As we enter October, many parents and students alike begin to feel the college application pressure mounting. If you have a junior or senior, chances are you've had at least a few of the big college talks, and you may find that the closer you get to the actual application deadlines, the more heated/frustrating/anxiety-provoking these talks become for both you and your daughter! One parent and educator recently wrote about this college pressure cooker and what really matters when you're raising a soon-to-be high school graduate.
The race to the top can mean sacrificing down time, taking on too much, prioritizing prestige over goodness of fit and can leave any parent or teen feeling overwhelmed, burned out and discouraged. What Ms. Gilman recommends is a reframe of what really matters in raising a child to adulthood.
As you enter the minefield of college applications, remember to be compassionate with yourself and your teen. It's easy to get lost in the competition, the all-or-nothing thinking, the feeling that everything hangs in the balance of this One Big Decision. Be gentle with yourself and your daughter. Remember that whichever path she takes, she will learn from it, grow from it and ultimately find her way. Her path may look different than you envisioned. She may take unplanned detours along the way. Rest assured that the name on her college diploma will not determine the quality of her character or of her life.