Parents forcing me to pursue a career of their choice.

29 Jun 2024 Ref-No#: 6243

Salam! My parents were kinda forcing to pursue career of their choice but when I said no they made me feel bad about it emotionally, I wanna do engineering and I got a reputable university but when asked them to pay the fee , they said no I understand that fee is high since its a private university, so i suggested an education loan but then i got yelled at for an hour about how I do not know anything and how much money Ive wasted of them already while preparing for entrance exam, and got told that I shouldve gotten a govt university if i wished to study. After that my dad said that there’s no point in engineering and I should prepare for a govt job and that he’ll not let me work far from 200 kms from our home, my brother has almost been saying that I won’t be able to do anything in my life. the due date for the university has already passed , Am I obliged to listen to them regarding where I work and study and also they’ve been saying it for a year now that I should become and Aalim and go to egypt to study, I have always been saying no but they keep saying it , I don’t know what do, they keep tormenting me emotionally cause I am saying no to their wishes.

Answer

Wa ‘alaykum as-salām wa raḥmatullāhi wa barakātuhu,

I understand the emotional and psychological strain you are experiencing due to your parents’ expectations and your aspirations. It is essential to approach this situation with both respect and a clear strategy. Kindly consider the following:

Religious Perspective

In Islam, respecting and honoring one’s parents (Birr al-wālidayn) is paramount. However, this does not mean compromising your personal aspirations and mental well-being. Islam encourages the pursuit of knowledge and personal development. If your career choice aligns with your passion and strengths, it can lead to a more fulfilling and productive life, benefiting both you and the community.

Psychological Perspective

  1. Open Communication: Engage in a calm and respectful conversation with your parents. Clearly express your passion for engineering and how it aligns with your strengths and interests. Share your vision for your future and how you plan to achieve it. Highlight the practical aspects, such as job opportunities and potential income.

    Regarding your parents’ desire for you to become a scholar and study in Egypt, it is essential to communicate your career goals clearly and respectfully. If your passion lies elsewhere, explain how you can still contribute to the community in a meaningful way through your chosen field without compromising your Islamic identity and religious values. Elaborate on how you will use your degree for the upliftment of Dīn, as a contribution to the Muslim community, and as a means to get closer to Allāh.

  2. Understanding and Financial Concerns: Your parents have made it clear that there is difficulty in funding your education. Recognize and acknowledge their financial constraints. Explore various scholarships, grants, and alternate funding options that may be available. Research part-time job opportunities that can help you contribute towards your tuition fees. Presenting these solutions can demonstrate your commitment and proactive approach. Remember, you cannot oblige them to pay for your studies if they are unable to do so.
  3. Acknowledge Their Concerns: Listen to their concerns about the distance. Offer solutions like still supporting them, visiting them, and how your will always keep in contact and be there for them.
  4. Compromise and Flexibility: Seek a middle ground. Consider applying to both private and government universities. This shows your willingness to consider their concerns while still pursuing your goal. Discuss the possibility of scholarships or other funding options to alleviate their financial concerns.
  5. Emotional Support: Build a support system outside your immediate family. Seek advice and encouragement from trusted friends, teachers, or mentors. They can provide a balanced perspective and emotional support.
  6. Professional Counseling: Consider seeking the help of a trusted religious scholar, a professional counselor, or a psychologist. They can provide strategies to manage stress and improve communication with your parents.

Practical Steps

  1. Alternative Funding: Research scholarships, grants, and part-time job opportunities that can help fund your education. Present this plan to your parents to show your commitment and initiative. Websites and organizations dedicated to educational funding can be valuable resources in finding suitable scholarships and grants.
  2. Explore Government Options: While you prefer a private university, it may be worth exploring government institutions as a backup. This could serve as a compromise that may be more acceptable to your parents.
  3. Seeking Support: If communication remains strained, consider involving a respected elder, Imam, or counselor to mediate and facilitate a healthy discussion.
  4. Career Counseling: Seek advice from career counselors or academic advisors. They can help you identify the best path forward, considering both your interests and the practicalities of your situation.

Conclusion

Balancing your personal aspirations with your parents’ expectations is challenging but achievable with open communication, mutual respect, and a well-thought-out plan. May Allāh guide you in your decisions and grant you the strength to navigate this difficult situation.

Remember, it is essential to remain patient, respectful, and steadfast in your pursuit of knowledge and personal growth. May Allāh ease your difficulties and bless you with success in your endeavors.

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