A mother who didn’t hear from her daughter for several days after dropping her off at college swung by campus to deliver what can only be described as a missing person flier in a hilarious viral video.
Nicole Walters, 32, is an entrepreneur and mother of three in Maryland (daughters ages 6, 15, and 18) who recently sent her eldest off to a local college. On Aug. 22, Walters and her husband had plans with their freshman daughter, but when she didn’t respond to their text messages and phone calls, the worried parents decided to pay her a visit.
Walters filmed the aftermath of the visit and posted it to Facebook, where it’s received 53,000 reactions, 14,000 comments, and 3.6 million views. “Bless her heart,” Walters says of her teen in the footage. “She thought she could dip off and go ghost for three days. No you won’t. What you’re not fittin’ to do, while I pay tuition, is disappear for three days.”
Walters explains that her daughter initially made contact — at 2 a.m. via text message — after her first day of classes in a message that read, “Oh no, sorry, I was just out late.”
Walters says in the video, “Out late doing what? Out late doing what? ‘Cause the campus bookstore is closed and the library is not 24 hours.”
During their surprise visit, the parents brought their daughter some fruit — “Here’s some bananas because potassium is important,” Walters quips — and a flier with the teen’s photo that read, “Is my kid being irresponsible? Tweet @NapturalNicole photo proof and get a $10 Starbucks gift card and a free pizza.” She also threatened to print 500 copies and distribute them in the campus quad if her daughter disappears again. “We’re not playing. … There are 35 Kinko’s between my house and your school,” Walters says.
Walters also dismisses any claims that her daughter needs to learn independence at school: “I pay for you to get a degree. … Life is coming no matter what. … You will not learn independence on my dime.”
Her supporters seem to agree, leaving comments such as “Mom goal for real. I would have showed up after the first day and asked my daughter who she thinks she is” and “Whew, she’s no joke! Bet she’ll focus and earn that degree.” Another person commented: “This was absolutely great!!! It is everything we feel when our kids go MIA.”
“I have a pretty structured way of parenting, but what you saw in the video was everyone’s mom in their worst moment,” Walters tells Yahoo Beauty, adding that her parenting style is unique to her family. “I adopted my daughters a few years ago and they didn’t have support, so they’re not used to adults who are consistently present. I want them to know that ‘out of sight’ doesn’t mean ‘out of mind.’”
The mom says that the college visit was necessary. “We wanted to reset our daughter’s intentions and remind her that her past doesn’t have to dictate her future,” she says.
The visit also came as no surprise to the college freshman, who Walters says was standing off camera laughing while she filmed. “She knows — I Snapchat her friends and ask them to take photos of her to send me,” she says, adding that she is happy to “recruit” them to track down her daughter if necessary and that the phrase “potassium is important” has become a punch line at school.
“Some parents may disagree, but we are confident in our parenting,” says Walters. “Excellence is a priority.”
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