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First lady Michelle Obama on Tuesday told parents anxious about sending their kids off to college that she believes in “letting go.”

Obama sat with hosts of TV talk show “The Real” to talk about a public service campaign targeting 14-to 19-year-olds called “Better Make Room,” which aims to celebrate education and guide the college-going process. Someone asked for advice about teenagers leaving home for school.

“When they get to be 17, they’ll be like, ‘Bye Felicia,’” Obama joked, before giving serious advice on how parents can deal with the anxiety of sending their kids away to school.

“The best thing my parents did for me was to nurture me and hold me tight and then let me go, and then support me in letting me go,” Obama said. “By that, I mean I talk to parents about this all the time. You know, you let them practice now and then, you got to practice letting go.

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Michelle Obama Shares Why It’s Important Not To Hold Onto Kids Too Tightly  was originally published on