A few days ago
English Wiz

i want to go away to college but my parents won’t let me?

i’ve applied to the university of michigan ann arbor and i want to go there soo baad.. but my parents are so conservative and old minded they think that cuz i’m a muslim girl and 16 years old i shouldn’t live alone…

they don’t understand that i’ll be 17 when i go and i’d be living in a dorm and that the campus even has a mosque for prayer so i won’t be forgetting my religion.. what makes it worst is that my brother is a freshman there and we could live together in an apartment around campus .. but they wouldn’t hear it..

also, a guy that graduated from my high school is offering 5 full ride (full tuition) scholarships to graduates from my high school and i have a good chance of getting one..

plz i know i took too long, but just a few more things.. my dad doesn’t know that i applied and i don’t know how to talk him into letting me go if i get it (as i never goten my acceptance letter yet )

any tips…

Top 5 Answers
A few days ago

Favorite Answer

You are on the right path. You know were you want to go. You have applied and you have potential scholarship options. It is frustrating to hear that you have to deal with what feels like oppression in the eyes of an american born Christian.

It is a right of passage for high school graduates to move away and live the college experience. But in his defense, many fathers have a hard time letting go of their little girl.

If you have the support of your brother perhaps he could advocate on your behalf. Have him explain that there are many Muslim girls that go to his school and still honor their family by respecting their religious traditions.

Figure out what is the full scope of his objections are to your attendace at the university. Is it just that you shouldn’t live alone? Or is their more to it? Most incoming freshman have roomates, so you won’t be living alone. Contact someone in admissions or find out from your brother what resources are available on campus for Muslim students beyond the Mosque, like support groups. Maybe you could meet up with some Muslim girls, even online, that could help offer you support, and may in turn give you and your father more insight as to how “this” can be done. Someone in admissions could ouline what support they have for Muslim students, who are in somewhat of a unique situation with all the “limitations” that are put upon them by their male counterparts.

It is 2007, time for Muslim women to get what they deserve…an education without oppression. Be persistent, just try and chip away at his archaic thinking… it is in this country anyway.

You are obviously a very intelligent girl, having amassed 30 college credits by the age of sixteen. Just find a way to be creative in getting what you need from your father. I bet you can find a way to do this and at the same time demonstrating respect for his views.

“Surprise” him with your acceptance letter and scholarship offer when it comes. I hope you can get support from your mother.


A few days ago
Dorothy K.
Well, if you were to not get that full ride scholarship for some odd reason, who would be responsible for paying your tuition? Would you take out loans? If not, would your Dad be primarily responsible to see that tuition was paid? If you have to answer yes to this last question, there may be no getting around him saying no to you leaving for college and since you are a minor (under 18) he can legally say this to you! However, if you do get the full ride scholarship, that is an advantage and he would be a bit foolish to not let you go since your college education would be paid for and University of Michigan is a great school. Have you showed him the possible dorm living environments you can choose from? I know that most dorms offer a substance free floor so, he wouldn’t need to worry that you would throw personal and religious values aside and give in to that temptation. You may even want to show him the student organization lists- my school has an organization for Muslim students united- they are active on campus and in the community with volunteer work. Something like that should be seen as a positive advantage when you talk with your Dad.

If he still will not budge, just attend community college until you are 18 and can legally leave home. This too has advantages- community college is much, much cheaper than regular college and the first year of college is a big adjustment, if you were closer to home or still lived at home, you might have an easier time with the transition.

Weigh all the pros and cons with your dad before you just write him off as just being stubborn and/or mean, o.k.?!


A few days ago
First, some simply rules for negotiation. Getting into a shouting match is a sign of desperation and solves nothing. If you act like an irrational child, your father will be validated regardless of your logic.

You have to show him this is a win-win arrangement, and you’ve brought up some very valid points. Stress your commitment to your values and religion, and impress upon him that part of your faith is being able to retain your values on your own. Also, stress that you are driven to do the very best you can for yourself, and Ann Arbor is an incredible opportunity (which it is). Be prepared to make some concessions – visit once a month, live with your brother, call every other day, whatever he wants so long as you can go.

It may be that he has a very different value system – women need to be protected, you should be looking for a husband, maybe even that women should not be educated – I don’t know if this is true, but in some cultures these attitudes are prevalent. If this is the case, you could (rationally!) remind him that in the US women are expected and encouraged to educate themselves to the best of their abilities. You could even say the opportunities Ann Arbor will provide will make you a higher wage earner, which will make you more likely to marry well (statistically this true).

Finally, in bargaining there is a concept called BATNA – best alternative to a negotiated agreement. Once you’ve offered everything you can and if your father continues to say no, you have two choices: acquiesce to his demands, or defy him. Unless your father intends to supply you with all your needs and desires for the rest of your life, then you need to prepare yourself for your future. If your best potential lies in Ann Arbor, you might have to make a very difficult choice – defy your father and do college on your own. It would seem very strange if it got to that point, since most parents want what is best for their children. But if you need to, you may have to stand up on your own and say no to your dad.

I probably wouldn’t have any of this conversation until (1) you are accepted to Ann Arbor; and if you plan on defying your dad, (2) after you have the scholarship or have researched other scholarships and low interest student loans.


A few days ago
Live life the way you want. No one shouldn’t tell you how it’s going to be. Your’re almost an adult. Don’t let no one stop you from the things you want to accomplish. Learn how to stand up and be who you want to be.

A few days ago
Kannan J
your father is a moron.