Parents career choices vs yours (How to find a middle ground)

Choosing a career is one of the most critical decisions of our life. Especially in Asian countries, choosing one’s career becomes a collective family decision. There is often a clash of interests when the child’s dreams are not in alignment with the idealistic standards set by the parents.

Disagreements and differences in opinion are bound to occur when people belonging to different generations, holding different views come together to make major career decisions. In Indian society, parents tend to pressurise their children into pursuing careers that can ensure financial security, status and recognition. In this process, they tend to overlook the interests and passions of their children. Children in turn push back with hostility and rebellion towards their parents in order to stand up for their dreams which further escalates this conflict.

Here are some tips to find a middle ground that can resolve these conflicts –

Communication is the Key

Having healthy and open communication between the parents and children is crucial. This can allow parents to put forward their expectations and also give children a space to showcase their achievements and interests.

Respect both Sides

Understanding that both the parties are on the same side and not fighting against each other is important. Parents should be mindful of not being overbearing and ignorant. On the other hand, children should respect their parent’s experience and guidance and be open to a different point of view.

Understand the difference between involvement and intrusion

Parents firmly believe that their opinions and suggestions are in the child’s best interest. However, this may not always be the case. It is important for parents to be conscious that in the quest of wanting their child to become self-sufficient and successful, they are encouraging and supportive and not dominating and oppressive.

Ask for help

Consulting a career counsellor can be of great help when trying to reach a middle ground. Their expertise can allow them to see the situation from different perspectives. This can allow the counsellor to guide the child into choosing a fulfilling career that meets their interests and design a route to success that can satisfy the parents. Counsellors are also aware of the latest trends in the job market and can identify factors that can lead to career enhancement. 

Realizing that ultimately children have to walk alone in their professional journey is necessary for parents. However, they can definitely make it easier by being their guiding beacon and their ultimate support system.

Importance of Professional Counseling: A friend or family member may listen to you, but they aren’t professionally, technically qualified or experienced to offer you professional advice. If you wish you can contact us at MindTribe to receive help from our team of expert psychologists.


MindTribe Founder Dr. Prerna Kohli, India’s eminent psychologist, established the company to leverage the strength of the online to make counseling affordable and accessible to everyone. MindTribe provides counseling, workshops, support groups, forums, and eLearning.

About the Author.

Kumkum Gupta is a psychologist at You can learn more about her by clicking here.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of, the Founders, or management team.

Acknowledgement: All images used are open source and from Unsplash.


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