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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 ?

sandripples Fri 18-Jan-13 17:22:41

Hi, that's good to read Copt. Thanks!

DS went to Open Day at Bath (as did I). He was impressed by it - I agree it seems to be excellent for engineering and I know a colleague whose daughter loves it there. DS decided against it as the main reason he felt impressed was the sports facilities and he's not hugely sporty, and secondly he felt Imperial was even better. I think it was a useful thing for him to see a campus uni as its important to see a few different places and get the feel of them. But in the end he wanted to go the 'best' he could in terms of reputation. (He got 4 A*s - as did 40% of his current class!)

Bath seemed very manageable to me - campus, smally city. BUT I did also wonder if it would be too small after a while. (I myself went to Edinburgh which was a perfect size for me!)

He had 4 offers - I felt I'd have been happy for him to go to any of these and that he had to make his own decision. He really liked the Imperial staff he met during Open Day/Interview and that swung it.

webwiz Fri 18-Jan-13 17:49:44

DD2 is in her second year at Bath and she seems quite happy with the size - she does go to clubs in Bristol sometimes so there is somewhere bigger nearby if you feel claustrophobic. I went to Durham but don't remember it ever feeling small I suppose we just went to Newcastle if we fancied a change.

Yellowtip Fri 18-Jan-13 19:38:55

Is he ok now gelo? I hope so.

I was pretty horrified by the amount my DS brought home (though he said he didn't do enough work in the first term and was banking on catching up). It's really important to get the balance right. DS seems to go out a lot, so I guess it's ok. But being badly ill is a major problem - there doesn't seem to be time to be ill.

Pleaseandthankyou Fri 18-Jan-13 19:40:33

Thankyou for your comments.DS very sporty and spends a lot of time training, at the minute it is before and after school. I think this would be difficult the first year at Imperial,probably impossible after that as he could be living miles away. He's also very laid back. He enjoys his subject, gets very good grades but doesn't spend much time studying. Revision is always very last minute. At least he has plenty of choice.

gelo Sat 19-Jan-13 01:52:20

Yes, he seems to be yellow, thanks for asking. A week in the sun before the start of term seemed to have cleared the bugs away and he seemed very happy and back on top of his work when I took his stuff up last weekend.

You are right about not having time to be ill though! Hopefully they'll all stay healthy this term.

Copthallresident Sat 19-Jan-13 14:09:36

pleaseandthankyou There is a thriving sporting culture at the London unis, as evidenced in the bars on a Wednesday night. Team sports are taken very seriously, in fact the annual Varsity match between UCL and Kings has been banned from Twickenham Stadium because the rivalry got a bit out of hand. DD isn't a team player but makes use of the gym on her campus during the day, and has also joined a cheap basic gym close to her, there are more and more springing up, no contract / pay as you go etc. I think hers is a tenner a month with her NUS card. Last year she used the facilities at a local leisure centre which were even cheaper with her student card. Obviously Bath has amazing facilities on campus, but he will be living away from campus in subsequent years too? I have to say Bath was our least favourite fixture (I was a team netball player), I remember bleak windswept courts!!

sandripples Sun 20-Jan-13 13:12:14

Pleaseand thankyou,

Yes DS makes very good use of the gym at Imperial which is free and just across the square from Halls where he lives. There are other facilities in the same place - a pool I think but possibly more. There are lots of sporty societies but I still think the factor of having to travel round town in London may be less convenient in future years - certainly compared to Bath where the fields etc are all on campus. (but yes, very windy on top of that hill!)

I'm concerned about where students in London find to live when they can no longer stay in halls - any tips?

Copthallresident Sun 20-Jan-13 14:13:00

sandripples waves to clever namer of names! DD and flatmates haven't had a problem at all finding flats, the only trade off is size and comfort versus being further out. Last year their flat was lovely but on A1 and on top of shop, typically student flats are flats normal people might find less desirable, on top of shops, on main roads etc. . This year it is all a bit Shameless but a few stops nearer in to uni, and they love it. She actually uses the bus because it is cheaper and it takes 15 mins. I'm not sure where Imperial students tend to live but I would have thought towards Shepherds Bush and Hammersmith you would get the same sort of cheap places with good transport connections. The good thing is that unlike other city unis they don't have to sort it out in November /december leaving lots of chances for falling out before they even move in. There are various sites where flats seem to keep coming on right through the summer. Even one that you type in what you want and it generates a list.

sandripples Sun 20-Jan-13 16:19:25

Hi Copt - and thanks for this - i feel reassured.

'I am sixteen, going on seventeen tralatralatraltralaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa....'

sandripples Sun 10-Feb-13 19:33:30

Hi, I guess it partly because its cold wet February and also I've had a fluey bug recently, but I'm missing my DS even more this term than last I still feel that the house is so empty and have begun to feel life lacking in a purpose .....

I'll probably pick up when spring is here and I can get out into the garden and for walks - but is anyone else still finding this hard? My DD is away working in London now and DS is down there too - 2 hours by train.

fussychica Tue 12-Feb-13 17:53:29

My DS only went back 3 weeks ago and it's certainly easier this year than last. I am dreading Year Abroad next year as I know I'll worry even more than when he first started.

Poor weather certainly doesn't help - hope you perk up soon sandripples

Lifeisontheup Mon 18-Feb-13 15:33:44

Just read this, my DS is going to Italy next year fussychica and I'm already worrying without letting him know of course.
Where is your DS going?

mumof3teens Mon 18-Feb-13 20:59:20

DS3 year abroad next year too sad Austria and Germany.

fussychica Tue 19-Feb-13 19:49:08

Hi Life and mumof3 DS is going to France - has applied for British Council Teaching Asst post but he won't know if, and where, he's going for months which is probably the worst thing. Are yours going to Uni in germany/Italy or BC too?

DS is doing Euro langs (Spanish, French and German) Uni wouldn't let him go to Spain(sensibly) as he is fluent in Spanish. I just hope France is better than a lot of folk say (unfriendly, impatient etc) To be honest I'd rather he was going to Germany which I've heard good more things about but it wasn't an option.

We'll have to worry/support together!

Lifeisontheup Tue 19-Feb-13 20:29:45

Mines got a place as an erasmus ? scholar in Venice, not sure about the details until I pin him to the wall and extract information at Easter grin
It's so difficult having to stand back and knowing we won't be able to help much as we don't speak any Italian, France would be easier as DH speaks good french.
I don't know anything about how they go about getting a place to live or anything else.

fussychica Tue 19-Feb-13 20:47:52

Venice - wow - expensive?
I do worry about how much support they get abroad from Uni but people all seem to get though it! At least if he's at Uni he'll likely be with people in the same boat. DS could be pretty isolated depending where his school is. He didn't want Uni though - wanted to earn some money and get some work experience which he lacks.

Lifeisontheup Tue 19-Feb-13 20:57:35

I don't know about the cost, I think he will get the same loan as he does here and we pay his accommodation so we'll have to see. They were told getting a job would be difficult because of the difficult economic conditions in both Italy and Spain. not sure how many people from the UK will be there.
I guess this is the real letting go, I can't just nip up the motorway, not that I've ever had to but I could.
DD finishes uni and hopefully starts proper work next year too so it'll be letting go all round really.

fussychica Tue 19-Feb-13 21:19:06

I suppose the dashing up the motorway thing is what really worries me - DS was rushed into hospital with a punctured lung during freshers week and landed up having surgery. He is 4.5 hours away and that was bad enough!

All that letting go at once - scarey but I'm sure it will all be fine.

Lifeisontheup Tue 19-Feb-13 22:33:24

That sounds scary fussy. Is DS tall and skinny? I'm guessing spontaneous pneumothorax with professional hat on smile . Hope all is fine now.

fussychica Wed 20-Feb-13 10:43:22

Spot on 6'1" and skinny as a rake. Tries to bulk up with only limited success. Yes he's fine now thanks but it was a shock.

Lifeisontheup Wed 20-Feb-13 12:11:27

I gave my 6'2" with every rib showing DS a list of symptoms before he went off to uni and told him it was one of the few acceptable reasons to call an ambulance.

Overprotective Mum, not me never smile
Glad your DS is fine now.

mumof3teens Wed 20-Feb-13 17:50:15

Fussy and Life : DS3 has applied for Teaching Assistant job in Austria for 6 months then 6 months studying at a German Uni (is studying German & History at uni here).

Lifeisontheup Wed 20-Feb-13 18:33:26

You really have to sit on your hands and let them get on with organising things themselves don't you? Fortunately DS has a very sensible and organised girlfriend who will bully him into action, at least he'll listen to her and she is with him a lot more than us.

fussychica Wed 20-Feb-13 18:45:40

Sounds good mumof3 I know places are very limited for the 6 month Austrian stints. I just wish the whole BC process didn't take so long don't you? Not finding out if their applications have been successful and to which region within their chosen country they've been allocated to until May/June is a pain for sorting cheap flights etc and a bit late to sort anything else if unlucky.

mumof3teens Thu 21-Feb-13 08:17:04

Yes agree fussy - DS3 'doesn't know' when he will find out where he has been allocated hmm May/June is v late to find out. Where is your DS? (mine at Sheffield). Haven't really thought about what it will be like when he is actually there for a year.... He loves skiing, so is hoping to do quite a bit of that in Austria (which makes me even more nervous). That sounds really frightening re pneumothorax - DS3 rang me at 3am one morning last year to say he felt 'really poorly' and would I please go and pick him up shock. Thought the worrying would lessen with 3rd DS, but apparently not.

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