Help! My mom is a monster on a mission to destroy my list!

<p>It seems like every school that I put on my list, my mom finds a reason to take off. </p>

<p>Too urban ("Is it really worth getting shot in the head?"), too much partying (this at a state school that is nowhere near the top of those infamous rankings.), I know someone who became a crackhead there, you won't fit in there just trust me, that isn't for you.</p>

<p>She says these things for just about EVERY school I put on my list. How can I tell her that is MY process and I will be the one who has to live there and do all of these things.</p>

<p>I'm also slightly offended that, because she knows one person who got addicted to drugs at ABC State U, she also thinks I will. Does she have that little faith in me?</p>

<p>It's still very early. At some point, when you're not in the middle of a head-to-head screaming match, you should have a grown up conversation about what is your job, what is hers, and what is done by both of you. Creating a list can be done by both of you so hang in there. It's going to be a long year. </p>

<p>Be a good listener, demonstrate that you're listening (by summarizing her message in your own words). Don't automatically throw out her ideas without truthfully considering her rationale. </p>

<p>Now put your negotiating hat on and take turns which colleges should be on your list. Remember to have a few reaches, a few safeties. A good balance where you'd see yourself going there.</p>

<p>My title was a joke. We haven't been screaming or anything like that. ;)</p>

<p>It's difficult for me to understand her rationale though. Yes, I want a school in an urban area for all of the cultural, social and economic opportunities. Urban areas have a certain level of crime. There's no way around that. However, that doesn't mean that I'm going to have my brains blown out, like she implies.</p>

<p>If you ask her what she DOES want on your list, what does she say? Maybe you can find a middle ground on a few characteristics and start from there. Or maybe you need to take a few steps back and deal with whatever's stressing her about your going away to college in general.</p>

<p>It seems like what she's worrying about is common to just about any college - maybe they're not all urban, but there are risks everywhere (some people actually consider rural campuses riskier for crime). You're not going to be able to promise there won't be any partying or drugs. I think there's more to this. Try to get to an open conversation about the deeper issues. And do listen - don't just get into a "yes it does/no it doesn't" volley.</p>

<p>She basically says she doesn't know. She didn't go to college and she's not well-informed about what all's out there. She thinks I'm headed to the Ivy League no matter what. Sorry, but that ain't happenin'</p>

<p>If you live in a rural or suburban area, your mom may never have really experienced an urban area and may never have wanted to. Us moms tend to worry about our kids & she may just be trying to protect you. What I would say is that if there are urban schools you're interested in, you can calmly frame your case for applying to those schools by saying something like "I know you're worried about me living in NYC, but NYU has such a fantastic (fill in the blank) department that I think it would be worth it." </p>

<p>Re: the Ivy League route. Take some time to educate your mom about the realities. Work into conversation the fact that Harvard had a 6.9% acceptance rate and that they reject as many perfect score applicants as they accept, if not more. If she's not familiar with college admissions they she might need a little reality check about that kind of stuff.</p>

<p>The thing is, my mom is from NYC. We now live in a college town. She grew up in NYC and loved NYC. She always talks about how great NYC was. Yet she doesn't want me to experience all the positives that a big city brings? :confused:</p>

<p>Can you sit down with your mom and your guidance counselor? She might appreciate getting what she might see as "objective" information. I'm sorry you're having to go through this - the process is hard enough when people are on the same page.</p>

<p>The decision where to go to college was my daughters...however, she agreed to visit a few colleges that I wanted her to see so she would get a feel for different types of colleges-large v. small; college-town v. college in the middle of a city, etc. I was thankful that she indulged me but happier just to have the opportunity to spend some time with her during her junior & senior years.</p>

<p>My daughter created her initial list. If there was a school in question, I didn't hesitate to express my concerns. In those instances where she had valid arguments to contradict my input, I heard her out. When she could not support her selection with valid reasoning, she "heard" me and took it off the list. Thus far, our experience building and tearing down the list together has been a pleasant one. </p>

<p>It may go without saying, but it will be more productive if each of you are willing to compromise and support the critiques with real data. You may want to go as far as to supply your mom with crime rates for your urban selections; graduation and retention rates for others...</p>

<p>PS - Great thread title! Got my attention :)</p>

<p>Just be sure, in the end, that you can accept any school as "your college" after all is said and done. Many kids this year struggled with that. It's easier to resolve issues now, before you apply, than to get back acceptances from places you could never envision yourself.</p>

<p>CIA, remind dear mother that she has done such a superb job raising you that you wouldn't think of hanging out with crackheads in the dorms or walking around a dangerous neighborhood at night. Tell her she raised you right and you want her opinion on potential schools to a point. If the monster behavior continues into the fall enlist your college counselor. I have a feeling mother is beginning to feel anxious about you leaving next year. Be sweet to her.</p>

<p>I agree that your mother is worried and anxious. Let me guess--are you the oldest child, or the first child to go to college?</p>

<p>Funny story--my mom had visited my (very recent) alma mater back when she was looking at schools 30-some years ago. She thought the town was a "pit" and wondered why in the world I would want to look at the school. Well, we visited the school, and my mom fell in absolute love with the school, campus, and town! She even (literally) bought the t-shirt during that visit, though I didn't decide to attend until, oh, April 30th of my senior year.</p>

<p>*She basically says she doesn't know. She didn't go to college and she's not well-informed about what all's out there. She thinks I'm headed to the Ivy League no matter what. *</p>

<p>This is probably why your mom is behaving like she is. She didn't go to college, so she's not sure which "non-ivy" school would be good enough for you. She thinks you're ivy-bound because she doesn't understand how competitive the elite school process is.</p>

<p>So, apply to a couple of ivies to make her happy, but explain that you have to apply to a couple of match and financial safety schools as well.</p>

<p>*In-state, First-gen.</p>

<p>3.3 GPA (2 C's in AP classes, got 5's on both exams)
32 ACT
AP's: U.S. History: 5, European History: 5, English Language: 5, Psychology: 5</p>

<p>Good extracurriculars,... *</p>

<p>BTW...has she actually toured any of these campuses that she dislikes? If not, get her on some campus tours.</p>

<p>Is that your weighted GPA? </p>

<p>With your ACT score, you might get some good merit at some safety schools. Are you pursuing any of those?</p>

<p>When I was applying to colleges I used to threaten (jokingly ) to apply/go to a silly school (no offense to anyone-- but it was, ad at the time was called Slippery Rock State Teachers college) to help put in perspective that my list of schools was a good list. Perhaps using your sense of humor might help your mom put things in perspective?</p>

<p>
[quote]
I have a feeling mother is beginning to feel anxious about you leaving next year. Be sweet to her.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>This hits the nail on the head, IMO. Everyone reacts differently to their "child" going away to college. Add in that she didn't go, and you have more elements in play.</p>

<p>Be kind, be understanding and hopefully she will come around. Keep developing your list and discuss it with her. Even if she is always putting up roadblocks, she is actually listening to you (sounds a little like role revearsal to me).</p>

<p>I went away to college, half-way across the country. I know what the college experience is. I am still freaking out about my "baby" going away to school (only a three hour drive) in just a few weeks. Admittedly, I am equal parts excited for her and sad that she is leaving, but I was ALWAYS positive and excited on college visits. She is both anxious and excited too.</p>

<p>My mantra (which I started when my kids went to sleepaway camp) is that just because it's the best thing for them, doesn't mean it's easy for me. That's what being a parent is!</p>

<p>Once again, at college drop off three weeks from tomorrow, I will be feeling like the mommy bird, pushing her baby out of the nest to learn to fly. I've prepared her all I can. Now it's up to her.</p>

<p>I hope some of this will help you. It is an exciting time. I hope your mom learns to share it with you.</p>

<p>Make a longer list, with some truly awful schools on it. Agree to take those off.</p>

<p>OP,
Unless you personally finance your life while in college, you have no leverage in this process. You do not own it, so to speak. I am sorry to dissapoint you, but having polite and calm conversation and listen more than talk is the only thing that is smart fro you to do. Asking person who will support you thru the college for their input, suggestions will open up much more to you than arguing about it. Nice conversation might include you providing criteria list for colleges and asking your parent to come up with list of colleges that meet these criteria that both of you can discuss later. My D. did it for the list of Grad. schools. Yes, she actually has asked me to compile list based on her criteria. She was very happy with it and has applied to all schools on my list. And I never cared which one she will choose, which I have expressed many times. Be smart, it will pay off. In most cases at the end it does not matter where you end up going for UG, but it matters a lot what you accomplish while being there. Best of luck.</p>

<p>I had the same problem.</p>

<p>If you can afford to put some cash aside and pay for your applications yourself, do that. Parents have a hard time letting go. How far away are the colleges from where your mom lives? In the end, only YOU know what you want. Stay true to your convictions. </p>

<p>Start the applications to the schools that you really like and show your mom that you're putting in the effort and have her meet you half way.</p>

<p>I agree with what someone posted earlier - have her visit the schools. Also, visit the schools yourself. You just might end up not liking them yourself. :(</p>

<p>Good luck!</p>