How would you answer these questions?

tryingtobestrong

Active Member
My daughter is in grad school and has to interview me via zoom and it will be sent to her professors. I was told not to say anything embarrassing...
So I am just reaching out to see how any of you would answer these ?'s. Lol..
My answers seem short. Hope that is okay with her.
Here are the ?'s:
1. If you could give one piece of advice to other parents with children in grad school what would it be? This one stumps me other than make sure you save for college as soon as they are born.

2. How do you support your child during their educational experience? I have pretty good answers to this one.

3. What have you noticed that has changed in your childs life as a result of being in a graduate program? (my answer to that really wants to be that she doesn't go out partying like she did in undergrad! but I imagine that won't suit my daughter...)

Just reaching out to see what others would say. I am not the most "professional speaking" person.
 

KTMom91

Well-Known Member
While Miss KT did not go on to grad school, she went to college 800 miles away from me, totally on her own, and she had to grow up really quickly. I'd like to answer, hope that's all right.

1. First off, while they are your children, once they're in grad school, they aren't children any longer. Be accepting of the new ideas they are trying out as they find themselves during the process. Some of those ideas and situations will be better than others. Some of those ideas will need to be challenged. This does not mean you have to be accepting of anything that is damaging or dangerous to them.

2. I don't know that full financial support is always a good thing. I think that working, at least part time, is a good way to learn that work/life balance that we all need to find. Emotional support, yes, and physical support, like feeding them occasionally and letting them do laundry at your house if they're local, yes, unless of course they are total DCs. Then you decide what contact you are willing to have.

3. The main thing I noticed when Miss KT graduated from college was her inner strength. She had been teetering on the edge of professional victimhood (like her father...ARRGH!) and when she was so far away from home, she had to take care of business. There was no one else to do it. For the most part, she learned to take her lumps, have the courage of her convictions, and stand up/advocate for herself when necessary. She graduated in 2013, and is still 800 miles away, married and divorced, working full time, with good friends in her support system. She loves the city she lives in and plans to stay.
 

Copabanana

Well-Known Member
I echo what KT Mom says. Every word.

1. If you could give one piece of advice to other parents with children in grad school what would it be? I haven't had a child in graduate school but I was in graduate school. I think what I would have wished for is that my parent was proud of me, was there for me for support, but did not seek to control or define the experience for me, it's meaning, pressure me, or opine about the correctness of my goal. In other words, be a silent partner, be back up.

3. What have you noticed that has changed in your childs life as a result of being in a graduate program? I think graduate school for me was the first time I had a serious vision of what I could be and achieve and make of my life. I had to develop a certain kind of steel in my spine, and begin to take myself seriously. I was fully self-supporting and I put everything on the line in order to finish. It became my first and only priority until I adopted my son. I think I would have done most anything to achieve the goal of completing the graduate program. I think most people in order to successfully complete a program like this have got to do a version of the same thing. I think it would be a powerful and loving thing to acknowledge my child for this.

Thirty years later I have come to see that my graduate degree became the defining thing in my life. Certainly the title was something. But what I mean here is the achievement. It became the skeleton on which everything else hangs. It is almost as if parents provide the structure throughout childhood. But a graduate education (and other comparable endeavors) provides an opportunity for an adult child to create a structure for themselves.
 

susiestar

Roll With It
My Mom went to graduate school starting when I was in 4th grade. My Dad went when I was about 14 (and he wanted it to be a father daughter project. So many of my teachers hated him after that.). So I sort of grew up in grad school. Add to that having a surrogate Grandpa who was a Professor Emeritus and always had a bunch of grad students around, and being in a primarily university town from the time I was 13, I have some serious experience with the grad school process. Mom ran the PhD program for her department for many years. I was often drafted to help her with whatever was going on - serving at parties, entering grades into the computer, data entry if a student really needed help, etc...

1. One piece of advice? Remember to live a little. I have seen so many grad students who are buried under work and school and they forget to take much time to themselves. Those little rituals of self care - from a run to a workout to a face mask to time to meditate, whatever it is that helps you recharge, don't forget to do those things. If you burn out, you are no good to yourself or anyone else. I cannot count the number of times some student would show up at our house in a frazzle, all burned out. I think I was 15 when I finally got that down to a routine. Mostly because often my folks were at work or some function while I was home alone to deal with this. I would get them settled with coffee, a coke, or whatever. Usually I had homemade cookies or pie to offer. The tissues were always close by for this reason. If they were super stressed, I brought the dog in (she never met a stranger and was very chill). Then I made small talk until they expressed what was wrong. Mostly I just listened because what else could I do? If I knew where my Mom was, I called her. Otherwise, I just sat there with the student until either a parent (one of mine) came home or the student left. Usually they were overly tired and freaking themselves out.

2. How do you support your child? By letting my child know that I have complete faith that they will be a success at this. And by helping when I can reasonably do so.

3. What has changed? A greater level of maturity and an increased willingness to do whatever hard work is required to complete her goals. (So sort of the less partying but not expressly said).
 

tryingtobestrong

Active Member
Thank you all. I think I did okay. My answers were along the same lines as all of you.
She is working so hard and we are very proud of her. She will start her clinical in April and I got a text the other day that she got her hours..
She said .. Monday and Tuesday are going to blowwww! I start at 7:30 and finish at 6:30! (add a 1 hour commute to that) She will have Wednesday off and then Thursday isn't so bad and Friday is 7:30-5:30.
I had to chuckle to myself with her Monday and Tuesday. It is a long day and when she would work for our family business an 8 hour shift was so long but she was younger and also not doing something she loved.
All will be good. She will shine. I know she will.
 
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