KAMPALA – Choosing a career is an extremely important decision that impacts an individual’s entire future, so parents often become very stressed. Since past to nowadays, parents are playing a major role in the selection of the course and future career of children. Every year majority of young minds are confused while choosing careers. If a wrong choice is made, where interest and aptitude of a child do not fit, it oftenly leads to a change in the field after few months and sometimes years, wasting time and effort of the child. Psychologists say human beings oftenly make decisions based on what they have been through, heard and the kind of atmosphere they have been exposed to while growing up.
Right from the childhood, interest and talent of a child should be priotized and it must be kept in mind that every child is different. The parents know the interests and disinterests of their children. So the parent has to guide in selecting the best course after consulting the well-known persons for future prospectus. If we force the child to choose a career against his or her interest, he or she may never be able to excel in life. The worst part is that most parents who want their children to become doctors, lawyers and engineers never ask them about their choice. On top of that, they want them to perform extremely well. That is why depression and suicide rates are high. If children choose a career according to the wishes of their parents and which is not of their interest, they would have a boring academic life as they would face a lack of interest yet college life is the best phase of a student’s life. To enjoy this phase and make it more interesting, a child should choose his or her own career path.
In our society, there is a trend of following others, including neighbours and relatives. To convince a child to take up a particular career, parents often give examples of neighbours’ sons and daughters. However, this trend has decreased in last few years but there are still some people following this path. On the other hand, most of the parents fail to achieve their dreams due to family or financial issues. In such cases, try to get them fulfilled through their children. Imposing the interests of parents on the children creates pressure on them. They might struggle under this pressure to evolve. Even if they succeed to the external appearance, they might not be completely satisfied with whatever glory they earn. As self-satisfaction is the highest motive of existence, children should be allowed to choose their career on their own.
Every child should be more grateful to his parents in this world. Parents are the ones who suffer a lot of difficulties and bring up their kids so that they can live a healthy and happier life. It is the desire of every parents to see their children well settled in their life and thus, they have the right to choose a better career for their kids. Parents want their children to find happiness and success in life and one factor which influences happiness and success is career choice. A child is a born face in the world of experiences. He or she has aspirations but less able to choose the best career option to pursue. Parents have their personal experiences and also complete knowledge about their children which can guide them into making best choices about their future. A child may have interest in something and without looking at the long term impacts may try to do a programme that might turn out be unfruitful. Research also indicates that when students feel supported and loved by their parents, they have more confidence in their own ability to research careers and to choose a career that would be interesting and exciting.
A child knows his interests and abilities better than anyone else. He knows his subjects and areas of interest and thus, can decide his career path easily. When a child is well informed of the feasible options, they should be left to choose their own path. This helps the child to work on their field of interest and excel in the life. Also, the child would hardly blame the parents for any down-surge in their career. This would give them confidence to fight their own way to success and they would eventually learn to survive in this highly competitive world.
Parents should be cautioned against imposing their own goals on to their children or seeing their child’s accomplishments as a reflection on themselves. So while parents should show genuine interest and support for their adolescents‘ career plans, they must allow adolescents to discover who they are on their own. Some teenagers fear the disapproval of their parents if they pursue a career in art, drama and music as opposed to a practical high-earning occupation such as law or medicine. If parents make it clear that they have no specific expectations for their child’s career, he or she feels free to explore a greater variety of professions, choosing one based on his or her own preferences.
Parents should guard against shooting down ideas their children may have about their future careers. If they react negatively, it may shut down the whole exploration process. They need to keep the lines of communication open, and encourage their child to gather as much information as possible on their career interest areas. A parent must recognize that their role is simply to act as a facilitator in their child’s career journey and allowing independent career choices marks a young persons first real step into adulthood.
But we have some other parents also who strictly monitor their child right from the beginning and they know in which direction their child going and hence accordingly decide his or her future. Parents should consult with their child before taking any decision by considering child’s creativity, their nature and mind. As parents play a pivotal role in making a bright career of their child so they should support them in possible way and let them to choose the career of their choice. Sometimes we see children choose a path to satisfy his parents where he has no interest at all. We find some students who are not good at studies but they have enormous talents in extracurricular activities. In this situation instead of forcing their child to become a doctor or engineer, parents need to take initiative to reveal their child’s dormant talents. They should encourage and guide their children to go forward on the field of their child’s choice.
In conclusion, despite some arguments, I strongly believe that parents should avoid pressuring their children to follow specific career paths. Young people need freedom and parental support in choosing their future careers. Parent or child, it’s not a single person who is entitled to choose about the career options for the child, rather it should be mutual effort guided by complete evaluation of the strengths, weaknesses, ability and willingness of the child and scope of option proposed in future. We are all seeking happiness in life, its ideal to choose a profession that builds a drive and makes you feel you are fulfilling a purpose. Money is important, but following what makes you happy will definitely attract money.
The writer is a student of Dental Surgery at Uganda Christian University