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To all parents, please help.

glamfairydustglamfairydust Registered User Posts: 111 Junior Member
edited January 2008 in Parents Forum
Hi.

My parents are having second thoughts about sending me to the school of my dreams because it is too far away from home. They don't think I'm responsible or mature enough to survive on my own. Any advice/tips on what I can say to ease their minds and convince them to let me do this? Any kind of help is appreciated. Thanks =)
Post edited by glamfairydust on

Replies to: To all parents, please help.

  • GratefulDebGratefulDeb Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
    As a parent you set the foundation for who your child will become in the future. You instill morals, values, and right from wrong into your child and when they go out into the world they take that little voice of yours with them.

    If you lay the proper groundwork then when your kid goes out into the world they will make the right decisions. The problem arises that at the age of 18 you do not necissarily have all the skills needed to make the right decisions for yourself. Some of those wrong decisions can cost you your future.

    If you keep an openline ofcommunication with your parents and tell them that when faced with an important issue, you will come to them for advice, then they should let you go. They are not going to be around you 24/7 forever and they need to know that you can make the right choices or maybe the wrong onees but that you will trust their advice.

    I think it is important for you to go where you want and where you can get in becuase you don't want the future to be full of regret.

    Just curious, wher do you live and where do you want to go?
  • oldfortoldfort Registered User Posts: 22,997 Senior Member
    This is how my daughter would handle the situation. She would play it cool, let me have my say. She would ask me to let her apply anyway and we could decide come April. Meanwhile, she would prove to me that she is a responsible person by not getting into any trouble, try to do chores around the house without me nagging. When she is accepted in Spring, then it would be a much easier conversation.

    The worst thing you could do is to throw a temper trantrum. Keep your cool. I think your parents are afraid they'll miss you too much if you should go too far away. My daughter had an aspiration of going to Stanford. When she was a sophmore, it sounded very exciting to both of us. But as time came closer I really didn't want her to go so far away. Luckily, it was not an option. I would have let her go, but I think she was relieved not to go so far away. It is bitter sweet for us parents.
  • Muffy333Muffy333 Registered User Posts: 2,108 Senior Member
    When my 17 year old daughter wants me to think she's mature she cleans up her room. Really clean. And the bathroom (toilet too) And runs errands for me. And hangs out with the "smart kids" as opposed to the "dumb*** kids". If this phase lasts more than 24 hours I sometimes decide she's mature. Does that work for you?
  • MoominmamaMoominmama Registered User Posts: 827 Member
    Some great tips above. Also, you could research what the college offers in the way of support for freshman. Orientation week? Special housing? And see what they do for students in general -- tutoring centers, on-campus health care, etc. See what clubs or activities you might join, and show your parents that you won't be lost and alone on this campus. Ask your parents if there are any friends or relatives living within an hour or so of the school who would be willing to help you out in case of an emergency. Make sure your cell phone provider works in that city, or find out which one does.

    By proactively showing that you are aware of what problems might occur and what resources are available to you to solve them, you'll be demonstrating a lot of maturity.
  • worknprogressworknprogress Registered User Posts: 1,536 Senior Member
    First of all, admit that you probably have some areas where you need to improve. Ask them to think about what would ease their minds. Tell them you will use this time to become more self-reliant and help them be more comfortable with the move.

    In the coming weeks and months really try to behave in a more responsible manner. Maybe you are pretty mature, but really think of areas where your parents think you need to improve. If you really want to convince them, it won't be through your words or arguments, it will be through your ongoing initiative and attitude. By being humble and asking them for guidance, you will really get their attention and respect.
  • maritemarite Registered User Posts: 21,586 Senior Member
    I'm assuming that you aren't going to college until next fall, right? You have nine months in which to mature, and at least four months to demonstrate to your parents that you are capable of being on your own.
    First, take heed of the advice above. Second, research with your parents all the resources available for students on-campus, and discuss with your parents what you will need to know: how to manage your money, how to handle travel, buying things online (if you have not done before), phones and phone bills, etc... Remind your parents that you do have 9 months to learn all this and that college is a great way to *gradually* learn to live independently of your parents.
  • mafoolmafool Registered User Posts: 6,453 Senior Member
    Good advice above. Also, take the initiative and start asking about the things you know you need to learn. Can you do your laundry? No? Ask to be taught how. Are you 18 yet? As soon as you are, go to a bank, open a checking account, and learn how to balance you account. Do it monthly. Do you have problems keeping track of due dates and obligations? Get a date book, write things down and follow through.

    Show that you are taking mature responsibility for learning the skills you will need. Show that you know how to ask for information when you need it.
  • stressedoutmom19stressedoutmom19 Registered User Posts: 15 New Member
    I hear you and I'm a mom. My daughter is currently a freshman and at this time last year she wanted desperately go to Middlebury College in Vermont which is about 8 hours away. We all thought it was glamorous to go to Vt. and how wonderful and fun it would be to visit her there..the mountains, the skiing, etc. She wanted to be in New England somewhere if she didn't get into Midd. She really wanted to see another part of the country as she has traveled quite a bit and is very adventurous.
    She is now at Georgetown...2 hours away and for me its still too far. I used to cringe thinking about her going to a local school or a state school just down the road becuase they weren't good enough for her and didn't have the atmosphere we thought she should be in. Now I understand the parents who tell their kids they're not allowed to go far away. her best friend's dad told his daughter she was only allowed to look at colleges within a 4 hour drive as he would not want her any further. He couldn't bear the thought of her being too far away.
    Honestly, this whole college adjustment has been harder on me than it has been on her. My whole world has been turned upside down and I am very lonely without her in my life. You have been our lives for 18 years and it is hard letting go.
    Your parents still want to be parents and be close to you. If you play sports or are part of the college band or performing arts, they would want to still be able to come and see you play and if you're across the country that's not always going to be possible.
    Your dream school sounds like their nightmare. Perhaps you could find just as good a school close by as there are many good schools in all parts of the country. It sounds like you are very lucky to have such caring parents that they don't want to see you go too far.
  • carolyncarolyn Registered User Posts: 7,435 Senior Member
    <<They don't think I'm responsible or mature enough to survive on my own.>>

    Could you tell us more about why they might feel this way? Are there specific things you can think of that might give them pause about letting you go far away? Have you made some mistakes that might cause them to have hesitations?

    I think before we can give you advice, we need to know more about your parent's side of the story. Often, what seems unfair to one party in a story makes some sense when all points of view are heard. So, fill us in on why your parents might feel you are not yet mature enough to go far from home. Then we can offer some advice on what you might do to not only convince them you are ready, but to actually get ready.
  • mairoula517mairoula517 Registered User Posts: 225 Junior Member
    I'm not a parent, but depending on what kind of kid you are (ie, responsible or not) this could just be code for they're afraid to let you go so far because they'll miss you. That's certainly what's happening with me and my mom!
  • mafoolmafool Registered User Posts: 6,453 Senior Member
    I have a one-and-only sophomore who is attending a university that is 14 hours away by car. I understand the angst of parents when they contemplate their kids going so far away.

    I am going to venture an opinion here. This is not about us. Yes, it can be very, very difficult. Yes, we can hate it! But, it is not about us. Just as most of us would step in front of a bus if we had to to save our kids, perhaps we should consider that we can also handle the pain of separation if that is what is best for our kids. End of editorial.

    That said, there can be reasons to be concerned about distance that go beyond parental emotions. One could be the maturity that is addressed in the posts above. I would suggest that all parties get busy with helping a prospective college student learn the skills needed for independence, regardless of that student's ultimate location. Another is financial. Air travel between our home and our son's school is expensive. When he was considering this school, we spelled out for him exactly how many times a year we would be able to pay for him to fly home. Beyond that, if he wanted to come home, he would have to find a ride or the money to fly home. In addition to it being a financial reality for us, I saw this as one of the tests to see how serious he was.

    I don't intend that this is an inclusive list, but these are the things that occur to me at present.

    As always, YMMV. :)
  • NorthEastMom2NorthEastMom2 Registered User Posts: 387 Member
    Maybe your parents are concerned also about emergency issues. My d is applying to several schools that require plane flights - so if there is an emergency, we cannot respond quickly. She has asthma, which isn't usualy too bad - but I am planning to talk to her about how to handle medical issues, etc. When to go to the doctor, tracking meds, filling prescriptions....
  • ChristcorpChristcorp - Posts: 1,177 Senior Member
    Some very good advice above. The truth of the matter is; we don't know you. Maybe your parents are totally correct. Maybe you aren't mature enough or responsible enough to go to a college far away. That's not for us to say. Therefor no one here should help you "Convince" your parents. They could be right, you could be wrong, and going to such a school could be a disaster.

    On the other hand, you could be totally correct. In which case, the only advice is for you to talk to your parents. Find out their concerns. See if there is a way to instill confidence in them for you. Obviously, arguing and "Acting" like a teenager won't help, so keep that in mind when you discuss this with them. Maybe you can find a compromise with them. Maybe you can convince them to allow you to attend the first semester as a trial. If you maintain a 3.0gpa or above, don't have problems, are involved with activities, sports, clubs, etc... then you can stay. if you are having grade issues, calling home all the time, whining, having problems, etc... then you'll transfer to a different school later. That is just one suggestion.

    Also, realize that you still have 4-5 months to lock yourself into a college. Maybe you can work something out with your parents in the next few months to make them feel more confident. Also, this is a stretch, but there could also be a financial issue involved. Many parents don't tell their kids when there's financial issues involved. Maybe the school that is closer is a lot cheaper and they are using the other excuse as a reason. I'm not saying any of this is the reason. I'm just pointing out that you need to communicate with your parents. The only thing they can hold over you is paying for college. If you want to go to Harvard or Yale and your parents say "NO", that doesn't mean "NO". There are plenty of people who have worked their own way through college. When you graduate high school, you are probably 18 and as such an adult. If you play that card, they will see that maybe you are responsible and mature. Be very careful however. They may just call you on it and say; "Fine, you want to go to xyz university; do it on your own". Be very careful how you play this. Good luck.
  • carolyncarolyn Registered User Posts: 7,435 Senior Member
    I think Christcorp summarizes things very well. I used to get upset when students told me that their parents weren't supportive of their college plans -- that is, until I started realizing that in some cases, the parents had very good reasons for not believing that their child was ready to go far away. So, you really need to talk to your parents and LISTEN to what they have to say very carefully. Don't be defensive, don't over-react. Just listen, and then think about whether their reasons for not considering you mature enough hold some truth. If that is the case, ask your parents what they need to see you doing in order to feel more comfortable that you are ready to go far from home.

    Additionally, in some cases, the underlying factor isn't fear that the student isn't ready, or that the parents aren't ready to let their child go away, but rather FINANCIAL. Some parents are embarrassed to admit to their kids that they can't pay for certain schools. So, you need to ask them directly if part of their concern may be financial. If it is, then you and your parents need to discuss financial aid and merit money possibilities as well.

    But, I agree with Christcorp: Be very careful how you play this. LISTEN carefully to what your parents have to say, and ask a lot of questions. Then calmly and maturely discuss the different options. Once you have a fuller understanding of your parent's side, you may want to consider asking another adult, that both you and your parents trust (such as a counselor or teacher) to talk with your parents. Sometimes a non-biased third party can help parents and students work things out. Good luck!
  • glamfairydustglamfairydust Registered User Posts: 111 Junior Member
    Ok, thanks everyone, I really appreciate it =)
This discussion has been closed.