DEAR ABBY: My daughter was accepted at a college of her choice in Pennsylvania that offered loads of grant money. Our out-of-pocket is about $6,000 if she gets a Stafford loan or works this summer to help with the $4,500 that would be the loan. My husband is insisting on a community college, which she doesn't want to attend. He constantly cites the fact that our house is in foreclosure and that he owes money to the IRS for his business, which is why things can't be.
I think our children should be able to do things if they're workable. I encouraged them all through school to do their best and follow their dreams. My husband offered no assistance with homework or anything else. Any compliments they got for extracurricular involvement and excellent grades, he'd always say it was because of me -- and rightly so, but it was also them.
Incidentally, our firstborn wanted to go to a particular college, but his father convinced him to go to the community college by promising he'd pay for it and get him a car. He never even taught the poor kid to drive. I offered professional driving lessons, but my son declined.
Now my husband is using the same tactics on my daughter. Should I send her to follow her dreams against his wishes? You can't stifle them forever. -- ENCOURAGING MOM IN NEW YORK
DEAR MOM: With the house in foreclosure and money owed to the IRS, your husband is right to be concerned. Sometimes the best-laid plans go awry because of circumstances beyond our control, specifically the volatile economic climate we have been experiencing.
That said, I think you may be overdue to have a frank talk with your daughter about what she may have to do in order to supplement the grants being offered by the college of her choice. If she is willing to work over the summer and possibly beyond -- and considers taking out a student loan of her own -- she should be given the chance to live her dream.