Que Sera,Sera….

Recently heard about this seminar taking place in the city which has some motivational speech for parents. The commercial on the radio goes like this “Mrs. Dubey wants her daughter to become doctor! Mr. Gupta wants his daughter to be an Engineer and Mr. Agrawal wishes his children become Arhitects……Has anyone asked what the children want to be? Dah dah dah..”

Thinking about the commercial I started wondering. Now that I’m a parent myself, this will come to me sometime in the future, which is quiet distant right now, but this situation will dawn upon me, so!

In time before ours there was no system of asking children about their choices-blame the unawareness amongst children and parents both or not much options available or both the reasons combined!

When our times came, parents became somewhat educated in ‘career’ field and started giving importance to it. Children were asked what they want to become but eventually most of us ended saying doctor, engineer or a teacher. Nobody in my peers, as far as I remember or know of, ever said [or even became] a swimmer, cricketer, dancer, astronaut etc.

So the norm continued, of choosing the usual, till we are here today at this age. Today there are plethora of options available for children to chose from including the unconventional ones and there are ways to fulfil your dreams and become what you really want to. Along with changing times the parents of yesterday have evolved too. They understand completely about becoming something and liking what you do are two different things, thanks to movies like ‘3 Idiots’.

Very honestly, when I was been asked what I wanted to be when I grow up [which was / is a typical question posed at children by visitors to break the ice [?] or lack of knowing what else to talk to the children that age :)] I was not sure at all, I think so! I mean never really thought what would I become and what would I do for my living!

Today when you talk to children falling in 3-5 years of age bracket about their aims and ambitions, spat comes the reply with a clear mind. You can see there is no tinge of doubt in their eyes or speech!

I recall having this discussion around our child’s future and career with family friends recently and the question came up ‘what if Chipry wants to become an actress tomorrow?’ To which I went silent and started thinking. On way back home me and Husby discussed the same question and at the end we were like we might just guide her to choose the right profession and the topic received a full stop from us.

But thinking deep into it now, why did we conclude it on those lines? What did we mean by ‘right’ profession? Is acting a ‘wrong’ profession? Or is it because none of the family members on both sides have ever opted for this career? Or do we still need to break free from the usual career moulds that we have carried in our heads life long?

I know Ankita Lokhande- The Pavitra Rishta fame on Zee TV, personally. I’ve seen her grow into what she is today- a successful actor of television and I’m sure she’ll go places. Do I adore Ankita? Yes I do! Do I feel good about her success and her career? Yes I do! But she is an actor, so do I think she opted for the ‘wrong’ career? Honestly no!

Apart from her talent and beauty her parents are the important reason behind her success! I’ve seen her mother carry lunch boxes and water bottles for her and stick by her side right form 7 in the morning when her dance practice started. I’ve seen her parents be at her side at every competition, audition, practices, everywhere when she just started to prepare for her career as a model initially! They dedicated their time and energy to her, for her,to support her and encourage her. And I’m sure it played a vital role in her success!

It’s the parents who need to realise the talent and inclination their children have towards. They are the sole source of support and encouragement for children to look up to before taking any plunge. Even a boy of 4 years while getting ready for bungee jumping at a mall looks at his parents for encouragement and cheer and when he gets what he was looking for on his parents’ faces, he performs perfectly! Like wise the girl performing in a school drama searches for her parents in the audience. Even in that dark silenced room she can spot those faces which give her support and tell her that she is doing a good job !

One of my cousins wanted to opt for Commerce in his junior college but my uncle was adamant that he take Science and he made him opt for it. 3 years in a row my cousin failed the subjects but my uncle was still not ready to budge. He made it his ego issue under which he forgot that he was wasting his son’s precious years of education. This remains in our family history fresh till date as an example for other set of parents to learn from! Later my uncle,after lot of deliberation from family members,gave in and let my cousin do what he wanted to. Though it was a bit late for him to study and settle down in a career and moreover he had lost interest too. So he started of with his printing business and he excelled. Later he got married and his wife enrolled him into Commerce grad college and helped him complete his graduation. Life is fair again but then my cousin would never forget those 3 years of his student life which he saw going down drain and the pain that he went through seeing his friends reach places while he was doing nothing,then!

In both the above examples parents have played a vital role in making or breaking a child’s future,what else do I have to say!

So after this question from Deeps, comes the next, can we choose our children’s career?

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14 thoughts on “Que Sera,Sera….

  1. I will reply to the question Same as I replied to Deeps question and I think the answer is valid here also .. Communication is a must .. I give you mu example i did not have good communication with my dad, and my mum was the usual house wife she did not have a clue what was going on, so all through the time i was coaxed into medical, doctor banega bikram.. was the line i was made to take .. schooling was ok i got away with a log , but college I was into BSC and believe me i hated it and for the record in my 2nd or 3rd year I did not ATTENT A SINGLE LECTURE, I ws too afraid to tell my dad fearing somehting .. although he never said it . But I think I wasted those 3 years I could have done something which i loved. I was very good in sports and without giving into records and all.. I think I was good enough to go on to big time In india especially. But I just cud not as the parents and grand parents had their heart bent on making me a doctor.
    I just was not cut up for that, that is one of the reasons of coming ot UK tooo ..

    I understand what you mean!

    Lucky for me the beautiful girls of the city beautiful went for computer courses and i joined , else I probably would have been into labour or something here. and for some reason parents did not appose to doing this course even once inspite of it being quiet expensive in those days , a one year course i think was 15-20K.. anyway
    So what I am trying ot say is had me an my dad had a good communication I am sure i could have done better, maybe do another computer course you know I was good in it actually I was very good 🙂 .. or gone into sports etc I mean something .. be something .. Rather lack of communication maybe did not bring the best out of me.

    you’re right communication, a clear ‘sitting out and discussing’ would have helped both sides…or at least your dad would have known about your choices!

    SO I would say TALK to the kids , you will know what they want to , or what they are good at let them flourish , yes advice is a must you have to advice them whats good or bad for them and hopefully if you have a good comunication and a repo with the kid they will take ur advice on board…

    I would not say parents cant decide a career for the kid they can But dont FORCE it on them , you can decide talk it out and I am sure you will know soon enough if the little one is interested in it at al .. Till you talk you wont know and pressurising might work for sure but will the kid be happy … I dont know

    Each time I see a indian athlete run that 800mtrs or the 1500mtrs I do think sometimes Could I have , you know It will remain a mystery maybe I was crap in sports or thinking to much of myself but I will never know and that is not a good feeling .. 🙂

    sorry i wrote a lot of personal things here .. I am sure you will be a wonderful parent you think too much 🙂 he he heh

    take care and lots of love to the little one

    don’t be sorry and what for B? Your comment brought a good point out and I’m glad you shared it here!

  2. Of course, parents play a very crucial role in shaping their children’s future. And you have covered this issue with all the relevant points. As you said earlier there was not much awareness in both parents and children about the different career options available and to top it everybody wanted to become a doctor or an engineer. But with time fortunately parents’s mindsets began to widen, although there still are parents who would not budge from crushing their children’s desires with their own unjustified expectations. But by and large there is a positive change being seen where parents are educated enough to support their kids’ choices.

    yes this positive change however of small percentage is a breather!

    My cousin, a topper in the 10th class boards last year was quite naturally ‘expected’ to opt for the science stream but she was pretty sure that she wanted to take up humanities and she took that up with her parents’ full support and encouragement.

    that’s how things should work,I’m glad for your cousin!

    I hated(and still do) the ‘adage’ where parents loved to profess,’ I want my child to become a doctor or a CA or an engineer BECAUSE I couldnt be one. They loved to thrust their expectations on their children irrespective of their kids’ faculties and interests lay. I’m glad to see that today such mindsets are on the way out. I, for one know as a, parent, how I would hate to do that to my child. Its important to know and understand what your child wants and what her dreams are and I think as parents its in us to guide them and support them wholeheartedly towards achieving those dream.

    oh tell me about it,huh! As if children are produced to fulfill your unfinished dreams!!! You know my mother always wanted to become a doctor but she didn’t and hence she always had this wish that her daughter will become one but she never ever forced it on me and thank god for my mom or else I would have screwed up my career big time!

    “Today when you talk to children falling in 3-5 years of age bracket about their aims and ambitions, spat comes the reply with a clear mind.” 3-5 year olds have their interests in place so early on? I doubt, Scribby. They are too young to know for sure what they want to become when they grow up. Yes they do start to show their inclinations, like some would love to dance, paint or love to play around with gadgets, etc. but I dont think they would have a clear idea as to what they want from life yet.

    With clear mind and no hesitation I mean they sound so clear and confident of what they want to become like in Nmanam’s case..she might not know how she would become one cookery princess or whether she would even become one when she grows up but today she is confident…like I quoted my example I was never sure what I wanted to become when I was a kid…or my peers usually ended up saying teacher for the starters! 🙂

    BTW, Namnam when asked what she wanted to be when she grew up, her answer was,’ I want to be a princess who cooks’ :D. You think these vocational colleges will have introduced that stream in another10-15years?? 😆

    And Scribby, dont stress yourself thinking about Chirpy’s career so early on, let her choose the toys that she wants to play with first, career is a long shot away. You chill madi! 🙂

    lol not at all Deeps 🙂 I just got stuck at that ‘if’ asked by our friends..what if when chirpy grows up and wants to become an actress…is when I thought I should clear my mind 🙂 just getting prepared you see 🙂

  3. Do you think Chirpy will even allow you to THINK about choosing her career after all that being firm (refer your post on Nov 28) she shows now *Sticks tongue out*

    hahaha I doubt so too 😉

    But on a serious note, you are right, We cant really ‘choose’ anything for our children…rather on a personal level, I wont choose anything for R…as long as she is financially independent when she grows of age, I dont care..she can become a hair dresser (RD wants her to be that) or a dancer…I have no probs with anything..

    exactly my point as long as she has chooses what she is going to happy in,we’re fine 🙂

    you know my dad once told me when I was about 12 and someone asked me what do you want to become? and I said ‘I dont know’ Appa said ‘become whatever you want, just put in the best in that..if you want to become a sweeper go ahead, but remember to put in your best efforts in removing every bit of dirt lying around’ I love my parents for giving me that choice..

    what wise words! Made a mental note of these 🙂 Say a ‘thank you’ to uncle,okay? 🙂

    1. I love what R’s mom dad’s said!

      me too 🙂

      I remember kids whose never did well in studies (meaning didn’t come 1st,2nd etc) and are today TV journalists, air hostesses etc and are enjoying their work and career and ultimately it boils down to that! So dont worry Scribby, just back Chirpy at anything she wants to do!

      not worrying Nattu,was just wondering generally 🙂

  4. Ah the never ending question: what do you want to do when you grow up? In India I think even today there are parents who force their kids into areas they probably are just not cut out for. I remember from my high school friends, I was the only one who chose to take up Arts after the 10th. Everyone else went into Science and probably one or two into Commerce. And then, the Science people all jumped on the engineering bandwagon taking up whatever they could (even civil engg which they had no idea about). One of my best friends went the Sc way and did BscIT but isn’t really happy in her job which she has been doing for the last 5-7 yrs. She is a people-person and is not fond of just sitting in front of a computer all day and has said to me more than once she wishes she had had the balls to stand up to her parents and done something like I did.

    that’s the irony of most of the professionals of our times!! Now I think times are changing..even if parents are still from the same mold at least children have got the balls now a days to protest and stand by themselves!

    My sister and I are fortunate that our parents never pressurised us. I wanted to become a journalist and then decided on a psychologist after one year of psych in the 11th. My sister got into graphic designing and is a copywriter and we are both happy in our fields.

    that’s how it should be,thank god for your parents 🙂

    I think it’s important for parents to trust that their children sometimes do know better about their likes and dislikes. It is important to be open minded and not just do what every one is doing. And at the end of the day, I think what every parent wants is for their child to be happy. So if your child is going to be happy being an actor, a teacher, a carpenter, a lawyer or a plumber so be it!

    yes ‘trust’ is the key and then support and encouragement…I say even if you disapprove of something that you child is wanting to get into..reason out but don’t just dump a straight ‘no’ and move on!

  5. I agree with you Scribby…and your post reminded me of a very old TV serial… I don’t remember it’s name..
    It used to come on DD..the title song was something like this.. “Kya banoge munna? Kya banoge munna? Mummy kehti bano doctor, papa kehte afsar…Engineer ban jaao bhaiya, behna kehti aksar.. Kya banoge munna?”

    I do remember this song vaguely and tried to youtube it but it’s not there!

    Well I find this song objectionable because here, parents aren’t worried about daughter’s career…irony….

    purane jamane mein..especially DD ke jamane mein aisa hi hota tha 😦

  6. Times have changed and changed for good… Things like career are now being given importance and parents are also allowing their children to take up whatever they want..

    I remember after my 10th results it was time for me to choose between commerce, PCM, and PCB… All my relatives had told my mom to convince me to take up PCM as I have always been very close to her but she told me don’t listen to anyone take up whatever you feel like and while choosing just choose whatever you think you’d be able to happily throughout your life… Those word just did it and I took commerce ignoring all my relatives view… And today I really like my work and thank my mom for letting me choose….

    thanks to your mother 🙂

  7. the straight answer is No parents cannot choose child’s career but we play a major role in influencing them.. say for example My father was an engineer so was my bro so I choose the same path.. Its not that I was not given option but naturally Math was my choice with my family talking math most of the times… but some kids opt different career from family in which case as parents its our responsibility to support them.. I strongly hope when its my turn I will have the clarity in my mind to support my kid’s choice..

    yeah parents cannot and should not choose on behalf of children.period 🙂

  8. I’d written a similar post some time ago, although a short and precise one, and I know how unfair it is for us to expect our kids to listen only to us where their career and well-being is concerned.
    Like you said, during our time I don’t remember anyone giving a serious thought to what career choice to make, esp girls, who never thought they’ll have to ‘make a living’ for themselves. Even now I get this from people ‘why do you need to work when your husband’s earning well?’ Quite orthodox, but yes it still happens.
    Some kids figure out early in life what they want, while some develop their interests with age. I feel that our main responsibility lies in guiding our kids when they’re confused. Why just us, we can make them speak with relevant people or send them to career counselors if they need to get some information, but eventually let them decide on their own.

    couldn’t agree more on this Varsh!

  9. I guess as parents, we have to make them capable of choosing a career for themselves. Give them good education, lot of exposure, try to teach good values etc. And hopefully, they’ll make the right calls. If they are struggling, help them choose. But the final “choice” must be theirs.

    yes making children capable of making right choices is the way to bring them up not to push them to choose what you want to!

  10. I have seen parents wanting kids to follow a rigid path that they themselves have chalked out….that I wonder is it because they wanted a robot who would fulfil their expectations that they produced the child? 😐 It is truly unfair.

    hahaha how true @ robot!

  11. Tht is sad abt ur cousin…i hv heard of may parents blindly pushing kids like this! It must be so tough on the child, and so depressing! Wow u know Ankita….she is so beautiful, altho i dong watch the show, i really like her! And it is heartening to see how much her mother has supported her! kudos!

    yes Ankita’s parents are examples!

  12. D and I too had a discussion on this..just like that. Its all fine by us but one thing I insist on is a graduate degree even if you are a model or artist or sportsperson. 🙂

    precisely what we think…an education will always be of a great help and not burden at any point in life..one must hold a graduate degree at the least!

C'mon,out with it,right here :)

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