The fear of leaving the nest


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Art by Sue Jin Park

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]With college application season upon us, high school seniors are rushing to complete applications and submit them. For some students, attending a school near home is comfortable to them, while for others, their ambition lies beyond their borders.

College is a step in which kids are stepping out of adolescence and into adulthood, yet they are ill prepared for such a change and decide to take the easy way for college. They’ve already made their first mistake. After college, it’s only natural to find a job and become your own person. But many kids fail to understand that.

Currently, they are used to having someone else to depend on for warmth, food and shelter. Having to find all those things on their own is something they cannot fathom doing, which frightens them. Reality cannot be romanticized; it’s harsh, but learning how to deal with it a young age is for the best.

I am the kind of person who wishes for independence; an out-of-state school is my first choice. Telling some of my friends about my aspiration, I’m met with mixed emotions. Some applaud my ambition, while others gasp in disapproval, “I could never leave state for school, I can hardly leave town!” While I hardly blame them for their irrational fear, it’s something they will have to come to terms with, if not now, then later. Some may argue that they won’t stay in the same place for long, that eventually they will have to move because of marriage or new job opportunities, but it can’t be easy during that time either.

Most adults instill this fear in their children’s minds indirectly. Confirming that reality is too difficult to cope with, they keep them sheltered away. But that only hurts them. It should be parents’ responsibility to help their child to grow into successful members of society, who can easily survive on their own, but they’re instead making cowards out of them.

The kids whose future dreams are to be a doctor or an engineer have so many colleges at their fingertips, places where they can expand their potential and have an impactful education. Demands from their parents should not limit their ambition and they should have the option to leave home if the opportunity arises. Taking account for their own life now is what will ultimately help them to succeed later in life.