"Broadening your Horizons"

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-12-2002
"Broadening your Horizons"
234
Fri, 04-04-2003 - 8:41pm
Okay, I've been scanning through the posts below, and this is something that has grabbed my attention. There are those here who seem to believe that you can only broaden your horizons by going to college or joining the peace corps or military. It also seems that doing so as a young person (directly out of high school) is preferable.

So, I'm curious about how people feel these things actually "broadened their horizons", and how that has benefited them in their lives so far. I'm also curious how you feel this has benefited you more so than someone who might have opted out of college/military/peace corps.

Okmrsmommy-36, CPmom to DD-16 and DS-14

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Sun, 04-06-2003 - 10:49pm
I'm curious - how are you going to enforce this?

"I've been to college and it's something my kids WILL do. Not going is NOT an option."

By the time my girls reach university, they'll be seventeen, eighteen years old. I don't imagine I'll be in any position to be ordering them about at that age over such personal decisions. I will be strongly recommending university for them, but I think by the time they are adults, that will be out of my hands. What methods will you use to enforce this lack of option?

pax

Jane

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Sun, 04-06-2003 - 11:01pm
I was kind of thinking the same thing. Dh and I fully intend for our children to go to college, and we have my dd (12) convinced its pretty much a *must*. But I also am realistic enough to know that at 18 she could suddenly decide to take off for Europe for a year, or get a job somewhere, or my biggest fear-get married. I would totally PREFER that she go to college, will do all I can to convince her to do so, but at 18yo, she is an adult and has every right to make her own decisions.

dj

Dj

"Now when I need help, I look in the mirror" ~Kanye West~

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Sun, 04-06-2003 - 11:26pm
I'm of two minds as to whether it would be best for them straight out of school. I know that I would have gone into a totally unsuitable university course, had I gone on straight from school, but then I don't want them to wait like I have until they are approaching their mid-thirties! *But* I am aware that many people who enter tertiary studies as older adults or at least after a break of a couple of years working and travelling say that they take it on with a far greater degree of commitment and purpose. If I can only afford to help each of them through a degree once (that's four degrees, plus my own and dh's post-grad, eek!) then I'd rather it was doing something they know they want, rather than something they just feel they have to do. It will be interesting to see how it all pans out, anyway.

pax

Jane

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-07-2003 - 5:07am
Oops. What happened to "there's no right or wrong answers"?
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-07-2003 - 5:22am
That's about the saddest, most pitiful thing I've ever read.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-07-2003 - 8:44am
Your post brought tears to my eyes!!!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-07-2003 - 8:44am
I went to college at 17. Before I was 21, I had met literally hundreds of people of different cultures, races, religions, etc. The college population was 1/4 Jewish and predominantly urban -- quite a change for a white, Christian girl from a small town where everybody was pretty much the same. After graduation, I worked for an international organization in Washington DC, where I met people from all over the world. Then I went to graduate school at a huge state university. I also traveled out of the US, met international students, and encountered people from just about every walk of life.

By the time I went to graduate school the second time, I was married and had my first child. College is a whole different experience if you have home and family responsibilities. There is just no comparison between going away at 17 as a first-time independent person, and going back after having a family.

My personal opinion is that getting married and having children straight out of HS is the exact opposite of broadening your horizons. I'd call it narrowing your options.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-07-2003 - 9:12am
It's all a matter of comparison from where you start in life. Just being a stable influence for your children is providing them with a "broader" horizon than you had as a child.

If you'd gone to college, you might have met someone else closer in age to marry. You would have had different children (maybe adopted instead of bio), you might both have careers.

The school of hard knocks isn't the same as broadening your horizons.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 04-07-2003 - 9:36am
I can only speak of my own situation, but my parents never presented any of us with any other option except going to college. It was never "IF you go to college", it was "WHEN you go to college". Both parents have advanced degrees, earned after their kids were born, so we knew about their college experiences. From the time we were in elementary school, we talked about where we were going to college. All five of us graduated in four years, and all but one have advanced degrees. The one with only a B.S. sometimes says that he only went to college because Mom made him, but I think he's pretty happy to be an engineer. :)

IMO, it's a matter of not opening the door to letting the kids think there is any other option. I have no idea if it would work for anyone else, but that's what I'm doing with my kids. I'll let everyone know in 10 years if it worked.

Avatar for biancamami
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Mon, 04-07-2003 - 9:38am
Same with my family! It was always "when you go"

It never entered ANY of our minds that we wouldn't go to college! That just wasn't an option.

Ana

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