Mom doesn't want me to go out of state for college

So I am a sophomore right now and my mom has made it very clear that she doesn’t care if I get into MIT or Harvard, she won’t let me go out of state for college (my dad said he would do anything for me to get there). The thing is, my parents aren’t providing ANY financial support for college, as they won’t be paying for tuition or room and board (as was the case with my brothers though they were in state). I am just wondering in what theoretical ways could my mom “prevent” me from going out of state for college? I would be 18 so she wouldn’t really have any custodial power to stop me (Just to be clear my relationship with both parents is great, there is no trouble whatsoever other than this debate and which car I get to drive until I can buy my own). Since they aren’t going to be paying for my college they don’t really get to chose where I go for financial reasons. And since they were always the ones who pushed me to do the best I could possibly do in school, in my eyes my mom doesn’t get to limit where I go now after I literally worked my butt off to get into the best school I possibly could. Now if I get into duke (in state) then all problems avoided since I would have an insanely good place to go for engineering that by my calculations would actually give me the lowest possible tuition out of everywhere I want to go. But if I don’t get into Duke and do get into a few out of state places on similar levels, what ways could my mom potentially stop me from going?

Well…who IS going to pay for you to go to college?

Are you hoping for a full ride merit award?

Is your family low income and you are hoping for a full ride need based award?

Do you have the stats to get accepted to a school that guarantees to meet full need for all?

They can refuse to cooperate with financial aid forms, which gives them veto power over your college choice unless you get a full ride merit scholarship that does not depend on parental finances like need based aid.

Why will they not contribute for your college (even in state) when they did for your brothers?

I think you need to research how to pay for school if your parents will truly pay nothing and if that is exacerbated by you going against their wishes (unreasonable as they might be).

You need to focus on schools that give full ride merit scholarships (i.e. not Duke). Even then, you will need money for transportation and other expenses.

You still have some time to work on your parents. If you have a realistic shot at a full ride somewhere, enlist a counselor at school or maybe a teacher/principal, to discuss concerns as a family.

N.C. State is a solid option for you.

To answer the previous comments in order: Paying for my college is going to be a mixture of financial aid and money from my part time jobs, I definitely have the stats to get into anywhere I want (whether they accept me is a totally different matter however), I make enough money from my part time jobs to handle transportation and other expenses, my families income is low enough to where a place like duke would cover all but roughly 3,000 a year (which my job and if needed very minor loans could handle). And NC State is a good school but if I wanted to go to NC State I wouldn’t have worked anywhere near as hard as I have over the last two years. I know it is an arrogant thing to say but people get into NC State engineering (just from the ones I know) with 1/3rd of the effort I have been putting in and I feel that it would be a waste of my hard work to there. And I realize you should always work as hard as you possibly could, which is what I have been doing, and I know my hardest work can get me into somewhere better than NC State.

Unfortunately we cannot pick who our parents are and some are not as good as others. If they will not contribute a dime for college than YOU decide where you want to go and what’s affordable (e.g. merit). Good luck to you.

I just realized they could refuse to sign off on the financial aid forms (thanks @ucbalumnus ) :)) well looks like I’m either winning the lottery in the next two years, going to NC State (yeyyy didn’t need to take that many AP classes for this), or going to Duke (YEYY it all paid off except now I’m gonna get mauled to death since I support UNC’s basketball team to the grave). If UNC gets some good engineering additions in the next two years that would help.

If you want need based aid you will need to rely on your parents’ cooperation to fill out the financial aid forms each year.

So probably your best bet is to include out-of-state schools that will award full ride merit based scholarships based on your stats. (And that may be the way that all of the hard work you are doing will pay off - not in the prestige level of the school, but in the financial freedom your stats give you).

You might still apply to some prestigious, generous need-only schools – your mom might change her attitude if you actually are admitted to Harvard (after all, it sounds like your dad is supportive … so he might be able to persuade her)

But hedge your bets by also applying to the high-merit schools. If the choice is that you are going out of state to a college in Massachusetts vs. a university in Arizona…then the college with the need-based aid might seem more attractive to your mom.

Also, as you are only a sophomore, your mom’s attitude might change in a year’s time as well. If you are the youngest child, you mom might still see you as her baby and be finding it hard to let go… but her perspective might shift a little and over time she might start to see you as an emerging young adult. (So important to act mature and responsible at home-- including taking initiative to help around the house, and minimizing the need for your mom to assume a caretaking role.)

calmom 2nd youngest but the best of all of my siblings by far so I do understand her not wanting me to leave

What’s your mother’s stated reason for not letting you go out of state? That seems pretty restrictive for someone who isn’t willing (or able) to pay anything.

I realize that you are only a high school sophomore and no matter how academically strong you are, you still see the world through the eyes of a kid with a very limited experience set and knowledge base. That said, your statement above is quite arrogant for someone with very limited financial support and knowledge about the profession you aspire to (currently engineering).

If you are fortunate enough to be admitted to NC State as an engineering student and manage to succeed in graduating, you will have just as many professional opportunities as you would with a Duke degree. Engineering is a profession in which graduating from an expensive private school gives you no greater status once you secure your first job. Engineers from NC State do just as well as graduates of anywhere else as long as they can deliver the goods on the job. I hope that by the time you are applying to colleges your opinions and attitudes have matured.

You’ll be just fine with an engineering degree from NC State and your adult self will really appreciate not being saddled with debt because your high school self thought you needed to go to a status school you really couldn’t afford.

RandyErika Whenever I ask why she just says “because I don’t want you to” or “because I said so” which was the main driver behind my “you can’t really stop me xD” attitude

Which probably is not helping. Since you have older siblings she may well know sophomore year is pretty early to be making big decisions.

@Joblue I mean yeah I know its an arrogant thing and having limited financial support is exactly my reason for being so arrogant about where I want to go. If basically the government is the only one helping me pay no matter where I go why should it matter whether I go to the amazingly overpriced state school or the insanely prestigious university. And yeah there’s always the chance of me not being admitted into NCSU engineering anyway but realistically just based on my stats, the chances of me being admitted are way higher than the chances of me being declined, and It’s not like me working harder took away any of my extracurricular activities so I’m not worried about getting declined from NCSU AT THIS POINT whether that’s arrogant or not I see it as realistic.

@momofthreeboys But I’m not trying to make a big decision it’s just that I want to know that if I do manage to get into something out of state far better than what is in state that I would have their moral support in going, which so far I am getting all from my dad and none whatsoever from my mom.

Oh and I’m saying she wont pay for it but its not like she really can without taking out a massive loan, which her not paying for it I was totally fine with. My mom not paying for it AND trying to control where I go and don’t go is just a very big NO-NO on every magnitude to me which is why im being stubborn about this btw.

If she’d have to take out a massive loan are you sure it would be affordable for you? Wouldn’t you have to take out a massive loan?

@Sue22 it would only be a small loan with financial aid which I’d be the one to pay completely

@Ibwamaul You have my support, which as you know is worth nil. My advice is to put your intelligence to work in getting your mom to gradually shift her support to your side over time. Hopefully your father can help in that regard.

Assuming you plan to apply to (at least) 6 or 8 schools, maybe she can help you construct a set of choices that are good matches for your expected accomplishments and future potential. Are there enough in NC to fill out such a list? Maybe broaching the subject of GA Tech or UVA would be a good starting point for places outside NC that aren’t across the country or all the way up the coast.