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Question: My 13 year old daughter wants to go back to public school, I do not want her to. The children's father has decided to move out and to a different state and we do not have a support group within 2 hours of here. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Dear Mom,

From the tone of your letter is seems as though your husband has moved out of the house under bad circumstances. I am very sorry for you and your children that you are having to deal with such a sorrow at this time in your life. Gathering from the ages of your children I am going to suppose that you and your husband are either in your mid forties or fifties. This is indeed a great burden for the two of you. I will keep both of you in prayer.

Could it be that your little girl is feeling the burden of the sorrow of having her parents at odds with one another? Perhaps she is dealing with this confusion in such a way that leads her to desire to want to 'escape' the confrontations and frustrations? Have you spoken with her in a candid way to ascertain her deep feelings about the situation?

Thankfully the summer months are upon us and it gives you time to work through some of the issues you are facing before you must begin a new schooling year. I would take this time to speak with my daughter and learn first hand her stand on the issue of schooling. It may be that what would serve her better is time with you to completely explain how she is feeling. Sometimes (most times) young children are not able to fully articulate the depth of their grief and confusion with regard to such adult issues as the ones you are facing.

Bless your heart. I would imagine that you are working overtime emotionally just to keep yourself afloat. Please take the next few weeks to allow yourself to fully process the changes that have happened in your life. It would be very helpful for you to speak with your parish priest or another person who is available to listen. Many times I believe that we know the answers to many of life's challenges but we seem to need to 'talk it out' with another person in order to fully understand our position. Receive the Sacraments frequently for therein is physical comfort that is tangible and sure. Sit before the Blessed Sacrament and allow the Good Jesus to enfold you in His arms. In this safe refuge you will find strength. In allowing yourself time to heal, you will be better able to help your daughter.

I do not think that this is an issue of education but more an issue of emotions that need expressing and understanding.

Let us pray together a Hail Mary for all the women who are facing similar challenges in their lives at this time. Let us keep close in prayer those women and children who find that they are in danger due to domestic violence. Let us keep close in prayer those women who find that they are faced with financial burdens which make meeting the demands of young children difficult. St. Maria Goretti, pray for us. Amen.

Sending out a prayer,

Rita Munn

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