Peacekeeping 101...

Well, The Boy is home from school for the summer…or perhaps longer and with that, my peace-keeping skills are already getting a workout.
I’ve always been the middle-man in my household – the “go to” person. 
If J wants to relay something to The Boy, he tells me.  If The Boy wants his dad to know something, he tells me.  It’s not like they don’t speak to each – they do.  The typically get along without incident.  They both have their opinions and usually respect what each other has to say.   Usually…
The Boy has not done fabulously at college this year.  I honestly believe, it’s not for lack of trying, he tried, but he just wasn’t interested in what program he chose.    I understand that it’s hard to choose a program and a career based strictly on a college catalogue. 
How can you possibly know what you want from life, if you haven’t experienced anything?  I understand this.   The Boy is so much like me, it’s terrifying.
Problem One – The Boy is confused.  He doesn’t know what he wants to do with his life, but he knows it’s not the course he was taking.   I understand this, but J does not. 
Problem Two – The Boy is a dreamer.  J is a facts and figures kind of person and needs a “plan” at all times.  I’m somewhere in the middle – I love to dream, but make a plan to get there and if things don’t go according to plan, I readjust and carry on.
Problem Three - The Boy understands that not getting a college education isn’t an option – neither is living in my basement when he’s 30.  He wants an education, he just doesn’t know what it will be or what in life will make him happy.   J can’t grasp the concept that not everyone knows what they want from life (at age 18) or how to get it. 
Problem Four – J looks at the past year as being a “waste of time and money”.    I somewhat understand the money thing, but I understand The Boy’s point of view too – “that being away from home has made him appreciate different cultures, different views, different people, where he’s from and where he doesn’t want to be”.   What J needs to realize that The Boy is the one working to repay his student loans, so instead of looking at it as a “waste of money”, he needs to look at it like an expensive life lesson. 
I have no doubt, The Boy will be successful in life.  He’s passionate and driven, but he just hasn’t found out what makes him passionate enough and driven enough to follow his dream.
Once again, I’m the middle man – constantly needing to find common ground while keeping both sides happy and on speaking terms with each other.  I’m exhausted and it’s only been three days…
Any recommendations?  I’ve considered running away from home, but I’m sure they will find me.


R. Jacob said…
It sometimes takes a lifetime to find your true calling.

when you run away from home, don't leave a trail of bread crumbs and swing on by and pick me up!
Brian Miller said…
can he work on his general study credits this next semester and maybe try a class he thinks he might find interesting...if he chases the program and is not passionate about it he will be stuck in a job he hates...
Simply Suthern said…
Im thinking its mostly general studies anyway the first 2 years so it aint a waste.

My daughter finally chose international business. The wife is still crying over that. Plus she aint coming home over the summer.
Sarah said…
Heck, I am 28 and still don't know what to do with my life so I understand your son's feelings! That is a tough one, but I agree with the expensive life lesson thing, if he is the one re-paying the loans then it is up to him to decide how best to use his time in college. I think 18 is awefully young to have decide what you want to do for the rest of your life. Good luck for your summer and keeping the peace!
K13 said…
I'm agreeing exactly with R. takes a I am in my 2nd career and honestly, I'm not terribly passionate about it. I think this should have been my 1st and the previous should have been my least financially things would be better. Ha!!

Sorry for the peacekeeping duties you are being tasked with.

Oh and as R. Jacobs said again...if you run, come by for me too please!!

Raven said…
Sounds like a sticky situation and I really have no advice for you. :(
Sorry. Good luck with it though.
CrazyCris said…
and I'm almost 35 and also seriously wondering what to do when I "grow up"!

so, sorry! and GOOD LUCK!!!

PS: home for the summer??? It's not even May!!!
JennAventures said…
My Canadian BFF was in the same situation as your son-but she stuck with a program and now(since graduating) is still taking classes now that she figured out what she wanted to do. She says if she could have done it all again she would have done a gap year to gain more life experience before picking. Maybe the boy should travel someplace and get a job for a year? With the understanding that when the years up he goes bcd to school.

No one knows what they want at 18
Hey life goes on and I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up! I have tasted a little of many professions, yet none so far no winners. He'll find his way and besides his choice of degree does not necessarily mean he'll do that. Maybe The Boy needs to know that. I studied Microbiology. I work in a Physiology lab. Worlds. A. Part. (and yes I know that's one word ;D)
Jacqui said…
It's a toughie deciding what you want to do at 18 when there are careers out there that you don't even know exist. I found what I would have loved to have done in my late 20's by which time I had a husband, a mortgage, bills and a career too far up the salary scale to give it all up and start again - but how, in hindsight, I wish I had. Don't get me wrong, my path has given my a good standard of living, an enjoyable career and a number of good friendships - but there'll always be part of my that wishes I could have gone down the other completely different route.
Hey ho, we makes our choices and live by them!

A gap year may be a good option to finding a broader perspective to land on something he would like to do.

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