I thought I would be. Very sad and tearful and miss him a lot. I am used to him being away (his Dad lives abroad so he is often there in hols) but this feels very different. His 'normal life' was always here with me. Now it's not and his holiday life only will be here. I am so proud of him for his achievements and for getting to a great Uni, but very sad at the moment.

I know it will pass.

Lilymaid Mon 01-Oct-07 10:59:49

Karen, my sympathies although I have to admit I didn't feel as tearful as I expected when DS1 went off two years ago. His absence gave us more time to spend with DS2 who was then going into Y10 and we remembered how great it was when we started university and made our first little steps towards grown up life! In fact, DH scarcely wants to leave when we visit DS - wants to relive his student days!

karen8 Mon 01-Oct-07 17:07:05

Thanks Lilymaid. I am sure I will get used to it - it just feels like a hole in my life at the moment. I have a little one still at home (18 months!) so enough to keep busy with, plus a busy job. But I do miss my eldest

mumof3teens Fri 04-Jan-08 20:44:52

Took Ds1 back to Uni this morning - still feels a bit sad each time he goes back. How are you "new" empty nesters feeling?

RustyBear Fri 29-May-09 22:00:23

I just found this thread searching for Kimi's 'first thread I started' thread - I think this was my first - it feels really strange, as DS has just come home after his final university exam & will be with us till he finds a job - so after having a truly empty nest since DD went off to uni last September, I've now got a fledgling back!

Lilymaid Sun 31-May-09 14:51:13

I was on that thread, though DS1 was going into his 2nd year in 2006. He's now working - and in a proper job which is an achievement for the class of 2008! DS2 starts A2 exams tomorrow and is then taking a gap year and applying to university for 2010 entry. So my "empty nest" will be in another year.
Good luck to Rustybear's DS in finding a job.

RustyBear Wed 24-Jun-09 20:07:03

Just bumping this thread for anyone who might need it ... and also to boast report that DS got his results today: he got a 2:1, which he's very happy with grin

mumeeee Thu 25-Jun-09 21:36:48

DD2 19 is off to uni in September. She has just had confirmation that she has got a place in her first choice of halls. Now we have to save up the money to pay for it!shock asshe is going to London.

Milliways Fri 26-Jun-09 17:44:53

Yay for Rustyboy! A 2:1 is fantastic, you must be soooo chuffed

DD is conveinced she has failed all her A levels so we just have to wait here.

RustyBear Fri 26-Jun-09 21:00:36

Thanks Milliways - now he just has to find a job!

And I'm sure minimilli has done fine!

mumeeee Sat 27-Jun-09 12:51:25

Forgot to say Rustybear congrationlations to your Ds on his 2.1 fantastic result.

mumeeee Sun 06-Sep-09 22:35:08

Just reviving this thread as DD2 will be off to uni on Thursday. So just 4 days to go. She has at last started packing.

HarlotOTara Mon 07-Sep-09 09:26:58

Oooh can I join too? My eldest DD is off in a couple of weeks. However she is only 40 minutes away by car so I can pop down whenever wink. I am sure she will love that!! So far I feel quite alright about it partly because it is so near but also because I had the big separation when she went travelling in Thailand and India earlier this year. I cried from when she left to go into the departure lounge until I got home from Heathrow. I couldn't bear leaving her on her own. However I did get used to it (using facebook to keep in touch helped). It really felt that someone had plunged a knife in my heart.

All that said I am sure I will be a little teary as goodbyes always hit me that way. Strange really as I have hardly seen her all summer. A small plus was that I knew her room was tidy and clean and we used less milk!!

However I am interested regarding what she should take in the way of cooking utensils etc. as she is in self-catering halls. I am thinking cheap stuff and absolute basics as I am sure most stuff will disappear. Any advice gratefully received before I hit Ikea.

Lilymaid Mon 07-Sep-09 09:31:22

Cooking utensils - yes go for cheap stuff as it will disappear/be trashed. I discovered that our local Oxfam shop had a load of cutlery and other stuff that they didn't have room to put out in the shop - very useful for house shares in 2nd and 3rd years.

alypaly Mon 07-Sep-09 09:41:47

think i cried nearly every night for the first 6 weeks. I made no rules about phone calls, just said ring me when you want to..as i didnt want to feel as though i was a nuisance. He went to nottingham which is 2 hours away, so couldnt exactly drop by. Got the odd phone call on an irregular basis!!
but what i did get was the bin sack full of washing to be done when he came homeshockhe was having a ball with all his new friends which wa great. Uni and school are the best times of your life...good luck to him...enjoy it...the rest of it is mundane and repetitive going to work everyday. he has been lucky enuf to get a job placement in melbourne through the uni for 3 weeks ,so he is having the summer of his life travelling round australia with a uni colleague.when Ds2 goes i am sure i will feel lonely but as long as they are happy that all i want. i know that when i get a phone call, its because he wants to and if he comes home mid term its because he wants too.

HarlotOTara Mon 07-Sep-09 12:51:13

lilymaid - hadn't thought of charity shops - will they be cheaper than Ikea?

My DD doesn't know how to use the washing machine - I feel quite embarassed saying that although my youngest DD does. I will not however be washing sack loads of clothes - think she needs to do this herself either at college or at home!

alypaly - travelling is great for them I agree. When my DD got back from India she said that if you can travel there you can travel anywhere and I have worried about he far less than before.

alypaly Mon 07-Sep-09 12:54:26

HarlotOTara ...the only time i got worried was when he told me he found a red backed spider on his back pack!!!!!!!!!yikes...they are deadly poisonous

Lilymaid Mon 07-Sep-09 13:04:03

I found that our local charity shop was delighted to sell me a great deal of cutlery etc for almost nothing - but your DD might like to start off with new stuff from somewhere like IKEA. Once they are sharing houses in the 2nd year they are grateful for anything that closely resembles a knife, spoon, plate etc! (And you may be so shocked by the lack of care/disgusting kitchens that you won't want to spend out on anything decent).
I would try to tell your DD the importance of separating out coloured clothing from whites and that anything with wool in it needs to be washed separately with different detergent/soap and should not be tumble dried at high temperature. Some of her clothes will be ruined by inappropriate wash programmes, others by strange cocktails imbibed during Freshers week.

NorthernNell Mon 07-Sep-09 17:32:40

DD1 off to Liverpool on the 20th - not exactly 'empty nest' as there are still 3 at home but there will be a dd1 shaped hole!

Just know I am going to blub the whole way back from dropping her off (probably the whole way there as well!sad)good job DH will be driving.

mumeeee Mon 07-Sep-09 20:52:17

I bought a 12 piece cutlery set at poundland for £1 and some cheap tesco value cooking utensils that were less then 50p each. I've also bought a box of crockery (4 bowls,4 dinner plates and 4 side plates)from poundland for £7,49. DD2 sems very pleased with them. She is off to London so she can only take one car load. Dh is taking her, I'll go with them if there is enough room in the car but somehow I don't think there will be.

HarlotOTara Tue 08-Sep-09 09:59:22

Mumeeee £1 for cutlery is cheaper than £2.50 in Tesco will need to investigate. Am thinking of marking everything with one of those indelible pens once advertised by David Beckham (forgotten name). From experience things disappear

mumeeee Tue 08-Sep-09 21:30:49

DD2 has now almost finished her packing. There are bags,boxes and cases all over the place. She went out today to buy herself toohpaste and stuff. She has now gone to a friends birthday party so I won't see her untill tomorrow, I'm cooking her favorite meal tomorrow evening and will probably have some wine with it to make it a special last meal.

Milliways Tue 08-Sep-09 23:14:08

DD is on holiday this week, and I think her Accommodation pack has just arrived. <<holds breath for bill>>

My Mum works in a charity shop, and from that and her home she has put DD together:
Towels, plates, mugs, bowl, glasses, cutlery, kettle, small iron & a mini fridge!!!

She has a few more weeks though, starts 3rd October.

Milliways Tue 08-Sep-09 23:14:54

Oh, and DD found "Toasty Bags" in poundland!

webwiz Wed 09-Sep-09 09:38:09

Ooh can I join in smile. DD1 is off to UEA on the 19th of September, she has a saturday job in Wilkinsons and last week they had a special 20% off for staff day so we were very organised and bought everything she needed in one go - although we did need two trolleys. The entire contents of her wardrobe are all over the spare bed so that she can choose what to take as well as various odds and ends that she simply must have with her. DD2 has just gone into year 12 and DS is in year 8 so it won't be quiet at home without her but since she has been a complete pain for the last two years it should be calmergrin

anastasia74 Wed 09-Sep-09 18:35:15

Yes, I'm dreading my only dd moving out next week for uni. Which sounds selfish I know - but Just lost my dear father, which was very sudden and has left a gapeing hole in my life.

Feel I need some constants in my life at the moment but everything feels like its in meltdown. I know she can't put her life on hold for me because of whats happened and I really would'nt want her to and I am really proud of her.

I know over time I'll deal with it and we can talk, email etc. but the absence of her physical presence I know will be difficult for me.

Anyone been in a similar situation who can
offer any advice to help cope with feelings.

mumeeee Wed 09-Sep-09 22:21:10

Sorry for your loss anastasia74. Well we've had a nice meal with DD2 and she sat and chatted to us more than she's done for a while. She is now in the bath andstill has a couple of bits and pieces to finish packing. Wehn DD1 went to uni she was only just up the road and I could see her fairly often. But DD2 will be in London which is quite a long way from Cardiff. DD1 is also lives in London with her DH, they got married in march. So by tommorow evening I'll be down to one child. DD3 is 17 and spends a bit of time with DD2 so she'll miss her.

mumeeee Wed 09-Sep-09 22:27:02

Milliways check that she is allowed a mini fridge in her room before she goes. We were going to get DD1 one when she started uni but discovered she was not allowed one in her room. Something to do with bieng a fire hazard.

RustyBear Wed 09-Sep-09 22:42:41

DD had a mini fridge provided in her room at Exeter, but she hardly ever had it turned on because it hummed so noisily it kept her awake.

Can't believe it's 3 years since I started this thread -DS has now graduated & DD goes back for her second year at the end of next week!

Milliways Wed 09-Sep-09 22:48:12

How long did it take you to adjust your shopping/cooking habits Rusty?

piscesmoon Wed 09-Sep-09 22:49:22

Mine is off at the end of the month. As he is my 3rd I am getting quite excited-I have lots of things that I want to do. I don't feel empty nest as it won't be long until holidays-terms are short!

Ponders Wed 09-Sep-09 22:51:15

When my first one went to uni I went on both cooking & laying a place for her for months sad blush grin

piscesmoon Wed 09-Sep-09 22:53:18

Having said that I expect I will have a few tears when I drop him off!

RustyBear Wed 09-Sep-09 22:55:19

Milliways - we did have a surfeit of milk for a while after they left - cereal seems to be a universal teenage filler!

DH & I tended to just have snacks in the term-time evenings, as we both have good lunches - I spent last year losing weight in term time & putting it on in the holidays because I was cooking in the evenings.

mumeeee Fri 11-Sep-09 19:55:20

Well we took DD2 up tp her uni yesterday. Her halls are right next door to the college she'll be studying at and about 5 minutes walk from the town centre. We spent a couple of hours with her getting her stuff into her room and having a look round the town centre. We had to buy her a cable for her laptop as the intente is cable connection not wireless like we have, She did offer to pay for one but DH siad he'd buy it. We had spare ones at home but forgot to take them. It seems a very nice place. I felt a bit sad and emotional when we left her.
I've spoken to her this evening to tell her that her bank card had arrived ( we were hoping that it would arrive yesterday). She has already made some friends and was at the supermarket. So at least she is buying some food.

RustyBear Sat 12-Sep-09 09:12:52

..... And drink? grin

mumeeee Sat 12-Sep-09 15:58:57

She doesn't drink that much so I don't think she'l buy it at the supermarket! She has been asking me questions about the price of everything recently!

Milliways Sun 13-Sep-09 17:52:28

We have just had a day looking around Cambridge, as I haven't been yet and probably won't fit in the car when she does move in (take up valuable clothes space!!) grin

The Porter at the college was lovely and we got to see her room - which is great. She has a newer room with ensuite (have yet to see the bill) with lovely views, so she is very happy and I can imagine her there if I can't drop her off.

Now we need to find a basket for a bicycle!

academicallyTormented Sun 13-Sep-09 18:10:47

Oh gosh, I'm about to see this from an unusual perspective, I'm going to be leaving my 1 year old DD with my parents for term time which is going to be so hard, and I know my mum is going to miss me a lot (she keeps telling me!) but she's so excited for me too.
I'm trying to work out how best to drop into conversation that instead of building a school and doing a ski season and working in an office for my gap year I had a baby... I mean how does that just crop up? I don't want to 'announce' it as such, I suppose if people ask about my family? My room will be crammed full of pictures of her but I think most people will assume she's my little sister (have 3 youngers sisters, one is 7 so still quite little and my mum is only early 40s)

mumeeee Sun 13-Sep-09 18:16:01

Hi Milliways. When does your DD actually go up to Cambridge? The bill will probably be expensive but hope it's not as much as DD2's is. Hers is £5000 for the year and we had to pay the first instalment before she went. We have told her that we'll sort out the second installment but she will have to pay us back. Actully she won't have to pay us back but we haven't told her this as we want her to try and save a bit.{grin}

mumeeee Sun 13-Sep-09 18:17:18

Well I'm hopeless at typing in smileys. I'll try agaain. grin

Milliways Sun 13-Sep-09 20:22:52

Mumeee shock - where is she????? The Ritz?

DD starts on 3rd October! She has been invited to a local party as well - they have loads organised next week around the country for people to meet up before they travel in October, in a pub in our town!

AcademicallyTormented: Well done you! DD's friend has just had a baby which put her plans back, but we have just learned all about parent accommodation etc at Uni's if she decided to re-apply & take babe with her. You are very lucky to have your Mum look after her for you, but I can't imagine the double missing for you - your Mum & your baby. I wish you the very best of luck with your course, and all the arrangements. Your new friends will be impressed that you have managed to sort it all out, and won't be able to meet your DD too

mumeeee Sun 13-Sep-09 22:44:13

Milliways she is in Kingston upon Thames which is counted as London. She could have moved in on the 1st September and can stay until the beggining of July so that is longer than a lot of halls. Most London accomadation is expensive. My DB took my nephew to Guildford to an open day ( he is going to uni next year) and he said the accomadation there is as nealy expensive as DD2's. academicallyTormented well done for geting a place at uni and for sorting things out so that you can go. It's good that your Mum can have the baby. I know you'll miss her but at least you'll know she's safe and happy. I've just done some savoury mince for tea and had loads left over!

RustyBear Mon 14-Sep-09 10:06:40

Not just London that's expensive - we're going to be paying £5600 next year for DD in Exeter - though that does include all bills, including Internet/phone & insurance.

mumeeee Mon 14-Sep-09 10:43:56

Well Dd2 starts her course today ( she has an induction week) and I'm feeling nervous which is a bit silly really as it's her course not mine. I just fel I shouldbe there making sure she has everything although I know she is perfectly capable and used to sort herself out at college.
Rusybear that sems very expensive for Exeter,
DD2's accmadation does include the internet and some bills, But she has to pay towards electricity and sort out her own insurance.

RustyBear Mon 14-Sep-09 11:07:30

It is a very nice house though - they had to book it last November to get it. As far as I can see, they won't have to buy anything else except food.

mumeeee Mon 14-Sep-09 22:04:54

Well I've spoken to DD2 this evening.She sems to have had a good day. She was at a pub with some friends. I hope she's not going spend all her student loan at pubs!

mumof3teens Tue 15-Sep-09 11:45:57

Well mumeeee at least you have done the leaving at uni bit and she seems to have settled well. We are taking DS2 up to Leeds on Sunday - feel tearful just typing it :{ Just checking he has got everything and still need to do a food shop together.

Pimmpom Tue 15-Sep-09 12:39:32

Anastasia- Has DD gone off to Uni yet? I can imagine how much you are going to miss her but you must feel incredibly proud. xx

mumeeee Tue 15-Sep-09 21:53:43

I haven't got used to cooking for only 3 yet. I cooked a sausage kegeree tonight and have still got some left ove. I'm still feeling a bit tearful about DD2 but as you said mumof3teens she does seem to have settled in well.

mumeeee Thu 17-Sep-09 17:49:17

Well DD2 has been awy for a week now. We are gradully getting used to her not being around. I actually for the first time last night managed to cook tea for the 3 of us and not have any left over. I wonder if I can manage that again tonight!
Anyone elses DD'Ds gone away yet?

RustyBear Thu 17-Sep-09 19:47:53

We are taking most of DD's stuff tomorrow, stopping overnight to see my Dad, who also lives in Devon. DD's bf will be bringing her and the overflow down on Saturday...

brimfull Thu 17-Sep-09 19:49:38

dd not at uni yet-in yr 13 but I am silently dreading her going
will miss her like mad

NorthernNell Thu 17-Sep-09 20:28:22

DD1 of to Liverpool on Sunday - not sure if I will get through the journey there without breaking down in tears! Will try not to shame her too much!

Manxie101 Fri 18-Sep-09 02:37:07

Dear All,
Took my eldest to uni last week - we live on Isle of Man so seems very far away and "final" even though Im sure it isnt! I didnt expect to feel so sad and so emotional about it. Have to say it was one of the hardest thing as a parent - take youngster leave in city - drive of and know Im unlikely to see him before Xmas. Im very proud of him and know this is time for him to spread his wings and fly but his mum is really feeling that empty nest even though is not yet empty!! No 2 14 and still very much here. The strength of the missing him has taken me totally by suprise - wont ever forget that image of him confidently walking away. Hes fine by the way! making friends, likes the course so far, seems to be doing the shopping, ironing etc according to his facebook! and he has phoned us. Please tell me this gets easier??

HarlotOTara Fri 18-Sep-09 06:17:39


My DD is off to uni next week but she has had a gap year and went off to India and Thailand at the beginning of the year. She flew off to Thailand on her own (meeting friend there) and it was unbelievably painful saying goodbye, I didn't see her for 5 months so I can relate to what you are saying. I cried all the way home from the airport (and in the airport after she had gone which is a first for me). It does get better once you feel they can cope and the big world isn't going to eat them up. Letting go of our babies is never easy. Of course you will miss him and if it isn't easy to visit your ds then that makes it feel worse but as the cliche says it does get better in time. It is early days for you yet but you will adapt. I used facebook to keep in touch with my dd and texts and the occasional phone call. My dd going to university feels like a doddle at the moment particularly as she will be 40 minutes away by car and I could visit every day (bet she would love that!).

Anastacia, I am so sorry for your loss and it must make your dd going to uni. even more painful. Nothing will stop the grieving and it is all a bugger. Maybe take one step at a time, talk to friends or on here?

mumeeee Fri 18-Sep-09 20:58:26

Just had an email from DD2 she is enjoying her course so far. She has all readt had to do a perfermance for the 2nd and 3rd years and it was only the induction week this week. She now has her proper timetable and gets Tuesdays and Fridays off, She says she is going to start looking for a job. She also says she hasn't cooked a proper mael yet and is mainly living off of bread and pizza! Another thing she said was that she loves and misses us all which bought a tear to my eye again!

mumof3teens Sat 19-Sep-09 12:14:21

Feeling v teary about taking DS2 tomorrow Not helped by having a chest infection for 8 weeks (me) so feeling v down - will have to cheer up for his sake. He is quite worried about going, but his gf went this morning (different uni) so a few tears from her yesterday and this am. Off to food shop with him this pm for a few basics. Still feel sad every time DS 1 goes back to uni after hols and he is now a 5th year, I really need to let go!

RustyBear Sat 19-Sep-09 22:54:20

Just back from taking DD - she's just updated her FB to say she's connected her internet & now has to unpack-obviously has her priorities right!
We had quite a good trip, though we did make the mistake of choosing a day when the road outside was being dug up & on a temporary one way system, and the football team were playing at home - the stadium is in sight of the house- so parking nearby was difficult.

It's a lovely house - much nicer than the usual student dump & actually worth the small fortune we're paying for it. grin

mumeeee Sun 20-Sep-09 00:06:30

Glad you had a good day Rustybear and hope you have a good tomorrow mumof3teens. I've actually ben helping with a meet and greet new stuents event that our church organise today. We meet students at the station and then take them in the minibus to their halls and help them get their keys and take thier luggage to thre rooms. I was at the staion all day. There were mostly internatianal students coming by train. A lot of the students seemd to have at least one member of thier family with them. One student was from shrewsbury her parents sent her on the train as they were working. She seemed fine but a little bit upset her parents hadn't come with her. I expect she didn't let onto her parents that she was upset that they didn't come with her. She had bben to see her halls on Thursday but ebn then it was a friend who drove her down.

mumof3teens Mon 21-Sep-09 09:25:45

What a lovely idea mumeeee. We took DS2 up to Leeds yesterday. Started to cfy a bit when we said goodbye but felt a bit better when we got home. Think the anticipation was quite stressful. Nice room and flatmates. He sent a text last night to say he had been out bowling with a group and had a great time. So relieved.

mumeeee Mon 21-Sep-09 12:01:33

Glad your DS has already made friends mumof3teens and that his room and flat mates were nice. It is a stresful time I'm still mising D2 but know she has settled well. DH emailed her last night as he said it was his turn!

anastasia74 Mon 21-Sep-09 20:11:09

Well shes gone. Dropped her off there on saturday. Felt at home among others parents - all looking a little bit - rabbit caught in a head light look/what are we doing here look. Which I also felt.

Lovely purpose built en-suite apartment. I'm soo jealous - wish I was 18 again.

Her roomies were also moving in - 3 boys. whom she seems to have got on with very well so far. (Also another girl who has'nt arrived yet).

Already cooked a meal and been shopping with them. As if they'd been together weeks.

Went back again sunday to take her more things she forgot, with my mum also this time hmmthankfully only 20 mins away - so can pop over for a hug if i get really bad.

After recently losing my dear dad I'm thankful for that. I feel for others with only children that have just gone. Its tough.

Now need more hobbies/distractions. Quick

Pimmpom Tue 22-Sep-09 10:36:59

Seems like she is settling in really well Anastasia. DD 16 has just started college and has a new set of friends that you would think she has known for ages.

Knowing she is only 20mins away I'm sure will be a comfort. It is like a safety net - just knowing you can pop along for a hug means that you won't need to. xx

Milliways Tue 22-Sep-09 18:34:00

DD has said goodbye to a lot of her friends now - but the local council have just asked her to do a week at an after school club next week, so she gets another weeks earnings in the bank before she goes!

She is at a party tonight organised by the Uni - they are doing one in each County, to help make a few local to home friends who will be with you at Uni in October.

Mummee - what your group is doing is lovely Have told DD to find a nice friendly church and she may get lucky with people takimg pity & offering the odd Sunday lunch grin

hunlet Tue 22-Sep-09 18:35:27

IT'S shit. You just get used to it.

THEN they come back.

webwiz Tue 22-Sep-09 20:07:09

We took DD1 off to Norwich on Saturday and helped to cart her stuff up to the fourth floor. It was a bit weird leaving her but there was a friendly looking girl hanging around in the corridor so at least we knew DD1 would have someone to talk to. Anyway she's already made loads of friends, been to several freshers events and persuaded a boy from down the corridor to fix her computer when she couldn't connect to the university network. So long as she's happy I'm happy smile

mumeeee Tue 22-Sep-09 21:09:27

Hi all glad that everyones DD?DS's are settling in well to uni life. Milliways the party sounds a good idea and yes extra money is always good. DD1's student loan has now gone into her bank acount ( it doesn't go in until the student has enrolled) which is good as I was a bit woried about her spending all her savings before she got it.
Our church actually do free student lunches on most Sundays.

mumof3teens Wed 23-Sep-09 10:29:04

DS2 settling in well and having a great time. HS first lecture today so is v excited (sure that will wear off!) got lots of freebies yesterday (all dental themed ). I feel a bit sad but relief that we have got through dropping him off and the first few days.

mumeeee Wed 23-Sep-09 23:36:01

I know how you feel mumof3teens. DD1 had her first day of proper lectures on Monday. She started with a voice lecture which apparently was all about breathing, exercising your voice and how it works. . She said the day went ok but it was long 9 t0 5.15 so she was tired. But she was going out with her new friends so couldn't have been that tiredsmile.
Dh said what about fruit and veg when he emailed her and she emailed back and said she's eating lots of it and it's nearly gone so she.s got to go to the shop to get more.

mumeeee Fri 25-Sep-09 13:03:47

Just a quick update. I've spoken to DD2 this morning and she.s geting on fine although she's a bit lonely today as a lot of her friends are sortimg out a script and she is doing hers at a differnt time. . SHe told me that electricity is now included in thier rent which I'm really pleased about. Also she can now recieve parcels ( they didn't used to be able to). Apparently they have changed the rules since last year as thre has been some complaints about both things and also with the electricity they found that students were finding it difficult to sort it out.

mumeeee Thu 01-Oct-09 10:27:00

Just wondering how eveerybody is getting on. I suddenly had a bit of a break down yesterday and started crying about DD2 although I know she is Ok. I spoke to her on Saturday and she was going in to London for the day with her new friends.

Milliways Thu 01-Oct-09 22:07:18

Hi Mummee!

I have tomorrow off work to help DD pack. She has more friends around tonight for a final goodbye with those who are having a year out as other friends all gone now.

I will be having my wobble this time next week!

mumeeee Fri 02-Oct-09 22:11:43

Hi Milliways. Your DD seems to have a very late start to her course. Is she going on Saturday?
I've just spoken to DD2 she is stillhaving a great time,but has got a bit of work to do now. She says she is fine with it and will be able to finish it by the deadline as she has 2 days off a week,
She hasn't bothered to sort her TV out as she says she is not missing it. I think she goes out a lot with her firends and at other times is busy with uni. Dh and I are off to Barselona tommorrow to celebrate out Silver Wedding Anniversery so won't be around for a week.

Milliways Fri 02-Oct-09 23:31:13

Yes, she is still packing (11:30 pm !) and we drive up tomorrow. Freshers week next week and term ends Dec 5th!! They only have 8 week terms.

Glad your DD is settling in. DS is going to download her favourite TV programmes and send them to her to watch on laptop.

Have a great time in Barcelona. We have a friend based there and weather is still around 21degrees so should be nice

Milliways Sat 03-Oct-09 18:44:09

Dropped her off today!

She has already put out vases with artificial flowers, pictures & photo's on walls, extra cusions on bed etc so her room is very "homely".

She's also very happy they her neighbour has bought all her indian spices with her and is into cooking - asked if she liked Indian! grin

Lots of free parties and events organised for the week - so the fun starts now!

Milliways Wed 07-Oct-09 17:34:37

How y'all doing?

DD phoned yesterday as has had the accommodation bill (we have said we will pay this). They also had the matriculation ceremony - all gowned up. Can't wait to see the photos.

Lectures start tomorrow.....

shockers Wed 07-Oct-09 17:41:56

My DS phoned today and told me he can't sleep because his halls are so noisy til the early hours. His lecture this morning was in a stuffy room which is underground and full of people and it lasted for 2 hours.... he fell asleep. He is getting upset through lack of sleep but likes his fellow hall dwellers and doesn't want to make a fuss. I cried after I'd spoken to him.... he sounded so down. sad

Squishabelle Wed 07-Oct-09 17:59:34

Aw Shockers I feel so sorry for your ds. DD1 had this in her first year and it really was a problem. She was sharing with a group of girls (in hall) who all seemed to be going absolutely wild and just couldnt handle their new freedom (from parents). They didnt even think about going out for the night until 10-11ish! Dd1 used to come home to sleep sometimes and return early the next morning. It wasnt just the noise either - the stealing of food/milk etc always seemed to be a problem, although the installation of a fridge in her (locked) room sorted this. It was much better in her 2nd year when she went into a rented house with more sensible people.

Milliways Wed 07-Oct-09 18:26:32

Aw Shockers! <<Hugs>>

They are all the same. DD only arrived at Uni on Saturday and was out Sat, Sun & Mon - so last night she said she was staying in even though "everyone" was going to see a band in the next college. She was so tired.

I suppose once the coursework etc has to be produced, (and money runs low?) they will all calm down and settle into a routine.

webwiz Wed 07-Oct-09 19:06:31

DD1 is halfway through her third week and they have already calmed down - she has practicals to write up and research for reports and so couldn't carry on the extensive partying she had been doing. She has had also had a few nights in because she's been feeling under the weather (not surprising really - I was beginning to wonder how she was going to survive clubbing every night and going to lectures). I think she's starting to get into a bit of a routine which I'm quite glad about, she has quite a long first term and I think she needs to pace herself.

Shockers I hope your DS gets some sleep soon.

shockers Thu 08-Oct-09 23:04:07

Thank you!
I've spoken to him today, suggesting ear plugs which he says he will go and get. He's going out tonight with some friends who are in their 3rd year and have a house.... am hoping something will come of it!
The thing that's worrying him most is the falling asleep. He did his foundation year with the OU with a full time job so he knows he can cut the mustard but if he can't stay awake to listen....
Thanks again smile

mumeeee Fri 09-Oct-09 13:08:06

Hi |Everyone. I'm back from Barcelona now.had a great time weather was really warm and sunny.My MIL spoke to DD2 on Monday says she semed very happy. I'm going to phone her later today but am dreading it a bit as our cat is not very well and DD2 adores her.
She has a reading week at the end of October and will be coming home for part of that,I'm looking forward to seing her. Shockers sory that your DS is finding it hard to sleep. DD2 has been out a lot but she is used to the late hours because whenever she went to a night club with her friends here they never went out before 9. But she was always very good about coming in quietly(well most of the time). I think they are calming down now as they all have uni work to do.

Milliways Tue 13-Oct-09 16:14:29

Hello everyone - how are they all coping with regular lectures?

DD has a tough timetable with 6 lectures on 1 day (her best day has only 2). When the whole lecture is in a foreign language, given by a native speaker, it is hard!

Will you all have them home for an A leverl Certificate night? Ours in on 20th November.

mumeeee Tue 13-Oct-09 21:17:39

Hi everyone DD2 sems to be coping with long days. Well long for her. She starts at 9 and finishes at 5.15. But she only does 3 days ,she has Tuesdays and Fridays off at the moment. That might change next semester.
We don't have A level certificate days around here, they just go and collect them sometime after they are available. DD2 took her A levels las year she had an unplanned gap year.
She has a reading week at the end of October when she doesn,t have to go into uni. She is coming home for that. Told me last night that she has booked her coach ticket for Monday 26th October and will be staying until the following Sunday. I'm really looking forward to seeing her. I had to tell her last night that our cat had got use and the vet had to put her down. So she is feeling a bit sad about that but otherwise okay. Managed to get in touch with her and DD1 before it actually happened.
Oh and when I phoned last night she was actually staying in to get some uni work done so the going out sems to have calmed down for now.Sorry for such a long post. How is everyone else?

mumof3teens Wed 14-Oct-09 09:24:43

DS2 is loving his course although the placement he went on yesterday was a bit of a reality check - v deprived area. He is really enjoying s catering (although he had requested catered halls). He is coming home for the weekend which will be great. DS1 announced he was also coming home this weekend, turns out he needs to apply for his junior Dr post for the next 2 years and wants us to look at his (thought it wasn't just the pleasure of out company he wanted!). They all seem to be settling in so well though don't they, which really helps us Mums?!

webwiz Wed 14-Oct-09 15:48:41

I think the fact that DD1 has settled well has been a great help - she seems to be having such a good time. DD2 is looking forward to going to stay with her sister for a couple of days in the half term holiday. DD1 has told her to bring something to do on the monday because she will be very busy with her lectures and a 3 hour practical that day and if you had seen how lazy DD1 one was in her A2 year you would know why I am shock about this - but in a good way smile.

DD1 gets her A level certificates at the school's prize giving night in Dec which will be when she is home for Christmas

Milliways Fri 23-Oct-09 20:27:48

One of DD's friends has left Uni due to home sickness

Luckily the college have agreed to defer her place for a year.

mumeeee Fri 23-Oct-09 21:55:43

That's god that she has a place for next year. I think DD2 gets a bit homesick sometimes but she has also made a few friends. She actually said I love you to me on the phone the other night. She was in the pub with her friends. She is coming home on Monday for a few days. It's areading week and she doesn't have to go into uni. I'm really looking forward to seeing her

mumeeee Sun 01-Nov-09 18:18:42

Well DD2 came home on Monday. We've had a good week and beenout for a ccouple of meals together. One with Me and her younger sister and one with the family including MIL ( not DD1 though as she's in London with her DH). She's had a couple of late nights out with her friends from here. She woke us up on Tuesday night when she came in and then she woke me on Wednesday night at about 1.45 texting me to tell me she was sleeping at a friends.grin.
We dropped her off at the coach station this morning and I felt sad again. Although I won't miss being woken up late at night.grin

mumof3teens Mon 02-Nov-09 12:06:58

Yes I still feel a bit sad when DS1 goes back after a weekend at home. DS2 is coming home on Thursday night for the weekend - really looking forward to seeing him (although I know the main reason he is coming is to meet up with his GF!). It is so interesting to hear all of their news though isn't it mumeeee?

mumeeee Mon 02-Nov-09 21:58:46

Hi mumof3teens. Yes it was interesting to here all her news. She kept us entertained by telling us all about the antics she and her friends have got up to. One was taking a roadsign on a bus( the bus driver didn't make any comment) and putting it in their lift.It stayed ther for a few days. She also showed us a photo of her first attempt at making chiken stir fry. She managed to burn it but still ate it. She tends to eat very litle but told us her friends make her finish her food. She has also done some work.grin

Milliways Tue 03-Nov-09 20:36:57

My DD said she is becoming Veggie as meat is so much time/effort! She also eats in the Canteen somtimes just to get out from the books and into some company for a little while each day.

She is finding the workload very tough. She has to produce essays/do tests every week and the work is all expected to be an extremely high standard - which can be demoralising when you are used to being "Top of the class".

We hope to have her home for a weekend in a few weeks for the A level cert. night.

mumeeee Tue 03-Nov-09 20:56:30

In a lot of universities the first year isn't to hard it's seen as just beibng the first step of independance. Although DD2 has done some essays and has two to to hand in this week. She says they are much harder than he English A level ones. She has also got to do a performance on Friday that she wrote,

Milliways Tue 03-Nov-09 21:15:40

I think that's part of the problem for her - most of her friends are telling her how much spare time / lack of actual work they all have! Still, she wanted the joys of Oxbridge!

Hope your DD's performance goes well

mumeeee Tue 03-Nov-09 23:20:34

My typing is awful. Sorry about that. I don't think she had to write a whole play just a part of one. I think they all have to narate each others perfprmances as well as doing thier own. Not exactly sure how it works.

mumeeee Tue 17-Nov-09 11:13:24

Feeling a bit sad to day, DD2 isn't very well she's had a sore throat and a bad chest for the past few days and I just want to be there for her. She did say last night she's feeling a bit beter. Also I'm worried she's not eating properly.Oh well she'll be home for Christmas and I can fed her up again.

fuzzywuzzywombat Sat 21-Nov-09 17:15:34

My DD went to a uni only an hour away on the train, Ive been to settle her in, and visited once and shes been home once also, b/f and best/f visit her, shes settled in to lovely accomdation gets on with her work, has made new good friends, has 2 part time jobs, still awaiting student loan so all in all its all pretty normal and happy....apart from the fact im absolutley devastated without her, i cry every day, its a supreme effort to do thing (but i do)and i pretty well know im depressed. Im so hugely proud of her and dont want my feelings to spoil her experience but its a massive strain hiding this. Do other Mums feel this? Ive tried to speak to other mums at work etc and they just seem so pleased to get rid of their children, or in another 6 months time will my feelings have all gone away?

mumeeee Sat 21-Nov-09 23:05:51

You do get used to it. DD1 went to uni here in our own town. So although she was in Halls I did see her quite ofeten but did miss her a lot. She's now married and I felt very lost after her and her Dh went to live in London.But that's antother story,
DD2 is about 3 hours drive awy and whie I miss her a lot. I don't often feelsad. Only at times like the othr day when I knew she was ill and I couldn't help her. I've spoken to her since and she is fine now. She'll be coming home in a few weks for Christmas and I'll ebjoy having her home. But I know she is growing up and needs to get on with her life. Having DD3 still at home helps.

Milliways Sun 22-Nov-09 00:04:58

DD is home this weekend as we had her school A level cert night last night. First time we have seen her since she left at the start of term.

She was desparate to find "snacks" in the fridge that could be raided

DS & her have been giggling away together - it's lovely.

Oh, and I got her a load of tinned food to take back with her.

mumeeee Sun 22-Nov-09 23:42:41

Hi Milliways. Has your DD gone back now? I gave DD2 a goody back of food to take back with her when she was here in October. She texted me last night in answer to something that I'd texted her, She finished with I can't wait to se you at Christmas and I love you lots. That bought a tear to my eye.

Milliways Mon 23-Nov-09 17:12:17


Yes, she went back Sunday pm, and met a friend (by pure chance) at Kings Cross so they did the last leg together.

She is so looking forward to having some real relaxation at Christmas - we can all spoil her then.

webwiz Wed 09-Dec-09 08:52:28

Are all the DCs due back soon - DD1 finishes on friday but I'm not picking her up till next tuesday as I think she is going to do a bit of end of term partying. She was home last weekend for her Grandfather's 70th birthday party and she has transformed into a helpful, reasonable person. She is sooo different that we have started referring to her as "the imposter" (you wouldn't believe what a pain she was just before she went away!). She's looking forward to having a rest at Christmas especially as she has a busy end of term with exams and assessments.

Milliways Wed 09-Dec-09 18:53:55

DD finished last week but has a job at the Uni helping out with the students staying over for interviews for next years intake, so comes home next Wed.

She has been set a pile of work to get through in the hols though.

mumeeee Sat 12-Dec-09 12:03:06

DD2 finished on Friday. She is coming homw tomorrow by coach as we are unable to pick her up. We will be taking her back but I'm not sure when her term starts again.
I'm really looking forward to seeing her. It was her 20th birthday on Wednesday (9th) and the first one she has had away from home. I sent her a small parcel ( her proper present is here) and phoned her on her Birthday, She was out with friends and seemed to be having a good time.

mumeeee Fri 15-Jan-10 13:10:40

Took DD2 back to uni on Saturday after having her home for a month. Felt sad leaving her again, but I konw she's happy there and has made lots of friends. Has anyone elses DC's gone back?

webwiz Sun 17-Jan-10 15:36:08

DD1 went back on the 7th so she could get herself sorted out before term started on the 11th. The drive took a bit extra because of all the snow but she was keen to get back and see friends. Its been easier to get used to her being away than it was in September and this will be a shorter term so Easter will be here in no timesmile

saggarmakersbottomknocker Sun 17-Jan-10 15:43:17

ds2 went back last Saturday. He seemed to have more stuff than when he went in September. I loved having him home but worried more about him when he was here then when he's away. At least his student loan money turned up on time this term.

Milliways Sun 17-Jan-10 20:24:58

DD also went back last Saturday, and has just had her first birthday away from home, which is odd. She took a hue cake & all her presents with her as the post hadn't been working around here due to the snow - akthough there was a lot less of the white stuff at Uni end.

She has also got a job abroad for the whole summer, so that will be even stranger

saggarmakersbottomknocker Sun 17-Jan-10 21:50:02

What will she be doing Milliways?

RustyBear Sun 17-Jan-10 21:57:06

Love the way this thread keeps getting revived - can't believe it's nearly 3.5 years since I started it!

DD went back last week, we did the trip to Exeter & back in one day because it was supposed to snow again on Sunday & then it never did.

She's already sorted out next year's house - it was booked by the end of November - it seems to get earlier & earlier!

Milliways Sun 17-Jan-10 22:12:56

Hello Rusty. DD is talking about sharing a house next year! Probably more fun if you all get on.

This thread will be going when your DD has graduated and got a Masters grin

Saggars, she will be working on a campsite (yet to be determined) as receptionist / kids club person.

RustyBear Sun 17-Jan-10 22:23:28

Well, DD had to take a risk on who she shared with for this year - she'd only known them a couple of months before they had to start house hunting! They do seem to get on OK - though next year she'll be in a house with just 4 girls, instead of 4 guys & 2 girls, so it won't always be either football or shooting games on the TV...

Milliways Sun 17-Jan-10 22:39:20

Ah, DD has an advantage then in that the houses are owned by her all girls college

mumeeee Tue 19-Jan-10 13:00:04

DD2 has only been back at uni for 10 days. But my Father in law died on Sunday,we let her know that evening, She seemed fine,but last night we got a phone call from her asking if she could come home. She sounded very upset. We said of course she could come home. So she's coming home this evening for a few days. She's brining some uni work to do and has asked her friends to let her Tutors know. It's nice to know she still wants her Mum and Dad and also that she won't let her work get to gfar behind.

mumof3teens Tue 19-Jan-10 19:48:45

That is sad mumeee. DS1 & DS2 went back to uni on 3rd Jan DS1 is in the middle of his finals. Cannot believe it. He will finish them on Friday and is then home for a week before he goes on 2 month elective. Hate it when they go back, but soon get back in the swing again. DS3 just finished AS exams.

mumeeee Sun 24-Jan-10 23:17:40

Well DD2 went back to uni again today,she has assesments this week. She is looking and feeling much beter than when she came homeon Tuesdat. She is coming back next wekend for the funeral. It's in Birmingham and she wants to travel up with us,

mumeeee Thu 15-Apr-10 12:16:48

Well DD2 has just left to go back to uni after her Easter Break. She has only been home for 12 days this time and has been out quite a lot catching up with old freinds. always feel strange after she's left but I know she is doing wel at uni and has made Loads of new friends. I can't believe she has nearly finished her first year at uni it only seems like 5 minutes ago we were leaving her for the first time.
She is now looking to Share a house with a group of friends nex year. They have got one house in mind which is right near her campus. They are viewing it this week. The only trouble is they will have to pay rent for the summer if they want it. They do really want it so if they do get it she probably won't be home much in the Summer.
How is everyone else feeling noe thieir Dc's are coming to the end of thier first year?

webwiz Thu 15-Apr-10 16:27:07

I can't believe these first two terms are over with! DD1 has been home for the full four weeks over Easter as she wanted to have a rest (she was ill with mumps for the first week) and get on with some revision for her exams which start in a couple of weeks. She's upstairs packing at the moment (I can hear very loud thudding music coming from her bedroom) as I'm taking her back tomorrow.

She already has a house sorted out for next year and annoyingly the rental period starts on August 1st even the term doesn't start till the end of September. They wanted the house though so have gone for it anyway.

We are just starting the whole university process with DD2 who's in year 12 now. I can't imagine how quiet it will be without them both - I won't have an empty nest though as DS(13)will still be at home. I've told him as he'll be the only one at home I'll be able to shower him with love, he looked horrifiedgrin

mumeeee Fri 16-Apr-10 00:02:44

DD2 has only had 2 weeks off for Easter. But she did have a reading week in February. Which meant she didn't have to go into uni.
She is a bit late sorting out a house but they have first refusal on the one I mentioned. Her group of friends just need to talk about it and find out if they are all happy to pay rent for the summer.

pippop1 Wed 12-May-10 16:31:52

I sometimes send my DS an online shopping order from one of the supermarkets. It's really appreciated and the delivery charge is usually free if you spend over a certain amount or choose a strange time of day. If not it's not too much and you can send them heavy stuff (such as washing powder and toilet rolls) that are difficult to carry without a car. If you send cider/beer you will be v popular and it's better than sending money as you know they will eat well.

mumeeee Mon 17-May-10 12:23:28

pippop1. We can't send big deliveries as at the halls where she is at the moment won't wxcept them. It is one big building with several floors diveded into flats of six or 7 bedrooms. They go to the office to collect their post. She and her friends have now got the house I mentioned. It's right near the campusso she still won't have any travel costs, They can move in in June if they want to.

pippop1 Thu 20-May-10 09:46:23

No, we couldn't send deliveries until he was in a shared house in the second year. In fact two things (books from Amazon) that I sent to halls never actually got to him as they had an unmonitored post room with pigeon-holes one per 8 people in the flat.

mumeeee Mon 24-May-10 23:19:16

pippop1 that's asbame about the books. We can and do send DD2 small parcels and she has all ways got them. I think this is because there is a security gaurd or another member of staff on the site at all times and they monitor the post.

pippop1 Tue 25-May-10 16:25:51

When he had a cold one day I sent him a fleecy blanket. The poor thing only had a duvet. I have to confess I am a (possibly overly) concerned mother.

mumeeee Tue 25-May-10 19:14:35

I think I can be that way to and I expect a lpot of other Mums are. I send DD2 little bits and pieces every now and again. She loves silly things. I bought her a fleecy blanket when she came home for a few days and she tok it back with her, I do try and not send her money for food as I'm trying hard to trust her to eat properly and we want her to learn to budget, She is doinf well and hasn't run out of money yet. I know she buys fruit.

mumeeee Tue 25-May-10 19:16:51

Sorry about my typing.

mumeeee Wed 16-Jun-10 22:35:28

How are all your DC's doing? DD2 has now finished her first year at uni and she actually hasn't run out of money? She is staying in Kingston for most of the summer holidays. She now has a house that she is sharing with friends and is already in the process of moving in. She has managed to get her self a job for the summer. She'll be working Tuesday to Friday evenings and all daySaturdays, So it will actually fit in with university when she goes back, She has also got invoved with some Drama group up there, DH and I are a bit sad that we won't see her much in the summer but we are very proad that she's doing well at uni and has made a lot of friends and that she tried hard to get a job,

RustyBear Thu 19-Aug-10 12:14:55

Time to revive this thread, maybe!

Makes me a bit nostalgoc to see it - I started it when DS was off to Warwick, he's now been graduated a year & DD is about to start her last year.

Lilymaid Thu 19-Aug-10 12:33:39

I was on this thread when DS1 was 2nd year. He's now been at work for two years and is going back to university for an MSc this year.
Meanwhile DS2 is on a gap year and will be returning to start university at the end of September.
Warning - from our experience in DS2's gap year, an empty nest can be great! Your car is your own, no worrying in middle of night whether they will come back from clubbing, free to do what you want when you want, you don't have to cater for their food fads/gigantic appetites...
longingly in DS2's room and gives the teddy a cuddle ...

Mummifixit Wed 15-Sep-10 08:03:56

My DD is moving into halls this Saturday. I have been a single parent for many years and she is my only child. I am so proud of her for achievements and the fact that she is going to uni. But, I am dreading her going - the house is going to feel so empty and quiet. I do work full time, and I have started a college course, and so will have something to keep me busy. I am absolutely dreading dropping her off - I don't know how I will prevent myself from being in floods of tears sad. Any suggestions of helpful things / techniques would be very much appreciated.

mumeeee Thu 16-Sep-10 00:06:27

DD2 went back to uni for her second year last week. I had already ben through my eldrst DD going to uni but she was in our home town so could meet her regulary. DD2 is in Kingston which is about 3 hours drive away from us. Any way DH and I took her to her Hall when she started last year ( this year she is in a shared house and went back by herself). We spent a few hours looking around the town with her and had lunch together, We left her to unpack as that was what she wanted and I found it was better not to hang around to long. I phoned her quite often to start with. But now we keep in touch by text and I phone her about once a week. She sometimes phones home usually if she needs help with something or som advice,

donna123 Thu 16-Sep-10 15:20:19

Can anyone help with an idea for a going-away present.
The back bedroom is full of pots & pans and other practical stuff but I need an idea for a nice thing to remind DD that her mum&dad love her. I'm not going to get clothes or jewelery because it's bound to be all wrong, so what is a fail-safe?
In my dreams, years ago, I was going to do her a mixed tape ... which is just a little bit obsolete these days. sad

mumof3teens Thu 16-Sep-10 18:47:11

Just dropped DS2 back at Uni today sad. He has gone back a bit earlier as he has a job at the uni for 3 days helping freshers settle into their halls. I think a nice pressie for donna123 to give might be a basket (or box) full of small goodies that her DD would like - favourite bits of food, nice girly shower/bath things, magazine etc I know my DS1 really appreciated a photo of all of us that he had on his wall. mummyfixit - Your DD will probably be fine - I would take a door wedge to prop open her uni door and take along a few small bottles of beer or biccies/cakes and invite other freshers into her room for a drink/cake as they walk past. Both DS1 and 2 did this and both arranged to meet up in the common room at 6pm with other freshers. At least then you know she will be doing something with some other newbies, which will make you feel better. I was upset taking mine to uni but just had to remind myself that they were both doing something they had wanted to do for a long time. As mumeeee said, arrange to speak to her or text her once a week or so - the terms really do fly by and it will be great to see her and catch up with all she has been doing when she comes home.

mumeeee Thu 16-Sep-10 19:59:51

When DD2 went to uniu we bought her a cable to commect her laptop to the internet. I also gave her a box of basic supplies like coffee and hot chocalte. I emailed her a family photo during the first week.
During her first year I sent her little bits and pieces everynow and again. Thingslike small bottls of toiletries,silly stationary stuf and other bits and pieces I know she likes, I will do this again mow she has gone back

thelunar66 Thu 16-Sep-10 20:04:20

DS off to Lancaster on 4th October... that's me and DH alone now.

God I'm gonna miss my boy. My baby. sad

And Lancaster is 3 hours away, so no whizzing off to rescue him like we had to with DD who was 30 mins down the road in Lincoln.

He is also waaaaay less street wise than DD.

donna123 Fri 17-Sep-10 08:32:13

We have been collecting household goods throughout the year, as we have spotted bargains, and will be taking that down. The other stuff we will get when we drop her off because we don't know the dimensions of the room yet and also with heavy stuff, like groceries, it's daft to cart it all the way down there when there is a supermarket just up the road. We have also sussed out where Ikea and Wilkinsons are!
Good thinking about the internet cable, mumeeee, because we are on wifi at home. DD thinks the S.U. sells them.

Toiletries and stationery sound like nice ideas. Along with a large wodge of cash so she can afford to be sociable during Freshers.grin

mumeeee Fri 17-Sep-10 10:58:27

We didn't give her any cash as we paid er rent and wanted her to learn to budget straight away, She did have £300 of her own money which she had managed to save, She should have had more but while she was at home wasn't very good at budgeting. She learnt during her first year and is now much better at budgeting, Oh she did have £500 left to her from her late Grandfather. She didn't get that until towards the end of her first year and she used for deposit and rent on the shared house she is now in. She moved inwhen she finished uni for the year. Stayed up ther for most of the summer as she had a job for a short while, Anyway I'm going on a bit. Just wanted to say young people grow up during their first year at uni.

Bearcat Fri 17-Sep-10 17:06:26

My youngest DS was 19 last Saturday and rather than giving him all money for his B/D I bought him a Roberts Alarm/radio with an ipod docking station, and its brilliant.
He is off to the same uni on Sunday that his brother graduated from after a 4 year engineering degree.
Oldest son has been having a massive clearout of all his stuff this week before he starts work and has come up trumps with all sorts of stuff (stationary) that the youngest will find very useful.
The pile of stuff in the hall is gradually getting bigger (youngest DS has done nothing to assist here as he has been woring full time for the last 8 weeks and he's pretty laid back about it all. Hopefully he'll pack his clothes tomorrow).
We won't be empty nesters in the short term as oldest has decided to stay here with us for a while at least, particularly as we live in SW London and he can commute to work and all his old friends also seem to be back from uni living at home!
In fact his cousin who is starting a PhD in London is coming to live with us next weekend until he can sort himself out with accommodation so things aren't going to change much numbers wise in our house!

dizzydoris58 Fri 17-Sep-10 17:49:47

Hi all,
I 'm new to this thread and to DC going off to uni.
DS has started at drama school last week. the school doesn't have halls so he had to find a house and people to share right from the beginning. Luckily the school held a meeting up day back in July and had a FB group so that they could get to know others on the course.
DS moved into his house last sat, unfortunatley one of the rooms is quite small, they drew straws and he got the small room, he's quite bummed about that, but its been agreed he can pay a bit less. sorry we can pay a bit less! the loan hasn't come thru yet, although we have had the confirmation letter.
Anyway he is having a great time, making loads of friends during Freshers and finding his way around London. Drama schools are small compared to uni and he says the 2nd and 3rd years are really welcoming.
Me and DH are missing him like mad and have realised we did too much for him at home washing, cooking etc. We still have DD at home for 1 year and then she will be off. not looking forward to that!!!.
Its very weird cooking and looking after 3 not 4 still i suppose you get used to it. But at least I know I'm not alone.

mumeeee Fri 17-Sep-10 21:09:50

dizzydoris58. He won't get his loan until he has been enrolled and the uni confirm that he is doing the course. DD2 got her loan today. She had to go and scan her confirmation leter in at uni earlier this week.

teahouse Fri 17-Sep-10 22:27:34

Dropped DS1 off to Plymouth yesterday - 4 hour drive and lots of tears when we parted. Just me and DS2 now so a big change.

He seems a little more settled today and with Freshers week next week I am hoping he'll be OK. Not in halls but Uni approved accomodation.

Isn't it strange seeing them go. All those years he had me to fall back on, and now he's got to learn to do a lot for himself.

Waiting to hear about loan and grant but fingers crossed all will be OK. so much to worry about

Drayford Sat 18-Sep-10 22:31:11

DD off to London tomorrow. It's not so bad for me as she's been at boarding school for her sixth form, but her bedroom does look really bare

She is absolutely straining at the bit and can't wait to get away from boring old Devon!

I've taken MN advice and am sending her off with a chocolate cake and a bottle of vodka!!!

donkeyderby Sat 18-Sep-10 23:50:20

I can't prepare myself for how I am going to be when I drop DD off in Norwich on Saturday. She's quite shy and a bit worried she won't make friends. Bless her, she's booking stuff up for Freshers Week in a real effort to be out there and doing stuff. I think she probably will be ok, but I can't make it happen for her. I have to stand back and let her go. It's very hard, and I feel quite weepy just thinking about it.

Do you think there will be a surplass of chocolate cake and vodka? I'm worried she'd drink all the vodka in one to get over her nerves, so I'm sticking to buying wine.

mumeeee Sun 19-Sep-10 16:01:04

donkeyderby. DD2 started uni last year at the age of 19. She was quite shy bit soon made friends. She had alredy found some studnts on a Facebook group who were goiong to be living in the same halls as her and on the same course. |She made lots of frinds and had a great year. She is now sharing a house with some of her friends. She went back early to help on Freshers week, Her uni starts tomorow and they had freshers week last week.
She has grwon a lot in confidence and also learnt to manage her money. I didn't send her with any chocoalte cake or vodka, But did give her hot chocolate and her favourite biscuits,

saggarmakersbottomknocker Sun 19-Sep-10 16:17:54

My middle one has gone abroad for his second year <sob>

webwiz Sun 19-Sep-10 16:19:14

Donkeyderby is your DD at UEA? If so don't worry! DD1 is about to start her second year there and she made friends really easily (She wasn't very confident and didn't like new situations). Most people in the halls of residence are first years and they are all keen to get to know each other.

Manda25 Sun 19-Sep-10 19:21:39

We are in London and my 19 yr old leaves for 'up North' in 6 days time!! I have been trying not to think about it ...(reading this thread has made me cry !!) We have been shopping and have got all the pots and pans etc. .... and 2 suitcases full of food!

It is a strange mixture of feelings !

Trishee Mon 20-Sep-10 21:32:40

Just dropped of DS1 to start at Huddersfield yesterday. Despite having two other kids, I'm feeling devastated. We've always lived in Wimbledon, so it's a bloody long way away.

My DS1 has always been academically very bright, but a complete airhead - totally impractical. Got a text from him today saying that he went for a walk last night and got lost for three hours !! This isn't helping my worries about him any.

I'm sure the whole experience will do him a world of good, but I expect a lot of calls of "Mum, what do I do about....?" in the next couple of weeks.

donkeyderby Mon 20-Sep-10 22:29:21

Thanks webwiz and mummeee. Makes me feel much better. DD's been on the Facebook sites and has chatted to people in her block and her course. Quite a few boasts about gap years and exotic travels but they can't all be well-travelled sophisticats.

mumeeee Tue 21-Sep-10 10:22:15

donkeyderby. You are right they are'nt all sophisticated travellers. DD2 spent her gap yeer working for a short time in the Disney shop. Diobg some dance classes and also a couple of shows ( she is doing acting and media at uni). Most of the time she seemed to just be habging round the house or going out with friends.

donkeyderby Mon 27-Sep-10 16:18:57

Well, we dropped her off at UEA....I feel fine one minute, and then my stomache gives a lurch out of nowhere and I realise that she is the first thing I think of in the morning and the last thing I think of at night. It feels so strange, like I've lost her.

I'm pleased not to have the extra clearing up she generates and not to have to cook a vegetarian meal every night that she won't eat because she's already had cheese on toast at 5pm. But I'm so worried she's not making friends. She says she is on good terms with her fellow students in her block in halls, but doesn't 'have anything in common with them'...that's 14 people she doesn't have any thing in common with!

When does the worrying ease off?!

toomuchempathy Mon 27-Sep-10 17:20:09

we are now alone in what feels like an empty house after dd2 went last week . she is fine and really enjoying herself but we feel lost and trying to find things to do other than work & Tv that will not feel as though dd's are 'missing' ! Any ideas ?

Lilymaid Mon 27-Sep-10 21:58:19

We too are now official empty nesters. DS2 had a gap year last year, so was out of the country for several months. We dropped him off at university on Saturday. I felt a little sad this evening returning from work - as on Friday DS2 had picked me up so we could do a supermarket shop and of course, he wasn't there today!
Anyway, DS2 has a massive room in hall - what used to be a double room, so there is one large room and a smaller area through an archway. All the furniture that is there is a bed, built in wardrobe, desk, small chest of drawers, desk chair and some wall shelving above the desk. So, has anyone any suggestions on how to use up the space? We are considering taking some camping chairs/table/bean bag and any other odd bits and pieces that can be taken to pieces and transported home at the end of the year (he doesn't have to pack up at Christmas or Easter). Any further suggestions - especially for storage furniture would be welcome!

mumeeee Mon 27-Sep-10 22:52:56

donkeyderby She will make friend. When DD1 went to uni in 3005 she said she had nothing in common with the other students in her block in halls, But she did make friends and now at 23 she is still in touch with a few of them and her 2 best friends were bridesmaids at her wedding last year. DD2 is quite shy but as I said she has also made frinds during her first year at uni.
My brothers oldest son ( my nephew)went to uni this weekend and apparently my niece aged 10 cried all last night about her missing big brother and couldn't get to sleep!

Milliways Tue 28-Sep-10 18:40:22

DD goes back on Saturday - and has just found that her shared house (owned by the college) has a Washing machine! She is sooo spoiled this year, 4 best friends sharing a lovely place, cleaner & gardener provided, literally opposite the college door

The 4 girls now have a bedroom each, 2 bathrooms & 2 kitchens (one on each floor), a tiny sitting room - with sofa, kitchen table & chairs, and a 180' garden. Result grin

donkeyderby Wed 29-Sep-10 09:43:38

Thanks again mumeeee. Lovely and comforting to hear about your DD. My DD is terrible at keeping in contact and her silence creates a space in which I can project all my worst fears! I notice she has a new 'friend' on Facebook from the Uni, so that's something.

webwiz Wed 29-Sep-10 13:04:09

My DD's house is a bit different from your DD's Milliways! It is very messy and all the boys have their own gaming consoles so they have 2 Xboxs, several PS3s and a Nintendo 64. They have already had a complaint from the Postgraduate student who lives next door because everyone was playing different music loudly and she couldn't get any studying done. I think they bought her a bottle of wine and promised to synchronize music choice.

donkeyderby -I work on the principle of "no news is good news"! If she isn't contacting you it means she's spending time doing other stuff.

toomuchempathy Wed 29-Sep-10 15:06:39

Lilywhite - could have spare bed for visitors , could charge small fee for friends visitors !! ?? Also space for all those poor souls who have to move out over holidays to leave stuff behind . otherwise bean bags sound good , or a sofa ?

toomuchempathy Wed 29-Sep-10 15:09:07

whoops just re- read it and beds & sofas aren't usually very transportable ! but maybe some are !?

Lilymaid Wed 29-Sep-10 15:25:39

Oh, yes, I could suggest to DS2 that he rent out part of his room as storage - he'd quite like to develop a reputation as an entrepreneur and earn a bit of money!

mumeeee Wed 29-Sep-10 23:41:38

Milliways . Thats good . DD2 has also founfd a house that is right behind the campus. We have seen it and it's a very nice house well actually like a cottage and has an apple tree in the garden. They have a gardener but not a cleaner.

Milliways Thu 30-Sep-10 16:28:51

It'll be nice visiting in the spring when we can sit in their gardens.

TeenageWildlife Mon 04-Oct-10 10:20:56

First day without my DD. Dropped her off yesterday so now just me and DS. Where did the time go? I miss all the stages of her, her warmth and her chaos. I know she'll be fine but I just feel so sad and heartbroken.sad

mumeeee Mon 04-Oct-10 11:37:48

TeenageWildlife Well done to both you and your DD for getting her this far in life. You will feel sad for a litle while, But you will get used to it. Arrange a time to phone her and in the mean time send her texts. I phone DD2 once w week, Usually on a Friday. I also send her silly bits and pieces from time to time.

amothersplaceisinthewrong Mon 04-Oct-10 11:44:13

My DD, our second has started at a Unit 200 miles away and is loving it. But then she spent the last year backpacking in Oz/South east Asia so is well used to being away from home and home comforts.

DS doing a masters only 50 miles away.

We email/text regularly - no set rules about this, and of course DS is much worse than DD about communication!!

We are LOVING being a couple again! And the bliss of waking up and finding the house exactly how I left it the night before!! Not sure I was born to be a parent actually!!

TeenageWildlife Tue 05-Oct-10 09:22:30

That's the trouble, I was born to be a parent and feel like my right arm has gone. Smelt her pillows this morning and miss her so much. sad

Glee4mee Wed 06-Oct-10 13:57:06

Hi another mum feeling not quite whole at the moment. Text DD1 this am and haven't had a read receipt yet - I'm imagining all sorts! Will i remember this feeling when I'm doing the washing in December?

agedknees Wed 06-Oct-10 17:52:50

dd went back on Thursday. She had a horrid house last year, but is in a nice clean flat this year (5 sharing).

She sent a photo of her room on Sunday to say it was still tidy.

Feel better leaving her in a clean flat. Hated leaving her in house of horrors last year.

toomuchempathy Wed 06-Oct-10 18:30:46

To TW yes it is sad ! Both DH and I feel as though the house is empty and as you say, they are missing. I have tried to be very busy nad planned a short break somewhere we hadn't been as a family . Then they both decide to want to come home on ssame weekend and the same as end of our break > so hol rearranged so we can collect dd2 . Looking forward to this but not the week after when all will seem very quiet again . We are not alone but not everybody talks about it , people always say Oh you'll have your life back ,,but I LIKED MY LIFE WITH CHILDREN !! it will get better !!!!

figroll Wed 06-Oct-10 21:47:17

It's a week and a half since my dd1 went and I am slowly getting used to it mainly because I still have dd2 who is 15. She doesn't text unless I text her, which I am surprised about as she was a very thoughtful person until she went away. She seems to have gone completely wild staying out until 5 and getting blind drunk on spirits. The drinking culture is a bit of a worry, to be honest.

toomuchempathy Sat 09-Oct-10 07:36:20

fresher's week/ fortnight ( mine was 3 days ) can be very enticing . DD1 was totally exhausted after a medics week and came home for weekend . DD2 texted that she was very tired and had 3 hours of lectures later that day , when asked why she was tired before the lectures , replied that she hadn't had much sleep in the last two weeks !Hopefully when the work kicks in your dd will have got over the freedom and freshers temptations and will be fine !

ajandjjmum Wed 13-Oct-10 20:26:38

DS - normally quite a sociable soul - didn't enjoy freshers that much. He is settling down now, has lots of contact time and has got himself about 10 hours work a week at the supermarket! I think he'll feel much happier now that he's got some structure to his week. Both he and his girlfriend have said that they were surprised at how lonely they felt at times, and I know quite a few people who are taking time to settle down.

donkeyderby Thu 14-Oct-10 22:03:19

Reporting back after a roller-coaster 3 weeks...DD went incommunicado for 4 days after arrival and kept going offline on FB as soon as I tried to 'chat'. Phone switched off. Finally got her and she said she was lonely and was having 'crippling panic attacks'.

Cue 48 hours of blind mum-panic. I felt so desperate, not being near her. Phoned mental health services at the uni, just to direct her where to go. DD incommunicado once again. Aaaagghh.

She finally sent cheery text to say she was busy staying up until 3am getting drunk and discussing Harry Potter and Dr Who with flatmates (she's a bit nerdy). Enjoying her course and gathering 'friends on FB slowly but surely). Last seen in a FB pic, arm in arm with male flatmate!

Incommunicado again, until phone call asking for money. I said no, she put the phone down.

Have temporarily turned her room into a heavenly sanctuary/sewing room for moi. Loving that and getting used to her complete lack of interest in staying in contact with me! It's been an experience so far!

webwiz Thu 14-Oct-10 22:16:45

I agreed with DD1 that she would send me a weekly email to keep in touch that way she would be in charge of keeping in touch and I wouldn't be encroaching on her fun. She's in the process of signing up for a year in North America for her third year and I have a million questions about it but I suppose it will have to wait till the Christmas holidays.

aquaagua Thu 14-Oct-10 23:14:36

skype is a great way of keeping in touch especially if it has a camera - sometimes you can how the offspring look!

Mine is in her second year and now loving it but found the first year difficult as she loves home and is five hours away.
I do miss her but not like the first few weeks when it was if a limb had been cut off. We get on really well but they have to build their own lives but hopefully she will always be close to me and my husband

figroll Fri 15-Oct-10 11:17:58

I am glad, reading this, that I am not the only one who hardly hears a thing! I feel quite used to there just being 3 of us now, but it would be nice to hear something occasionally. Still I expect it means she is enjoying herself.

Lilymaid Fri 15-Oct-10 13:45:24

You generally only hear when they need money. [Mother of uncommunicative sons emoticon]
If they don't contact you it is probably because they are having a great time.

mrsscoob Fri 15-Oct-10 14:40:30

Ha Ha I am so glad to have found this forum/thread. I was fine about my son going to uni and quite excited for him but he really upset me with his lack of contact, I felt like he was doing it deliberately or something and I actually felt quite down about it, reading this has made me feel much better and realised it is quite normal. Sorry about the girl having panic attacks that must be really worrying I hope she is better now.

donkeyderby Sat 16-Oct-10 12:58:56

Thank God I'm not the only one with a child who won't get in contact! It's SO frustrating and worrying (especially as I'm the mum of the one who said she was getting panic attacks). Spoke to an old friend the other day whose DD has barely been in contact over her 3 years at uni, except for money and at holiday time. I guess they must know we're here if they need us. Thank God for Facebook too - it's the only way I have any idea what she's doing and she looks quite happy in her photos on there......

mumeeee Sat 16-Oct-10 13:31:19

donkeyderby I'm not on Facebook but DH is. However DD2 has not aded him as a friend as she doesn't get her friends who have parents as friends on facebook. She'd rather just have her friends and sisters on it. |Dhdoes sometimes find out what she's up to as he is friends with DD1 on there and of course DD2 does send her messages. She know that and is okay with it.
She does text me but rarely phones. Mainly because she hasn't many minutes on her phone contract but has unlimeted texts.
DH and I were in London yesterday we had benn staying with DD1 and her husband, So we met DD2 for lunch in oxford Stret, Spent a pleasant couple of hours with her before we hasd to go and get our coach back to Cardiff.

WhereDidTheYearsGo Tue 19-Oct-10 19:07:42

Just found this thread again - was on it near the start when dd1 went off to uni - popped back up when dd2 went and now it is the turn of my youngest. He's a boy though - and I can sympathise with all those who have found their ds's don't communicate much. I too kept thinking it was something I had done wrong or that he was glad to escape as we had always chatted loads when he was at home! However DH assures me that ds will feel he has no need to communicate if he is doing fine. Doesn't help me much as I was very teary to start with as my nest is now empty, but it's not about me really I know. Getting used to it now but it doesn't mean I like it much. :-(

Reesie1967 Tue 23-Nov-10 21:55:48

Hi I just found this thread - and am glad that I'm not the only one who's finding this a bit tough. When I left my DD at uni all seemed fine, I even congratulated myself that I had made the transition so seamlessly. The truth though is that I probably put it to the back of my mind - and now that I start to think about it, I really do miss her loads.
She's been good at keeping in touch, and due to work meetings, I've met her a couple of times for dinner (even though she's 4.5 hours away)- but that just makes me a bit sadder.
Meanwhile DD is having a fab time - which is great - and I have DS (16) at home. How on earth will I manage if/when he goes to uni???
Grrrrrr - I was so not expecting to feel like this!
I guess as I was hopeless at leaving them when they were little I shouldn't be surprised. But I am. I do hope it's easier after Christmas

amothersplaceisinthewrong Tue 23-Nov-10 22:00:23

Both of ours are now at Uni. It's wonderful. Just like being a couple pre-kids.

webwiz Tue 23-Nov-10 22:30:08

I found it a bit easier after Christmas Reesie1967 because you know they can manage and have come home at the end of term in one piece.

I'm already having some wobbles about next year when DD2 goes and DD1 will be having a year in America and so will be miles away. It will just be me, DH and DS(13) and they both think talking is overratedhmm

funnyperson Wed 24-Nov-10 15:02:39

My DS went to uni this October I felt so proud and happy as he is in a lovely hall of residence near Marylebone and he is having a great time and loves his course and has a girlfriend and contrary to all my fears has met his essay deadlines and is not on drugs. However I broke my preuni promise to only ring him once a week within 3 days because I missed him so and now I speak with him every three days or so- not for long- he doesnt seem to mind. Took him out to dinner with his sister who is still at home in 6th week which went down well on both sides.

larry5 Thu 25-Nov-10 14:20:35

Dd went off in September and has been home once since then. We speak about twice a week and communicate by e-mail sometimes.

Unfortunately I have had to sort a medical problem for her - she was referred to a consultant by the uni doctor so had to ring choose and book who gave her another number who then gave her a third number. I rang Patient Advice for her and it was all sorted but it is very difficult thinking of them as responsible people when they have problems and you still want to look after them.

I am looking forward to Christmas although she has a job for a week (she is going to be an elf).

mumeeee Thu 25-Nov-10 15:34:58

I Know what you mean lary5. DD1 is in her second year at uni but still phones us if she has a problem that she is not sure how to sort out, She also just phones for advice sometimes which is good.

harbingerofdoom Wed 09-Feb-11 22:05:44

I've just realised that both of them are starting this Sept. DD1 is on a gap year and couldn't decide (despite A*'A B). Is now over the wobbles. DD2 doing A levels this year with offers from the unis she wants.

mumof3teens Mon 14-Feb-11 15:18:32

Well DS3 has now got all 5 offers - v pleased and proud of him. He is very run down at atm with Glandular Fever, so struggling to keep up with school and work. Needs to decide on firm and back-up, which is a great situation to be in. Still ploughing round the post-offer open days and changing his mind with each new visit! Can't believe DH and I will be on our own in the house for the first time in 24 years shock.

webwiz Mon 14-Feb-11 21:40:55

Hope your DS feels better soon mumof3teens we've just seen the back of a glandular fever flare up over christmas and throughout the january modules. We'll have to wait and see how much it affected DD2's results. She's been lucky enough to have 5 offers as well and is trying to choose. We've got two more post offer open days to go and then its decision time.

DS is in year 9 so I've got a few years to go until its just me and DH. Both DD's will have finished university by then so I'll have to persuade them not to come back to live at home!

mumof3teens Tue 15-Feb-11 17:02:58

Thanks webwiz he looks v pale and is tired all the time. He started in Jan and had 2 lots of ABs for 'tonsillitis'. He had a blood test which confirmed GF, but the Doc said his white cell count was low. It had improved last week, but they are testing him again in 2 weeks. He went in to the Jan exams then came straight home to bed sad
We have just Sheffield and Bristol open days then decision time. What does your DD want to study?

webwiz Tue 15-Feb-11 18:55:30

DD2 wants to do Maths. Bath is her first choice and she's choosing between Nottingham and York for insurance. We are going to York next week and spending a night there so we can look at the shops too.

GF is a horrible thing and the only thing that helps is rest. DD2 couldn't eat very much because of her throat and ended up really thin. Her clothes were hanging off her and she was really upset about it so we've been living in the house of chocolate. I have to try and not eat it though as I do not need to gain any weight at all!

RustyBear Tue 15-Feb-11 19:34:39

Nice to see this thread is still going 4.5 years after I started it!

maryz Tue 15-Feb-11 20:25:47

This must surely be the longest-running thread ever not to reach the 1,000 posts smile.

Talk about "slow and steady wins the race".

mumof3teens Tue 15-Feb-11 21:21:57

York itself is fab- we are popping over there with ds2 this weekend (he is at Leeds). He has a friend at York studying maths who really loves it there.

phoenix09 Mon 28-Feb-11 23:44:50

My husband has never been a great communicator. Since our daughters both started Uni in Sept 10 and we have been on our own alot - it has highlighted the problem. The house feels very silent now and i'm sure he is depressed ans really misses our 2nd daughter in particular as he is VERY close to her.

This was made worse recently by the fact that she has just started seeing someone at Uni. Are their any men out there that have experienced this and can give me a few tips of how to deal with this? He is lucky enough to be able to pick and choose the work he does and does not need to work fulltime, but he is choosing to hang around the house alot more now on the computer or watching daytime Tv and I can't get him to snap out of it !!!

Jacinth123 Thu 14-Apr-11 20:17:16

Hi! I am new to mumsnet- just found it when looking for "empty nest" on the computer. My daughter hasn't even left yet but plans to do so in September. It is something I have been dreading for years and can't believe we are nearly there. When I was eighteen I couldn't wait to leave home but now it is hard to be the one left behind!
My daughter has three university offers and awaiting one interview result. That one is much closer to home but the place she likes the best is the furthest away!
Phoenix09, my husband sounds very similar to yours. How are you getting on now?
How is everyone else doing as the end of the school year is coming closer and university decisions are being made?

webwiz Thu 14-Apr-11 21:55:12

Hi Jacinth123 DD2 is off to university this year (hopefully!) and am dreading it as she is such good company to have around. I know I'm going to miss her, it just leaves us with DS(14) at home. I have been through it before so I know that the first term is the worst but once you get through that its ok and they do come home again. DD1 is in her second year at university and is home at the moment for Easter so our house is very noisy at the moment!

DD1 is spending a year in America so I'm not sure what that will feel like because she will be very far away - she will be home for Christmas though so I imagine January will be very quiet when both the girls go away again.

mumof3teens Wed 20-Apr-11 22:50:11

DS3 off to uni in sept (hopefully). Will feel v strange with no babies at home anymore. DS1 has a job from beginning of August (if he passes his finals), so will really be leaving home this time. Feel quite sad about it, but obv very happy for him.

Milliways Mon 25-Apr-11 21:55:34

Hi Rusty! I saw on another thread that your DD from the OP is about to graduate! Will she return home or does she have a job lined up?

DD had an internship this holiday so we only saw he for a few days. She went back today as had a supervision this pm. (DS is taking his Hogwarts GCSE's next month too).

Has your DS left the nest for good now too?

Jacinth123 Sat 30-Apr-11 13:02:54

DD now has four offers but still hasn't yet made up her mind. I have to try to be as objective as I can and not worry if she is going to pick the furthest away! The latest offer could involve living at home but it probably isn't the best thing for her to do as she wants her independence.
I am looking into some volunteer work at the moment so I won't spend my time just wondering what she is doing. She is away this weekend doing sports at one of the northern university towns she may go to.
Hope everyone else is enjoying the sunshine and holidays.

RustyBear Wed 15-Jun-11 17:29:07

Milliways - I've only just seen your last post - hope you're still around!

It was actually DS I started the thread about, he was the first to go - he's been out two years now, but hasn't yet got a permanent job - lots of internships, both paid & unpaid, the latest one he got on a recommendation from a previous 'employer', which is a good sign, I think. He's trying to get into publishing, which isn't easy at the best of times, even worse at the moment.

DD has just finished her Psychology degree at Exeter - in fact her results came out half an hour ago - she got a 2:1 which she's very pleased with. She's now looking for a job which will allow her to do a day-release course in counselling - she wants to work with problem teenagers (she's had a lot of experience already, as she's probably been out with most of them in this area.... grin)

Lilymaid Wed 15-Jun-11 21:29:35

I was posting at the beginning of this thread in 2006 when DS1 was going into his second year at university. Since then he's graduated, worked for two years, earned enough to keep himself and pay the fees for an MSc and is now completing that ... so hopefully he'll be off to another job in the autumn.
Now DS1 has just finished his first year at university, and if he takes a year out in business, I will still have a student DC at university until summer 2014.
I think I must be a student removals expert after moving them up and down the country and from student house to student house for the last 6 years.

RustyBear Wed 15-Jun-11 22:13:36

Yes, lilymaid, I remember - it was you that advised chocolate cake and vodka for getting to know people - definitely worked for both my two!

mumof3teens Sat 16-Jul-11 17:22:45

Thhought I just posted this but I can't find it! Have literally just waved goodbye to DS1 (makes me cry just typing that). He starts his job on Monday and is moving to a lovely house with three friends. I am very happy for him - just sad at the end of an era. Tried really hard not to cry in front of him ;) We have his graduation on Wednesday to look forward to, so I know I will see him soon and he has been away at uni for 5 years for heavens sake! Always knew he was coming home in the hols though. DS2 finished uni for summer yesterday thankfully. DS3 interrailing for a month at the mo, and hopefully will start uni in September (really empty nest then though....).

BakeliteBelle Thu 04-Aug-11 23:48:57

I was here a year ago, really worried that DD was having panic attacks and hating university and barely getting in contact with me when she first went. A year on, she has really enjoyed herself, loved being independent (how she does it I don't know as she lives in chaos at home and doesn't leave her bed), and has met some good friends who she is moving in with.

I know it doesn't work out so well for others, but I am so relieved. I was in a terrible state when she left home and seemed to be failing to enjoy herself at all, but it all changed so quickly. Her new boyfriend spent his first week in his room, miserable as sin, but is now loving it too. So far, so good.

suzieglue Tue 09-Aug-11 13:16:34

Eek!! Results day is fast approaching and hopefully my only child will be off to Uni in Sept. Any tips? need to keep happy, smiley for her as its so exciting, but feel sick to my stomach at the thought of her leaving home. Where did all that time go....?

mumeeee Tue 09-Aug-11 17:19:11

I have been there twice, D1 24 went to uni a few years ago, She was in Cardiff which is our home city so we still saw her quite a bit, She's now 24 and married which was much harder than her going to uni as she was suddenly making a new family but it was fine, DD2 is going into her 3rd year in September, She came home regularly in the first year but now has a job in Kingston so has stayed up there, She's really enjoyed being at uni and has made lots of friends, i worried about her at first as she was 3 hours drive away from us and also she wasn't very good with money, But she surprised us budgeted much beter thn we thought she would and keeps in contact with usm When she went I tried not to text or phone her every day, noe we talk on the phone about once a week occansinly in can go to 2 weeks but we text in between times, I also keep in touch with DD1 the same as DD2, I still have DD3 at home.

suzieglue Wed 10-Aug-11 10:11:04

Thanks mumeeee sounds like the transition is not going to be as bad as I envisage, as you've survived it twice over. Is it perhaps worse though that she's an only child? Think our house is going to be awfully quiet!!

mumeeee Wed 10-Aug-11 10:25:24

You will find the house very quiet at first. Try and do something for yourself once she had gone. EG go out for a meal,meet up with friends. Also try and have a good day with you DD the day before she goes. When DD2 went we had a celebration dinner the evening before she went. Not because we were celebrating getting rid of hersmile. But celebrating new beginnings for her,

Are you taking her to her Halls. DH and I went with both DD1 and 2. We. settle them in helped them do a last minute shop do that they had some food and in DD2's case went round the town with her and had some lunch. Then we said goodbye and left them to unpack. I dud cry when U left them particularly with DD2 as she was so far away from us. Bur ad I said before I got used to it.

RustyBear Thu 18-Aug-11 11:06:31

Just thought I'd bump this thread for those celebrating with their DC today!
It's just coming up to it's 5th anniversary and still being revived from time to time!

TartyMcFarty Thu 18-Aug-11 12:54:21

My mum is going to be living alone for the first time in her 34 years of motherhood when my youngest DB goes to Cardiff next month. She's twice-divorced and has a 'companion' who she keeps at arm's length. She lives 30 miles away in the depths of the countryside.

I'm really sad for her; motherhood has been her life and she's loved it. I'm also really proud of the way she's facing up to it with plans for more work (she's self-employed) and solo walking breaks. She has my DD for a couple of days and a night each week too, which she loves.

It's going to be a big change though, thank goodness for long uni hols!

harbingerofdoom Fri 02-Sep-11 18:50:36

Has anyone experienced their two DCs going off at once? Am very busy now but how will I feel in mid October?

RustyBear Fri 02-Sep-11 18:55:47

My SIL's two eldest both went at once - the older one took a gap year, the second, a year younger, didn't. To make it worse, they live in Rutland and one of the boys went to Guildford and the other to Newcastle, so they had to get to opposite ends of the country on the same day!

Where are your two going - hope they are near each other, or at least in the same direction!

harbingerofdoom Fri 02-Sep-11 19:34:48

Thankfully not the same weekend,so no logistics problem.

Feel sorry for your SIL, must be about 4 hours in each direction,do like Rutland though. Lived there for several years,just love it.

mumof3teens Fri 02-Sep-11 19:46:26

Just back from taking DS2 back to Leeds. Two more weeks then DS3 off to Sheffield. Really empty nest then :0

ggirl Fri 02-Sep-11 19:53:41

dd off to sheffield in a few weeks
we're supposed ot be there by3pm on the 17th..5 hr drive
have to ds 8yrs with me so we are staying in hotel and driving back next morning
do I stay and help her unpack or leave her to it
don't want to be in the way

mumof3teens Sat 03-Sep-11 09:21:05

GGIRL - I stayed for an hour or so to help set up room then left them to it. I know Sheffield have a drop in centre for parents on the 17th(and probably 18th) too. Not had that before with the other two. With the last two they took a pack of small beers and wedged their room door open - soon had quite a crowd, who all arranged to meet in the common room later, so at least we knew they had somewhere to go when we had left. What is your DD studying?

ggirl Sat 03-Sep-11 11:40:29

thanks have ds with me so an hr sounds good., dd studying french and economics.
What's your ds doing?

mumof3teens Sat 03-Sep-11 12:21:55

DS3 is doing History and German. Was choosing his modules last night - v exciting

Riveninabingle Sat 03-Sep-11 12:26:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Greenshadow Sat 03-Sep-11 14:54:05

DS1 is leaving to going to UWE in Bristol in just a week and a half.

First child to go and will still have two at home. Because he has had a gap year the transition for him and us will be a lot easier - we have got used to him not being here half the time and he has gained a lot if independence.

Can't imagine what it will be like when/if DS3 goes.

funnyperson Sat 03-Sep-11 15:28:57

So looking forward to freedom. I cant wait. I want it to be a very long time before grandchildren are foisted onto me. The joys of serfdom always escaped me. I shall be lying in late at weekends at last. I can nibble salads. I can read books unrelated to childhood or education. I can watch the channel I want to watch in a pristine sitting room in the most comfy armchair and I can play classical music to my hearts content. The word 'no' in its various forms will exit from my vocabulary.
Alas only for 175 days in the year. Unfortunately I will be required to be earth mother at Christmas.

ggirl Sat 03-Sep-11 22:13:29

Greenshadow yes dd's gap yr has def helped us get used to her being away for long stretches at a time. I was worried about how her littlebrother would cope with her going as she's like a 2nd mother to him..but I think he'll be fine.

ggirl Sat 03-Sep-11 22:14:26

Riveninabingle where is your ds going?

Riveninabingle Sat 03-Sep-11 22:42:16

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funnyperson Sat 03-Sep-11 23:03:34

Riven I am sorry about the one who will never leave.

harbingerofdoom Mon 05-Sep-11 20:35:35

Riven no empty nest for you yet then. Hope you can cherish all the time you h
ave with the remaining two.

harbingerofdoom Mon 05-Sep-11 20:42:52

funnyperson,yes,yes,yes. BUT......both at once sad

funnyperson Mon 05-Sep-11 20:57:33

I see what you mean Harbinger- it will be a big wrench for you having two go at once- are they twins?
I tried the 'must cook amazing meals in the little time I have' approach- alas it only ran to Chicago Town pizza from the freezer (again) with McCann smilies and salad- still the favourite DD/DS meal. They shan't miss my cooking at least as its v easy to copy!
Ah well - I guess it does mean I value them more and more ( If at all possible) I keep thinking of little DD age three and a bit just starting school and DS first words and feel quite proud really that somehow everyone has muddled through to at least this stage

harbingerofdoom Mon 05-Sep-11 21:32:30

No,not twins,just one year apart. One had a gap,other not.
Gap DD1 wasn't sure about going to Uni despite A*,A,B because of the devaluation of languages in our society. Worked her way up to supervisor very quickly in a popular supermarket on this site. Left in April and lived in Seville for 3 months (2 mo language school). Is now very keen to study again. DD2 Oxford.

hoochymama1 Tue 06-Sep-11 16:12:00

So glad to find this thread. DD off to Leeds next week DS already in Sheffield.Felt weepy yesterday but not bad today. Trouble is, DS got major depression in uni and is only now entering third year. Sheffield were brilliant about it, his GP was great and he is lots better. I know that DD is different and her stroppy ways will carry her through, but I do worry.

housewife19 Tue 06-Sep-11 17:29:57

DD off to Reading 2nd Oct, my first to leave , i am really pleased for her because its what she s wanted and worked so hard for i am very proud but i know how much im going to miss her .I plan to hold it together with positive talk and actions until after she s moved in , i figure i can fall to pieces in the car on the way home.sad smile grin

Yellowstone Tue 06-Sep-11 23:09:18

Glad he's doing well hoochy. Well done him to get back on track, it takes a lot.

Chummybud1 Thu 08-Sep-11 20:56:44

I took my daughter to uni on Saturday, first to leave home. I have 3 more. She was so happy and excited that I couldn't help feel happy for her, but today I feel so down, think it's just hit me that this is really it, she will never live here again. She has been very good, text every morning and evening and phone once a day

funnyperson Fri 09-Sep-11 19:13:41

Hmm DS has now left for 24 hours. It must be bad, because I suddenly found his mobile answer message funny. It is a prolonged burp. In the normal way I find it very irritating and juvenile. Now I must be missing him, because a few minutes ago I rang and got the burp and I suddenly saw the funny side and laughed and laughed.

picklesanne Tue 13-Sep-11 09:44:55

My DS is off to university on Thursday, I feel so sad and am crying just thinking of him going. My 16 year daughter has just left school and gone into employment so no more school runs, I will miss them so much. I have always been a stay at home mum and my husband just thinks i'm being stupid. I don't want to spoil it for DS but i know he is picking up on my sadness, i just wish he wasn't going yet, where did the last 18 years go. Any advise would be great.

funnyperson Wed 14-Sep-11 22:09:24

Hugs for you picklesanne.
Photos will be good on both sides, skype, facebook and mobile phones will all work. If you can, go and see him in 2 weeks.
When my DS went away I promised him faithfully I would ring him only weekly but in the end I spoke with him practically every second day for a fortnight or so then we all got used to it and the time soon flew by.
This year he has left it 4 days before coming home for a meal and a chat and I'm fine and he is fine about us speaking every day if we want.
I missed their school a lot though, so I go back to help with the sixth former UCAS apps every year which helps me.

funnyperson Wed 14-Sep-11 22:13:34

The other thing I missed and they missed were the school concerts, so now DD and DS and I go to 'proper' concerts together and it helps us with missing school.

Greenshadow Wed 14-Sep-11 22:17:12

Dropped DS1 off at University this afternoon.

He seemed quite happy and relaxed about it, despite being the only one to have arrived yet in his flat. He is lucky though, in that a couple of his close friends from home are also going there, so was planning to meet up with them this evening.

I wasn't too bad - somehow the fact that he is only 45 minutes away makes a massive difference.

picklesanne Thu 15-Sep-11 22:06:46

Heartbroken when he we left him. He was upset as well, have spoken tonight and he seemed ok but am so worried about him, really didn't expect to be so upset. Really regret not having a job now because although I loved being a stay at home mum I now have nothing but time on my hands to sit think and cry.

duchesse Fri 16-Sep-11 10:42:51

This house always seems ghostly quiet even with one missing- when DS leaves next week we will go from 8 people to 7 in the house. I daresay we'll get used to it pretty quickly. He's feeling very positive about university and living away from us, so I guess we've done an OK job with him. He's only going to be 2.5 hours away so easy to pop back for the weekend if he wants to.

Ponders Sat 17-Sep-11 21:46:36

I met a woman in Tesco yesterday who has THREE going this weekend shock

but still has 3 left at home (I didn't interrogate her about ages etc or if they are all 1st year or what but still, imagine organising that lot!)

I've only got one going, but he is the last, & he's always been a big presence, we will miss him so much sad

ggirl Sun 18-Sep-11 14:11:06

Right have arrived back home after dropping dd off at Sheffield.
blubbed most of the way down the M1

She is already having a whale of a time...thank god.

Yellowstone Sun 18-Sep-11 14:56:48

Ponders the Tesco lady has probably done much less organising than you. That's how it works when there are more than a few. All I've done for DD3 is to buy a small embroidered Victorian table cloth in an antique shop up North for £4 and then washed it (it's to cover the inevitable grotty stained desk). She's doing the rest, same as the other DDs.

Lilymaid Sun 18-Sep-11 15:44:43

We saw lots of cars going north yesterday up the A1 packed to the brim with student junk.
We were going to remove the last of DS1's belongings from his flat before he flew off to a job abroad today. He's been in the same city as undergrad, worker and postgrad for the last six years, so it is a real change for him. I was getting rather emotional, though DS1 pointed out that he would only be 4 hours door to door from us and that we were going to his new city (very popular/cool tourist desitination) next month.
It doesn't seem a day since we first dropped him in hall (with the infamous chocolate cake and bottle of vodka) as a fresher. Now we have to get his stuff safely packed away and get DS2's stuff together for his return to university next week.

mumof3teens Sun 18-Sep-11 15:49:52

Dropped DS3 off at Sheffield. Haven't cried (yet). He has just phoned and is having a great time. Such a relief. Down to just DH and me now.

ggirl Sun 18-Sep-11 16:24:53

I must admit the flats looked amazing and dd has already had bbq with flatmates.
Left her purse on the kitchen table though so I have to post that up to her...doh!

Ponders Sun 18-Sep-11 18:59:26

we took DS to Sheffield today too grin & I didn't cry either, mumof3

his room is fab & I was very impressed with the organisation & all the hi-vis marshals.

haven't heard a word since we left 3 hours ago - assume that's good news.

homeaway Sun 18-Sep-11 19:44:37

We got back in the early hours of this morning from our UK stint. What a full on day. DD settled in ok but already had two bottles of juice taken from fridge, so hope that things will get better. Room was rather stinky so we got fabreze and left the window open for hours. She will survive and so will i but it will take time to get used to her not being home when i come home from work. DS off on Wednesday so helping him pack as we speak. Hope you are all ok

NotQuiteSoDesperate Sun 18-Sep-11 20:42:49

Drove down to Kent and back today - 6 hours in all. It's DS2's second year, so I coped better than I did last year. He is going into a shared house this year with 5 others, who all seemed really nice. The house is great generally, although his room is the smallest - he drew the short straw!

But, we were really annoyed to see that the house hadn't been cleaned over the summer - despite them having to pay a retainer and the rent was very high. I decided to make his bed (sad mummy!) and I'm glad I did, because I found an old, mouldy mattress stuffed underneath the bed and then a bloodstained handkerchief and other rubbish under that! I was horrified!

We will be writing a letter of complaint to the landlord and I gather that some of the other parents will be doing the same. I took photos of damage and the mess and I have asked the lads to check the inventory carefully to make sure everything is there and that everything is working properly. I think they may have some issues with this landlord!

Ponders Sun 18-Sep-11 21:38:02

IME most student landlords are only in it for profit, & for getting as much money as they can hmm There probably are honourable exceptions, but they're hard to find.

having photos of the state of the place is a good start, & landlords do have to protect the deposit with a TDS, but although student rents are so high landlords still appear to think they can pocket the lot & then charge for eg annual repainting out of the deposits

DS1 shares with 5 others in Newcastle. Their annual rent last year was over £23,000, & they worked very hard to clean the house before they left, but the landlord is still intending to keep most of the deposit for professional cleaning & a coat of magnolia throughout angry

The landlord's agent said there's no point appealing to the tribunal (??? or whatever it's called) because "they always find in favour of landlords", which has made him determined to push it as far as he can!

Good luck with yours, NQSD. (The mattress etc sounds disgusting shock)

Betelguese Sun 18-Sep-11 22:16:38

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funnyperson Sun 18-Sep-11 22:26:18

Good luck with your DS Betelguese- what is happening about the cello?

Betelguese Sun 18-Sep-11 23:01:27

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Betelguese Sun 18-Sep-11 23:03:53

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Betelguese Sun 18-Sep-11 23:08:15

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Betelguese Sun 18-Sep-11 23:13:39

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funnyperson Sun 18-Sep-11 23:19:53

Betelguese you have not missed the date as DD has not moved yet

gingeroots Sun 18-Sep-11 23:48:45

notquiteso - how horrible to find the house in that state!
Interesting link ponders re deposit ,I never knew there was a guarantee .

If any comfort ,we live ( in London ) opposite a house that is always student rented . I've restrained myself from rushing across the road to slip parents ( dropping their kids off ) my phone number " just in case " they need it .
But said house is always cleaned ,renovated ,painted between lets - so some good landlords out there !

Betelguese Sun 18-Sep-11 23:51:22

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Yellowstone Sun 18-Sep-11 23:57:06

The landlady tried the deposit thing on with DD1 and her four housemates but DD1 and a sidekick went to the agents and wouldn't take no for an answer. The house was at least as clean when they left it as it was when they moved in, probably cleaner - they were extremely miffed.

If students have looked after a house they shouldn't take no for an answer.

Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 00:00:20

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gingeroots Mon 19-Sep-11 00:04:51

As for me ,I lurk on this thread in anguish .
Feeling each tear for DC's left miles away as if it were my own but wishing I could join in with tales of flat mates and barbecues .
We've just left DS at a tiny college ( hi-vis jackets ,how I smiled ! ) where he's going to do a Foundation Degree .
He'll be coming at weekends ( and I'm sure many would love their DC's to be doing that ) but it kind of feels neither one thing or another .
I have told him I'm proud of him for getting this far - but I'm afraid I'm not .
It wasn't all his fault that he's not done well ,but he could have worked harder .
I feel sad for him and lacking in my parenting skills for not helping him achieve results more comesurate with his abilities .
And he doesn't seem to want to socialise ,tho I feel slightly cheered by the notion that this now seems more of an actual choice than a default .

Still - different strokes for different folks ,maybe he'll thrive in a gentler ,less academically challenging setting .
Just another stage of the journey .

gingeroots Mon 19-Sep-11 00:05:28

coming home

Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 00:13:59

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Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 00:24:56

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duchesse Mon 19-Sep-11 00:28:38

Betel- they are not grants. We wish... It's a third of DS's budget from his student loan for the year.

Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 01:03:28

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Greenshadow Mon 19-Sep-11 07:50:51

Only a third of his loan for accommodation Duchesse ?

Where DS1 is, the accommodation is about 110% of his loan!

duchesse Mon 19-Sep-11 08:49:22

I know, he's lucky he's going to a cheap town with plenty of student accommodation. £60/week for his room +small amount for bills.

However, if you look at average price of a terraced house in Swansea, you can see that the landlady benefits from a payback time of 5-6 years on the house purchase, and then pure profit thereafter barring some maintenance. No wonder there's no shortage of student lets. I can see it is a lot harder in London. My sister ended up living in some dreadful ratholes during her degree (quite literally, ones where you couldn't leave a morsel of food in the kitchen for 10 minutes- that one above a butcher...)

gingeroots Mon 19-Sep-11 09:36:28

Betelguese - I could be misunderstanding ,but in this case I don't think I am .
It is definitely students renting across the road .
But I do realise that this is a money making business and loads of people - students and others - are living in c**p accomodation to line someone's pockets .
I was just saying that I know of one situation where the landlord is good .
Trying to be a little positive ! Doesn't come naturally to me ,can you tell smile ?
Doesn't help all the others I know .

Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 09:47:51

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duchesse Mon 19-Sep-11 10:16:57

Think you might be confusing me with Gingeroots, Betelgeuse. Although my DS could very very easily have been in the same situation as Ginge's. He was extremely lucky to get a place at all this year with his lower than predicted grades. Never mind the fact that his IQ and results are like, Ginge's DS, severely mismatched. Ho-hum. I think he's someone who needs to learn everything for himself, the hard way. I hope your DS finds his mojo during this year Ginge.

Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 10:20:31

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Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 10:24:38

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Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 10:53:02

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Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 14:00:21

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funnyperson Mon 19-Sep-11 15:27:22

Betelguese the overactive thyroid and diabetes sort of go together as they are both autoimmune disorders. I found ith my DD (who had an undiagnosed underactive thyroid for ages) that these thingsalter the personality in subtle but significant ways. I am thinking your DS shouldnt make decisions about degree until his overactive thyroid is treated also let the college know as it would have affected hs peformance especially for maths.
I am sorry as I do think you do a marvellous job

I agree with you and others that landlords appear to be quite grasping. Before DS moved, in his student house was in a state with black mould in the kitchen and a leaky roof. Luckily the landlord showed me round and a quiet chat pointing out the significant health hazards and asking for it to be sorted before I signed the guarantor form worked wonders.

funnyperson Mon 19-Sep-11 15:29:26

Betel dont go for a year's leave. Your DS would be unhappy. He could take the year and then retake if he fails, no?

Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 16:40:40

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Yellowstone Mon 19-Sep-11 16:55:33

Betelguese your DS's situation sounds very difficult and rusticating brings all sorts of difficulties of its own.

But what do you mean 'The entire care and day to day work for the disabled student falls solely on his family'? Is that your experience of Oxford? I'm surprised.

Betelguese Mon 19-Sep-11 20:19:20

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Jellykat Mon 19-Sep-11 21:07:17

Just a quick word of warning to anyone whose DC are in Privately rented student accommodation..

In DS1s second year of student renting he lost a lot of his deposit, as did his flatmates, for things that were there when they moved in - scratches on desks, stains on carpets/walls etc etc.. Despite the deposit scheme, it can boil down to the landlord versus the students' word.

The landlady even charged them £70 for wiping down 5 kitchen cupboards - some of them are such rip off merchants..I argued with her for months, she never disclosed the name of her Deposit scheme, and short of taking her to court (costly) we were buggered.

It's a good idea to take photos upon arrival, with the date etc displayed as evidence, if the place is a state.

And if anyones DC are in Bristol, with a landlady whose initials are NK , be on your guard!

Yellowstone Tue 20-Sep-11 10:18:15

Betelguese I'm pretty shocked. The Oxford system is supposed to be more supportive of its students than a more anonymous, non collegiate university. My experience comes from situations which are different from your own, but I've only encountered really strong support.

What would you feel the college should and can do?

Betelguese Tue 20-Sep-11 12:52:54

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Yellowstone Tue 20-Sep-11 13:49:49

Betelguese I've come across that wall before but haven't listened to all one hundred clips. But the ones that I have listened to don't mention disability at all. You make it sound as though your DS has been cast adrift. That surprises me, or disillusions me and hasn't been my experience at all. The Wall of 100 Faces doesn't get me much further: is there a particular one?

Betelguese Tue 20-Sep-11 17:30:43

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Yellowstone Tue 20-Sep-11 19:00:25

I'll try to listen to more of the clips, I've only played a few here and there.

Yes I know the amount of work the students are expected to do and the deadlines for essays and tutorials and the complexity of the regulations too.
It's simply that I've been very impressed by the solicitude of the tutors and colleges as a whole when a disability/ health issue has cropped up. Good, practical suggestions and a sense that the tutors really do care.

It sounds as if your DS's first two years have been marred greatly by his situation which is obviously very difficult to manage (and I assume fairly unusual?), but I hope that's not so.

ggirl Wed 21-Sep-11 13:42:25

aargh-dd just called up in floods of tears.
She's panicking about her timetable as she's doing joint degree and has to arrange the timetable. Says she's got lectures 9-5 every day..which I think may be exaggerating somewhat in her stress.
Have told her to find someone to help her and reminded her how she was stressy like this when she started senior school smile
Still hard listening to her crying.

Ponders Wed 21-Sep-11 14:50:20

doesn't joint subjects mean you do half as much of each as someone doing the single subject, so it adds up to the same amount of time?

(NB I don't know this but it's what I've always assumed...)

hope she has got it wrong anyway, & will calm down soon, ggirl

ggirl Wed 21-Sep-11 15:26:25

have seen this from uni website

Dual honours degrees and Major/Minor degrees

If you choose a dual honours degree programme - e.g. French and Management - you will study two subjects to Honours degree level with each subject carrying equal weight.

In a Major/Minor degree - e.g. Mechanical Engineering with Spanish - you study the first subject (Mechanical Engineering in this example) for the major part of your degree and the second subject (Spanish) as the minor part. The split will vary from course to course, but as a rough guide the major subject will make up around 70% of your degree and the minor 30%.

As a dual honours student you will work at the same academic level as single honours students, but you will choose fewer modules from the options available in each subject.

so she prob is choosing too many modules or something

homeaway Wed 21-Sep-11 15:27:08

Would be surprised if she had lectures all day. Just said bye to ds who is on his way to do a joint degree so will have to wait and see. Dd missed her induction lecture as her internet was not connected until yesterday and she only has access online to her info ! Her oven does not work, neither does the heating so I am hoping the accomodation office will sort that. I think that they are all tired from having to organise everything without us. I suppose the first weeks will be the hardest but once they are in the groove they will be ok.

Betelguese Wed 21-Sep-11 16:54:55

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ggirl Wed 21-Sep-11 17:37:15

have spoken to her again..she's feeling better
think she a bit overwhelmed with all the organising/newness etc

she always been lacking in self confidence when it comes to academics for some reason
thinks she can't do it but is more than capable..has been a running theme in her life so far

Betelguese Wed 21-Sep-11 19:13:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ggirl Wed 21-Sep-11 20:34:44

I did suggest she try and find someone doing the same dual course. She said she feels better now and things are being worked out .
Feel like I am interfering now ,she said she'll call if she needs me.
She's made good friens already and she says they're being very supportive so that makes me feel better.
Funny how it still tugs at your heart strings when they're young adults...am a wimp.

funnyperson Wed 21-Sep-11 20:52:46

betelguese does the oxford gp not help?

Betelguese Wed 21-Sep-11 21:12:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Betelguese Wed 21-Sep-11 21:33:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SeaMist Thu 22-Sep-11 12:32:17

I've brought my DS up on my own since he was one. There has just been the two of us for all this time. And now he's off to uni. I'm so utterly proud of him for his achievements, and he is so excited, but I feel totally devistated too.
It really hit me last night when shopping round Tesco realised I was buying food just for myself. Unpacked shopping in floods of tears. He goes on Saturday, which is his birthday as well. And I can't take him down to Luton (5 hours away!) as I have to work. No choice.
I knew this would be hard but didn't expect it to feel like a physical pain..

Ponders Thu 22-Sep-11 14:45:50

oh seamist sad

what a good job you've done though smile

have a hug

Betelguese Thu 22-Sep-11 17:40:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

gingeroots Thu 22-Sep-11 18:14:30

More hugs seamist .

Be proud of him and keep telling yourself that you'll both get through this .

It will get better .

funnyperson Fri 23-Sep-11 21:50:39

empathy from here too seamist.

Betelguese should DS transfer to a John Radcliffe endocrinologist?
Also I email my DD endocrinologist with her blood test results it saves a lot of time and energy.

It goes like this: get form from GP receptionist. Get blood taken at JR phlebotomy dept. Ring up receptionist for result. email endocrinologist with drug dose and bloodtest result.. Get answer. remind endocrinologist to let GP know new drug dose for repeat prescriptions.

OR even like this: get 24 hr printout of blood sugars. scan in on computer. email endocrinologist with drug doses plus attached 24 hr glucose. await reply etc.wink

harbingerofdoom Sat 24-Sep-11 20:29:17

It's not going to go in the car! Hall full, two more boxes in front room, at least two in DD1's bedroom plus her huge suitcase. Help

Ponders Sat 24-Sep-11 21:12:53

2 cars. it's the only way.

(mind you we took 5 people altogether in the end)

can you borrow roof bars? or a box?

harbingerofdoom Sat 24-Sep-11 21:34:25

Mine's a C1, so not much help. We'll squeeze it in I hope hmm

harbingerofdoom Sat 24-Sep-11 21:39:01

Too late to borrow-off 9am sharp according to DH grin
He's up at 7am to do the loading. Everything is packed beautifully and more to the point 'essential'.

Ponders Sat 24-Sep-11 21:39:17

C1 isn't huge, is it?

good luck! smile

Ponders Sat 24-Sep-11 21:40:11

(it's astonishing just how much is essential these days confused)

harbingerofdoom Sat 24-Sep-11 21:44:05

C1 is probably the smallest car on the roads (can't even put a full shop in the 'boot'. Smart cars don't count as they can't seat four adults.

Betelguese Sat 24-Sep-11 21:44:09

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

harbingerofdoom Sat 24-Sep-11 21:47:24

Sorry, I think we are got our lines crossed. I don't think it will all go in DH's estate. A C1 second car isn't going to help much!

harbingerofdoom Sat 24-Sep-11 21:54:48

At least I got DH to take his 'essentials' out- things like ice shovels,3 old coats,boots etc. etc. and coffee mugs.

Ponders Sat 24-Sep-11 22:00:18

oh I gathered the C1 was your trailer, harbinger wink

even so, a C1 with only the driver in would hold quite a lot!

how far have you got to go?

harbingerofdoom Sat 24-Sep-11 22:08:59

This weekend it's only 1 1/2 to 2 hours away and is the bigger challenge space wise due to all the kitchen equipment.
Next weekend we have a longer drive but I hope what I think should be a smaller load doesn't have DD2's femail magic wand waved over it.grin

harbingerofdoom Mon 26-Sep-11 21:03:42

Glad to report that the mountain fitted into the one car. Phew.

Some very nice fit 2nd year males helped DD1 unload. One was as white as a sheet after the previous night's poor chap.(If I'd waved food under his nose........).
It's funny to think she might even be older than them!
DD2 off on Monday.

Ponders Mon 26-Sep-11 22:06:06

oh good - well done, harbinger!

good luck with DD2 too smile

harbingerofdoom Mon 26-Sep-11 22:23:08

Thanks ponders, so far so good. Round two started this morning! Cases, washing and how many shoes?

LyonMum Wed 28-Sep-11 16:15:59

Im new to this website. Wasnt crying a moment ago but as my fingers are typing the tears are flowing. Relief? That Ive actually found a site where I can log on, unload and blub all at the same time? Hopefully. I see so many familiar feelings expressed on here: my last little son (age 12) cries like the older one has died as opposed to gone to Uni. I normally work but Im home with illness which makes the house seem like a ghosttown. I did go to work yesterday (dropped him off on Saturday 24th to Bath) but kept crying in the kitchen at work with no notice (whats that all about?!). I dont like this empty nest syndrome ... not at all. AND to hear that it doesnt just go away like measles or sore throat is shocking .... (have stopped crying momentarily so thats good )

LyonMum Wed 28-Sep-11 16:26:49

Right ... i just typed that and he called... he gave me 4 minutes of time, told me to get skype and a webcam ... then said he had to go as his halls have bad reception. I feel like Ive won a million pounds but now Im crying again .... how many mums turn to medication I wonder?

funnyperson Wed 28-Sep-11 18:30:07

Lyonmum I wouldn't go turning to medication just yet - may be in a month if you still feel the same way.

Think of how well you have done as a family to springboard your DS off to a good start in life. No mother wants their DC tied to their apron strings - its a good time for them to go and a safe way to do it. I do think universities are a safe context for these young ones to grow up - quite apart from the intellectual stimulation.

It has definitely been harder for me to let go of DS this year- firstly I have had him home for 3 months and secondly I am worried about him because he failed his first year. Last year I tried ever so hard not to be a helicopter mum and he used to be touchingly concerned at how I was managing without him to find my glasses. This year he is in a student house with friends which is OK and clean but not fantastically well appointed, but he has yet to make it down to his university to even firm up his modules though I am annoyed to see that he has joined the boxing club. Though I am proud that he arranged a freshers bop event in the JCR for yesterday.

Boxing club , of all things, I ask you how is that going to help him unless some terrorist organisation has recruited him? Heaven help us, or perhaps it is a response to the rough area his student house is in, again heaven help us. I mean the British Medical Association put out a statement against boxing some years ago as it caused brains to pulp. Not great.

Just now I realised I had rung him 7 times already today- first to wake him up at 1.30 ( he says he was the first in the house to wake up- not reassuring) and then to make sure he got up and went in to get his modules confirmed. Then I realised I was going over the top with anxiety. So here I am on mumsnet. I think now I have had my say I am off to keep busy as that, and thinking positive are the things which pull me through. I wish all other empty nesters well.

funnyperson Wed 28-Sep-11 18:35:27

PS both the DC have me as a facebook friend-this really helps me and them communicate. For example whenever DD 'pokes' me I know that she is still alive, and she always pokes me when she logs in and I poke her when I log in, even if we cant be bothered to actually send a message at that point, and it helps.

gingeroots Wed 28-Sep-11 19:35:31

funnyperson - I feel for you .
Maybe boxing is good ?
Healthy body /healthy mind ?
Discipline ?
You never know ....

( though like you I suspect ,I'm learni ng not to get my hopes up when it comes to DS ,sounds mean ,but I think you'll know what I mean )

funnyperson Wed 28-Sep-11 19:45:17

gingeroots -it is a fine line between keeping the faith as it were- knowing that he will come good in the end, though perhaps he needs support- and letting him be an individual. But children are like that from birth- always their own person, never the dream one thinks of- which is why, ultimately, they are so testing and so real and rewarding at the same time!
But oh dear heaven....... boxing........gulp........what about, for instance, the historians brunch at patisserie Valerie.... I mean what was wrong with that?

harbingerofdoom Wed 28-Sep-11 20:05:19

Lyonmum you're not alone. DD1 went on Sunday but I'm keeping so busy sorting DD2 (Mon).Not worth mixing their packing-I would never hear the end of it!
When DD2 leaves I am empty nest for 8 weeks.You have a little boy at home so as he grows up the house will get noisier!

CherryLip Wed 28-Sep-11 20:16:53

I too dropped off at Bath Uni on Saturday but as from overseas stayed until yesterday! Had to buy an awful lot there as arrived only with suitcases! Would recommend skype with camera to everyone!

picklesanne Wed 28-Sep-11 21:21:35

Well DS has been at Kingston for 2 weeks and is begining to enjoy it, the house still seems so quiet but I know I have to get used to it, he says he might pop back again this weekend but think that is more to see his dog than me, it is very difficult to let go and the tears are never far away, but I suppose thats life someone once said to me . . . have them, love them and let them go. Very true but so hard. Love to you all. Xx

webwiz Wed 28-Sep-11 21:55:33

funnyperson my DD's do the poking thing on facebook as well. DD1 has managed to panic me this week though, she left me a message on facebook that she had split up with her boyfriend and then there was no contact for 4 days aaaargh. I was starting to worry that she was ok and as she is in America it isn't easy to get hold of her. She finally appeared online about half an hour ago. Phew.

Lyonmum (and Cherrylip) DD2 has just started at Bath as well and is really enjoying herself. She said they were testing the "stay inside your room" alarm today. We can't think of any reason why this alarm might be useful other than Zombie attack.

It does get easier after the first term and once you get into the routine of university year the holidays come around quickly.

harbingerofdoom Wed 28-Sep-11 22:08:09

Not going down the Facebook ruote

harbingerofdoom Wed 28-Sep-11 22:08:40

route even

webwiz Wed 28-Sep-11 22:27:26

Facebook is the only thing I can actually rely on with my DD's as they never seem to check emails or keep credit on their phones hmm

harbingerofdoom Wed 28-Sep-11 22:33:18

Mine must have magical phones!

webwiz Wed 28-Sep-11 22:45:18

DD1 has a string of very cheap phones because she does dire things with them. Apparently if you drop your phone in a glass of beer putting into a cup of uncooked rice afterwards will get all the water out of it. However leaving it in your jeans pocket in the tumble drier is unfixable.

Ponders Wed 28-Sep-11 22:58:27

I am mostly communicating with DS2 by text (he has a Blackberry & is looking after it, amazingly)

FB is not allowed (by him) sad

otoh he is ringing - occasionally - so I know he is alive & functioning smile

mumeeee Thu 29-Sep-11 10:43:23

DD2 will text me and answer her phone. She even calls me back if she's missed my phone call and sometime just phones for a chat.grin But she is now in 3rd year and I don't text everyday. But she does not want us parents on FB although she has added her grandmother ( my Mum ) and has her sisters on there smile

lostmymind Thu 29-Sep-11 12:46:58

May I join you all? DS went last year, and I'm losing DS on sunday sad
Not sure quite what I feel right now - relief perhaps, but will miss him very much regardless.
The spare room floor isnt visible for all his 'stuff', cant believe he has as much as my DD did AND he's catered.
Oh dear, I can see a vast pit of empty nest syndrome looming...

LyonMum Fri 30-Sep-11 10:46:46

Webwiz and CherryLip - it does seem to get a little bit better as the days go on but I am still crying EVERY day. Not just a little bit but massive cry-outs. Im trying to get it all out! My DS doesnt text like the girls with updates about "stay in your room" drills or the like .. I must admit the girls do seem to be better at staying in touch. Even DS's girlfriend is texting me to tell me about Loughborough ...whilst DS just text this morning "sooooooo tired". I desperately want to drive to Bath just to have the day with him but that will definitely make it alll much worse.... I need to hold on to half term in October surely?

LyonMum Fri 30-Sep-11 10:48:16

By the way Lostmymind - welcome ..... this is a saving grace ... although loggin on does make my cry even when I wasnt planning to !! Ive downloaded a book called The Empty Nest - has some v good psychological pointers and reinforces we are not alone ....

homeaway Fri 30-Sep-11 11:14:17

DD got locked out of room last night , not because she forgot her keys but because the clothes airer fell down and blocked the door. She is now very tired and is wondering how much it will cost for them to get her in. They cant lift the door as it only opens around 1cm. There has been some talk of them breaking the window as the latch is broken and getting in that way. She had to go to a seminar this morning and was hoping to sneak out early as her housemate has to go out. Not much we can do for her really but just praying that it wont cost too much. Well I dont suppose she will leave the airer there again ! Never mind....

Ponders Fri 30-Sep-11 11:38:42

oh homeaway, what a PITA! Hope it isn't too expensive. Where did she sleep?

Lyonmum, they don't all get a mid-term break - depends on subject & institution. My DSs are both doing Politics but at different places, & one does get a reading week (2nd week in Nov) & one doesn't, so check with your DS what his dept does.

(Agree about utter failure of boys to share stuff compared with girls!)

Ponders Fri 30-Sep-11 11:41:52

Hello, lostmymind smile

Hope Sunday goes well for you

(We had so much of DS's stuff piled up in the front room (no spare room) it was a relief to get it all out of the house...)

lostmymind Fri 30-Sep-11 17:19:08

thanks all smile
really not sure how it's all going to fit in the car...

Is anyone planning to visit their DD/S's in a few weeks? For DD i went up 2 weeks after she'd moved into accomodation, see if she had everything she needed; food, books (ok, I missed her). DS is less keen and wants to be left, says he may come home early november (a reading week as per Ponders), but I'm debating whether or not to go up before then.

It's soo hard to let go. DD settled very well and is happy, hoping DS will be the same.

Betelguese Fri 30-Sep-11 18:51:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

webwiz Fri 30-Sep-11 19:05:54

lostmymind we are going to visit DD2 in half term. She'll have lectures etc for some of the time we are there but we'll be taking her out for a meal in the evening and I'm sure we can amuse ourselves when she's busy.

ggirl Fri 30-Sep-11 20:23:22

have just booked a few days in sheffield at half term

Betelguese Fri 30-Sep-11 21:35:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

funnyperson Fri 30-Sep-11 21:51:49

betelgeuse hug for you.
I am beginning to feel sad about DD going too.

funnyperson Fri 30-Sep-11 22:00:12

lostmymind I agree 2 weeks is long enough to wait. I have seen DS weekly so far though. He is coming home for the weekend tomorrow!(after fronting a stall at the freshers fair smile) to help move DD in out on Sunday.

Betelguese Fri 30-Sep-11 22:48:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LyonMum Sat 01-Oct-11 12:36:52

Just sent a message to DS. I said I was sending up some spare towels and he quickly logged on to facebook, sent a message saying NOOOOOOOOOOOO and then went off line again. He told me to stop sending him things and he knows that Im worrying but that he loves me and I need to CHILL! He also said I need to get used to him not being there. There, that told me. Is it that simple people? I dont think so. Today, my tears are shed later than usual but I really need to stop this crying. Its like a separation anxiety, Im a professional woman with a career and yet this separation is all consuming. I literally cant think of anything else. I said I want to see him in October and he says he will be popping to Loughborough to see his girlfriend first. I think I know what to do ... I think I should ask him if he wants to see me/his little brother/family at all and when he does then he should let us know. Wouldnt it be nice to be asked to visit instead of feeling overly needy. It hasnt helped that DS2 away on a birthday party so both DS's missing ....I just wish boys would keep in touch more than girls .... my husband says its definitely a boy thing, as did my brother in law... I just need to get that into my thick skull.

webwiz Sat 01-Oct-11 13:05:52

LyonMum DD1 held us at arms length for most of her first year. I was massively jealous of my friends skyping their children and going to visit when DD1 didn't seem to keep in touch very much at all. She got better after that and now is much happier to talk to me and let me know what's going on in her life. I'm going to stay with her for a week on Monday - something that was unthinkable two years ago.

DD2 is very different and I have already spoken to her more in the last week than I spoke to DD1 in a whole year.

I think if you want to visit just say we can come on these dates in October which is best for you and I'm sure he'll appreciate a bit of free food by then.

Betelguese Sat 01-Oct-11 17:46:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Fififi Sat 01-Oct-11 18:11:50

Ahh! Here you all are!

DS set off for Durham today with DH. I have stayed at home because DD2 not very well, and I doubt there'd have been room for me in the car anyway! they're staying the night in a hotel in Durham tonight, can have boys chat about the rubgby and football over dinner and brakfast tomorrow, a quick look round the town tomorrow a.m. before going to check in at 12 noon...

I said i wouldn't cry when he said goodbye...but I did. And then DD1 had a strop saying I didn't cry when we left her at Oxford last year ( I did but she didn't see - we said our goodbyes and then she turned left to go to a welcome tea at the JCR and we continued staright on. I turned back and the tears came as i saw her stride out all alone, with the beautiful back drop of Christchurch behind her, and it struck me that she was really starting her new life, on her own terms...)

An hour later DS was back - he'd remembered a desk light and books and pens and blu tack and chargers but left his wallet behind....
Didn;'t cry when we said our good byes again...

He's a bit apprehensive about it all. He's much more of a home body than DD1, and has stayed close to the same very small gorup of friends since he was 7. He's happy in his own company so I think he's worried about enforced jollity - though being made to come out of his shell will be a good thing. I'm not sure freshers week will be his thing, but I'm sure it'll all fall into place once lectures and tutorials begin...Hope so.

He has asked if I'll go up at DD2's half term, which i will because I've not seen Durham at all. He's just texted from the car to say he'll be needing black tie for the freshers ball at the end of October so I guess we can shop for that during the visit.

Good luck to everyone's DC's and good luck to all of us as the nest empties...


Fififi Sat 01-Oct-11 18:16:42

PS Dear Betelguese - I love to read about your relationship with your son. I know for a fact that DD1 does not subscribe to the view Mum is best....and she'd not let me within a million miles of her facebook...but she will at least text and BBM....your relationship is obviopsuly very close and very different from many mother/late teenage child...

I'll take her up to Oxford on Tuesday ( she's back in college) and we'll all go up on her birthday in November for a big pub sunday lunch but I suspect that will be it this term, though I expect she'll turn up at home a couple of times in betwen 21st parties in London.

picklesanne Sun 02-Oct-11 09:48:07

DS has come home for the weekend again, lovely to see him but will be sad to see him go back monday. So want to ask when he will be back again but don't want to pressure him into visiting if he doesnt want to, but I so need to see him each week. How long have other people found it is before you don't miss them quite so much?

mumeeee Sun 02-Oct-11 15:14:47

Pickesanne. Please don't expect your DS to come home every week or even much at all. He needs to be able to do stuff with the new. friends he is making and to settle in to his new life. DD1 went to uni in our city so we did see her quite often but that was because her halls were only 20 minutes walk away but we didn't see her every week. DD2 is at university which is 3 hours drive away. In the first year she cane hone every few weeks. But in the second year. She came home for the Christmas term. Then she got a part time job so just came home for a few days at Easter. She came with us on holiday for 2 weeks in July and the came home for a couple of days at the end of August. Most of her friends also stayed in their shared house over the summer because of job commitments. She is now back at uni we haven't seen her since the end of August. .We won't see her until 12th November for my Dad's 90th birthday. She jeeps in touch by text and phone calls. She phoned last night and said I love you at the end of the call. Sorry if I upset you at all with this post. I'm just trying to show you that. although our DC's do grow away from us when they go to uni they still love us. If we let them do this they will still acknowledge and respect us.

RustyBear Sun 02-Oct-11 16:59:41

I wouldn't worry too much about missing them- you might find they are back with you before very long!

It's five years since I started this thread when DS went off to Warwick, and he is now back, having spent the two years since graduation working towards his goal of a career in publishing - after a series of volunteering and internship placements he now has a temporary full time job with a major publishing company, which he is hoping will turn into a permanent one - but he can't afford to move out yet.

And DD is currently here too, having graduated from Exeter this summer, looking for a temporary job and hoping for a bit of travel before she starts a postgraduate course next September.

So I've now got a full house - in fact it's about to become a bit fuller, as we will be having DS's friend, who is starting a job nearby tomorrow, staying wifth us for a few days until he finds a place to live.

picklesanne Sun 02-Oct-11 17:32:24

Thanks Mumeeee for your advise ,would just like to say that I havn't once asked my DS to visit he has come home because he has wanted too (to see the dog i think). Anyway won't post anymore will just accept thats hes gone.
Good luck everyone hope it all turns out ok for you all.

mumeeee Sun 02-Oct-11 17:58:50

Picklesanne it's nice that your DS wants to come home. DD2 did get a little bit homesick in the first year and we had a couple of tearful phone calls. But she made friends and settled down. Rustybear you're right they may well come home again when they finished uni, DD1 came home for a few months after she graduated. But then she got married and went and lived in London with her DH. That U dis find hard as she was suddenly completely grown up and in her own family unit, but that's another stiory.

Betelguese Sun 02-Oct-11 18:19:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ponders Sun 02-Oct-11 18:23:26

Rusty, I never noticed the date on your OP - your entire domestic university history is right here grin

Anyway it's clear that there probably as many ways of coping (or not) with the empty nest as there are individuals coping (or not) I found the last few days before DS2 left were the worst, as I imagined him not being here any more, & thought about how sad it would be not to have his clutter all over the house; now he's been gone 2 weeks the relative peace & space is rather nice! (am still thrilled to get the odd text/call/email though wink)

fififi, your DS is sounding very much like mine all over again smile apart from DS2's small friendship group being much more recent; he's not at all keen on the laddish stuff either, eg choosing to stay in rather than go to a Jager bomb party in his first few days (although he has no intention of going to the freshers' ball!)

I think he is enjoying finding kindred spirits in class & at societies rather than through an alcoholic haze - not that he doesn't like alcoholic hazes generally, but they have to be on his terms. I'm sure yours will have a wonderful time in Durham, & you will love it when you visit - especially in Oct, when the leaves have turned & are reflected in the river, it's very beautiful

Betelguese Sun 02-Oct-11 18:31:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ponders Sun 02-Oct-11 18:45:47
Ponders Sun 02-Oct-11 19:03:24

OMG, DS2 has acquired some goldfish shock

(DD1 is on his FB & has been introduced by photo)

do you think they might be a mother substitute? wink

mrswoodentop Sun 02-Oct-11 19:29:46

Durham is so beautiful,I had the most fantastic time there ,a similar pic is on our landing.Also met dh there as added bonusgrin
Ds not keen to apply though,went to the open day but didn't think it very welcoming hmmThink he also doesn't want the pressure of the high offer .

funnyperson Sun 02-Oct-11 20:12:04

Dear all it is so nice to read all your postings. I said to DD on the way today that I was a bit worried of being at the bottom of the pecking order and she said 'you are at the top of my pecking order'. Astonishing. DS was a bit quiet and needs lots of support. Repeating his year is not easy because he has to face all the new freshers and all his old year group, however he is adding in a subject so something new at least. Also 200 signed up to his society at the freshers fair!
I am feeling a bit strange. Happy- it has been one of the happiest days of my life- but also uncertain for them though they have a good start. I'm OK about being old. Yesterday there was a very odd moment when they were sat down to dinner and I came in from the kitchen with something or another and they both looked up at me like lambs at a mother ewe- as if something secure was really there for them. Yet they are 18 and 19 years old, and most of the time so vocal about their independence.
Ponders Durham looks very pretty.
Betelguese I hope your son has an easier time of it this year
lyonmum hang on in there for your other DC and keep yourself as calm as you can with exercise, early nights, hot drinks before bedtime, positive thoughts etc. The trouble is always that when DC tell me to 'chill' it makes me feel heated up! There is nothing for it, they will grow up and we will grow older.

homeaway Mon 03-Oct-11 09:57:10

Just to update you all , dd got into room the next day after sleeping on the floor at a friends. In the end the uni managed to lift the door off the hinges and do it that way. Airer is now bent but still serviceable ¨! She reckons she wont have to pay anything.... not so sure

We asked ds if he wants us to visit in November and he said yes ,so we will just take him out for a meal and do a shop with him. Dd might come home for a week at the end of the month.

For all of you missing your ds and dd ,it does get better. We make sure we skype as often as they want to and they know that they can contact us if they want to. I know with my dd it was important for her to contact us when she wanted to and not the other way around as she would feel pressured.

It is wierd, it seems like they left months ago and yet it is only weeks ! Have a good week everyone.

harbingerofdoom Mon 03-Oct-11 20:33:03

So,so sad. DD2 gone aswell.
Two lively teenagers to nil in eight days just doesn't sit right.
Also had a 'mare of a day-fully packed car wouldn't start. RAC/ring for rental estate time. After three dif. chargers the one from DD1's car worked.(Getting a feel for our motoring here!).
DH shifted car off site and the blooming ticket wouldn't work! to get us out.
Both feel v.v. sad and DH has been quite tearful (bless) just didn't expect it to hit him as he'd thought it all through 'rationally'.

funnyperson Mon 03-Oct-11 21:14:25

I tried watching my favourite programme on tv.It was very odd to be able to watch it all with no interruptions. Sitting on the favourite chair didn't work as it was DD's aircube which she has taken with her. I loaded the dishwasher then there wasn't any one to talk to. Very odd. I am feeling sad.
So sad that I rang my sister whose DC went at the weekend too and heard all about the massive box of industry sponsored freebies which the Imperial freshers got, the period rooms overlooking the lovely garden square in Kensington (her DS) and the ex council student flat in Brick lane (her DD).
Next weekend is going to be tougher than I thought. I'm feeling a bit rudderless.

lostmymind Mon 03-Oct-11 21:16:17

Glad you got there in the end Harbinger, sorry it was a rough start, the day's stressed enough as it is.

Mine's gone too sad car was packed to the gunwales, we all unloaded and unpacked him (yes, made his bed for him), had lunch together then left. No drama, no tears, and in a way I think we're all relieved that this next chapter of his life has started.

Coming back to a home bereft of DC's was horrible though - dog keeps running into different rooms looking for DS, finally settled to sleep on DS's bed looking miserable. Place feels cold and empty, I've had music playing all day to try and fill the empty space my DC's have left.

harbingerofdoom Mon 03-Oct-11 21:41:44

Were your DCs 1 year apart school wise * lostmymind*?
I think that we all need ideas of what to do that doesn't try to recreate the past. ie BC

gingeroots Tue 04-Oct-11 21:08:12

lostmymind - that's so sad ,your description of the dog looking for DS is heartbreaking .
Hope you're feeling a bit brighter today .
My situation is different in that DS comes home at weekends - though I don't really feel "lucky " as a friend ,understandably ,said to me .
If I had a confident DS who'd worked hard at school and gone off to uni - as opposed to one who now cries because he feels he could have got better grades - I might .
He says he likes his tiny college ,so that's good I suppose . ( though I'm full of doubt ) .
But ,actually .... I'm relieved not to have him here during the week .
I worry so much about him that it's a relief not to be confronted by his physical presence 24/7 .
He's there and I'm here - it mercifully limits what I can do to help him.
No doubt he'll be back fulltime soon enough ,disapointed in himself and wondering what to do next .
Does that make me sound like the bad mother I feel I am ?
Does anyone else ,though frantic over their DS ,feel relieved that some of the worry is out of their hands now ?

Betelguese Tue 04-Oct-11 21:50:38

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Betelguese Tue 04-Oct-11 22:53:56

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funnyperson Tue 04-Oct-11 23:16:02

Lots and lots of good wishes for your DS Betelguese Good luck for his philosophy exams. Hope it all goes well.

Thyroid things can and do go into remission so there is hope. The blood tests will help. He is doing really really well to be at Oxford with such an intellectually challenging subject in spit of having two serious endocrine conditions. I hope he has a fabulous time smile

funnyperson Tue 04-Oct-11 23:17:48

...sorry... in spite of ...
Regular exercise which he gets from walking around that lovely city will also help!

funnyperson Tue 04-Oct-11 23:18:34

Hope he has a great room to stay in and good luck with the cello!

funnyperson Tue 04-Oct-11 23:34:29
funnyperson Tue 04-Oct-11 23:35:45
funnyperson Tue 04-Oct-11 23:39:35

this link explains how the over or underactive thyroid can affect his feelings


funnyperson Tue 04-Oct-11 23:41:46

here are some telephone support contacts for those with thyroid diseases

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 00:06:21

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Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 00:10:12

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Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 00:11:49

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Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 00:14:24

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Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 00:21:17

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Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 00:26:08

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Fififi Wed 05-Oct-11 17:09:46

Well I looked out for an odd besocked young man earlier today betelguese but didn't spot him!

So DD1 is back at Christchurch for her last year. She has gone back into college after a lovely year out last year in ateeny tiny house in Ship Street. She was so excited to be returning , since she's got a shared set of rooms overlooking the quad this year. She and a friend have a large sitting area (two sofas, two arm chairs, fireplace , bookcase - it's BIG) with a bedroom leading off on each side. The bedrooms are small - just room for a sink, small(ish) desk, bed and chest of drawers ( DD1 doesn't even get a cupboard in hers - praise the Lord for argos rails). But with the fab sitting room who cares really? And the overall effect is just what you imagine Oxford college rooms to be like...only downside is a trek down a flight of stairs to the showers/bathrooms and loos but hey....

Being a third year and returning on a non busy day, the ever genial porters ( is it a requirement to be slightly rotund and only about 5'6"?!) let us drive right in to the quad square for 15 minutes so she only had a few yards to carry all the bags. And being right by the entrance she met up with four friends within seconds who all, bless them, cheerfully delved into the car and carried duvets and pillows and mirrors and lamps and martini glasses (!) so we were done in no time.

meanwhile Spidson seems to be surviving freshers week in Durham, though have had text asking how you get butter stains out of a suit ( new, second time of wearing...anyone?). Was amazed that a suit was required on the first night! And next day got a text saying he'd need black tie for the freshers ball later this month....This can't be normal>>>>or is it?

Just the one at home for me now....

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 21:04:10

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harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 21:37:45

betelguese,*funny*, and yellow goodness knows how I have valued your help over the last few months.
I think that our dcs are all now at Oxford.
BG hope your son is okay, a close friend had thyroid probs. sorted quite easily but must be monitored.
Anyone know Balliol?

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 22:16:44

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harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 22:22:47

It is standard,just accept the bloods and he will be fine. Our GP told my DH that he would end up knowing more about the condition than he did-and so it proved!

Yellowstone Wed 05-Oct-11 22:28:58

harbinger did your DD get where she wanted to be/ her original choice?

I assume DD3 is in Oxford because I left her there on Monday in a lovely room but she was a bit cross that I got her stuff to her late having been kept waiting by DD1 at lunchtime (who was an hour and a half late to the rendezvous) and having dumped DD2's stuff off fairly unceremoniously in a Cowley house which was suffering badly from the after effects of a party. I was a bit put out that I wasn't the soignee mama who had the gates of Magdalen specially opened to let her unpack on the spot envy, instead I had to do a double yellow stunt and hurry off immediately after to find the nearest parking spot (quarter of an hour away). Not great. I think she's still cross. In that she hasn't e-mailed or phoned. Perhaps she's just busy. She forgot a duvet too though we found her bed fully made up with a fluffy college duvet too: that was a first! DD2 forgot all linen but remembered a duvet. Sorry to see Wadham under a blanket of building work again funnysad

What fabulous weather to start off in though. DD3 and I slipped in through the back gate to Magdalen in the morning just to pick up her key, let in by a Maths don who said he always walked the long way to work when he possibly could. As we approached the college he said he hoped she'd be very happy and told her she must remember not to work too hard: "just be good enough". Very sound advice.

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 22:30:23

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harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 22:37:38

Yellow yes into her first choice! All that anguish! Balliol- I know first in alphabet etc. but she fell for it on open day. Actively didn't like some others so put no second choice on her UCAS form.

harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 22:42:39

BG you should be very pleased that you have caught you son in time. My DH wouldn't accept anything was wrong for far too long. As soon as he was diagnosed he was off work for eight months.

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 22:42:49

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harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 22:46:17

She didn't get a direct offer from them just an open offer,hence the continued worry.

Yellowstone Wed 05-Oct-11 22:48:19

Wow harbinger. We're not that brave!

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 22:51:49

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harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 22:51:52

What do you mean?

harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 22:53:47

Sorry BG that was to Yellow. X post.

harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 22:56:57

BG That could be construed as .....Bet you're glad to still have him!

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 23:00:41

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Yellowstone Wed 05-Oct-11 23:02:06

To not put a second choice harbinger!

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 23:06:55

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harbingerofdoom Wed 05-Oct-11 23:18:20

yellow I was okay about it as she really didn't care where she went,if not first choice! I must admit she wasn't too keen on some other colleges that interviewed her. So,perhaps a two way thing.

Betelguese Wed 05-Oct-11 23:31:47

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funnyperson Thu 06-Oct-11 00:06:05

I know this isn't the point, but I do think that some of you are gifted writers. Reading these descriptions and little homely details moves me so much and makes the DC and you all so real, even though I haven't met them.

Betelguese reading about your son always makes me smile somehow because he is obviously so talented and you obviously love him so much. It must have been awful when he came home having lost all that weight. At least he is on the right treatment now and should be fine. brew for missing him. He must be really good on the cello. And at maths.

Harbinger I heard Balliol is great, what was the room like?

Yellowstone Magdalen, Christchurch and Wadham then for your DD? lucky lucky family you must have done something really right to have helped them through it.

Ilostmymind are you coping?

My DD is very happy so far and has explored the college roof amongst other places.

funnyperson Thu 06-Oct-11 00:09:08

I smile and I'm a bit teary at the same time actually because of all that love and concern and worry you express

Betelguese Thu 06-Oct-11 00:31:55

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Betelguese Thu 06-Oct-11 00:33:21

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funnyperson Thu 06-Oct-11 05:00:38

Its a place from which the silhouettes of the dreaming spires can be seen in the sunset, and at sunrise, where DD and her new friends sit and chat and enjoy the fabulous views of the Bodleian and the colleges, or just wander and emulate Lyra and her friend in Northern Lights playing hide and seek on the roof of Jordan College. smile

gingeroots Thu 06-Oct-11 10:07:45

funnyperson - posting at 5am ?
Night shift or can't sleep ?
How's DS ?

I found to my horror ( and accidently I swear ) that my Google web history on my laptop also shows DS's history .
Not edifying ,and has swiftly dispersed any notions I entertained that he might be socialising in his spare time - of which he has a lot.

Betelguese Thu 06-Oct-11 10:20:19

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Yellowstone Thu 06-Oct-11 11:07:12

funny DD1 had an attic room on the main quad in her first year and they used to sit right up on that roof there. A pretty perch and very high but not for faint hearts. Nicholas, Dorothy and King James used to look on unsmiling (so no change there).

And no-one at Christchurch I'm afraid, DD2 is at a pretty little place in the middle of town. No, I haven't done much and we've had plenty of blips, but thank you anyway smile

I've now sent a final ultimatum to DD3 saying I shall e-mail her very good looking college dad asking how she is if I don't hear by early tonight grin

Betelguese seems to have an extraordinary DS. Mine aren't in that brilliant bracket at all. I just stand back in awe with Maths and Philosophy - and the music as well: different world, different league. Still, Oxford needs the others, they can't all be top.

Betelguese Thu 06-Oct-11 12:21:08

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Betelguese Thu 06-Oct-11 14:51:39

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funnyperson Thu 06-Oct-11 22:19:38

gingeroots my DS is fine thank you, he came home today because it is a festival -he has survived his first few days of repeating the first year and I think he will pull through with flying colours as long as he stays sane and gets up in the mornings and meets his deadlines. He has changed to a joint degree- history and economics instead of single history and I think he will find this more interesting as it will mean fewer continents' history to learn about (he is dropping the African history module) and fewer essays and he will be better focussed on his real interests
i e South and East Asia (India and China basically) history and economics. I don't track his computer history but he spends a load of time with his real life girlfriend - who also lives in the shared house! And he is co president of one of the student societies.
I feel sorry for him because he did get a first, even with the zero marks given for the essays he submitted late, and I wont be easy in my mind and neither will he, until I see his results at the end of this year.

funnyperson Thu 06-Oct-11 22:29:59

DD's good looking college dad posted his longterm girlfriend up on his facebook page so that was that. Oxford girls are quite pretty and some of the boys appear slightly wolfish, so I fear its not going to be that easy for DD to find true love. But hey, she has only been there 5 days!

Good night.

Yellowstone Thu 06-Oct-11 22:51:05

My college dad ruse worked a treat and I got my phone call so I now know DD3 is very well and happy and loving it all and I'm not (or no longer) being ostracised for very poor logistics on Monday.

I think I'm born to fret.

I also entertain myself by being a latter day Mrs Bennet or perhaps more appropriately (due to numbers and I'd like to think lack of neurosis) Cora. I marry them off in my mind at the first whiff of romance. The fluency of the surname matters I think. It's not very modern but still.

funnyperson Fri 07-Oct-11 07:27:06

I get Mrs Bennet- but Cora? confused

Yellowstone Fri 07-Oct-11 08:27:20

You clearly have better things to do on a Sunday night! Downton Abbey.

I've been a bit carried away recently by a spate of fine young men with good prospects and magnificent names....

gingeroots Fri 07-Oct-11 09:17:42

funnyperson - great to hear your DS is doing well .
Well done him for sorting out change to a joint degree ,hope all goes well .

Hope all DC settling in now - it's a big change for them .

Betelguese Fri 07-Oct-11 13:14:21

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Betelguese Fri 07-Oct-11 13:20:57

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harbingerofdoom Fri 07-Oct-11 19:54:44

Wolfish(?) as in predatory-beware. Or will woo a girl till she succumbs? I'm hoping my DD (6 days) can differentiate grin

funnyperson Fri 07-Oct-11 21:15:54

Betelguese- oh dear this is not great news and so soon after returning for his new term- when did they get the July blood tests I wonder and what did the August blood tests show? and what will all this do for his blood sugars and his morale?

By the way - i saw a mum of a child in the corridor today and about 2 months ago this mum was very ill in clinic ( I was seeing the child) with an overactive thyroid- so ill that she didnt know how ill she was- anyway the carbemazepine didn't agree with her liver and now her (Oxford) endocrinologist says its best if the thyroid comes out surgically then she can just go on a stable dose of replacement thyroxine- its a thought worth discussing with the consultant. Incidentally I am not so sure I would leave this in the hands of the GP- i think you should ring DS consultant direct as all this chopping and changing will affect his studies.

funnyperson Fri 07-Oct-11 21:28:40

Wolfish as in predatory- the sort with lots of very drunk pictures on facebook great bags from solid clubbing under their eyes and a lecherous leer. Easy to spot unless you are in love with them- that sort- luckily DD goes for clever nice and steady good looking types. I have (only slightly) stressed to her the importance of a wealthy background but I don't think she heard that bit hmm

Of course we looked at all the freshers names to see who was 'eligible' - we thought de beer might be- turned out to be a girl, alas- I think the boys have the advantage at Oxford actually- a real turn around from the seventies when most Oxford girls were bespecled and very intense and still had the advantage of being very scarce.

Anyway I'm trying to lay off the pressure- I sometimes think we put too much pressure- pressure to perform, pressure to be happy, pressure to find a handsome wealthy soulmate who marries them - etc- I'm not so worried now because of DD not having to face dangerous night journeys where she might get raped by minicab drivers.

harbingerofdoom Fri 07-Oct-11 21:48:06

BG Hope you can both work round this. What Funny was saying makes sense to me (non medic) as someone totally hypo can live with thyroxine. Likewise a type 1 Diabetic can also have the synthetic replacement. Food for thought or shoot me down as I've got the wrong end of the stick!

harbingerofdoom Fri 07-Oct-11 21:53:43

Funny did you really look at the names on the stairs. Must admit I gave them a quick glance but nothing stood out!
What I didn't like was that DDs name wasn't quite correct.

Betelguese Fri 07-Oct-11 22:42:41

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Yellowstone Fri 07-Oct-11 22:47:15

I look at all names everywhere, I'm always intersted in names, lots tell stories. When DD1 was in the eaves on the right, a Dr. Sturgeon was tucked away in the opposite room. I never felt he should be so far away from water, and I never saw him, nor did DD.

Betelguese did your boiler get fixed? And have you made it up to Oxford with all the missing essentials? I'm very sorry to hear he's not well.

Betelguese Fri 07-Oct-11 22:49:24

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