A Conversation Overheard

Mother: . . . And because of that D on the test, your grade point average went down to 3.94?
9th-grade child: No, Mom. I told you — it went down to 3.49.
Mother: 3.49! You never told me that! If your grade point average is below 3.50, the colleges won’t even look at you! Oh my God! 3.49! We have a lot of work to do.
9th-grade child Oh, Mom, I don’t think I want to take Psychology next year.
Mother: Well, we’re not taking Sociology. That’s a lower level course than Psychology. You’ll just have to suck it up — and get an A.
9the-grade child: silently lowers her head

I have just a few things to add:

  • I feel very sorry for both of them.
  • I feel very angry about how the evolution of public education has put them in this position.
  • I wish I could help them see that there are other ways to be.
  • I am very thankful that neither I nor my 9th-grade child will ever be participants in a conversation like that.
  • Talk about people suffering all around us every day . . .


    4 Responses so far »

    1. 1

      sunnymama said,

      Wow! Seems crazy to me. I’m thankful too that I’ve found another way to be with sunnyboy.

    2. 2

      Mister Dad said,

      Darned super-hearing and attention skills!

      Can’t relate to your observation subjects at all. I audited a Soc class– liked a girl in it– and have studied psychology for the last 8 or 9 years, and that’s way after college for me! But then again, I’m interested in learning lots of stuff.

      That poor kiddo’s got a real challenge ahead. Hopefully, they may have a wonderful teacher who knows how to turn them on! And the mom finds grace and peace, too. It’s easy for a parent to get love and wanting their kids to reach all their potential confused with fear and not reaching their own potential…

      On the flip side, my two are (hopefully) learning plenty of what not to do when they’re parents. My goal is to recover in humility and model as much good stuff as I can come up with. So far, they get it…

    3. 3

      sgaissert said,

      Thank you for your wise comment. I think you are so right about love and sincere expectations warping into fear and anxiety about expectations. I see that in so much of our world, especially post-9/11. Fear takes over and reasonable thought goes out the window… Thanks for expanding on my post so well.

    4. 4

      Lisa said,

      That mother sounds like my engineer father….this conversation will not happen in my family as well. 😉

    Comment RSS · TrackBack URI

    Leave a Reply

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

    WordPress.com Logo

    You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

    Google+ photo

    You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

    Connecting to %s

  • %d bloggers like this: