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Saturday, January 7, 2017
Keeping Parents Calm During College Admissions Season
For most students, the applications have already been done. Even the latest admissions deadlines passed around the first of the year. Now, the hardest part of the process begins. The wait.
It will be another couple of months before decisions start rolling in. And the people most worried of all might not be the students themselves, but their parents.
Sure, college-bound kids these days are more stressed than ever about "getting in". The admission rates are down, the market is competitive, and only the wealthiest of students can afford consultants. It's no longer a simple game of grades and a top-notch personal statement.
Still, parents are viewing the process through both the reasoned lens of experience, and the totally irrational lens of a parent wanting the best for their children. Parents understand that leveraging a quality education is increasingly crucial to stay competitive in the job market. Parents who have gone to college may understand how vital the college years were to their own emotional development. Parents who haven't gone to college may be desperate to see their kids enjoy greater successes than they did.
Like any season of parenting, the hardest and most profound act a parent may take is surrendering. Control is an illusion. The admission or rejection will come in its own time, and the parent's job will be the same as always: helping your child navigate their new reality with love and support.
After all, by the time your children are headed off to college, most of the good parenting work has already been done. Breathe, and let them go.
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