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Family laughed at my dreams of adult study

Fiona Caine is here to help if you have a relationship, sexual, marriage or family problem

Published 26/07/2012

I'm 41 and left school with no qualifications because I had to look after my mother for my final two years, so I often didn't go into school at all.

For a few months now I've been thinking I'd like to do an Open University course and see if I can get myself a degree.

When I suggested this to my husband, he just laughed at me and said I was too old.

My two sons, who are at university themselves — supported by me, I may add! — just laughed and said I’d never manage it.

I was deeply hurt by them all. I really want to do this and I cannot understand the reaction of my family.

How can I make them see that this is important to me? AH


People in their seventies and eighties have successfully completed OU degrees, and I firmly believe that you are never too old to learn.

Your family probably don't realise how much they have hurt your feelings, so I suggest that you get them together, perhaps over a meal or Sunday morning breakfast, and tell them!

Remind them that although you left school without academic qualifications, that doesn't mean you were incapable of getting them — just that it wasn't possible for you at the time.

Tell them you have always supported them in whatever they have chosen to do, and that you would appreciate it if they could do likewise for you.

Belfast Telegraph

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