Pressure In College

110 comments

Good morning!

Eric and I got sucked into The Marriage Ref again last night! I hope they never cancel the show. We may or may not have a crush on the host, Tom Papa. ;) His little grin is so cute!

I was up around 5:30am and was off to work!

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I still have about 200 bars to make today!

breakfast called…

A fresh juice composed of cucumber, ginger, carrot, beet, and apple:

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I buy a lot of my juice produce from the discount bin at our grocery store. It saves a ton of money. This is a beat up apple that was going to be tossed had I not saved it. :)

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Beets make everything look pretty… Or like blood splatter as one reader commented. Ew.

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Rainbow sorbet!

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Use your good glasses… Also, use your good towels. ;)

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I got a set of these wine glasses from my sister (they gave them out as favours at their wedding) and I fell in love with them the first time I used them. I bet she never thought they would get so much use! I use them for green monsters, juices, wine, cantaloupe margaritas, etc. :mrgreen:

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I had my juice along with a GF + Raw Glo Bar.

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A very energizing breakfast!

Pressure In College

One of the things I get emailed about the most is my A Year Can Change A Lot Series (found here). This series documents how I was able to leave a miserable situation and find a career that I was passionate about. This led to quitting a stable job and despite all fears, deciding that I would do whatever it takes to be happy.

It is not an easy road. Many of you have emailed me with your stories. I received this email a while back and with Becky’s permission, I will share it with you:

“Hi Angela, Thank you, thank you, thank you for your AYCCA series. It really hit home with me. I have been miserable in school for a while now. You see, I started off doing what I thought I should do– a hard science degree– because my parents have always wanted me to pursue medical school like they did. I took hard sciences because everyone said that it opened the most doors for me even if I did end up changing the idea of going to med school. I am almost finishing up my 3rd year of my science degree and I have to say this has been the most miserable 3 years of my life. Instead of embracing the college experience like all of my friends I am stressed out and unhappy. Sometimes I tear up in the middle of class because I am so lost in the coursework and I feel so in over my head. Sciences just don’t ‘click’ with me!

I have to spend all my free time studying, just to pull a B average and even that disappoints my parents. They tell me I need straight A’s or I will never get into med school. I just feel so depressed right now. In my heart, I know that science is not for me. I don’t have a burning fire to do this. I feel like I would be a huge let down to my parents if I didn’t at least get my degree and then see what happens. They tell me, ‘Becky just stick with something once in your life and finish it.’  How could I do otherwise?

For the past 3 years, I have been going through the motions of college.

So many times, I have wanted to switch my major. I have always had a love of the arts. I am creative and I love to write poetry. I have notebooks and notebooks filled with my poetry. I also love to draw and I have been designing logos for friends on the side for a bit of extra money. This stuff keeps me sane.

Luckily I have a supportive boyfriend during all of this time. He has told me from the beginning to switch my major and go into the arts. He doesn’t really get along with my parents because he sees how unhappy they can make me. I know they just want the best for me, but I am having a hard time figuring this out for myself when they have such strong opinions about it all.

This email is way too long and I will be surprised if you are still reading, but thank you for putting yourself out there and giving me hope that I can do something now before it is too late. I feel like I am either going to make the change now or 30 years from now. What is worse? I just feel stuck and I wonder if you or any of your readers are going through the same situation or have been through it?”

Luckily I have never had pressure from my parents to pursue a specific degree, but I can imagine how hard it would be. I personally feel that it is always best to listen to your heart. I feel that many people ignore it and then when they are 50 they decide to finally make a career change and do what makes them happy. I say don’t wait. Life is too short to delay your happiness. I could be hit by a bus tomorrow and I would have died knowing that I was doing what I loved. If you know in your heart right now that you hate what you are doing, take steps to change that. See a career counselor at your college. I could have saved myself 7 years pursuing something I knew wasn’t for me if I had listened to my heart. I would probably have a heart to heart with my parents and tell them how I felt. I don’t think you can ever communicate too much. Maybe if they knew how unhappy you really were, they would be open to discussion?

Today’s question: Have you ever been in Becky’s shoes? Have you ever felt pressure from parents to go into a career you weren’t passionate about? What did you do?

~~~

Often people attempt to live their lives backwards: they try to have more things, or more money, in order to do more of what they want so that they will be happier. The way it actually works is the reverse. You must first be who you really are, then, do what you need to do, in order to have what you want. - Margaret Young

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{ 107 comments… read them below or add one }

Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin April 20, 2010

Fortunately I never got pressure like that from my parents to pursue a certain degree or major, but I can certainly relate to how she’s feeling. Right now I feel like I go through the motions at my job and am not passionate about it. My life has changed drastically in the last year as health and fitness has become a central part of my life. I started to blog so I am doing something regularly that I am passionate about and hope to move into a position in the health/fitness area. I’d love to work with other people to help them make a change and embrace a healthy lifestyle like I have.

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Jessica @ How Sweet April 20, 2010

I never felt pressure, but I knew I just wanted to be a trainer, and my dad kind of ‘coerced’ me into finishing with a business degree. In my experience, my parents have always been right, and I am so glad I have that degree.

I agree with you, Angela. Life is WAY too short. If there is a way to change things, do it. If it can’t be done immediately, take each and every step in that direction. If it is miserable now, it probably won’t get much better once school is over. And this is YOUR life – you want to do what you are passionate about.

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Heather (Heather's Dish) April 20, 2010

i did for a while, and i actually got a degree in something i didn’t love because of it. but the more i work the more i realize that you can do what you’re passionate about without a degree in that specific area (minus healthcare and law). the key is to become an expert in something…and expert doesn’t require a degree but a firm base of knowledge that you can get from reading, writing, studying, joining organizations, interviews, etc.

all that to say that if i had it to do again, i would have changed majors, but since i didn’t i’ve had to find ways around that fact! life’s too short to worry about mistakes!

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Meghan@traveleatlove April 20, 2010

I never had pressure to pursue a certain career, but I did have a “never good enough” father which impacted every part of my life for many years. It took a lot of self work to realize that those expectations are just a projection of someone else’s dreams or insecurities. Your life is yours alone, and you are the one who has to go to sleep happy at the end of the day.

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Heather @ Side of Sneakers April 20, 2010

What a tough situation. I’m all for saying change majors!! If you are this unhappy now, I hate to say it, it isn’t going to get better- what comes next? Being miserable in med school, then hating being a doctor? You have to do what you’re passionate about it. They never mention in college how your major affects your life afterwards- you need to find something that will let you work AND be happy in life. College is 4 years- life is a lot longer. I can hear the passion for arts & poetry just from the email- it would be amazing if she could find a way to incorporate that. All that being said, there’s still the difficult situation of the parents- I think it’s important to get them to understand how much this is impacting you. Maybe write it all down, or set up a meeting with them so you can all sit down to discuss it when you’re calm & not angry with each other. Or both. Good luck to you Becky- I hope you find a way to be happy & passionate in school & your career- and life! :)

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 20, 2010

I love this ‘College is 4 years- life is a lot longer’

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Shannon, Tropical Eats April 20, 2010

I can def understand what Becky is going through. I pursued a degree in Business Administration bc I thought it was the “safest” degree to graduate with. Luckily I discovered the Marketing–a specialization option for the Business Administration degree–and instantly fell in love with it. I loveeee the creativity aspect of it and cannot wait to begin a career within the food industry utilizing all of the skills I’ve gained from school.

Overall, I truly believe in the quote “Do what you like, like what you do.”

Here is another favorite quote of mine: “And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.”

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 20, 2010

Great quote!

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Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete April 20, 2010

I was in your shoes, Becky. I pursued a premed bach degree for 2 years, then a mechanical engineering degree for 1 year until I finally realized that I did not want to be unhappy anymore. The competition with the premed students was insane, and it was to the point that no one wanted to help each other b/c they didn’t want their comrades to get a better grade on the test than them. I wasn’t grasping the material, not because it was hard, it was because I wasn’t interested. I was devastated when I finally changed my major and added 2 more years onto my undergrad degree. I wasn’t going to be a doctor anymore but it turned out to be the best decision of my life. I couldn’t imagine my life without my environmental science degree (what I finally chose as a major), and I have not looked back since. I’m currently pursuing my masters in env eng/science and I couldn’t be happier. Please go with your dreams. Stop wasting your time. Your parents will understand in time if they truly love you and want you to be happy. :)

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Jessica April 20, 2010

I’ve definitely been in Becky’s position. My parents set a high bar, not only academically but personally. I was expected to be a certain person, and it was very black and white. It was their way or the highway.

I’m 28 now, and I lived much of my teens and twenties walking the fine line they put in front of me. Even when I thought I was walking straight, they just raised the bar a little higher. The moral of my story is, …STOP! They may love you, but they don’t know how to love you outside of controlling you. If you’re this miserable, there’s a reason, and it’s never going to stop unless you draw your own line. Take control, do what makes YOU happy, and let the chips fall where they will. There will be fallout, but it won’t be worse than a decade wasted in the wrong direction or continually being hurt when you can do nothing but disappoint their ridiculous expectations. If you do what you love, you’ll always be successful, maybe not monetarily but who wants to chase money?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 20, 2010

I love the quote ‘If you do what you love the money will eventually follow’

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Emmanuelle April 20, 2010

Like Beth I never had pressure from my parents to pursue a certain degree, they always supported my brother and I in our choices, even though they didn’t always understand them. I studied Languages and Economics and work now as a PA, and my brother is a baker (French buttercream-laden goodies anyone?). Now I’m miserable in my job and am on the path of changing careers completely, it will take a few years still and it’s a completely different story so let’s leave it at that.

For Becky, I would also say to speak to your parents. You can’t go on feeling miserable forever, now’s the time to switch major. You say you would be a huge let down for your parents, but would you bear being a let down for you? Listen to your heart :-)

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Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter April 20, 2010

I’ve felt a little pressure to continue with this architecture thing. I have considered going into psychology, or my favorite, going to culinary school. But it was so difficult to get into the school, and I don’t mind doing the work, so I guess I’m just sticking with this major.

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Heather (Where's the Beach) April 20, 2010

Thankfully my parents never pressured me on what career path to take. I, however, pressured myself into taking a job for the money rather than for the love of the job. 8 years later, I was crying every single morning before work and even during the day at work. I affected every part of my life. I was miserable beyond words. If I had it to do all over again, I would never have chosen a job for the money. All you can do is live and learn though. I don’t think that anyone should ever have to be so miserable and hope that Becky can change her situation somehow.

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Allie (Live Laugh Eat) April 20, 2010

I have some pressure from my parents but the pressure mostly comes from my classmates. I am graduating in less than a month and I have yet to apply for a job or go on an interview. I don’t even have my resume updated from last year. You know why? Because I don’t WANT a desk job and don’t want to be an investment banker and I don’t WANT to go to grad school….

The last couple of years have been less than optimal for me. I’ve had a less than stellar (okay, pretty bad) experience at school and one thing I’ve realized is that my happiness is far more important than anything else. I also am the type of person that will not be satisfied unless I am doing something I love and not feeling like I am wasting my time.

Thus, I am going to pursue what I love and that is baking. I have no baking degree and the only experience I have is in my own kitchen. BUT I’m willing to give it a try and I hope someone gives me a chance.

My parents paid $200,000 for my education for me to NOT have to get an hourly paid job but they too want me to be happy. They’re supporting me no matter what (I hope).

Follow your heart my dear!!

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Katy April 20, 2010

I wish I could accuse my parents of my bad decision, but they’re entirely supportive. I just wouldn’t listen to my heart. I was working at a daycare to support myself and LOVING it as I attended law school (which I hated). 2 weeks into law school I knew I should leave and pursue a teaching license. 4 years of work, and I still dream of doing that. I still won’t let myself until I at least pay off the law school loans, though. Listen to yourself now before you get in deeper!

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EaterNotARunner April 20, 2010

I can relate to that feeling 100%. I was a math major in college because it was easy (yes I am a nerd) and my parents saw it as a path to making a lot of money. Looking back, I wish I had pursued what I was interested in….I probably would be a lot happier in my career today. Don’t wait!

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Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg April 20, 2010

I think my parents were a little worried when I decided to go to grad school for poetry/creative writing (who makes money writing poetry?!?), but they held their tongues because they knew that it was my passion and what I needed to pursue. If you love something enough, you’ll find a way to make it worth, and luckily, this was always the message that my parents chose to send to me.

Plus, I think they could see that I was putting enough stress and pressure on myself as it was already, and they didn’t need to add any more!

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Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday April 20, 2010

I think university is an awesome experience and one that allows you mature and develop as a person. Whether or not you pursue a career in your area of study doesn’t really matter.

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Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg April 20, 2010

whoops– make it WORK :-)

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Anne P April 20, 2010

How sad to read how you’re feeling, Becky :( I’m with everyone else – screw tradition, screw what everyone else wants you to do, and do what YOU want to do. Like you said – it’s either going to happen now or in the future, so why wait? There’s no point in living life for other people, and the longer you wait, the more stressed out about it you’ll become.

Good luck and you can do it!! :)

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grace b April 20, 2010

Good luck Becky! While I have never faced pressure from my parents I certainly feel my own pressure. I’ve been having some doubts about where my major (Religion) is going to take me and wondered about tacking on a second minor (finished my Political Science minor but I would love to minor or double major in Environmental Science). And while I don’t feel like my major dictacts I take a particular job I’m just afraid that I’ll end up not even using it or being proud of it in the future. But in the end I know that I need to make job choices based on what I want and what I feel and when it isn’t satisfying anymore, I’ll change it.

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Nicole @ making good choices April 20, 2010

Great post! I went to a private college for undergrad and my masters for a degree in special education. While I was going to school I loved it. It wasn’t until I finished school and taught for a couple of years that I am considering changing careers. I don’t have any pressure from my family its more from myself. Hopefully I’ll be able to make a change soon! Thanks for the post.

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Whitney @ Lettuce Love April 20, 2010

I hope your reader realizes that she is not alone! We have all been there. I went to college for business (finance degree) and it was a good idea at the time because I’ve always loved business but recently I have found myself wondering what would have happened if I had gone to cooking school. If you know what makes you happy, you just have to do it. Don’t wait to start your life.

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Alanna April 20, 2010

I have absolutely been in Becky’s shoes! The first two years of my undergraduate degree I was enrolled in an Economics program. I was so unhappy and it took EVERYTHING in me to just make C or B grades. The work was so tedious and dry and like you Becky I would find myself tearing up in class or not being able to catch my breath, or receiving an exam back and having to hold back the tears. I took an Anthropology class as an elective and it was a giant breathe of fresh air, I was so content and happy while working on the material for that course and knew that it was really what I wanted to do. I dropped the Economics program the next fall and picked up a Anthropology/Folklore major. I finished my program and am starting my Masters in the Fall. It was the best decision of my life and I am so much more happy because of it.

Don’t wait, do what makes you happy!

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Kendall April 20, 2010

This one line ‘Becky just stick with something once in your life and finish it.’ resinates with me the most.

I get that feeling from my mom and my brother the most. I understand that they want the most for me, but I, like many of the women who have commented here, don’t want to settle.

It has come down to an ultimatum from my mom of “Well you’d better pick something before you are 25.” Or comments from my brother about which career I should go into because of the great paycheques, and then rolled eyes when I say that wouldn’t be for me.

As I write that down it doesn’t sound very supportive of my family, and it probably isn’t, but I know they want the best for me even though they might not show it in very supportive ways.

That being said, it is still VERY hard to continuously stick up for yourself on anything future related when you yourself have NO idea what you want to do.

Challenging it is to figure that out, but as it stands I know that it is something worth holding out for.

So Becky – I guess in answer to your question, yes, I too am going through the same sort of situation.

Let’s keep our chins up shall we?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 20, 2010

Thanks for sharing..I wish you the best with everything! *hugs*

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nut April 20, 2010

I did 2 university degrees because …IDK why. I did them. Both are in the sciences fields…the second is a professional degree in a healthcare field. So that is my profession now. The thing is that I hate it. It sucks my soul from me…it has contributed to a ton of unhappiness and (dare I say) depression.
Unfortunately, I also have 7 full years of student loans, student line of credits, a car (and monthly payments), insurance, living, groceries, etc etc etc…basically I have a lot of debt and nothing.
I would love nothing more than to work at a job that pays less…but the truth is that I can barely scrape by by working my job…
and my job pays in the range of 26-35 bucks an hour…while I cannot find that in other jobs.
My interests are in nutrition, creative writing, journalism, culinary arts, etc…blogging fulltime..book deals..these are my dreams :)
unfortunately, positions in these fields would pay far far less..I would take the pay cut, if it were possible…but its not..
my bills MUST be paid…I am barely able to afford rent now.
The sad thing is that I am almost 29 years old…and I see “no way out ‘ for a while…trying to trooper through with a good attitude…TRYING…if i can appreciate the little things now, then I think it will make me stronger.

I admit tons of jealousy when I see others with book deals…or quitting jobs to pursue their dreams (i dont understnad how they manage the money…i suppose my debt is deeper)…or i see people changing careers…or buying fancy kitchen equipment…I honest to god own one fork ,knife and spoon :) not cool.
anywya, sorry for the rant..

i just keep feeling there must be a better way out of my 9-5 hated profession..but its not there…maybe someday..unfortunately i will be like 40 years old :)
but better late than never i suppose

i just sincerely REGRET ever having done the 2 degrees i did (the second one i knew immediately it didnt FIT ME…but i did it anyway…i could not stand the idea that I would “not finish something”…that would be too horrible …

if i knew then what i knew now

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Miranda April 20, 2010

I never got pressure from my parents with regards to school. The only times they were involved with my schooling choices was 1) when I was in gr. 11 and wanted to drop out of French Immersion. They said no, I stuck with it. 2) My dad didn’t want me getting into social work as he was worried for my physical safety and emotional well beeing.

I got into social work, and have been here for 6+ years.

Currently I hate my jobs. I have 3, 1 part time, 1 full time and 1 casual call in. I work so much just to keep my head afloat. There is no moeny hear, I am not being challenged skill wise or being satisfied emotionally.

Currently I am looking into going back to school to do something completely different.

Finger Crossed!

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Miranda April 20, 2010

Ugh, sorry for the typos!

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Astrid April 20, 2010

I am in the same situation. I am finishing up a masters degree doing research I barely care about. I spend most of my time dreaming up new recipes, creating art, and writing. I’m currently trying to put my mind together and figure out exactly what my goals are in life. I have gotten too bogged down by everyone else’s expectations, and never listened to what I truly wanted, what I truly get giddy about.
My things: cooking and baking, paint and drawing, working with people and helping them, teaching, theater.
The one thing that always holds me back is money…I wish it didn’t exist!
It is aactually really nice to know that so many of us are in similar shoes. Looking for that magic sign of inspiration to change our lives around and make ourselves happy.

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Estela @ Weekly Bite April 20, 2010

In a way I can understand what Becky is going through.

My parents just wanted me to get a degree…. everything else was up to me.

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Meg April 20, 2010

I actually work in a career center at a university and have seen success come from many similar situations! My advice would be to talk to a career counselor at your university. They are certified counselors and can help you not only figure out what to do with your major or help you change your major, but they can also give you advice on how to approach your parents regarding this situation. Even if you just need an unbiased opinion, the people in your career center can help! :)

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Kristan April 20, 2010

I am an academic advisor and I see this all the time. Students want to please their parents, be able to have a job when they get out of school, and make money. I tell students all the time you have to live your life how you want to, you only get one. It you want to paint then paint but realize that you might need to look into additional jobs until your paintings sell. I loved psychology but my parents didn’t know what I could do with that degree. I did my research and found a career I would love to go to every day and not care if I didn’t make 6 figures. I enjoy my job everyday and that is what everyone, including parents should wish for.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 20, 2010

Love this

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Megan E (sweeton) April 20, 2010

I wholeheartedly, 100% agree with Angela. Don’t wait! This comes from my own experience just recently.

Three years ago I was accepted into an Ivy-League Ph.D. program in German Studies. It sounds amazing, and it’s an accomplishment, but it took me about a week to realize that the road to being a professor hardly resembled all the talk about “getting paid to teach/study/do what you love.” My heart was not in it, and I found the work irrelevant to my life and values. I couldn’t relate to my fellow students and their fervor for academia. I stuck it out for two horrible years, trying to tell myself that it was just an adjustment period, that it would get easier and better, that I’d come so far and was supposed to be really smart and why did it feel so difficult if this was what I wanted?

Everything in your letter hits home with me, the willing yourself to do something, the struggle to succeed, the tears and sadness. I went to therapy for depression. I isolated myself from everyone. It’s almost difficult for me to talk about, it was such a dark period in my life. Last Spring, I was finally able to quiet the other voices and listen to what I wanted. So I quit my program and never looked back. I feel AMAZING and I know I am doing the right thing.

Please believe in yourself. It is YOUR life, not your parents’. You can do anything you put your mind to, that’s not just a saying or some words. It’s true! And more importantly you deserve to do what you want to do and be happy with yourself. Take the plunge. Don’t look back.

Go Becky!!!

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Tracey April 20, 2010

My husband and I LOVE watching the marriage ref. Alec Baldwin cracks me up whenever he is on the show!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 20, 2010

They are all positively INSANE and we love it.

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Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) April 20, 2010

A friend of mine is in medical school right now because her parents threatened to cut her off financially unless she majored in bio, went to med school and became a doctor. She was too afraid to stand up to them and is going into a career she dislikes just because of that. It makes me so sad. My parents were and are supportive even as I pursue a career (journalism and freelance writing) that will never make me rich. Happiness is the most important thing.

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Lisa April 20, 2010

I’m really lucky to have parents that don’t care what I do as long as I’m happy. I think there was more pressure on my younger brother to NOT have certain careers. He was leaning towards becoming a police officer and my parents weren’t happy about that.

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Lisa April 20, 2010

Becky, I definitely know how you’re feeling. I experienced similar feelings over the past two years.

My Dad doesn’t pressure me per se, but he wants me to be a lawyer. I myself thought I wanted to pursue law, but I actually really love anthropology. I’m in my 4th year of my degree and am looking forward to pursuing graduate work, but it took me a while to realized that I love it…

I thought that I should be a doctor or something more respectable than the vague title of “anthropologist”, so I took some science classes and, while I thought they were interesting, I found they were extremely limited in scope and did not provide me with the critical framework present in anthropology.

I’ve even thought about stopping my degree and doing nursing for fear that I won’t find a job when I’m done anthropology, and the demand for nursing where I live is HUGE. I started looking into other nursing programs and was feeling the stress pile-on.

I was miserable: I couldn’t focus on my school work, couldn’t sleep, was really emotional. I then decided to just “go with the flow” and focus on my classes, not worrying about the future.

I realized that I AM an anthropologist, that I want to be one, and that I absolutely love the discipline. But, if you have already realized that the sciences are not for you, leave them. “Break-up” with the discipline, seriously! I think the thing that helped me decide what I wanted to do the most was asking myself the question “If I died tomorrow, and I could only ‘do’ one day of work, what would I do?”. For me, the thought of being a lawyer, doctor, or nurse for that one day made me feel dissatisfied. But an anthropologist….that’s something else ;).

Ask yourself that question, and whatever the answer is, DO IT. Practicalities, money, all of that will follow suit. You may be stressed for the first little while, and it will be tough, but it WILL be worth it. Don’t waste your life doing what your parents want to do, because the truth is, they aren’t you.

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Life Lite April 20, 2010

I am so hoping to pursue something of my own one day. It’s not that I hate my job, in fact I like it for the most part and I love the people I work with. I never dread going to work. But at the same time I want more. I want to be my own boss and spend my days working away at my passions. My Husband is in law school and our lives and my career are pretty much on standby until we find out what job he will have and where. I am the sole provider right now but I am literally counting down the days until we find out. I’m so hoping for a drastic move that will give me no choice but to leave my job (which is not transferable to most locations) and have the opportunity to really focus on what I want for a while. Here’s to hope and time!

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Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman April 20, 2010

Thankfully my parents never forced any career on me. I wanted to be a writer since I was little and they nurtured that and supported me. I was one of only a few of my friends who knew what they wanted to do right away—no fumbling with majors or possible careers. I think it’s so important to really question you passions and see where you want to end up. Then work toward it. Life can feel really long if you’re not doing something you love.

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Shannon April 20, 2010

I’ve been in Becky’s shoes! I had tremendous pressure from my parents to major in business. They were only willing to pay for my tuition if I majored in business and graduated with a good job. I got the good job, at a firm that lured me into a free graduate degree, provided I work for the firm for 4 years. I got myself stuck on this automatic, easy, successful path that a lot of people would love, but I was miserable! Soon after starting the firm, I decided that I NEEDED to pursue my passion (speech pathology). I started taking some on-line classes, and I am starting a full time grad program in the fall! It’s a few years too late, but sometimes I’m so excited that it’s actually happening that I tear up thinking about it :)

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Camille April 20, 2010

I have changed my major quite a few times throughout my past 3 years of college and before I landed on Nutrition, a major which I am actually passionate about, I dabbled in every field. I fully intended to become a film reporter at one point (and this would still be a dream career for me!) but my mom didn’t support the decision at all. She told me it had no financial security. I already had my food in the door by the middle of my freshman year, so this wasn’t true at all. I ended up abandoning my dream because my family didn’t support it. Luckily I found something else I am just as passionate about, but I still hope that I can pursue my first love at some point.

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NC April 20, 2010

I’m from India , and in my family all my cousins are either an engineer or a doctor , reason being they are proffessions that pay you well and are respected ( atleast to my parents who are both accountants and earn pretty well..) Growing up we were told this what we should pursue … I was good at Math and Science , so never saw any issue with it , till it came to deciding to be an engineer/doctor .. unfortunately I liked being an architect .. I loved architecture , I sat in for the exams for the engineer/doctor ,and told my dad if i did both would he allow me to sit in on the architecture exam ( to each proffesion in india you sit in a exam where they rate among the other students applying for the same school.) so he did , and I did great even scored the highest in architecture , still my dad thought I should not pursue that .. I cried so much … and went onto be and engineer and work as an engineer … because that was expected of me .. , but in my case being an engineer did not make me miserable , since I did not hate it , but it wouldn’t have been my preference , if you absolutely feel miserable doing it , then I would defintely suggest , changing your major , I don’t hate what I do but I always wonder if I would have been better if I had gone that route…

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Angela (Oh She Glows) April 20, 2010

Its never too late :)

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Anna April 20, 2010

I could’ve written this letter myself. For 2 1/2 years, I killed myself doing a dual degree engineering program at one of the best engineering schools in the country. My parents are engineers and were so proud that I was continuing the legacy, but they did know I was supremely unhappy. My dad thought (and still thinks) that I should just stick it out, regardless of how depressed or defeated I felt, but my mom was much more understanding and ultimately encouraged me to make the switch to a humanities major. While my dad still doesn’t get what it is that I’m doing, he realizes how much happier I am. I just wish I had admitted defeat earlier and saved myself a lot of sleepless nights and awful exams.

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