If you ask a majority of young millennials students about one of their greatest grievances in life, a fair majority of them will admit they do not like the degrees they are studying in but nonetheless have been forced into by their parents. So many of us may know the expression “Do what you love and you’ll never work another day in your life”.
And as cliché as this phrase has become right now, it still holds a great degree of weight which is why we’ve chosen to feature a young student from Islamabad named Wazir who is going through such a dilemma of his own.
Wazir, his real name hidden for purposes to his security, is a 19 year old boy who all his life wanted just one thing; to be a mechanical engineer. Yet Wazir finds his greatest ambition barred by the tyrannical presence of his mother and father who do not want their son to be an engineer but rather to be a filmmaker.
When we interviewed Wazir, this is what he had to say,
“When I was a little boy all my friends would just fool around causing mischief and generally being a nuisance. I was always the shy and studious type while they’d be the ones out there thinking just what next could they do to create trouble. I was different and timid so their shenanigans never really caught my fancy. I liked and wanted different things that had mostly to do with inventing. I remember having a toy airplane with a motor, and a couple of radio controlled dinky cars that my parents had got for me back when I was 8 years old. I’d disassemble the motor and pull out the wires from the controller. Afterwards I’d cut models of boats out of Styrofoam and then use the motor and copper wires to power that boat. I’d put my little boat in a bucket of water and watch with delight as it cut through the waters just like a real motorboat would.
Every time my parents asked me what I wanted to be, I’d tell them I wanted to be a scientist or an inventor and that always concerned them. I was doing pretty well for myself before my parents forcibly enrolled me in piano classes and painting classes. I absolutely hated those. I could not stand to press those damn piano keyboards. Every press of a button felt like betrayal. Every canvas I brushed over with colours felt like cheating on the love of my life, which was inventing. My fingers were always meant to invent things, not do nerd shit like painting and playing music. Those sort of things are for queer people who colour their hair like fairies and smoke Camel lights. I was a scientist, not an artist.”
Wazir has now just finished high school and says he is at that point in life where his parents are forcing him to enroll in a liberal arts college while he wants to opt for admission in an engineering degree.
“It’s horrible right now”, says Wazir with tears glimmering in his eyes and a crack in his voice. “My father gave me the ultimatum the other day that if I wanted to be his son, I had to be a filmmaker and if I wanted to waste my life to pointless pursuits like engineering, he would disown me. It’s unfair that parents think they can make major decisions for your life and career without taking into account what you want for your own self too.
We asked Wazir if he was ready to submit to his parents.
“Never”, he spits showing us both his palms. “These hands were meant for inventing gadgets baby. Not for making gay bullshit like art. And I will save up enough money so I can become financially stable enough to move out of my parents’ house and enroll as an engineer in a prestigious engineering college.”
Afterwards Wazir bored us out of our minds by talking passionately about some lame crap called sinusoid waves that we were too dumb to comprehend. Nonetheless, there are thousands of young students like Wazir who are wrapped in a battle with their parents fighting for the right to study in a field they are passionate about but succumb due to emotional, financial, and societal pressure that these cruel parents enforce. Parents should realize that in forcing their child to conform to what they believe is good for them will only pave way for