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How do I convince my uptight parents to let me go to a university out of state?

I am the only daughter in my family. My family is very protective about my because of my gender, therefore I have some restrictions. I want to be able to study and work without my parents interfering so often. I also want to simply live my life and focus on my priorities without having someone hang over my shoulder. I want to learn to be independence, struggle and work out my issues without always relying on my parents.

#independence #gender #outofstate #career #college

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Kim’s Answer

Ja-la,

The truth is, you may not be able to. If there are cultural issues at the heart of this, your parents perceive themselves as being judged by the relatives. What will all those relatives think of them if they allow their unwed daughter to leave the state to go to school? I had a similar situation with my parents trying to control my wedding. They disapproved of my sunrise service , among other things. I finally told them to keep their money, we'd pay for it all by ourselves. They got the idea, and backed off, and still helped pay for it.


Is it possible that your family does not have the financial resources that you think they do? Who is going to be paying for this out of state school? It usually costs a lot more to go out of state.


There are consequences. If you tell your folks, "hey, I'm an adult, I'll do what I want," it could get really bad. They could stop speaking to you, dis-own you, etc. That's not a road you want to take. As you go through life, you will encounter many difficult situations, and will want to have your family to lean on for support. If you have children, you will want them to know their grandparents. So, I do not recommend totally alienating yourself from your parents.


It is however, very important for you to learn to be an adult, and make your own decisions, and accept responsibility for your actions. I have seen 19 year olds who have no adult-life skills. It is not good. Have you considered trying to compromise? What if you go to a local school for the first two years, and if you earn at least a 3.2 GPA they will let you go out of state for the last two years? I know it's not the same thing as the full 4-year experience, but, it is a start.


This is a really difficult situation, and I wish you the best!


Kim

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Quinci’s Answer

Honestly you should just try to write them an essay on why they should trust you for a out of state school. You should look into women’s studies to make your gender look strong. Also they may feel comfortable if you went to an all girls college out of state.
Thank you comment icon Hi Quinci - is there something about writing an essay in particular that would make that more effective than efforts verbally? Also, I love your call to action for gender studies. but depending on the cultural context here, many parents like this are not at all receptive to their children studying programs like Gender Studies or even the liberal arts in general. Do you have any advice on that front? As a note to Ja-la, your feelings about being at an all-girls college matter as well. It may not be worth the stress that causes you to appease your parents - where you go to college is 4 years of your life! Alexandra, Admin
Thank you comment icon Basically I said to write an essay to show how dedicated she is to be independent by going of to college. Writing an essay shows more effort than to talk verbally. Also my advice for parents that aren’t for gender studies is maybe explain more to them about the major to let them know it’s a very natural major and should not be a threat to their children. I said she should go to an all girls college so her parents would feel more comfortable. Quinci Smith Slater (she/her)
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Austin’s Answer

Ja-La,

Great question and interesting situation. Having parents that care about you is great to hear, but having a helicopter parent that is overly protective is understandably frustrating. When I was growing up my parents were very relaxed with some things while with other things they were fairly strict about. From your description your parents seem to be fairly restrictive about a good amount of things which is unfortunate.


I recommend sitting down with your parents and having a frank conversation about how you are feeling. Express to them that you will never be able to grow up, mature, become independent, and learn with them having all this control over your life. Express that you understand where they are coming from, but that you cant be around them forever and the sooner you learn to be independent and mature, the better it is. Life will be much harder if you are not allowed to grow, discover yourself, and become an independent adult .


Now addressing the fact that you are the only daughter in the family which is a source of many of their restrictions, its 2018. Some people are more traditional, but you seem more than capable of taking care of yourself without having your parents needing to tell you not to drink paint (this is a ridiculous example but still). You should express to your family that it is not right for you to be treated differently all because you are their daughter (contrast this with how your other siblings are treated if you have any). When you enter the workforce, you won't be treated any different than your male colleagues so getting this extra attention isn't the best for your development. America as a country is still wrestling with issue related to how we treat each other, but I like to think that we as a country are progressing.


I hope this helps and I wish you the best of luck!!


Best,

Austin

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