Q. I am doing my 12th right now. My stream is Arts and my subjects are Psychology, sociology, philosophy and logic. I have always been good at helping people with their problems and that is what I want to do in future also. But I have a lot of doubts regarding this matter. Can you please give me a proper differentiation between a consulting psychologist and a therapist? Also can you please tell me good and flexible colleges for pursuing psychology in India?
Ans. I am happy to know that you want to pursue psychology as a career. It is a wonderful subject and makes a wonderful career. Therapy is one function of a consulting psychologist besides psychometric assessment and diagnosis. A consulting psychologist applies the principles of psychology to help and provide relief to clients as contrasted with psychologists in the field of teaching. However I would advise you to come for a session of guidance to know the different areas of specialisations and the different courses and institutions available in the field of psychology in India. Psychologists work in many areas such as schools, colleges, metal hospitals, prisons, remand homes, general hospitals and in private practice too. I will not be able to provide all the details in this column. I wish you all the best.
Q. My daughter is two year old and is showing odd behaviour. She has problems with other children who so ever come home. She bites them, pulls their cheek and makes them cry. No child wants to come to our house if they have been once. She likes people and talks to them but why she does this funny thing baffles me. Is something seriously wrong with her? Will she need medicines? I do not live in Nagpur and do not know any counsellor in my town. Please guide me what I should do?
Ans. Yes, your daughter is showing signs of behavioural disturbance. She will need to be assessed before we say anything more about it. A two year old child can show such signs and symptoms as you have mentioned. We need to measure her developmental milestones as well as other factors such as factors of nurturing and methods of disciplining at home. There are many areas of concern in a child and behaviour may get disturbed due to multiple factors. However do not despair and do not get alarmed. It can be taken care of once a proper diagnosis is done. Bring her as soon as possible.
Q. My marriage is fixed in the coming month and now I am getting double mind. I like another boy and we have been friends for some years now. What should I do? I cannot break this engagement as my parents will get shock and get heart attack. My mother has high blood pressure and she takes tension soon. This boy is okay and nice but I like the other one. He is now crying a lot and asking me to do something. I don’t know what to do? Should I continue or can I break it? Please help me.
Ans. This is a serious dilemma! In the eleventh hour you begin to doubt your decision to marry the boy or not. This is a challenging and daunting situation to handle. There is no easy method of taking a decision. Without using emotion you could weigh the pros and cons of choosing either of them and making an assessment of what will be better in the long term. This is the method used in arranged marriages. If you go by emotion you should marry the boy you love/like. I see another factor operating here and that is the pressure from your friend because he is crying a lot and making repeated requests to you to reconsider your decision. This requires a lot of thinking and assessing from various angles, you might have to take your parents into confidence before you jump t any conclusion. A couple of sessions of counselling can help us better to explore the possible pros and cons and the arriving at the best decision under the circumstances. Think over it very seriously.