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DEAR CHRISTINE: Worried she won’t go back to school

BEA DOTTIN, [email protected]

DEAR CHRISTINE: Worried she won’t go back to school

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Dear Christine,
Our son is 18 and currently a sixth-form student. My husband and I are on a working assignment from overseas and have been living in your country for the past three years.
Our son has been dating a 19-year-old girl for almost a year and she has already graduated. We found out last week that she is pregnant for our son.
She is a nice, friendly girl, and I don’t doubt that these two love each other dearly, but her parents did not take the news well. Her father, who drinks, became violent and called her some terrible names.
She could not take the abuse and is now living with us, although we do not allow her to share our son’s bedroom.
The only other stipulation is that both of them continue their studies and complete their education. My son’s girlfriend is an excellent student and has plans of going to medical school.
However, she tells us she wants to take a year off from school and get a job. She doesn’t want to attend college while she is pregnant or have the baby while concentrating on her examinations.
Christine, I feel betrayed and hurt.
I think she may have lied to us about attending college in order to live in our home. She also received a scholarship which she will have to turn down if she does not go this year.
I am concerned that she will never go back to school if she does not take advantage of that scholarship and it will ruin her future. However, if we throw her out for not living up to her end of the bargain, I fear our son will drop out of school and go with her in order to support his new family.
My husband says we should let her do what she wants in order to keep the baby in a healthy environment.
I’m terribly torn and don’t know what to do. What advice would you offer us?
Dear Undecided Mum,
Throwing your son’s girlfriend out would not be the right thing to do. She is not freeloading at your home.
Many students take some time off before going to college and she has already stated that she plans to get a job and is looking toward the future.
These two need help, and I urge you to be there for them. Don’t put any pressure on her or on your son. You won’t regret it.
Whatever decision she makes, please support her in it but guide her as well.
I wouldn’t be overly anxious about the scholarship either.
She can possibly have a heart-to-heart talk with the college and the two could possibly work something out. If this fails, I am sure she can apply for more scholarships in the meantime.