It’s one of the hardest hurdles to overcome as a freshman. Convincing your parents to rush and pledge a fraternity is as difficult as it gets. Some are blessed with Greek family traditions, while others are tortured by old school traditionalists. No matter how you were raised, you’re going to run into some form of parental issue during rush and pledgeship, let alone the 3+ years of fraternity life after your semester of hell.
So, what can be done? Well, there are a ton of ways to go about it. And honestly, each one has their advantages and disadvantages. If you haven’t figured out your parents by now, then you’re completely fucked. After living with the damn couple for 18+ years, you better know what the deal is. If you’ve got balls (and a decent job), you might not even have to ever tell them. On the contrary, if your parents are high as a kite on 4/20, then don’t be shy, ask them to fork it over for your first semester. The safer parents want you to wait a semester, while the Greek family bloodlines know that fall rush is the epitome of college. Know your parents, and act accordingly. Don’t be a hardass and do what your dick tells you to do. Be smart. It’ll pay off in the long longrun.
By now you should already know that pledgeship is going to cost you some serious change. The #62 Cost of Pledgeship varies with each fraternity, but assuming you’re somewhat social, frattin’ ain’t free. The two biggest hurdles of any incoming freshman attempting to join a fraternity involve money and parents. At the end of the day, both involve your parents. Like previously stated, you should know your parents by now. You should know whether money is going to be the issue, or whether they’re more worried about you getting your balls hazed on a daily basis.
If you’re able to sway the tide and find yourself knee deep in #53 Pledge Attire, you have to be smart along the way. Getting through #2 Rush is just the start. You have to keep in touch with your parents just enough to keep them happy. Don’t make the freshman mistake of blowing off your parents. Just remember, they’re paying for it, and they want to know about it (to an extent). While #16 Secrecy will always be the most important rule of pledgeship, you still need to check in with them every once in a while. As gay as that sounds, it could be the difference-maker a few weeks down the road.
To invite, or not to invite? That’s definitely the million dollar question. Gamedays? Maybe. Weeknights? Hell no. It’s common knowledge known around the fraternal world that fraternity dues contribute directly to the social fund. Yet, be careful what you show them. For most, it’s a “don’t ask, don’t tell” sort of relationship. For some, mom & pop want to relive their glory days and take advantage of what their son finally has to offer. On the darker side of things, an uptight set of parents can come crashing down on you with the site of empty beer bottles, broken handles and a twisted bong in the hallway. Our advice? Keep them away, unless they ask. A parent’s broken heart caused by a lack of an invitation is a lot better than a parents scorn thrown towards you at what house you’ve decided to join.
Whether you want to believe it or not, your parents used to get it on. They used to fuck like rabbits. Sorry, it’s true. Based on your relationship, don’t be afraid to prowl a little about their college endeavors. You’re about to leave the nest, and they’ll be willing to open up to you more than they’ve ever done. No matter how strict they used to be, they’re about to see their prized possession walk out of their lives. They’ll do anything to keep in touch, even if it means revealing some stories that you’d rather not hear. And don’t worry, they’ve always kind of wanted to tell you. It’s just a matter of you asking them first. Who knows, maybe your tree-hugger-of-a-mom rolled the fattest joints back in the hippy-fest days. You’ll never know until you ask. And believe me, the more you know about them, the more you’ll know about how to approach them when the time comes. Just remember, no matter how good your friends are, the first one’s you’ll be calling when you crash your car, get thrown in jail or flunk out of school… will be your parents. Parents are like virgins. You love them, you hate them, but either way, you’ve got to handle them with care.
It’s not hazing. It’s brotherhood.