During her first overnight trip in Grade 7, Jennifer Kolari’s daughter suddenly became “absolutely terrified.”
The dorm room, her sleeping quarters at Wilfred Laurier University in Waterloo, felt like a prison cell. Her routines and comfort zones had vanished. Feeling terribly homesick, she called her parents and begged to leave early.
Kolari listened to her daughter on the phone. She did not dismiss her fears, and instead talked her through the situation.
“I think probably the most important thing to appeal to parents is that your kids have to have some of these experiences, even adverse ones,” says Kolari. “That’s a tremendous lesson. But they are not going to learn that lesson if you never let go of their hand.”