Q. My son, in Std 4, has developed a bad habit of telling lies. He is not interested in studies and just wants to play. We are thinking of putting him in a hostel, but he is refusing to go. Should we put him in a hostel or bring him for counselling? We stay near Amravati and can come when you say.
Ans. The primary thing to do is to find out the nature of the problem and make a diagnosis of causes and effects.You have mentioned two issues- one that he is not interested in studies and two he has started telling lies. Both these things could be related to each other. It is important to find out the reasons for the disinterest in studies first and foremost. There could be a number of reasons, such as, levels of intelligence (IQ), specific area difficulty in subjects or tasks (reading, writing, comprehension, languages, arithmetic etc), hyperactivity and attention deficit (ADHD), ineffective methods of discipline at home and such areas of concern. Any problem in studies can lead to telling lies that helps initially as an escape route to studies and later becomes a habit. Now let's discuss issue of putting him in a hostel- if he has learning disorders or has low intelligence, it will become worse in a hostel for whatever little care you take at home will diminish in hostel. His lying will worsen too as will his studies. Secondly, since he will take going to hostel as a punishment to his bad habits he will bear resentment towards you. If we send him for betterment by saying that school is good and takes care of children with learning problems it might help. But where will you be assured of a residential school that takes care of such problems? So first bring him for a diagnosis and then decide best course of action. Packing him off to a hostel will be like passing on your troubles to another's shoulders. R T
Q. My mind often goes blank with irrational fears. I overthink things and feel depressed and suicidal. But I am afraid of doing that as I am a coward. I cannot fit into this system. I don’t like many people and hate mixing with a crowd. I am a good student, but am losing interest in studies. Please help.
Ans.You need professional counselling as soon as possible. Either request a family member to accompany you or a friend or come alone if you can. You should not allow yourself to suffer due to depression and fears of any kind. You should not think of suicide and dying at all. Remember if there are problems there are solutions as well. Like any other physical disease the mind also gets ill and falls sick. Then illogic takes over and such silly thoughts begin to bother you. Do not think much about your problems- just seek help as soon as possible and you will be fine. Have faith that there is a remedy and that you will be fine. T S
Q. I have appeared for Class 10 exams and I am certain that I want to pursue Law as a career. My parents may allow me to do Law after Std 12 only if I do not get into IIT! I find it crazy that I have to study science and appear for JEE and get into IIT, when I don't want to become an engineer? Please help! May be they will read this and get convinced that I am right.
Ans. This is truly funny and illogical. For if I want to go to USA, why will I take the route to China! I will take the shortest route to my destination. If you want to do law and are very sure of your interest and aptitude, then please enrol for humanities or commerce in junior college and also enrol into coaching of CLAT. You would need to score well in 12 Std as well as in CLAT to get into the best/ good law schools. There is no need to do science and to appear for JEE and then switch for law. The choice of career should be done immediately after 10 Std and the relevant subjects should be chosen. It becomes a waste of time, money and energy to experiment and try multiple options first before coming to a decision. The time to decide is actually NOW. Taking the aptitude test and career guidance may be another way to convince your parents if they do not read this column.
By RITA AGGARWAL (Consulting Psychologist) Take shortest route to your goal The columnist can be reached at 201, Paramount Heights, 40 Cement Road, Shivaji Nagar Nagpur 440010 or on 9156582334, 2220250 and 2223322. She can also be reached at [email protected] and can be visited at www.rita-psychologist.com)