Everything you need to know

Dear Rachael,

After a lot of losing at everything in life, I just got a few things to go my way: I got into grad school, and I got an internship. Of course, each comes with a huge hitch. Grad school costs $28,000 a year (for two years), plus the cost of living in the most expensive city on earth (NYC), so I’d have to take out loans for that. It’s a new program and would put me in the right place with the right people so that I’d have connections galore, and I’d love it all, I’m sure.

The internship for the summer is in San Francisco, doing what I want to do long-term, but the cost of living there is high and I wouldn’t be able to make money to set aside for grad school. I don’t have any loans to pay back from undergrad, and I’m not used to being financially independent and having these opportunities. Do I go into debt and live forever opportunity-regret free but financially ruined, or do I stay financially stable and live forever opportunity-regret laden but financially stable?

—Really Unsure Opportunist

Hey you,

Bump what people say about not having your cake and eating it too. What’s the point of having cake if you can’t eat it?

But really, find scholarships and aid where you can. There may be opportunities for you to get a grant for your summer internship. And while you’re working in San Francisco, maybe you can get a part-time job or freelance in something you’re good at to make money on the side. Then, since you won’t have loans to pay back for your undergrad, it’ll be a little bit okay to take some out for grad school. You only get educated once. And if you really think grad school is going to help you out later in life, do what you can to make it. Besides, you can always get a job while you’re in New York attending grad school.

To answer your question in your own terms, go in debt and live forever with opportunities, regret-free, and financially ruined. Then marry rich and lay all your financial ruins on your significant other. Wrong but oh-so-right.

With superlove,

Dear Rachael,

My best friend is pregnant, and although I want to support whatever decision she makes, I really want her to get an abortion. Is it wrong for me to influence her to get an abortion when she wants to do what her boyfriend wants, which is to keep it, when I know that she isn’t financially or mentally ready to be a mother? I would also settle for adoption, but either way, if she has the child her parents will disown her.

—Self-Admitted Pro-Choice Baby Killer

Sup Pro-Choice,

You’re being too hard on yourself, first of all. This is your best friend, and you want what’s best for her. If that conflicts with her opinion or even the moral standard, then whatever; you are entitled to your own opinion, no matter what.

I don’t, however, think it’s cool to woo her towards abortion unfairly. If you think giving up her baby is what’s best, do some research. Give her some statistical information, some real-life examples, and show her that maybe her extremely early 20s aren’t the best time to rear a child. It seems your friend isn’t so into what her parents think — it’s more about what her boo thinks. Which is fine, and all, until he leaves her with that baby alone. And that’s going to suck. So give her options. If you’re going to influence her opinion, do it responsibly. If she makes a decision that’s different from your own, that’ll suck; but as a best friend, it’s your responsibility to support her decisions, whether they are poorly made or wisely thought out.

Good luck with the fetus stuff,