The topic of career guidance remains a tricky and pricky issue in many households.
I saw an article in the ABA Journal recently, and it simply said “Associate attorney is the unhappiest job in America, survey says.” The article referenced another more popular article in Forbes, where Associate Attorney was named as the unhappiest job in America. I was not astound.
Then, I saw nursing (Registered Nurse, specifically) on the list. It was Number 4. That’s when I started to wonder ….
You see, Nursing is a popular career choice not only for Nigerians migrating to the US, but for other immigrant groups as well.
Law is a lot more restrictive, as very fewstates allow you to practice law without a degree from an American law school (and passing the bar, of course).
So, on the list of unhappy jobs/careers, we have two major fields which Nigerian parents force encourage their children to enter, i.e. law and healthcare.
Now, the question staring you in the face is this: should Nigerian parents force their children into unhappy careers? (You know I just had to repeat the post title like Nollywood movies do).
Taking this list seriously, the answer to that question is a resounding Yes. I use the word “force” here deliberately. At the time a child is about to start college or university, parents tend to be very heavy-handed with what course the child should study in school. Of course, there are a million and one reasons why parents, especially Nigerian parents, emphasize certain careers over others,such as the”perceived” income an individual is expected to earn in that field, job security, etc. And since parents are usually the ones funding the child’s education,their word is law.
However, i can also impel parents to recommend a good profession, but to try and force a child to pick a certain career will only cause a fight in the long run if it ends upbeing something they won’t want to do with their life. You will end up pushing your child away because they will be offended andthink you are not proud of them, or that they are not good enough for you. They will have no problem therefore, not having much to do with you, because they will just find people who will be proud of their own success and achievements. There will always befriends, and girl/boy friends who will be more supportive to them, and if you are the unsupported one, you will be lucky to even get a call from them once in a while.
As long asthey pick a career that is realistic and can make them a good salary to support themselves,then its really not your place to complain at that point. Just be satisfied they will have a good head on their shoulders.
… And since I have nothing else to add, let me ask you: would you allow your parents to dictate your career?
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