Does it Bother You? Adults add to the stress of college decisions

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By Grace George ’17

Photo courtesy of Isabel Tabs

Does it bother you that adult always ask teenagers about college? It’s as if there’s an unspoken law that the number one conversation starter for adults when talking to seniors is “do you know what you’re doing for college yet?” Juniors, when you get to senior year make sure to have your reach, target, safety and Common App Status ready at any moment because the college question is inevitable.

The whole premise of college is terrifying to begin with and just having to talk about it all the time can drive someone insane. The Common App and Naviance begin to haunt a person the more you talk about it. You can be in the middle of talking about your favorite campus and then get that chill and sinking feeling that makes you rethink every school you applied to.

You never know what school to lead with either when asked where you applied. If you name your target you’ll feel too arrogant, but if you name your safety–woah, exponentially worse–you’ll feel like everyone is judging your lack of intelligence and trying to guess your insufficient SAT score by the look in your eyes.

The college question does not usually pop up freshman or sophomore year, but come junior and senior year, it can be lethal. The amount of times that I have been asked where I am going and had to reply “I don’t know” has driven me insane. Not to mention the fact that I’m a second semester senior with still no clue as to where I want to go or where I should go to college. By now I should be a pro at talking about college, right? Wrong. It gets worse the longer you wait to make a decision. Every time I give the lame answer, “I haven’t heard back from everywhere yet” I get those tilted-head-furrowed-brow looks that make me want to scream, “NOT EVERY SCHOOL HAS EARLY ACTION!!!!!!!” At this point, I should just get “undecided” tattooed on my forehead for convenience.

What bothers me most about college questions is the fact that they are ALWAYS asked no matter what. I know that I’m eighteen and have done nothing really productive with my life to contribute to society or the greater good, but that does not mean I don’t have anything else to talk about than college. You know how often I get asked about being an editor on the Wessex Wire? Not often enough for the prestige of my position.

The fact that every relative of mine makes it a priority to ask me about college and nothing else is not only annoying, but it’s insulting. It’s telling me that they don’t know what else is going on with me and they don’t really care but they also don’t want to seem rude by not talking to me about myself at all. So, teachers, adults, parents, next time you encounter a junior or senior in high school, see if you can go a whole conversation without mentioning college. You may be surprised on how interesting a teenager’s life can be.