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What you need to know:

  • Let your children decide their future.

Gone are the days when becoming an engineer or doctor was your parent’s only cherished dream for you. The possibility of becoming something else, like a dancer, a writer or a photographer would make them cringe and run havoc in the household. I still remember my friend’s genuine concern after our class 12 board exams, many years ago. She wanted to become a professional ballet dancer. She loved dancing and was good at it. Today, she’s a pediatrician at a hospital.

Fast forward to today, I read a piece of news that talked about a Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) topper who wanted to become a Kathak dancer. She won a scholarship from the ministry of culture in India.

In another news a 13-year-old Indian pianist Lydian Nadhaswaram, from Chennai, has made India proud by winning the American reality show ‘The World’s Best’. He aims to be the world’s best composer some day and I’m rooting for him.

With changing times parents are trusting their children with their choices. It is no longer the norm to either become a doctor, engineer or perhaps hold a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree. Nowadays, children are allowed to choose the so called ‘off beat’ career path, from an early age, which is why it is no surprise that the young pianist won the reality show at the age of 13.

An Indian mother is being applauded for all the right reasons on social media. Her son’s CBSE result is out and, no, he is not a 90 per cent score holder. He’s earned 60 per cent in his exams and his mother is proud of him. She says it’s her son’s efforts that she appreciates. He can be who he wants to be. It’s important to keep your inner goodness, curiosity and wisdom alive.

A film in recent times that pushed the envelope and showcased a similar issue was the Indian film, 3 idiots. The Indian actor Aamir Khan’s character assigns his friend the Herculean task of standing up for himself and against his father, to choose the career of his choice, rather than being forced to become an engineer. In the movie, the character wanted to become a wildlife photographer and after much convincing, his father agreed.

I’m the mother of a five-month old son and I’ve promised myself not to choose a career for him. He can be who he wishes to be, an animal rights activist, a swimmer, a journalist, a chef, a teacher or even a doctor.

Yes we have a long way to go and the change is perhaps in the minority but we cannot deny the fact that the mindset of parents and their faith in their children is evolving for the better.

- The reader is a writer based in Dubai.