Dear Miriam | At Summer Camp, ‘No News is Good News’

Closeup of letters on writing desk at home

Dear Miriam,

My kids are at summer camp for the first time, and they haven’t sent any letters. What should I do? Should I be concerned? 
Summer Empty Nester
Dear Empty,
The saying “no news is good news” exists for a reason, and I think you should do your best to enjoy yourself while feeling pretty confident that your kids are enjoying themselves too. I’m sure you miss them and would love to hear about their adventures, but if they’re too busy to write home, take that as a win.
Of course, it’s possible that they’re too homesick to write to you, or that they lost all their stationary in the lake, or whatever worst case scenario you’re imagining during bedtime or when the mail arrives with no news from the kids. But actually, if anything terrible were happening, you’d surely hear from the camp. And since you’re not, I would encourage you to rest assured that things must be going mostly all right.
If you’re craving an update, I’m sure the camp has professionals on hand to answer questions from parents just like you. Give them a call, or send an email, and ask how it’s going. You’re not the first parent to have such a question, and in the role of taking care of your kids for the summer, they get to answer to you.
What I would encourage you not to do, however, is to complain to your kids about this. Don’t send them letters asking for them to write to you, and don’t hang onto any passive aggressive energy waiting for them to come home so you can give them an earful in person. As a wise person just told me when discussing this question, “even helicopter parents need to refuel.” You’ve sent them to camp, at least in part, to gain some independence, and their lack of communication is showing you just how that independence is growing.
Be well,


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