Ask Elle: Uncertain about the future

Elle gives advice to a student who’s worried about the transition into adulthood

Elle is MCHS’s advice columnist. Email her at [email protected].

Dear Elle: I really feel like my life is falling apart. I’m so scared for college and I’m not ready to be on my own. My grades are crap. I have almost no money saved, yet I’ve had a job for 2 years. My parents plan on letting me live with them for a while but, eventually, I will have to move out and be on my own—and aren’t appartments like $2,000 a month? Am I crazy for being worried about this?  I don’t know what to do. These concerns have led me down to a really dark place and I don’t know how to get out of it. 

Sincerely, Scared



First off, you are absolutely not crazy for having these fears, nor are you alone. Everyone goes through a period of uncertainty before they graduate high school.

Next, I think you should definitely take advantage of your parents’ offer. Stay with them and transition into adult living slowly while you make a plan for what to do next. Apartments are not usually so expensive. If you find a roommate or two that you are comfortable living with, you can share living expenses. Search around, because many apartments are just shy of $1,000 a month.

Finally, do not worry about how much money you have in your savings as you enter adulthood. Lots of high schoolers (and adults) live paycheck to paycheck. Though you are not at some crazy disadvantage, it is time you learn how to save your money. There are budgeting classes you can take, and some very helpful apps.

Finding a job that you enjoy, something that you could see yourself working plenty of hours at, will help you achieve both of these goals. Don’t pick just any job that’ll hire you—fast food jobs or retail can add quite a bit of stress to your life if you have other things on your plate.

In general, just know that these things always have a way of working themselves out. You’re not alone, and there are going to be lots of people there alongside you, to help you through it.

Need advice on school, work, love, life, or anything else that’s weighing you down? Email Elle at [email protected], and she may respond to your letter in the online or print edition of The McHenry Messenger.