From the time you were a baby to the day you left home to live on your own, your parents have always been there to look after you and provide for your needs.
They listened to your nonstop chatter, guided you as you were growing up, and encouraged your dreams. Your mom and dad were your first caretakers, mentors, and friends.
Now that you’ve moved on and, maybe, started a family of your own, maintaining a strong relationship with your parents may be a challenge. This is especially true if you’re living far away from your hometown.
Nevertheless, distance shouldn’t be a reason for you and your parents to grow apart. You won’t have your mom and dad forever, and you might regret later on if you lose that close bond you once had with them.
Keeping communication lines open is essential if you want to stay connected and remain close to your parents, regardless of how many miles are between you. Fortunately, there are now plenty of ways to stay in contact.
Whether you choose to be old-fashioned or contemporary is up to you; what matters is that you exert just a little bit of time and effort to communicate with your mom and dad.
Technology makes it easy to keep in touch
You don’t need to rely on snail mail to be in contact with your parents nowadays, although writing and sending letters once in a while can be a good idea, too. Advanced technology gives you a lot of options when it comes to communication.
If it’s getting harder for you to call your parents, send them text messages or e-mails instead. This way, you can reply to each other whenever it’s convenient. You’re probably online most of the time anyway.
Give them updates on how you’re doing and ask about them, too. Share interesting links and articles that made you remember them.
You can also take advantage of online VoIP services, most of which are free. Get your parents to use the same software or app as the one you have, so you can call each other and talk as long as you want without having to pay anything.
Some programs support chats and video conferencing as well.
“Distance shouldn’t be a reason for you and your parents to grow apart. You won’t have your mom and dad forever, and you might regret later on if you lose that close bond you once had with them.”
Some parents are less tech-savvy, in which case, traditional phone calls may be the best way to keep in touch. Have a set time to call so that you won’t be frustrated playing phone tag. Schedule it during a time that’s convenient for both of you.
Traditions help strengthen bonds
While reconnecting through digital means is effective, nothing beats meeting face-to-face. Time and financial constraints may become a hindrance to frequent reunions; nevertheless, you must try to visit your parents at least on special occasions such as birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays.
You can make it a family tradition to gather during particular events. Make it something your family can look forward to.
If you live within reasonable driving distance, you can plan to do monthly activities. For example, it can be as simple as having a home-cooked dinner, or eating out at your favorite restaurants. If you already have children, you may also want to plan picnics, movie dates, or trips to amusement parks or museums.
Such activities will give your kids and their grandparents a chance to bond as well.
Besides meeting as regularly as possible, you can also make it a practice to send small gifts or cards on “unofficial” holidays, including Mothers’ Day and Fathers’ Day. There’s even a Parents’ Day now. Make your parents feel that they’re always in your thoughts, even if you don’t see each other.
When you start your own family traditions, remember that they don’t need to be extravagant. Your rituals should allow you to stay close and connected with your parents, not stress you out because of the planning or intricacies involved.
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