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Old Yesterday, 02:39 PM
 
9 posts, read 330 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi, my name is Eleanna (everyone calls me Ellie), I'm 17 years old and I live in Athens, Greece. I need to get this off my chest and could use some serious advice so I thought I'd look up a space to share my thoughts. This was the first result that Google pulled up so here goes.

Things have been very convoluted and tough for my family and me. I grew up very affluent because my father was a successful businessman, but after he had a falling out with his business partner his company gradually started falling apart and eventually it just collapsed. My dad suddenly passed away in 2016 due to a heart attack, and ever since then it has been my mom, my 2 younger brothers and me trying to get by. My dad left us with a small amount of money (around 90,000 euros) and nothing else. We had to leave our house because my dad had a lot of debt so my mom signed this document that allowed for the debt to not get carried onto us (or something like that I'm not really sure about the specifics it's sort of confusing). So we had to rent this small house (180 square meters which is what, 1,800 square feet right).

Basically my mom stopped working after she had me because she wanted to take care of me and devote her life to being a mom (I want to do the exact opposite). She always depended on my dad for everything not to mention he was 20 years her senior. When my dad was alive it wasn't as much of a problem as it is now. She acts like such a child. She complains to me about everything that's going on in her life and is way too honest and always talks about how she worries due to the fact we don't have money (aren't parents supposed to hide that stuff to protect their kids). She doesn't have a job and keeps on saying she can't find one even though I AM SURE that if she really looked she'd find something. She always plays the victim card with everybody and it's so embarrassing. And she literally can't even drive up a highway because she's "scared" (45 year old woman who has had a driver's license since she was 18, by the way). She has zero independence and keeps on relying on other people and it makes me feel like she isn't being a proper mom. She makes me feel so worried and insecure all the time. And then when I actually tell her what upsets me she's like "stop judging me and criticizing me all the time" so it literally goes nowhere.

I'm nearly done with high school (I live in Greece but go to an international English speaking private school and am graduating this year. I've been there since 4th grade but after my dad died they felt sorry for us and offered my brothers and me financial aid, so luckily I still go there). I really want to go to the US and live there for the rest of my life, it's my dream to live in California. We used to go there all the time when I was little and I fell in love. I hate Greece, it really sucks here I just want to get out. But even though my dream is to go to the US I can't because US colleges are really expensive (even state schools for some weird reason) so instead I have to go to England (I was born there because my parents lived there for a while before we moved back to Greece in '03) and I don't want to. Meanwhile all the rich kids in my school can just go wherever they want it's not fair why did all this have to happen to my family.

I'm sorry for ranting if anyone can offer any advice I'd feel very grateful. I want to feel like I have someone there for me even if it is just people online, I don't care. Thanks for reading.

-Ellie
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Old Yesterday, 03:03 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
76,535 posts, read 68,538,450 times
Reputation: 73875
Hi, Ellie. Are you graduating soon, or do you have one more year to go? If a university in England will take you, and will offer financial aid or something, to cover your costs, grab that opportunity! What are your academic interests? If you have very good grades, you could try applying to Stanford University; they offer full-ride scholarships to anyone whose parents make under $125,000 (!!), who qualify for admission. (Very high admission standards.) I don't know if being an international student would make a difference, in terms of your eligibility for their full financial aid. You could look them up, and email their admissions office, possibly. If you're a techie, so much the better; it's a techie school to some extent.

You're really lucky to have the chance to study in England. Count your blessings, and make the most of the opportunities that present themselves. You can make your own life after that. You're REALLY lucky your international school offered you the chance to continue with them. That's why your English is so good! This will pay off, as you prepare to go to college.

Don't compare yourself to the rich kids. You'll really torpedo your mood that way. Make friends with some of the other kids; you may find some really nice people you never noticed before.

The schools in the University of California system, the highest tier of state schools, are very good schools, that's one reason they're expensive. (Long story--don't ask!) Everyone wants to get into UC Berkeley, UCLA, etc. Instead of focussing on, and grinding your teeth over, what you can't do, focus on what you can do. You'll get past this stage of life, will have a good education assumedly (since you at least have the Brit option), and then you can decide where to go and what to do from there. Keep your grades up, to maximize your options.

Your mom sounds like the old-fashioned kind of mom: the man makes all the decisions, so if the wife is widowed, she can't organize or manage her way out of a paper bag, handle the finances, etc. (Though at least your mom took steps to leave you kids debt-free). Maybe she's still grieving. It must have been a huge blow to her, and downsizing to the extreme extent she had to may have been traumatic--finding herself unexpectedly all alone as an adult, with kids dependent on her. Give her some space; it may have been a big freak-out for her.

What about your dad's relatives, and your mom's relatives? Could you stay with one of them for awhile? For summer, at least? And what about a summer job, now that you're almost an adult? You could save money for college.

Look forward, not back, and don't sabotage yourself, by comparing yourself with people who have everything. Face your situation (even if you don't want to), and use your bright mind to chart a path for yourself.

GOOD LUCK! Best wishes!
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Old Yesterday, 03:39 PM
 
9 posts, read 330 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
Hi, Ellie. Are you graduating soon, or do you have one more year to go? If a university in England will take you, and will offer financial aid or something, to cover your costs, grab that opportunity! What are your academic interests? If you have very good grades, you could try applying to Stanford University; they offer full-ride scholarships to anyone whose parents make under $125,000 (!!), who qualify for admission. (Very high admission standards.) I don't know if being an international student would make a difference, in terms of your eligibility for their full financial aid. You could look them up, and email their admissions office, possibly. If you're a techie, so much the better; it's a techie school to some extent.

You're really lucky to have the chance to study in England. Count your blessings, and make the most of the opportunities that present themselves. You can make your own life after that. You're REALLY lucky your international school offered you the chance to continue with them. That's why your English is so good! This will pay off, as you prepare to go to college.

Don't compare yourself to the rich kids. You'll really torpedo your mood that way. Make friends with some of the other kids; you may find some really nice people you never noticed before.

The schools in the University of California system, the highest tier of state schools, are very good schools, that's one reason they're expensive. (Long story--don't ask!) Everyone wants to get into UC Berkeley, UCLA, etc. Instead of focussing on, and grinding your teeth over, what you can't do, focus on what you can do. You'll get past this stage of life, will have a good education assumedly (since you at least have the Brit option), and then you can decide where to go and what to do from there. Keep your grades up, to maximize your options.

Your mom sounds like the old-fashioned kind of mom: the man makes all the decisions, so if the wife is widowed, she can't organize or manage her way out of a paper bag, handle the finances, etc. (Though at least your mom took steps to leave you kids debt-free). Maybe she's still grieving. It must have been a huge blow to her, and downsizing to the extreme extent she had to may have been traumatic--finding herself unexpectedly all alone as an adult, with kids dependent on her. Give her some space; it may have been a big freak-out for her.

What about your dad's relatives, and your mom's relatives? Could you stay with one of them for awhile? For summer, at least? And what about a summer job, now that you're almost an adult? You could save money for college.

Look forward, not back, and don't sabotage yourself, by comparing yourself with people who have everything. Face your situation (even if you don't want to), and use your bright mind to chart a path for yourself.

GOOD LUCK! Best wishes!
Hi I'm sorry I was trying to figure out how to respond to you it took a while to work through but I think I've figured it out.
What I'd like to do is study Psychology and then turn it into marketing (maybe) like as a post-grad degree. But definitely psychology as a first degree. I'm graduating this year, actually I've already gotten offers from a few universities in England and have my official exams in 2 weeks time. I hope I do well because if I don't live up to my predicted grades, they won't take me because all my offers are conditional. I would really like to go to Stanford or maybe UC Berkeley. Do you think it would be possible for me to transfer once I'm in England? I don't really like it there lol I know I should be grateful it's just, it's not the life I want for myself.
Another thing I was thinking about was that I could just complete my first degree in England and then go to California for a post-grad degree. But they're so expensive. Also I'm worried that even if I somehow manage to get a scholarship or financial aid I won't be able to actually stay in the US after getting the post-grad degree due to immigration issues. And there is no way I'm staying there illegally I'm scared and also it's wrong.
The thing is because my school is private and costs a lot of money, so many of my friends have endless opportunities. One of my best friends is going to NYU, another to the University of Michigan and another to UCLA and they're so nonchalant about it too. It makes me feel really bad and honestly maybe even kinda resentful. I wish I could do that.
My mom is extremely annoying. I keep on telling her she needs to be her own person that she needs to just be independent and strong and sort this mess out on her own (with our help and love and support) without depending on other people and having a huge victim complex. She always acts like everything is "too" hard. If she wanted to, she would. I'm not sure that she's necessarily old fashioned because she went to college and has a degree and even a master's degree and stuff. She's just very I don't know... immature? She doesn't make me feel safe and isn't that what moms are supposed to do? I understand she's freaked out, that's true. It was all a huge shock to her. But it feels like she isn't really considering my brothers and me and how much all this has affected us too.
All of my dad's relatives have passed away and the ones who haven't we aren't close to. I could stay with my mom's parents over the summer and raise some money, that's true. And then September I guess I need to leave for England. But I also feel kinda sad because I want to travel and can't. I wish I could go to Disneyland in Anaheim. Last time I went was when I was 8, with my dad.
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Old Yesterday, 03:54 PM
 
9 posts, read 330 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
Hi, Ellie. Are you graduating soon, or do you have one more year to go? If a university in England will take you, and will offer financial aid or something, to cover your costs, grab that opportunity! What are your academic interests? If you have very good grades, you could try applying to Stanford University; they offer full-ride scholarships to anyone whose parents make under $125,000 (!!), who qualify for admission. (Very high admission standards.) I don't know if being an international student would make a difference, in terms of your eligibility for their full financial aid. You could look them up, and email their admissions office, possibly. If you're a techie, so much the better; it's a techie school to some extent.

You're really lucky to have the chance to study in England. Count your blessings, and make the most of the opportunities that present themselves. You can make your own life after that. You're REALLY lucky your international school offered you the chance to continue with them. That's why your English is so good! This will pay off, as you prepare to go to college.

Don't compare yourself to the rich kids. You'll really torpedo your mood that way. Make friends with some of the other kids; you may find some really nice people you never noticed before.

The schools in the University of California system, the highest tier of state schools, are very good schools, that's one reason they're expensive. (Long story--don't ask!) Everyone wants to get into UC Berkeley, UCLA, etc. Instead of focussing on, and grinding your teeth over, what you can't do, focus on what you can do. You'll get past this stage of life, will have a good education assumedly (since you at least have the Brit option), and then you can decide where to go and what to do from there. Keep your grades up, to maximize your options.

Your mom sounds like the old-fashioned kind of mom: the man makes all the decisions, so if the wife is widowed, she can't organize or manage her way out of a paper bag, handle the finances, etc. (Though at least your mom took steps to leave you kids debt-free). Maybe she's still grieving. It must have been a huge blow to her, and downsizing to the extreme extent she had to may have been traumatic--finding herself unexpectedly all alone as an adult, with kids dependent on her. Give her some space; it may have been a big freak-out for her.

What about your dad's relatives, and your mom's relatives? Could you stay with one of them for awhile? For summer, at least? And what about a summer job, now that you're almost an adult? You could save money for college.

Look forward, not back, and don't sabotage yourself, by comparing yourself with people who have everything. Face your situation (even if you don't want to), and use your bright mind to chart a path for yourself.

GOOD LUCK! Best wishes!
Also thank you for taking the time to express all that. It meant a lot to me I feel very alone and reading what you wrote made me feel cared for. Thank you.
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Old Yesterday, 05:41 PM
 
18,076 posts, read 23,130,834 times
Reputation: 33515
ellie, you sound mature for your age...kudos to you..

your mom may see qualities in you …. she doesn't have herself... which on one hand im sure she is proud of you ….and maybe a bit jealous at the same time ..

you may be her one rare confidant.....because you are mature for your age ..


she's also sharing a lot with you...because this time may be the last years you two are living together and not again...



have some patience with her....
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Old Yesterday, 07:24 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
76,535 posts, read 68,538,450 times
Reputation: 73875
I don't know about transferring to a US university after a year or two in England. THere's the financial aid issue. In some cases, you can pay for grad school by being a teaching assistant in undergrad classes, if you continue in the same field (i.e. Psychology grad program). So that might be a possibility. Marketing is a whole different field; a Marketing Master's Degree is offered through Business schools or departments, at universities, though you're right; a Psych background is very relevant to marketing.

UC Berkeley wouldn't offer you financial aid for undergrad. Their financial aid is for CA students; they're a state school, so they have an obligation toward students of their state. They actually use some international students to milk for extra tuition money, that they re-distribute as financial aid to in=state students.

One option (don't laugh) could be the Catholic universities (for undergrad). Don't knock them; some are pretty cool. They provide a lot of financial aid. I've known Tibetan refugee students and Native American students, who got free educations from Catholic universities, and encountered no religious agenda at all.. Seattle University (in Seattle, WA) is one that's good. Look up their Psych Dept. CA has a few, too.
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Old Yesterday, 08:06 PM
 
Location: God's Country
5,099 posts, read 3,369,545 times
Reputation: 8482
Quote:
Originally Posted by ellie.sunshine View Post
I really want to go to the US and live there for the rest of my life, it's my dream to live in California. We used to go there all the time when I was little and I fell in love. I hate Greece, it really sucks here I just want to get out. But even though my dream is to go to the US I can't because US colleges are really expensive (even state schools for some weird reason) so instead I have to go to England -Ellie

Yeah, a lot of US kids found that to be true too, paying back college loans into their 40s, and they're not able to go to England.
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Old Yesterday, 10:28 PM
 
645 posts, read 191,908 times
Reputation: 1431
Quote:
I would really like to go to Stanford or maybe UC Berkeley. Do you think it would be possible for me to transfer once I'm in England? I don't really like it there lol I know I should be grateful it's just, it's not the life I want for myself.
Stanford and Berkeley are extremely difficult schools to get into. Transferring would be extremely difficult too.

Quote:
UC Berkeley wouldn't offer you financial aid for undergrad. Their financial aid is for CA students; they're a state school, so they have an obligation toward students of their state. They actually use some international students to milk for extra tuition money, that they re-distribute as financial aid to in=state students.
That's the truth. Besides, airline fees, as schools close for spring, summer and winter breaks, add up.

If you work for an international company with an office in Greece, work your way up to a position where you can transfer to United States. International companies will arrange the visa for you, pay moving expenses and taxes.

That's the best case.
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Old Yesterday, 10:34 PM
 
Location: planet earth
4,248 posts, read 1,578,624 times
Reputation: 9546
You're being "parentified." It's inappropriate - and a boundary violation.

You are very wise to seek counsel.

When your mom approaches you with inappropriate content of any kind, tell her that you love her but that she needs to discuss this with either another adult or a professional - that it is stressful for you to hear about her "grown-up" problems.

She needs to find a support network that she can lean on - but you are going to have to be the one to initiate boundaries.

Change the subject, walk away, do whatever you have to do to take care of yourself (without being mean).
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Old Yesterday, 11:38 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
76,535 posts, read 68,538,450 times
Reputation: 73875
Quote:
Originally Posted by YorktownGal View Post
If you work for an international company with an office in Greece, work your way up to a position where you can transfer to United States. International companies will arrange the visa for you, pay moving expenses and taxes.

That's the best case.
This is an idea.
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