Let’s face it—being the first in your family to attend college can be nerve-wracking. Now that you’ve graduated and are trying to figure out what you want to do for the rest of your life, one of the things you are most likely thinking is: “How will I explain to my parents what I want to do?” 

This is super valid. Going to college was a new stepping stone for you and your parents because as you were figuring out FASFA, your major, and more, you were also explaining your college process to your parents, while simultaneously learning about it for the first time. I want to remind you that you are doing a great job with everything you are currently navigating. 

Now you are probably thinking, “Okay, Estrellita, thank you for the validation, but what other post-grad options are you talking about?”

Let’s break down your options:

  • Graduate School: To have the potential to work in academia and research. 
  • Recover from burnout: You studied and worked a lot, rest. 
  • Attend Latino-focused networking events: There is more to learn about outside of college.
  • Internship: Expand your expertise if you want to work in an entirely new industry. 
  • Travel: Yes, you deserve this, and honestly, I wish I had done more of this.

Now that we’ve gone over this short list, how are we telling our Latino parents about our plans? It is important to remember that they want the best for you. However, I can understand how sometimes their supportive messages and gestures can get lost in translation.

I want you to keep this in mind as you prep your grand explanation: 

  • Our parents come from a different time and learn differently than us, based on how they were expected to search for opportunities in this country. 
  • They want to show support but are still learning how to do that since many of us feel supported with words of encouragement and validation.
  • They will come around with time even if their reaction to your plans isn’t what you are looking for. 

As a first-generation Latina myself, believe me when I tell you I understand. All we want is to do good in life and feel supported. It is possible to have that and more. It will just take some time. But that is more than okay, because you are an infinite trailblazer paving the way for future generations. 

I don’t know about you, but I am crying right now because I believe in you. Everything will work out! 

Break the news to your parents in a way they can understand

I am sharing my personal script below that you can use and tweak to your liking:

Ama y apa les quiero platicar sobre mis planes ya que me gradué. I want to talk to you about this because I care about your thoughts, and it would mean a lot to me if I could have your support. So, I am thinking about applying to graduate school, but also, I want to apply for internships in journalism. I did get my degree in Sociology to work with people and I still want to do that. I will just be learning how to get their stories published onto popular media outlets to help their voices be heard. Internships require a lot of time, like a full-time job, they don’t pay much but it will be a good way for me to get my foot in the door. 

*Proceeds to hug them*

I am so excited for your new future endeavors, and I would love to know how this conversation went with your parents. If you are open to sharing, please don’t hesitate to email me at hola@cafeconestrellita.com If it’s okay with you, I would be honored to share your message on an upcoming podcast episode of Cafecito con Estrellita. 

Con mucho amor y cariño, 

Your Estrellita