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RAMON PRESSON: Hey college boy, what’s with all the studying?

RAMON PRESSON: Hey college boy, what’s with all the studying?

Dear Son,
I happened to see your Instagram selfie of you studying late at night at the university library.

Your Mom and I are very disappointed. We sent you to Big Name University (an expensive private college, no less, that is stingy with scholarships and doesn’t give in-state students a tuition break) for you to get drunk and make bad grades.

We were counting on your scholastic dedication being a phase you got over during your freshman year. If you keep this up you will not have been on academic probation or gotten a co-ed pregnant by the time you graduate. Magna Cum Laude and no criminal record — is that really what you want?

And what’s this double major stuff I’m hearing about? Giving you extra flexibility and marketability in the job market and nonsense like that. And your Mom was in tears when she told me you were doing an internship of all things.

An internship? Seriously? You know that could lead to a job, don’t you?

Son, don’t you know that we’re counting on you to flunk out and move back home and sabotage our empty nester travel plans? We’ve been planning on financially supporting you as a slacker as you move from menial job to menial job with no ambition, vision, or direction for your life. We expect you to have a spirit of entitlement, not this current attitude of taking responsibility for your success. We shudder to think where this focus and determination is going to lead you.

And did I hear this right: you’re actually going to class? Unbelievable! I bet you’re actually writing your own papers too. I don’t where you picked up this impressive work ethic, young man, because you sure didn’t get it from me.

And did you know that we’ve gotten not one, not two, but ZERO calls from campus police, the RA on your hall, or the Centers for Disease Control. Not even a peep from the Honor Council. It’s like you don’t even exist to all those people.

It makes me really wonder about the caliber of people you’re hanging out with. I was always afraid that you would get to college and fall in with the right crowd — guys & gals who are a positive influence, people with high morals and standards.

collegeI knew we would regret not forcing you to join a fraternity that is on probation. You’re almost halfway through college and you know nothing about binge drinking. You haven’t thrown up in a bar toilet and haven’t woken up in a stranger’s room yet and it’s almost October for God’s sake!

And don’t think we don’t know that you’ve been exercising regularly and doing you own laundry. Son, this is so embarrassing. What are we supposed to say to our friends and family when they ask how you’re doing? Uncle Mike’s boy was permanently expelled without a refund after only his third week at Typical State College for selling weed to the faculty in the English department. He’s back at home, lives in the garage, and plays X-box all day when he’s not writing letters to his girlfriend in the state pen.

What are we going to write in the family Christmas letter? “Pray for Cameron. He’s on the Dean’s List again but we’re hoping he’ll be off by this time next year.”

Son, it’s only a few weeks till Fall Break. You’ve still got time to turn this around and take a nose dive before finals. We know you can do it.

Mom & Dad

Ramon Presson, PhD, is a licensed marriage and family therapist in Franklin
( and the author of several books. Reach him at

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