I already felt fairly independent from my parents before I went off to college, as my older siblings were both good students who did not get into any trouble, so because I kept bringing home good grades my parents let me be very independent. I had (and still have) a good relationship with my parents, perhaps because it took (and takes) a little effort to contact them. This story of a professor’s discovery of just how close her students are to their parents, on a daily basis, does help me to understand a bit why students sometimes ask me for ponies or unicorns (pedagogically speaking).
“But when I was in school,” I manage finally to gasp, “All we wanted to do was get away from our parents!” “We never called our parents!” “We despised our parents!” “In fact,” I splutter—and this is the showstopper—”we only had one telephone in our whole dorm—in the hallway—for 50 people! If your parents called, you’d yell from your room, Tell them I’m not here!”
After this last outburst, the students too look aghast. Not to mention morally discomfited. No; these happy, busy, optimistic Stanford undergrads, so beautiful and good in their unisex T-shirts, hoodies, and J.Crew shorts; so smart, scrupulous, forward-looking, well-meaning, well-behaved, and utterly presentable—just the best and the nicest, really—simply cannot imagine the harsh and silent world I’m describing.The Case for Breaking Up With Your Parents – The Chronicle Review – The Chronicle of Higher Education.