By Alyssa Fountain, Columnist

Home is a concept that comes with a lot of connotations such as parents, your own bed and something from the past — we are going home for the summer. For a lot of us, this can cause some anxiety.

Some are worried about tense family situations, like when your odd grandfather who tells stories about Antarctica moves in and takes over your bedroom.

Others are nervous about being trapped at home — if you don’t have a car, you might be stuck with bratty younger siblings.

Alternatively, you may be the one expected to drive your 13-year-old brother to his first girlfriend’s house and your sister to the mall.

Home means a return to curfews and a return to rules.

So, the best way to cope with the situation is to have a battle plan.

First of all, respect your parents. Acknowledge they have had to adjust to you being gone, and now they have to adjust to you being back. It’s weird for them too — or so my mother says.

Second, don’t get yourself into trouble. Have a backup plan, so if you break curfew, you can tell your parents you were doing something they would approve of. But try not to break curfew in general.

Third, if you want to be treated like an adult, recognize that will come with adult-sized duties. If your parents are putting a lot of responsibility on you, it’s a sign of respect and understanding that you are old enough to take care of some things.

Yes, it can be annoying when your brother is stinking up your car with too much cologne, but at least your parents trust you with him.

Finally, get out when you can and take advantage of the summer. Go on a long walk if your grandfather is driving you insane. Invite some old friends to go bowling. Walk the dog — I guess you could try putting a leash on a cat too.

If you feel trapped, phone a friend. Usually they’ll be pretty happy to come pick you up.

Here’s a special shout out to those people going home for the first time. It’s nerve-wracking — you have a new normal and that is going to be different.

Remember that your parents have a new normal, and everything is going to feel weird for everyone. But you guys will make it through together.

Some of us, myself included, are going to a new home for the first time. That’s pretty anxiety provoking, not knowing anyone there. So try some open communication with your parents, and just remember that everyone is doing their best.

Good luck and have a great summer. ◼︎

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