My Parents Will Freak Out Over My Grade

June 16, 2017

My life sucks!  I’ve been working so hard to come to Cal, and my parents don’t understand this isn’t high school anymore.  In high school, I took hard classes, but there wasn’t nearly as much competition as here at Berkeley.  They just don’t understand that I can’t get straight As anymore.  They’re going to freak out if they ever see my report cards.  Can I make it so they can’t see my grades?  I don’t want to lie to them! Help me please.”

Mama Luv can understand that your parents still have high expectations of you. The good thing is that your parents cannot get a hold of your grades unless you tell or show them. However, it seems likely that your parents will still ask you about how you are doing in your classes. The best idea is to try to have a conversation with them about the difficulties at Berkeley. Perhaps you can find facts about the academics here - grade distributions and curves. Show them that these classes you’re taking are really challenging and that you truly are trying your best. Speak with your college counselor to see if there is anything s/he can do to get the message through to your parents as well. But please just make sure to not lie to your parents about your grades! In the meantime, keep your chin up, strut with confidence, and shake what your mama gave ya! Mama Luv is here to help.
Mama Luv

Unlike high school, your parents do not receive report cards and will probably not see your grades without you knowing it. However, it is important to communicate your worries with them because you do not want them to stumble upon your grades and become upset. Expecting straight A’s through college is indeed a bit extreme. Sit down and talk with them about their expectations and why you feel it is unfair. Don’t simply mention the competition from other students, but show them how you are doing the best you can. If you find yourself struggling in school, have you utilized campus resources such as the Student Learning Center or your GSI’s office hours to get extra help? Are you managing your time well between school and extracurricular activities? Outside activities should not be a reason for your grades to suffer. Balance is key. Oftentimes, parents are worried about your future. Reassure them by letting them know how you are spending your time, that you are working hard in everything you do and will make something of yourself during you time at Berkeley. Good luck!

–Cal Barista Janet