FAQs for Parents of Young Adults

As parents of young adults, you might be anxious of your child's career growth. It is the crucial phase of one's life as far as career growth is concerned. We have compiled a list of frequently asked questions and you can mail us for more doubts.

One day my daughter wants to major in law and the next day it is political science and suddenly she wants to join the armed forces. I am not against anything. She’s grown up enough to make her own choices, but so much of confusion makes me realize that she is still not sure about what she wants to do.

How about taking her to a career counselor? They might guide her better on her aptitude for certain subjects. You can also ask her teacher or school psychologist to help her decide on her core competencies. If still unsure, she can do some trial internship or visit college campuses to get a clearer picture.

My son is very keen on studying theatre and fine arts in college. But I am not really sure about his subject choices. Will there be enough job prospects for him? Plus if he studies drama won’t his skill be restricted on the academic front?

It is true that theatre would be a more vocational course instead of a regular one. But there are prospects on that front too. In fact, you may urge him to do a dual degree or take up theatre as a diploma course along side and major in another subject. Fine arts have much more prospects today be it the digital world, advertising or any other similar profile.

My daughter did not get through the one that she really wanted to. This has made her a little upset and she seems to be getting depressed. Though we are very happy with her performance, she is suffering from low-self esteem these days.

Talk to your daughter about how good the other colleges that has got through are. Let her know that thousands of others don’t even get through one and she should be happy about her achievements and focus on doing well individually rather than sulking.

My 18 -year-old daughter is still not sure about what subject she would like to take up in college. Every time I bring up the topic, she just doesn’t seem to care. Her grades are very average and I am not expecting her to get through a premium institute but at least I would like to know her career choices.

Why not take her to a career fair or even a regular counselor to understand what prospects she has in college. You can just let her know that you are worried about her and may be if she took out the time to discuss the same with you, it would really help.

Keen on studying abroad, my daughter has brought home many prospectus and brochures from different schools. But I was hoping that she would be somewhere closer to home. Good colleges offering the same courses are here. How should I go about this?

If you have academic credentials and details about colleges closer to home, why not show her some brochures of the places around too. In the end, the choice of college is something that is her discretion. And though it is understood you want her to be closer to home, sometimes there is not much ado in these instances.

We are a family of doctors and engineers. No one in our household has a degree lesser than Ph.D. in the science field. And my son tells me that he wants to study literature. I know he’s a good student so why this field?

Literature or any other similar field has nothing to do with grades or marks. It is about a personal choice. It is not necessary that if he’s a good student he will do well in the medical or engineering field just because the entire family is there. On the other hand, he can do excellent with literature if he’s fond of the subject. Plus, he may go on with higher studies and get a Ph.D. in this subject to become a professor.

I was a professional athlete who didn’t go through college because of a keen interest in sports. However with an injury my sports career came to a halt. With no degree to fall back on, I didn’t get many jobs. Now my daughter too wants to avoid university and take up a career in basketball. How do I convince her?

You can cite your own example and let her know how you had to suffer a setback because of not having a degree. Plus show her the opportunities in line if she can get a sports scholarship. That way she can play her favorite sports and also enjoy the benefit of getting through a premiere institute.

I have twins. One daughter and one son - the problem is that though my son fares well academically, my daughter is just below average. On the other hand, she’s excellent on the artistic front and is a really good painter. But people keep comparing their achievements and I think that is making her a little upset.

Let them know that you love them both equally in spite of any academic grade or qualification. Let them know that their individual qualities are what really matters rather than just scoring good on the academic front.

There’s too much focus on education in my household and I feel that my wife doesn’t give my kids a breather. They are doing well on the academic front and I want my children to enjoy education rather than slogging.

The best way to go about is to let your kids decide. Close to being adults, let the set a definite time period for studying and doing homework and then move on to whatever extra curricular activities they enjoy. It can be a sport or a game or even just hanging out with friends.

What kind of role will the digital media have in doing projects? Recently it seems that my daughter is spending more time on her smartphone and tablet - claiming it is schoolwork and less in the real world.

The virtual world can be a major distraction. You cannot really tell a young adult what she should do but there are some house rules that you can encourage. Allot 1-2 hours a day for accessing digital media for educational purposes. Don’t allow the same at meal times or during family time to set clear boundaries.
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