"We were at an engineering school in the 1970's. The mom dropped her kid off at his dorm and drove away. Yes, she literally just pushed his suitcase and a few boxes out of the car, told Junior goodbye and to study hard, and she left.
This kid was 15 freaking years old, a super genius child prodigy with zero social skills.
His roommates were horrified, but most of them had little brothers, so big brother parenting kicked in. The kid was pretty well socialized by the end of the first semester and had a collection of de facto big brothers and big sisters helping him live life.
It was a relief because as a housing counselor, I was really worried I was going to have a bad situation on my hands. I did not need to do anything at all.
I did buy the older guys drinks a few times to thank them."
"I'm a former RA at a British University. I might add, not a private school, not a prestigious Oxbridge style university. A (at this stage two years after it changed) former Polytechnic. This will come to bear relevance.
The student halls I worked in had shared kitchens, but everyone got their own room. Not that much bigger than a coffin but a room with an en-suite nonetheless. On moving day one year, after most of the parents had left and the smoke had settled, there was one student who looked very troubled, just standing in her doorway with two oversized suitcases. I'd seen her Mum wander off to her shared kitchen. The girl was just staring into the room, seeming more and more frustrated.
Me: 'Hi there! I'm Dave, I'm an RA for the Uni. How are you getting on?'
Me: 'O...k. Did you travel far to get here?'
Silence...but now she'd taken to lividly staring at the floor and refusing to speak to me. I couldn't figure it out. Thinking to myself that maybe she was from abroad perhaps, or, maybe had some anxiety issues, I said, 'Well, let me know if you need anything, I'm just in the office by reception,' and turned around...
...to end up face to face with a very livid mother of this girl.
Her: 'Well?!' she barked at me.
Me: 'Umm...is there an issue?' I enquired
Her: 'Why haven't you taken her bags into her chamber?!' I kid you not, she said chamber.
Me: 'Oh,' I thought 'why not?' I was getting towards the end of my shift and the busiest part of the day had long gone by now. I picked up/dragged these two enormous suitcases into the room, a distance of about 5 feet.
Her: 'Well obviously you can't expect me to tip you,' barked the mother again, 'and as I'm sure you can expect, I have some questions for you as well.'
Me: 'It's not uncommon for there to be some! I'll answer what I can!' I chirped, making sure the plastered visage was as smiley as possible.
Her: 'Yes fine! These beds are awful, will she be able to bring her 4-poster in here?'
Me: '...A 4-poster frame? In a room that's barely 6 feet across? I mean, there's no rules against it, but I doubt you'll be able to fit it in.'
Mummy Dearest dismissed this with a wave of her hand. 'That's not an issue for her, it will be for you obviously' (...It will?) 'When do the maids visit?' she enquired.
Me: 'This is a self-catering hall. Students are expected to clean their own rooms.'
Big sigh from this old windbag followed by, 'I should have known. Well, what time are the meals served? I tried asking some of the staff down the corridor here but none of them would give me an answer. Why can't you hire bloody English people?!'
Me: 'Well again, its a self-cateri...wait, who were you asking?'
Turns out whilst I'd been having 'riveting' conversation with her daughter, this trout of a woman had gone up and down the corridor, banging on doors and just walking into people's rooms, gasbagging and demanding information on various facets of the halls. The biggest issue being that she'd been harassing our Chinese students, some from Hong Kong some from London, about when they were going to cook her little darling's food and that there better not be 'any bloody mice or snakes' in her precious princess' food.
Yeah, needless to say, this girl didn't last long without Mummy's help. And by that, I mean about six months into her first year, she left university after becoming pregnant. With one of her Chinese-national hall neighbors..."
"In a helicopter parenting situation, I had left my phone number at a desk for a desk attendant one night I was on duty. A resident saw this, my personal number, and gave it to his Dad.
The dad called me and immediately started yelling that there was a leak in his son's bathroom ceiling and urine had been leaking through it.
Me: 'Okay; how long?'
Dad: 'For a week.'
Me: 'Has he done anything? Notified anyone?'
Dad: 'You're the RA, you're supposed to know.'
The dad chewed me out for ten more minutes. I checked out the kid's room. He's got towels all over the bathroom floor. I looked up at the ceiling, there was a super light leak, definitely not urine. I told him so and told him to file a maintenance request. He demanded that I do it for him. I pointed him in the right direction, but he's a big boy, so no. He demanded to know if what I knew was water was actually urine. I casually asked why he let what he thought was urine leak into his apartment for a week. As I went to leave, he told me he's going to demand that the university pay for his ruined towels and he wanted my contact info to file a complaint. I nodded, gave him the info, and left.
His dad called me a day later, but I had spoken to my boss the night before.
'Hi I'm calling on behalf of---'
'Yes I know, sir, but I'm an RA and I handle students' problems. If he wants my attention, he can call me himself. Otherwise, I don't report to you. Have a nice day, sir. Delete my number.'"
"The oddest story I had was had one room that had completely different roommates. Not like the goth and yacht club 'Odd Couple' sort of thing, but two different away from home experiences. One had been in a boarding school for years and was laid-back. The second was a homeschooler with a Drill Sargent dad and doting mom.
The laid-back resident's parents didn't even show up. I asked him if he came alone and he said his parents were in town but wanted to avoid the chaos and would say goodbye tomorrow. The second resident almost seemed dazed when his parents left. His dad told him to stay in college (like an order) while his mom cried and took forever to leave.
The next day, I checked in on both. One was gone. The homeschooled one had moved out, drove a few hours and had arrived at his house twenty minutes after his parents did (a fellow student in the dorm was from the same town and even same church which is how we found out).
The parents of the remaining resident showed up the next day, asked where their son's room was. I told them and they thanked me. Then they asked if the freshman had events planned or were they free for dinner because they wanted to take their son and his new roommate out for dinner. It was too bad the homeschooled kid couldn't last 24 hours away from extreme parents."
"One time one of my residents said, 'Here, my mom wants to talk to you,' and handed me her phone.
I had to hold it a foot away from my head until her mom stopped yelling. Her mom was threatening to call the police because her daughter was being bullied (really, it was a verbal fight between two roommates). I told her if she really wanted to call the police go ahead. I'm following university policy by having a talk with both of them.
I literally could not care less if she called the police. But she said it as such a threat to me, it really irked me. Of course, she didn't call anyone."
"A mom backed over son with her car because he bent down to pick up box after shutting lift gate. She didn't want to get stuck in rush hour traffic so she wasn't paying attention hurrying to back out of parking. He ended up with a mild concussion and road rash. She was honestly was a huge prick about the whole thing. Felt bad for the guy. He had to go home every weekend to do family religious things like house blessings and other random stuff. He was Hindu but first generation American and just wanted to do college stuff on the weekend, like drink and try to lose his v-card with a white girl."
"My roommate's parents took way too long helping him move in and it got to a point where we all started partying despite them still being there. His dad had about 3-6 drinks (and probably a few tokes of smoke while nobody was watching) as his wife nitpicked over really arbitrary decorative details. They finally left and we were all making jokes about how they stayed too long, thank god they finally left, now we can go nuts, etc. Nothing mean-spirited__since they were super nice people, just friendly har-hars at the situation.
At this point, my roommate had been drinking, things were in full swing and lo and behold, we see his dad navigating his way through the crowds of people.
Apparently, he was in no shape to drive, his wife was furious and refused to drive, so he needed to borrow a laptop to make hotel reservations for the night. Everyone had been drinking and kept trying to help by making hotel suggestions, which app to use for bookings, which deal to take advantage of, etc. and this guy wanted to listen to everyone. So in the end, my roommate's mom is sitting in the car parked outside the frat house at 8pm on party night while his dad shoots the bull with a bunch of college kids about where to stay."
"One of my two roommates freshman year showed up on move-in day and set up her bed and desk and everything. She convinced her family she'd unpack the rest later, then toured the campus with them and said goodbye.
She then grabbed the giant box of all of the things she actually needed like her clothes, toiletries, etc., and moved them to her boyfriend's house off campus.
She ended up staying there all year, while still paying for the dorm. It was absolutely bonkers to me that her family never apparently found out. It worked out for me though, I had the space of a triple while only having one roommate instead of two!"
"I think the worst was the overprotective mother. She constantly called her son, who ended up not answering after the third call of the day.
Mom would then call his RA, who would go to the student's room and tell him to call his mom. If he didn't do this, she called the RA again and had this repeat.
It hit its climax when the mother couldn't get her son or the RA on the line and called the office in a fit of panic that her son had overdosed and died. No, he was just playing pool and ignored his phone.
I think the Director of Housing stepped in at that point since we didn't hear anything after that."
"I've been an RA for three years now. Every year, without fail, there's always THAT family that helps their kid move in on Sunday and then stays the ENTIRE freshman orientation week until school actually starts the next Monday. Except the freshmen obviously have activities to go to all throughout the week so the parents, who can't accompany their kids to the activities, sit around either in the kid's room or in the lobby of the dorm. It drives me crazy. Last year was particularly bad, with an entire family of mom, dad, siblings, cousins, etc, all camped out in the dorm's lobby for a week.
The university seemed to pick up on the fact that this is a problem because this year they introduced a new event into orientation week: a 'good-bye' lunch specifically for parents to give them the hint it is time to leave."
"I was an RA for three years and this was probably the worst parent interaction I've ever had and I worked in the school's conduct office as a grad student where parents would call angry because their precious angel broke housing policy.
This kid was a sophomore (roughly 20-ish) and his parents moved him in at the beginning of the spring semester. I went door to door welcoming residents back and welcoming new residents to the floor and then I got to this kid's room. Parents were setting everything up for him and he was standing in the corner, just watching with a blank expression. I introduced myself, asked his preferred name (nickname, etc.), and asked if there was anything I could do to help. Total silence. His parents looked at me like I'm the scum of the earth for talking to them.
Flash forward maybe a month. The kid was having roommate problems and so after some mediation, they decided to go separate directions, with the roommate moving into a different room in the building. So now this kid lived alone. I should mention that had had a busy schedule and friends in other buildings, so he wasn't around much which made this next part of the story very difficult.
It was a Saturday morning in February, so we weren't that far into the semester. Who shows up but this kid's parents. Ok, cool coming to visit your kid is nice, right? Wrong. The kid wasn't answering his door so the parents came and knocked on my door, at 7:30 on a Saturday morning, demanding to know where he was. Not being his babysitter, I didn't know but his parents had stuff for him and asked if they could leave it with me because they didn't want someone to steal it.
Being the nice person I am, I agreed, thinking, 'Oh, it'll probably be a box of stuff.' Again, wrong. Five boxes of food, clothing, video games, and books later, the parents left and told me to tell their kid to call them.
I went and knocked on this kid's door every hour because I had to leave that afternoon and I was getting no response. I called my supervisor and explained the situation, and we ended up calling the campus police to do a wellness check because no one seemed to have seen this kid in the past 24 hours. The kid, come to find out, was in the library (slept there) and was annoyed that we entered his room (again with police present).
Oh no, this was not the last of it. Since I agreed to hold on to stuff for the parents that one time, every time they would come to visit (every two weeks and they lived two hours away), they would bang on my door at an absurd hour to demand to know where their son was. At one point, one of my fellow RAs left the building to find the parents in the lobby asking everyone who came by where I was because I wasn't answering my door and how would they know where their son was without me. Truly, the kid suffered from helicopter parents and just didn't like calling them (go figure).
This continued for the rest of the semester and at move out? They forgot and left their kid there until 10 pm when the dorms closed at 6 pm and the poor kid was just sitting on the sidewalk waiting for them."
"I had to tell a parent of an 18-year-old freshman that I'm not allowed to key you into her room to set up a surprise party. Even if mom is paying for the dorm. It's a legal issue.
The mother was so upset, she called her daughter, who then agreed we should have keyed them into her room since Mom is paying. But sorry, it's still not allowed.
Her roommate talked to me privately. She was very pleased I didn't let strangers in while she was with her boyfriend...and that's why we have rules."
"Over a decade ago a mom and dad moved their daughter onto my floor. Most parents arrive and leave within 3-4 hours. This family was one of the first to arrive at 8:30 when the doors opened and spent the entire morning decorating. I was busy so I said hi and kept on trucking.
They took their daughter out for lunch and got back around 2pm, so it was a very nice send off so far.
At 4pm they were still there. The room was decorated, the daughter and dad were just awkwardly sitting there not sure what to do, but the mom was fussing back and forth around the tiny dorm room.
At 6pm I was rounding up anyone who wasn't already down for dinner to make sure the introverts didn't just hide in their rooms on the first night. This family was still sitting in this room together.
I said, 'Hey we're all going down for dinner, Ashley, would you like to join us?'
Her mom answered, 'Well, we're still sort of getting set up here, so...'
Seeing what was happening I said, 'Well, move-in hours expired an hour ago, and we're a little strict about visitors, as you can understand. Why don't you guys say your goodbyes, and Ashley can meet us downstairs?'
The mom non-committaly said, 'ok we'll see.' But I had like 10 other people with me so I couldn't wait around.
I got back to my floor at 8pm - they were still there - almost 12 hours now. I was trying to be polite and compassionate for the mom, but I told them the parents would either need a visitors pass (for staying the night) if they wanted to stay any longer. The mom didn't say anything to me but confirmed she'd heard the message.
About 20 minutes later the parents left. I talked to Ashley and she said her mom is really overbearing. I introduced her to some other girls who might run in the same cliques, and she settled in really well after that.
This mom ended up being my freaking nightmare for the first two months of that semester.
On day three she called me at 9:20pm convinced her daughter was abused and murdered (her words). She called her daughter at 9pm and the daughter didn't answer the phone - so you know, this was the only logical conclusion.
The mom wanted to know when I had last seen her daughter.
With my door open I was literally looking at her daughter in her next door neighbour's room watching Mean Girls while I was on the phone with the mom.
Another time the mom called and asked if the daughter was attending class, doing her homework, etc. I said I had no idea, an RA doesn't monitor things like that. But I said I would tell her daughter to give her a call.
Another time, the mom wanted to know if her daughter went out late at night, particularly with boys. She asked if I could just keep a little log of that and let her know. I said absolutely not, and I would be telling her daughter of the request. She got really mad, hung up, called back 10 min later demanding to talk to my boss. I gave her my boss's number, but she never called my boss.
And the mom would call me two or three times a week just to ask if I'd seen her daughter that day. These were really annoying at first, because the mom was really aggressive, but they got sadder as the weeks went on. The mom had a little of that 'let me speak to your manager' air about her. But it started to become clear that daughter stopped returning her calls because she was sick of her mom's constant nagging and didn't want to put up with it because she didn't live with her anymore.
The mom really missed her daughter and wanted to interact with her in some way. I was honest and I would tell her if I had seen her that day (which I usually did, if our doors were open I could see right into her room). I always told the daughter when her mom called. She always apologized for her mom, and then put off calling her back."
"The worst case of parent/student separation I've ever seen:
See, there wasn't any. At least if the mother had her way. The day after move-in, the girl's mother showed up in the middle of the day and asked for keys to the daughter's room.
That wasn't allowed.
Then she wanted someone to come with her upstairs and let her in. She was only there to get her daughter's dirty clothing! Why can't she do that?!
After 20 minutes of arguing, the woman left a note and told the poor guy at the front desk that it wasn't the last he'd heard from her, insinuated he was some sort of pervert for covering the desk in a women's dorm, and said he'd be lucky if firing and being kicked out of school was all that happened to him.
When the student was informed, she seemed totally embarrassed, apologized for her mother, and said it wouldn't happen again.
Two days later, the woman came back at 5:30 in the morning, found a way through the passcode to the building, and then, when her child wouldn't answer calls from the lobby phone, snuck upstairs when one of the residents was leaving. She woke up the entire (wrong) floor of people by banging at the door to an empty room and eventually got walked out by my friend and Public Safety.
She continuously shouted things like, 'But I just wanted to take my baaaaaby out to breakfast!' / 'How am I going to know she's eating right if I don't?!' / 'I'm her mother, and I pay for everything, so you can't make me leave!' / 'I'm going to sue you! You're trying to keep me from my baaaaaby!'
Public Safety kept someone in the lobby 24/7 for the next three weeks. It would have only been a few days, but scuttlebutt was that she tried twice more, including once in 'disguise,' which was sunglasses, a baseball hat, and a set of University sweats."