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The Daily Illini

Editorial: A letter from Alma for visiting moms

The Daily Illini File Photo

The Daily Illini File Photo

Starting Friday, families will start arriving on campus to celebrate Moms Weekend. As a mother myself since 1929, Moms Weekend is one of my favorite campus celebrations. After a day filled with catching up, exploring campus and checking out the campus facilitated activities, there is always a bit of worry in the back of my mind when the evening hits.

So moms, listen up. Whether you’re a returning alumna or not, some of us often seem a bit like young freshman trying to navigate their way around their first night out. There is always the threat that we may engage in behavior we might end up regretting as soon as the sun comes up. It’s not always our fault; sometimes we need guidance that only our children can provide.

So, to my current children whose (other) mothers are visiting: Treat her as you would want to be treated. Sure, it’s fun to show your mom all of your favorite spots on campus, but if that includes a night at your favorite bars, be careful.

Treat your mother like your lightweight friend. A glass of pinot grigio is different than a pitcher of Long Islands. There’s a novelty to drinking with parents, but they may also get swept up in wanting to relive their college years.

I always care about the safety of my children, and that extends to visiting moms.

For my children that are returning, I know it’s been a while. Moms, remember that as much as we want to have fun with our children, we probably don’t want to drink as much as we did in college. Don’t try to match your college tequila shot record, and definitely remember to eat a full meal before you go out. There will be no shortage of alcohol upon your arrival, nor a majority of individuals unwilling to drink.

More importantly, remember that even though anyone can get into the bars at 19, this isn’t Wisconsin and buying alcohol for your underage child is still illegal. Getting a ticket will surely put a damper on your weekend.

This isn’t to discourage you from having a good time. Whatever your respective offspring likes to partake in on Friday and Saturday nights, it will be even more memorable with the women who have been with them since birth. Cut loose a little bit and appreciate the work you’ve done in raising one of my Illini and admire how they’ve grown over time.

Finally out of the nest, your child has begun to live on their own, learn on their own, love on their own and — maybe most importantly — drink on their own. Once, your role was to keep them in line and in society’s good graces. However, this weekend lets you lend them more than just one sip of wine at a holiday dinner or to drink a beer when Grandma isn’t looking.

So have fun with your child; you are both adults now and can do things you weren’t once able to do. Enjoy it responsibly, though. After all, if you are both in jail, who will bail the other one out?

Love, Alma

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