K's adoptive father was outraged at his letter. He fired back a severe reply. In light of such brazen parental deception, K was immediately disqualified from further financial support. K showed me this response. He also showed me a letter from his birth family that he'd received at about the same time. This one was no less scathing in its reproval. Perhaps in deference to his adoptive family, it stated clearly that he should expect no support from their side either. The question of whether K would be reinstated into his birth family or somehow negotiate to remain with his adoptive family was left for a future day. K's immediate problem now was how to get by from month to month.
I asked K for his thoughts on the matter. He said he would take a job, teaching night school or such. Things were simpler then than they are now, and finding a side job was not so hard as you might imagine. I didn't doubt that K could likely get by. However, I was also aware of my own obligation. When K had gone against his adoptive family and charted his own course, I'd come to support his decision. I couldn't just stand idly by. I immediately extended an offer of material assistance. K dismissed this offhand. In his mind, self-sufficiency was preferable by far to dependency on the patronage of a friend. Once in graduate school, he asserted, any man worth his salt should know how to fend for himself. I had no intention of wounding K's pride for the sake of my own satisfaction, so I withdrew and left him to his own means.
K soon found the kind of position he sought. However, to one who so cherished his time, it was clearly a burden. Despite the demands of his new job, he persevered and didn't let up on his studies. I worried about his health. Determined as he was, though, he laughed off my concerns and heeded me not in the least.