Most parents and guardians tend to assume that after paying school fees and ensuring we have everything at school, we are fine. No, we are not. Financial support for our education is essential and we appreciate it. But it is not all we want as children. We want constant check-ups, attention, love and care. We want someone to ask us how we feel or at least have an idea of our daily routine, our struggles and achievements.
It is so frustrating to hear my friends sharing stories that after their parents dropped them to school in their freshman year, the affection decreased.
After the parents cleared fees, they left us to deal with life since we are already grown up.
We can deal with our own issues, but life is tough, especially in campus, — what with depression, being broke, toxic relationships and other daily struggles. Reports about high unemployment rate are demoralising students and the temptation to drop out of school to earn fast and easy money is getting stronger.
Most people experience their first serious relationship in campus, whether toxic or healthy. Sometimes these love affairs get out of hand and depression kicks in. Some unfortunately feel the only way to let out the frustrations is to turn to drugs. Others opt to stick to the toxic relationships sometimes with tragic consequences.
Negative peer pressure is also rife in campus. Relatives and friends who were so happy that you were making steps in the academic ladder no longer have the time to visit or check how campus life is. Ironically, at the end of the four years, they will be keen to know about plans of the graduation and whether you got a job.
Family really matters — having a guardian, parent or a friend who keeps an eye on you, who offers motivation that you need to make big plans and that parental advice on relationship matters. Taking a child to school and catering for their needs is not enough. Constant calls and even texts to ask us how we are really impacts our daily activities. We may be grown-ups but we are still yearning for childhood affection. Check on your children on a regular basis to understand their struggles. A lot goes on in school, miles away from home.
Caroline Gatwiri is a communication and journalism student at Maasai Mara University