I need some advice


Quiet as a Church Mouse
Dec 19, 2009
Southwest TN
Quote:If you have a good relationship with your parents they should hear you out. It sounds like there is some tension between you over them not wanting you to make your own choices on this. Honestly, I'd go for what I wanted, because you will have to deal with it in the long run and either be happy or be what they want you to be. The new healthcare bill alone makes a future in medicine currently not as predictable as it once was. I'd take that into consideration and point it out to them as well. All in all, I have my own dreams for my kids too, but they will have to live with their own decisions as to what they decide to do with their lives. Tough situation, but you can't please everyone else if you want to be happy. This is a time to be a bit selfish if you ask me. As a parent...that hurts SOOOO bad to say...but...it is true. They'll just have to learn to let it go. I have had to, and I still love my daughter without having to agree with her choices.


Feb 15, 2007
Austin area, Texas
As WoW said, go for the political science, and then a law degree. I know quiet a few people who have gone that route. Having seen your posting on this forum for the last year or so, I think that what ever you decide to study, you will not end up flipping burgers.

I went to a small liberal arts college, many of us had degrees in things like English, philosophy, religion, theater arts and history. Those I have kept in contact with have had earned advanced degrees, had interesting jobs, and sometimes even become SAHMs like me. I think if you follow your passion, you are more likely to be happy and successful than if you follow someone else's dreams for you.

Point out that Obama's undergrad degree is in poli-sci.

Good luck!
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The truth is out there...
Mar 5, 2007
Phoenix, AZ
I'm currently going through a similar issue. For awhile I wanted to go into medicine and just recently I realized that it's just not what my heart is into at the moment. I would rather figure that out now than half way through medical school! My parents are a little disappointed, but I also think that's a little bit due to ignorance on their part (and I don't mean that in a negative way at all!). My dad thinks the only job in which you can make a significant amount of money is as a doctor. That's just not true at all. In fact, many doctors are struggling right now just as much as anyone else! Not to mention all this healthcare stuff may affect how much doctors are paid in the near future.

My mom and dad say I am too intelligent to waste it doing nothing, but that's not what I'm planning to do at all! Eventually I would like to attend grad school, but first I need to figure out what I'd like to study! I'm also so burnt out on school that I'd rather work. I realize that my parents just want the best for me, but I don't understand what is so bad about working a little job to save up money before heading off to grad school.

I wish you the best of luck though! Definitely follow your own path. Otherwise you'll learn to hate life rather than to live it!

Sonoran Silkies

Flock Mistress
Jan 4, 2009
Tempe, Arizona
From your post it sounds like you are probably still in high school. If not, I apologise for that assumption.

The requirements to get accepted into med school include a lot more than grades and specific pre-requisite courses. Certainly thse are required, but a lot more is as well. A different degree, such as poli sci will probably be looked at with favour (so long as you also have the necessary pre-requisite courses). Participation in various clubs, volunteer organizations and other activities that make you a well-rounded individual is important. So, by not majoring in pre-med, you have not damaged your ability to get into med school should you be interested; and you have likely increased your chances.

Also, much of the first two years of college is applicable to most degrees. Regardless of your degree, you will be required to take English Composition, history, foreign language, math, science, etc. There are sometimes a few exactly specified courses, but others have a wide list of courses that fill the requirement. This is how you can explore your interests--selecting the ones that most interest you and see if your interest grows or lessens as you progress through the class. When you speak with your advisor, mention the major and career choices that you are considering and ask for recomendations that will accomodate both pre-med and pre-law. Unless you are close to being a college junior, you really don't need to make a decision at this point in time.

As for your parents, I cannot speak to them in particular, but if being a doctor is a long held dream of yours, and you have only recently expressed interest in something else, they may be assuming that your change of heart is based upon a particular class that you didn't care for or didn't do well in, or a transitory intersest developed by another class. Yes, there are some parents who will push a career choice on their kids, but most do not; they merely want their children to become contributing members of society--to be able to have a job that allows them the income and ability to live well, and an education that allows them to succeed on whatever carreer path they choose.


Oct 27, 2008
Pittsburgh, PA
just to clarify, I am a freshman in college. I already took most of the prerequisite courses in high school by taking AP courses. the problem now is that I don't want to continue taking pre med courses like chemistry and Biology (next fall would be organic chemistry, which doesn't sound fun), because all they will do is bring down my gpa, and I won't even use them.

Sonoran Silkies

Flock Mistress
Jan 4, 2009
Tempe, Arizona
Talk to your advisor about courses that would qualify for both routes. Also, consider the number of credit hours you are taking and how that impacts your grades--some folks do better with larger courseloads and some with smaller ones. Of course things like work and other regular activities also impact your grades and the number of courses you can handle at one time.

You might consider trying to find a summer job that would give you some exposure to the fields you are now interested in--look for work in a law office or even the city, county or state attorney's office, or pehaps work on a political campaign.


Aug 2, 2009
Southwestern Washington State
Sonoran silkies and Rusty have given you excellent advice I totally agree with.

I wish I had worked a summer job in the field I chose before going to school. I also did not check out the job market for the job I trained for well enough.

Despite my experience, my daughter recently made the same mistake. Despite working in the hospitality field, she went to culinary school to be a chef, before realizing most chef jobs are hot, sweaty and .....not exactly haute cuisine. Now she is a server/bartender in classy restaurants instead......but she went to school to be a chef. Luckily cooking is a great life skill.

However, having classes under your belt in medicine if it isn't your thing will not be useful. I would try my best to choose courses that do not commit you to either route temporarily, while you get a job in the law field over the summer. Or find a place that will let you come in and observe/volunteer. See if it really is for you. There are pros and cons with any job.

I would assume you are depending on your parents to help fund your education and for this reason need their cooperation. It can be really disapointing to parents once they get their heart set on something. I adored my daughter's first boyfriend and was so upset when they broke up. But I don't get to pick her man or her life, she does. While it still is painful to think she won't spend her life with that man I loved, she prefers the man she is with. As two adults, she doesn't get to choose my life just as I don't get to choose hers.

Your parents should be able to understand, if you have a good relationship, that you just don't want to be a doctor anymore. Being a doctor takes a huge commitment. Medicine is a calling. If you are not called....it just isn't for you. There should be a way you can explain this to them. They will feel pretty silly a few years down the road having paid for an education in medicine that you are not using.

I once knew a dentist who decided he wanted to be an attorney. So he went back to school, and eventually specialized in dental cases in his law firm.

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