I don’t know how to pay for my son’s college
Dear Harriet: My son is thinking about colleges right now, and we’re all in anticipation.
He is a strong student, so I feel confident that he will be accepted into good schools. But I’m afraid we won’t be able to afford it. We are not rich in the long run, but we are also not in the most needy category.
When I look at the cost of schools, I almost fainted. I don’t know how we will be able to bear it.
What are people doing these days to pay for college?
Dear very dear: You are part of a large group of families who are struggling to figure out how to pay their tuition fees. The good news is that there are thousands of colleges that charge different prices. In-country public universities are often in an affordable world. Community college is often a good and affordable start to the first two years.
You must fill out a FAFSA form stating your financial situation so that schools can decide what to give your family in financial aid. This is a stressful process, but many families end up getting some financial aid.
There are many companies out there that support families in navigating the process, including College Finance Services (ineedfinancialaid.com).
Dear Harriet: I live in a building for decades. One of my neighbors was here a long time ago, too. We’ve been friendly over the years, although sometimes it’s been a lot. It can be loud and obnoxious, but it’s often pretty cool.
In the early days of coronavirus, she learned that she had cancer. She used to be a loud woman, but now when I see her, she seems very calm and introverted.
We rarely stop to talk when we see each other on our patio as we used to. She was always the first to party all night long. now nothing.
I want to support her, but she never seems to want to talk. I don’t want to be pushy. How do I tell her I’m there for her if she needs or wants anything?
Dear patient neighbor: Your neighbor has a right to her privacy of course. Living through cancer treatment can be daunting. She probably doesn’t have the energy or leadership that she used to have during this time. She just can’t muster it. Unfortunately, Cancer often underestimates people’s personalities, especially if people were once active.
Without being oppressive, you can put a card under your neighbor’s door telling her you’re thinking of her. You can write her a note offering her a meal or an assignment if she needs to. And when you next see her in the yard, be warm and inviting, even if only for a moment. You will appreciate it.
Harriet Cole is a lifestyle specialist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people reach and make their dreams come true. You may send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.