One of the things you never want to tell yourself, much less your child. I’m sitting here in a hotel room the night before a college visit for the Kiddo. As I look at the program he’s expressed interest to pursue at this school, I realize that his application for the program is due in 45 days. Not only is the application due, there is a portfolio that is not required, but recommended. He is ill prepared for applying to this college and I feel that I’m largely responsible for his lack of preparedness.

I don’t remember having to apply this early when I was applying for college, but I guess things have changed in the last twenty years. While I was worrying about him having the grades to get into college, I should have been proactive and looked for deadlines and what was needed for his programs of interest. I keep telling myself that I didn’t push him hard enough. I didn’t keep up with the changing of the times like I should have. I didn’t keep him focused.

How do you explain that to your kid? As you can tell, the first thing I do is place all the blame on myself. But should I? Should I share the blame with his mom? I mean, he’s with her the majority of the time. Or should I share the blame with his mom and him? He hasn’t done much to make sure he’s ready for college.

I want to see my kid succeed, but I want him to be accountable and take responsibility for his actions or the lack thereof. Maybe he needs to check out a community college for a year or two to get some of his core classes out-of-the-way. (That’s what I wanted him to do in the first place, especially since he can do two years free.) He could figure out what his goals are and he would have a couple of years to mature so that he might better comprehend what he needs to do to accomplish those goals.

I could always give him some great advice from Henry Ford: “Failure is simply an opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.

Maybe this will be an eye-opener for him. I know it is for me. Maybe he’ll learn from this shortcoming and move forward and get off his ass to start getting ready for college. I know I’ve learned my lesson. From this point forward, every time he’s with me, we’ll be looking at degree programs and deadlines for applications and scholarships. I will be pushing him like he’s never seen before. Time for the passive dad to transform. I just hope it’s not too late!

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