I believe I may have reached a place in my parenting where I do not know what to do.
Which is not to say that I’m in a state of anxiety, or a tizzy, or a panic. Only that my children are growing up, and reaching places in their lives where their experience will diverge from mine. Without direct knowledge, I have to research, I have to ask questions, I have to gather information.
I’m thinking maybe you all can help. I know many of you are in your early, or not so early-twenties. Thank you in advance.
My son is a sophomore in college. At Princeton, as I have said, as was my daughter. I am very proud of both of them. But I digress. My son is choosing a major, and a course of study for his next two years. He will graduate, if all proceeds without interruption, in 2012. At which point, it would be good if he was earning some kind of living. Since my family fortune has dwindled and all that.
Here’s my issue. I inherited enough money at the age of 21 that I could major in Comparative Literature, graduate, take what were essentially internships, with Cameron Mackintosh Productions in London and Circle Repertory Theater in New York, and travel through India for 3 months. Then, and only then, I decided to go for an MBA and enter the world of salaried, health-insuranced, tax-paying employees. Which was perhaps not the best decision, but that’s another story.
As a result, I don’t know what kids do who graduate college without a clear path to revenue. What if, for example, someone majors in the creative disciplines, graduates, take a job teaching English overseas, then returns to the US? What are the opportunities, what are the requirements, what are the characteristics of early life out of college when still discovering a career path? What do kids do these days if they don’t have a clear route to an entry-level salaried job?
I am not saying I mind if waiting tables is the fallback. Only that I do not know if waiting tables is even an option these days. And where does one live? With whom?
I worry less about the eventual career part. It’s the wandering around preliminary stuff that I can’t envision with much clarity.
Well. That’s it. I thank you in advance. If you tell me all is well I imagine my son will thank you too. That is, if he can understand that I ask this question out of a desire to do a better job at mothering, and hence he can forgive me for having brought it all up to begin with.
Have a wonderful weekend.