Preparing for university
After dropping him off
Ben returns home and takes an impromptu 'gap year'
We start to plan the 'gap year' to make it as productive as possible
Writing about what I learned in the process
What would I have done with hindsight?
Student Services help us formulate A Plan
Ben starts to do useful stuff during his gap year
The university, Ben and me start to plan for success, second time around
Ben and I meet up with the various student services to formulate A Plan
The university nurse puts a (thankfully temporary) spanner in the works
More thoughts on the university nurse's comment
Putting it all into perspective
More thoughts as we plan for university
Beginning to prepare for university
Keeping an open mind on the eve of departure
Ben leaves for university again
Echoes of last year...
Sorting stuff out during those early days...
OMG, just days into university Ben falls prey to a phishing email - EMERGENCY
Rollercoasting through that first week
Supporting Ben with hopefully helpful advice
Ben survives the first week
Helping him to cope with a tricky second week
... which wasn't actually that bad, really... some positives!
Two weeks on - an update on university life
More news on how he was coping
... and how I was helping him to cope using Motivational Interviewing techniques
OMG, things go pearshaped...
The legacy of the eating disorder - problems socialising and getting to know people
How I attempted to detach myself from being too emotionally involved as it was all doing my head in!
Proud of him, but it's doom and gloom at uni...
Going back to Sheffield after a weekend at home... doom and gloom...
The road gets rocky
Hopefully mama's Tough Love approach is working
More rocky road stuff...
How was the university support package coming along?
Ben moved into a university-owned house for the second year. He didn't know anyone in the house and it was a bit of a dump. But he was very positive when I dropped him off for the start of the university term. We had our ups and downs, but on the whole it was a positive year. Ben met and made new friends within the 'nerdy' circle and was even voted onto the committee of the nerdy Role Playing Games (RPG) society. He and his new friends found a house to share for the following year and in September 2015, Ben left home for his final degree year at Sheffield. During this time I wrote a few blog posts about our experiences to help other families who might find themselves in a similar situation.
Thrilled to see these young people heading for university!
When university didn't work out, the first time round
Worried I may appear too negative!
One good thing that came out of Ben's eating disorder which was helping him in his studies
Overflowing with pride as Ben graduates with a first-class honours degree and makes plans to return to Sheffield to do a Master's degree in September
An update on how he was getting on back at university in 2016
He is still in touch with his friends from Sheffield and will no doubt meet up with them in the future. Meanwhile his circle of friends at home is stronger than it's ever been.
So, all in all, a Fantastic Outcome!!!