Q. I just gave my 12th standard exams and aspire to become an architect. I belong to a family of lawyers but no one in my family would be supportive of me going for any other career apart from law. I don’t know how good an architect I can be, but I surely know that I can’t become a lawyer. I am extremely scared to tell them of my wishes. What should I do?
A. In your situation, more than what you want to do; what is important is what you don’t want to do. You finally have to live with yourself and your work; hence it is absolutely essential, that you are satisfied in your career. You need to express your wishes clearly as being the most important. The best thing here is that apart from low interest in law, you have also said -“I surely know that I can’t become a lawyer”, and I am sure you have reasons to say so. Answer why you can’t become a good lawyer and explain the same calmly, to your parents and then propose an alternative career plan. If they are not convinced then suggest the idea of aptitude testing. Career counselling could be extremely helpful.
Q. I am a 21 year medical student. My parents want me to get married after my MBBS and they have already started looking for a match. However, I am mentally and emotionally not ready for any such commitment. My boyfriend of 3 years (who’s in my class too), is of course not ready for anything so soon. If I tell my parents about him they will pressurize me even more. He says he is open to commit and maybe get engaged after MBBS but marriage is not on the cards for him. I don’t know what to do. Please help.
A. 22 is really a young age to get married if you are an MBBS student. If you wish to settle down with your boyfriend; sooner or later, you will have to tell your parents about it. Also, if situation at your place is so tensed you must seriously talk to your boyfriend and prepare him, so he knows what may follow. One mid solution could be to tell your parents to let you complete your MBBS before running into anything, after which you will be ready to meet the guys they shortlist. Meanwhile introduce your boyfriend as a close friend, if you haven’t done that already. You might then consider a formal introduction of your parents and your boyfriend; (families can follow) and then, suggest engagement.
Q. I am in 12th standard and am trying hard to study. I have always been a good student and I have to score well now too. This has never happened before, but these days, no matter how hard I try I can’t concentrate in my studies. I should not be so distracted, I should be working very hard but I can’t understand why I am unable to study!
A. The tremendous pressure to perform is evident from what you have written to me. You do not need to worry however, as this is a common concern of a lot of students. What is important is that you give up negative, deterministic thinking and adopt a positive frame of mind. Use ‘can’ instead of ‘must and should’. Take frequent breaks and relax and try to incorporate exercise or sports and meditation or yoga in your routine. Believe in yourself, your dreams and your capabilities. If your mind is calm, you become confident and this improves concentration. Best of luck, you ‘can’ do well!
Q. I have been dating a boy for about 6 years now, and wish to marry him. But, whenever I talk to him about anything even close to settling down he becomes aloof and avoids the topic completely. Says he wants to be with me but not marry. My parents and his mother, a divorcee, want us to settle down. I sometimes wonder if he even loves me! What do I do?
A. Such a reaction from a 26 year old boy could be a result of career issues, being unsure, insecurities or dissatisfaction. But, my attention here goes straight to 3 things (a) A steady 6 year long relationship (b) known to his mother (c) who is a divorcee. It is possible that he has learnt to fear marriage from his parents’ broken bond. He is scared probably that your happy relationship could get ruined like his parents’. If this is the case, your role is to make him believe slowly that what happened with his parents, together and individually will not happen to you both simply because this involves different times, different people and different situations! Counselling can definitely help such deep rooted problems. Rest, you are the best judge of the satisfaction and happiness of your relationship.