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“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#1 Aug 22, 2013
DEAR AMY: I have a 22-year-old son who just graduated from an out-of-state university, which we paid for.

Now that he's back home, he tells us that to maximize his major (psychology), he will "need" to pursue a master's degree because he would like to be a clinical psychologist.

He now has a part-time job and is also paying rent/bills. He wants us to pay for his additional schooling.

He does not want to be in debt and take out loans because he believes we have some extra money to help out. What do you suggest?-- Mommy Big Bucks

DEAR MOMMY: Your son sounds impressively self-directed (working, paying rent and expenses). He is correct that in order to pursue the goal of being a clinical psychologist he will require more schooling.

The next step for him will be the burden of successfully negotiating with you about what you will (or won't) pay for. This is great practice for a future psychologist. He is solely responsible for fulfilling his own goals.

He should research and pursue financial aid through grants, scholarships or fellowships. If (after putting together his financial package) he still needs a financial bridge in order to fully fund his education, you might be willing to formally loan him this money (at low or no interest), to be repaid once he completes his education and secures a professional job in his field.

If you can't do this -- or simply don't want to -- he will have to decide whether he is willing to take on personal debt or pursue his higher degree in stages, as he can afford it.

DEAR AMY: I am worried about verbal/emotional abuse to my grandson by his father. I have talked to my daughter about this, but the situation doesn't seem to be improving.

I have also talked to the school counselor. She says she would have to reveal the source of this complaint/concern, and I am afraid I will not see my grandchildren again if it is revealed that I have complained.

I don't think this abuse is intentional, but comes from ignorance of any other way to "control" the boy.

Where can I turn for help in this matter?-- Anxious Grandmother

DEAR ANXIOUS: You don't say how old the boy is, or the nature of this mistreatment. Parents do have a right to make individual choices about how to parent their children, even if you don't agree with their choices.

On the face of it, going to the school counselor will be interpreted as an overreach. However, if you feel strongly that professional intervention is necessary, then you should pursue it, regardless of the risk you perceive to your relationship.

Your daughter already knows you are concerned about how the child is being treated; you should assume that even if the counselor discloses you as the source of the complaint, it won't surprise this couple in the slightest because they would already assume you are the source.

You should advocate not only for your grandchild, but for the parents, too. If you are able to influence them gently and effectively, everybody wins.

Your whole family should read, "It's a Boy! Your Son's Development from Birth to Age 18" by Michael Thompson and Teresa Barker (2009, Ballantine Books).

DEAR AMY: The letter from "Reluctant Wig Wearer" really hit home.

I, too, had a therapist who was treating me for depression and who spent a lot of time talking to me about my hair.(I have challenging hair; sometimes it's frizzy, sometimes it's flat.) She took my grooming practices as possible signs of my depression.

Additionally, my eye makeup was under review. We would sometimes review my whole grooming routine for half the session. She also thought I dressed too casually because I wore Uggs. It reminded me of being in high school. Ironically, this was one of the reasons I was seeking therapy.-- Happily Cured

DEAR CURED: I've received a high volume of mail on this topic. To a person, every respondent feels strongly that a therapist should not be offering subjective judgments about how a person chooses to dress.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#2 Aug 22, 2013
L1: If your son can't figure out how to pay for grad school, then he lacks the most basic of problem solving skills and likely would make a HORRIBLE clinical anything. You owe this moocher nothing. Yes, he's a moocher now that he's asking for money. The fact that you even had to write this letter tells me you created this monster and now it's on you to squash his self-entitled attitude like a bug.

L2: "She says she would have to reveal the source of this complaint/concern, " Since when?

IME, emotional/verbal abuse is not taken seriously by The System. Grandma's concerns will fall on deaf ears. People figure the system is clogged enough with kids being beaten and tortured by their parents (not realizing that the emotional/verbal abuse can do as much or more damage to children in the long run).

L3: Uggs are stupid.
Anonymous

Saint Petersburg, FL

#3 Aug 22, 2013
LW1: Graduate school is your son's responsibility. He is a college-educated adult now and needs to figure it out. If you want to help SOME, cool, but I think it should be minimal and/or in the form of a loan. He was lucky you paid for undergrad! He should have been saving those 4 years to put miney towards grad school. Many of us took out loans for school and survived. PLus, there are grants, scholarships, etc. Maybe he needs to find a full-time job with a place that will assist with graduate tuition.

He is too old to be expecting this from you.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#4 Aug 22, 2013
I think parents paying for their kid's college education is a wonderful, generous gift. PE did it, and she sacrificed in order to do it, and you just know her girls realize that they are very fortunate -- surely they have friends who are saddled with student loan debt.

But I also like the idea of making a kid finance the whole thing himself, and then using the money you would have given him, afterwards, to help pay down those student loans. He gets to build good credit, he's on the hook for financing his education (so maybe there will be less goofing off?), and yet you get to help to the degree you're willing to help.

This also would work well for when a family's financial situation changes. Dad got laid off? Well, it's a good thing you didn't send $15K to that school this year and instead got a loan, because now the family has that money when they need it.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#5 Aug 22, 2013
For me this is a timely letter

We are in the same situation as LW1 right now. The group knows we paid for undergrad for our girls. Younger girl is in grad school. It is not that she doesn't know how to get it paid, but negotiating FAFSA the first time and figuring out the alternatives is not exactly easy. I know lot of people do it, but first time out of the box is tough. In high school there were counselors all over eh place to explain this. The high school had them,There were private people. The college had them. Not so in grad school. Financial aid office just says we have this and this and none of that other stuff for grad students, have a nice life.

It is a first world problem but that doesn't make it any easier for her or for us helping her with the forms or assessing the benefits of various loan packages.

If anyone in the group has insight, please post, because we are at the dining room table on this one today.

“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Melrose Park, IL

#6 Aug 22, 2013
1- Of course he expects you to pay. You've coddled him thus far, why should he expect differently?

2- And I'm worried about aliens invading through my toilet bowl. I think there's a valid reason your complaint has fallen on deaf ears.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#7 Aug 22, 2013
"Your son sounds impressively self-directed (working, paying rent and expenses)."

WTF? No, he's doing the bare minimum of what any adult should be doing.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#8 Aug 22, 2013
StinaRocks wrote:
LW1: Graduate school is your son's responsibility. He is a college-educated adult now and needs to figure it out. If you want to help SOME, cool, but I think it should be minimal and/or in the form of a loan. He was lucky you paid for undergrad! He should have been saving those 4 years to put miney towards grad school. Many of us took out loans for school and survived. PLus, there are grants, scholarships, etc. Maybe he needs to find a full-time job with a place that will assist with graduate tuition.
He is too old to be expecting this from you.
And he went out of state for school. If he had chosen an in-state public university (I say public only because private schools don't typically have different tuition rates for in state and out of state students), his parents might have more money to help him with grad school. But he chose a more expensive route. Too bad so sad your dad, dude.

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#9 Aug 22, 2013
LW1: I think the funding of grad school should fall mostly on the student. Not saying the parents can't help, but he's an adult now and should start taking responsiblity for his decisions.

LW2: Keep talking to your daughter about this but don't hound her, that will only make her defensive. You may have to wait until you actually see the offending behavior; an object lesson if you will.

LW3: Uggs *are* stupid, but a therapist should keep that to themselves.

“I looked, and behold,”

Since: Aug 08

Location hidden

#10 Aug 22, 2013
LW1: Your call. You certainly donít owe him anything. Things I would factor in would be how much $$ I have and how dedicated of a student he is. If you can afford it without much trouble and he will put it to good use, itís the best gift you can give your child, IMO.

Also, if he is successful heís much less likely to be living with you as an adult and to be a financial burden upon you as an adult, as many adult children are in this day and age. He might even be able to help YOU out, when you are older, should YOU need financial assistance.

LW2: What do you mean by verbal and emotional abuse? Since you provide no specific examples, I think you just donít like to see the boy disciplined. MYOB.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#11 Aug 22, 2013
squishymama wrote:
LW3: Uggs *are* stupid, but a therapist should keep that to themselves.
ITA!

Toj

“Where is Everyone?”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#12 Aug 22, 2013
L1: Tell him to get a job where the company reimburses for higher education or start saving.

L2: What Red said.

L3: I never knew therapists were such fashionistas.
Anonymous

Saint Petersburg, FL

#13 Aug 22, 2013
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
And he went out of state for school. If he had chosen an in-state public university (I say public only because private schools don't typically have different tuition rates for in state and out of state students), his parents might have more money to help him with grad school. But he chose a more expensive route. Too bad so sad your dad, dude.
I forgot to mention that in my post, because I did catch that, too. You'll pay twice as much going to an out of state school!!! That money could have been saved for grad school!

We are lucky because we have a prepaid college program here in FL, so if my daughter goes to an in-state public school, it will be 100% paid for (plus 2 years of dorm). You lock in the current tuition rate when you sign up and make monthly payments until they are 18. In my case, it runs about $120/month for 4 years of tuition, 2 years of dorm and local fees. Then I also do a small 529 for anything extra (if she goes to a private or out of state school, extra costs, or grad school). Hee hee.... I almost said "we" instead of "I", as if her dad actaully contributed to any of it! Yeah, right!

“What's it to ya?”

Since: Mar 09

Location hidden

#14 Aug 22, 2013
PEllen wrote:
For me this is a timely letter
We are in the same situation as LW1 right now. The group knows we paid for undergrad for our girls. Younger girl is in grad school. It is not that she doesn't know how to get it paid, but negotiating FAFSA the first time and figuring out the alternatives is not exactly easy. I know lot of people do it, but first time out of the box is tough. In high school there were counselors all over eh place to explain this. The high school had them,There were private people. The college had them. Not so in grad school. Financial aid office just says we have this and this and none of that other stuff for grad students, have a nice life.
It is a first world problem but that doesn't make it any easier for her or for us helping her with the forms or assessing the benefits of various loan packages.
If anyone in the group has insight, please post, because we are at the dining room table on this one today.
Probably not much help, but Grad PLUS loans, She should be able to get Stafford loans too...I think the limit for grad school is like 100K, merit scholarships...also any other scholarships she might be able to get because of a special reason, ethnicity, religion, disabilities, first generation college student (I know she's not, just an example of one type), etc. if she's going to go for a Phd and they want her badly enough, they will pay for it.
http://www.fastweb.com

“What's it to ya?”

Since: Mar 09

Location hidden

#15 Aug 22, 2013
StinaRocks wrote:
<quoted text>
I forgot to mention that in my post, because I did catch that, too. You'll pay twice as much going to an out of state school!!! That money could have been saved for grad school!
We are lucky because we have a prepaid college program here in FL, so if my daughter goes to an in-state public school, it will be 100% paid for (plus 2 years of dorm). You lock in the current tuition rate when you sign up and make monthly payments until they are 18. In my case, it runs about $120/month for 4 years of tuition, 2 years of dorm and local fees. Then I also do a small 529 for anything extra (if she goes to a private or out of state school, extra costs, or grad school). Hee hee.... I almost said "we" instead of "I", as if her dad actaully contributed to any of it! Yeah, right!
They have that here too. Also the University of Washington has a program called the Husky Promise and basically it works like this: You apply for FAFSA and your PELL grant goes to the school. Whatever other grants you qualify for based on your FAFSA (like the "State Need Grant") also go to tuition. Anything left to be paid gets paid by the HP.

They don't require you to take loans, only use grant money towards tuition and the HP covers the rest through all of undergrad. It also takes into count stuff like the costs of housing, books, and transportation so they figure the total cost of all of that and award HP monies based on that, not ONLY tuition.

Even though it's a state school, they don't let everyone in, so it's almost like a private university that way.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#16 Aug 22, 2013
Sublime1 wrote:
LW1: Your call. You certainly donít owe him anything. Things I would factor in would be how much $$ I have and how dedicated of a student he is. If you can afford it without much trouble and he will put it to good use, itís the best gift you can give your child, IMO.
Also, if he is successful heís much less likely to be living with you as an adult and to be a financial burden upon you as an adult, as many adult children are in this day and age. He might even be able to help YOU out, when you are older, should YOU need financial assistance.
LW2: What do you mean by verbal and emotional abuse? Since you provide no specific examples, I think you just donít like to see the boy disciplined. MYOB.
what he said

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

Location hidden

#17 Aug 22, 2013
Mimi Seattle wrote:
<quoted text>
Probably not much help, but Grad PLUS loans, She should be able to get Stafford loans too...I think the limit for grad school is like 100K, merit scholarships...also any other scholarships she might be able to get because of a special reason, ethnicity, religion, disabilities, first generation college student (I know she's not, just an example of one type), etc. if she's going to go for a Phd and they want her badly enough, they will pay for it.
http://www.fastweb.com
Thanks.

This is a Masters in systems and applied engineering in health care. She is looking at medical school down the road.
Anonymous

Saint Petersburg, FL

#18 Aug 22, 2013
Mimi Seattle wrote:
<quoted text>
They have that here too. Also the University of Washington has a program called the Husky Promise and basically it works like this: You apply for FAFSA and your PELL grant goes to the school. Whatever other grants you qualify for based on your FAFSA (like the "State Need Grant") also go to tuition. Anything left to be paid gets paid by the HP.
They don't require you to take loans, only use grant money towards tuition and the HP covers the rest through all of undergrad. It also takes into count stuff like the costs of housing, books, and transportation so they figure the total cost of all of that and award HP monies based on that, not ONLY tuition.
Even though it's a state school, they don't let everyone in, so it's almost like a private university that way.
That's pretty cool!
Kuuipo

Marina, CA

#19 Aug 22, 2013
LW1: I say education is a good investment and there is nothing wrong with helping your 22-year-old son pay for grad school. However, I am guessing that you don't want to assume the full burden. What if your son works for a year or two and saves some money while living at home and then pays for at least part of his schooling? He will need some work experience as well as education.

LW2: Your best bet is to give your grandson all of the kind loving attention that you can and encourage your daughter to advocate for her son.

LW3: What Toj said.

“What's it to ya?”

Since: Mar 09

Location hidden

#20 Aug 22, 2013
StinaRocks wrote:
<quoted text>
That's pretty cool!
Yeah it is. Oregon made all their public universities free tuition, but with the HP it's basically the same thing. Plus, this is WA not OR, so you know, better.:D

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