Mahi (via email)
Q. I am a regular reader of your column. I am a 1st year student. I am having hell lot of problems with my parents. Both are government servants. My mom thinks that whatever good that happens is because of her and bad because of others. She never accepts her mistakes. She is very superstitious, arrogant, dominating, damn sensitive. She wishes that whatever she orders the others should do that, without saying anything. My mom always tell this to my dad about this and he also get against me and my elder sister. This happens every morning. Final exams are coming closer and I am not able to concentrate on everything. What to do? Please help me.
Ans. It seems that your mother has some emotional disturbances that may appear normal. There are finer areas of the mind that cannot be seen to the lay person but are visible to a trained eye. Your mother does show some symptoms at least. You could come to seek counselling with me and bring her along with you as a parent. I could talk to her and find out what’s bothering her. I could help her and help you too to build a good rapport with each other. If this is not possible then you may as an alternative stop arguing with her and maintaining a safe distance from her. Keep yourself focused on your primary task of studying and do not interest yourself with other issues. This is indeed very difficult to do but perhaps the best option if you are to keep your mind peaceful.
Neha (via email)
Q. I am a 10th student. I am concerned about my future and I am planning for IIT. This year I need to clear certain entrance exams and I am working hard. But my parents daily just keep on insisting to study, they think I will be unable to clear the tests. Because of this I am losing my confidence! Please help me.
Ans. You should have the confidence in your abilities and maintain that at all time. Even if others discourage you just smile and do not react otherwise. It is unfortunate that your parents do not show the confidence in you and do not trust your capabilities but still take it up as a challenge and show them. Sometimes parents do not know how to show encouragement and end up doing just the opposite. They may be anxious about you and keep expressing their anxieties but keep calm and believe in yourself. The journey of life is traversed alone and that is a reality. Face it and prove it.
XYZ (via email)
Q. I’v grown up reading your column since school days. I hope you can guide me through this difficult phase in my life. I am a fashion designer and always wanted to have my own business but it didn’t work out somehow as I was working from home and could not make labours sit at my place and work so we decided to wind it up and work by buying a shop. But being a girl my family thought it would be better if I work somewhere for the time being and after I get married they will help me set up my business. But I left the job in 6 months as I was not comfortable. It’s been 3 years now and I was really frustrated with sitting idle so decided to just chill till I get married. Hence I joined a gym and started moving out more. I met a guy in my gym and slowly developed friendship. We are involved with each other now but he is two years younger to me. He is a well known photographer but only a graduate. My family would like a high degree. Both families are very conservative and love marriage is a crime. I always wanted to marry with my family’s consent. We both do not want our families. Please advice. My age is matured too.
Ans. You should have continued with the job instead of being idle. That way you would have kept in touch with your profession. And now you have landed yourself into an affair which has complicated your life. You have two choices, one is to let your family choose a boy for you and keep this boy only as a friend. But if you are deeply bonded with this guy then you could go ahead with marriage plans and begin to fight it out with both the families. If that does not work out then you have the choice of going and getting registered in the court of law. Both of you are matured and professionally qualified people. He is also a graduate and doing well with his business. You need not worry about his degree. Degrees are important only to the extent of training that one needs in that specific field. Degrees by themselves have no value.
Published in The Hitavada on 31 Jan 2010