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Mother and daughter team on college survival guide

Thirteen long, interesting years.

Imagine: more than 115 months of your life spent with your hiney under a school desk. That’s a lot, but now you’ve graduated (or will soon be graduating) from high school and (you can barely believe you’re saying this) you can’t wait to get to college. Leaving home won’t be easy, but you’ll be ready once you’ve read “I’ll Miss You Too” by Margo Ewing Woodacre and Steffany Bane Carey.

And your parents? Ah, that may be a different matter….

On one hand, you’re very excited about the idea of college: the independence, new friends, new experiences, being an adult. It’s what you’ve been working towards for at least a year, maybe more.

On the other hand, you hate to think of leaving behind your room, your possessions, your siblings and everything familiar. College is going to be different, especially if you plan on moving more than a few hours from home. Will you fit in? What if there’s an emergency? Will your friends still be your friends? You’ll have fears, and you might have tears.

That’s all normal, say the authors. Remember that “all of the freshmen [are] in the same boat.” The first and perhaps most useful thing to do is to attend freshman orientation, which plunges you into campus life and helps diminish self-consciousness. It sounds silly, the authors admit, but it helps.

Try to meet up with your roommate, or at least talk on the phone or online before you have to live together. Remember that nobody’s going to remind you to study when you’re at college. Get to know your professors. Use extra caution when posting on social media while you’re at college; party posts can haunt you for a good long time.

Finally, stay in touch with your parents. They’ll miss you, possibly more than you’ll miss them (and your Mom will probably cry). Call, Skype, or text them often — not just when there’s an emergency. Talk to them when you’re in a bad spot, if you think you made a big mistake, or you just need a shoulder and you’re homesick. Remember that you’re an adult now but you’ll always be their kid.

If you’re a parent and you’ve read this far, fear not: “I’ll Miss You Too” has plenty for you as well. Half the book, in fact, is for parents of future college freshmen.

Starting with the fall semester of high school, mother-daughter authors Margo Ewing Woodacre and Steffany Bane Carey walk readers through everything from choosing a college, studying for SATs and packing for the big move, all the way through secondary education and for a year or two beyond. They helpfully touch upon issues both happy and thorny, and their words are soothing for parents, teens, RAs and advisors.

Previously published more than a decade ago, this book is fresh and updated and can surely help parents and future freshman with this transition. If the fat envelope has landed on your doorstep recently, “I’ll Miss You Too” is one book to get.

View publishes Terri Schlichenmeyer’s reviews of books for children and teens weekly.

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