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Hard Lesson Learned from a Broken Hearted Helicopter Parent

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Replies to: Hard Lesson Learned from a Broken Hearted Helicopter Parent

  • readthetealeavesreadthetealeaves Registered User Posts: 674 Member
    @sbgal2011 I can't add anything more than the above posters did. I am so sorry this is happening to you and your family.It is so hard not to want what we feel is best for our kids and help them go after it. Unfortunately, sometimes we help too much. Hugs to you and hope your son matures quickly and is on a better path. You are a good mom. Don't doubt yourself
  • DadTwoGirlsDadTwoGirls Registered User Posts: 4,984 Senior Member
    @sbgal2011 I know this is tough, and none of us can know what will come of this down the road.

    However, it does not sound to me like your son is going to work in a grocery store for the next 20 years. I think that the chances are very good that in a year or two, maybe less, he is going to understand why so many students want to go to university. Assuming that he does return within two or three or four years, he is likely to be a much stronger student for having the time bagging groceries to teach him some perspective on life.

    Of course, it is also possible that in a year or two he will decide that he wants to be an electrician, go to trade school, and ten years from now he will be running his own business with 3 or 4 employees.

    I feel for you. However, life is not a race and I do think that this is very likely to come out well in the end.
  • CU123CU123 Registered User Posts: 3,147 Senior Member
    @doschicos so many people miss that point....
  • CatLover20CatLover20 Registered User Posts: 70 Junior Member
    I can say as a student I wish I had a parent like you. My parents are completely disconnected from my educational process. They have never gone to a parent teacher conference, never attended a school event, people probably think I don't have parents. I think if I had a greater push from my parents I would be looking at a much easier college admissions cycle than I am. Do not blame yourself for this.
  • socaldad2002socaldad2002 Registered User Posts: 955 Member
    Maybe I missed it but what was the hard lesson learned from being a helicopter parent? Would you have done anything different?
  • porcupine98porcupine98 Registered User Posts: 1,618 Senior Member
    Don't beat yourself up. You can't predict this stuff. My parents didn't helicopter. I did the heavy lifting to get myself into college. And I still crashed and burned for a while. It's a tough age. He'll dust himself off when he needs to.
  • LittleStitiousLittleStitious Registered User Posts: 18 Junior Member
    I appreciate you posting this. I have had to do the same thing with my lazy and immature son to get him through high school, but I think it was the right thing to do. I honestly think if I had let go he would have failed or dropped out and that is a really terrible thing that research has shown practically guarantees a life of poverty, So I am sending him off to college and I fully expect he will have a similar experience to your son’s. Luckily we have the money for his first year in a 529 so I am at peace with the expense. My big worry is that he is honestly a very difficult person to live with who does not obey our house rules. So, we are not going to allow him to live here if he fails out of college. Expecting a very ugly scene next spring if he doesn’t have a miraculous growth in maturity.
  • PublisherPublisher Registered User Posts: 6,923 Senior Member
    Delighted to read of your son's rapid maturation !

    As an aside, my son attended boarding school & two brothers from a very wealthy family had a personal secretary assigned to them & had one of the family owned helicopters at their disposal. They both excelled. So not all helicoptering is bad. :)
  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn Super Moderator Posts: 38,656 Super Moderator
    I have already made it crystal clear to him that he is responsible for himself. If he needs help with an assignment or test, of course I will help him in every way possible. But I will NOT be checking to if things get done. I already started this with him in middle school and he is rising to the occasion. I guess that's what happens by the time the third child comes around - you finally have it figured out!

    Good for you! This is the lesson that we learned, too. With our middle child, the difficult one, his doctor said to us, "Do nothing, say nothing..." That turned out to be excellent advice. He's the one going to school in Lebanon and thriving. If we had kept trying to guide him, he'd probably be on the streets today!

    But it's hard. My 20-year-old daughter needs to get her visa to study in Italy this fall. I THOUGHT she had her ducks in a row for her consulate appointment, but she didn't. So I was scrambling to help her get needed paperwork when she informed me that she'd neglected to confirm her appointment so it was canceled. Argh. She is VERY fortunate that there was a cancellation in August so she was able to reschedule. That's the hard part - if I step back and the kid fails, there are MAJOR consequences. It's disappointing when you feel like you raised your kid to be independent but she struggles.
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