In need of some help...

<p>I need a little bit of help on with my college searching. I live in Northern California and there's only 2 schools that I'm looking at in state. My family is very close and they keep persuading me to go to the college an hour away from our house, and reminding me that a plane ride away isn't always as easy as it seems. I love them very much but at some point I feel like I need to grow up. I understand I'll always have them for support but I'm afraid I'll hurt their feelings. </p>

<p>Any advice?</p>

<p>You need to find out how you are going to pay for college. Take a look at the financial aid calculators at FinAid</a>! Financial Aid, College Scholarships and Student Loans and ::</a> College Planning Made Easy | Inside Source for College Admissions Requirements Find out how much of "we want you to stay close to home" is really "this school close to home is the only one we can afford". It may be that money is a bigger barrier than you expected.</p>

<p>There are advantages to going to school close to home. Chief among them: you can go home when you want to and your family can visit you whenever there is a school event you'd like them to attend. Chances are that you will be so busy with your school work, and your family will be so busy with their lives, that you won't be seeing each other every single day. I don't think you really need to worry about that one.</p>

<p>There are advantages to going to school farther away from home. Chief among them: developing independence from your family and increasing your appreciation for your family. Nothing helps us learn to love our families like living apart from them and finding out what the rest of the world looks like.</p>

<p>Back in the last century, I went from my home town in the midwest to college on the east coast. My mom's extended family lived in the same state, so I did have plenty of places to go for sort vacations. I also had good friends who were local who would take us midwestern orphans home to be spoiled and fed by their moms. Years later, I paid back some of my karmic debt by taking east coast orphans home to be fed and spoiled by my mom when I was in grad school in my home state.</p>

<p>Your family loves you, and they are dealing with their fears about separation. Just be sure to let them know that you understand they are a bit scared and sad about this. You probably are too. Just remember that wherever you end up, you (and they) are going to be fine.</p>

<p>Wishing you all the best.</p>

<p>It might help if you show them the academic calendar. We were shocked at how many breaks S's calendar contained and how often he'd be home or we'd be there: Just 5 weeks after he'd left, we were there for 'family weekend.' 4 weeks later in October, he was home for a week of 'fall break' (whatever that is), another month and it was a long weekend for Thanksgiving, then a month for winter break, a 'quickie visit' to see his gf over Valentines Day (he paid for it), and another 2 week for Spring Break at the end of March. He'll be home next week (May 15th) and it hardly feels like he's been gone...</p>

<p>We joke that maybe if we pay more, he won't have to leave home at all...</p>