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Old 01-26-2013, 07:04 AM   #1
Minnie_me
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Am I a dream killer?

I have two daughters. Both feel that I'm a bit of a dream killer, so I'm asking for your opinions.

DD15 is a very good student (not gifted like all of these DIS kids, lol, but very bright). She has a 99 average in 10th grade, taking all accelerated classes. She loves animals, and wants to be a veterinarian. I think of 8 years of vet school, and then what it takes to set up one's own practice, etc., and I think it's just not the right path for her. I tell her that there are many other occupations that deal with animals, and even ones that don't (she can still be an animal lover without having to be a veterinarian, right?). She won't even look at anything else. I just don't think she's got what it takes to get through vet school (drive, ambition, competitive edge -- she is VERY laid back!).

DD12 does not shine academically like her sister, but shines on stage. She is a very good singer, actor and dancer. She has always gotten the lead in every musical she's auditioned for, and gets pulled up to the high school to be in their productions as well. She does community theater, too, and gets rave reviews from everyone. So, of course, she wants to be a *star* on Broadway. People in our community all expect her to! I'm very musically inclined myself, and I KNOW she doesn't have what it takes. We live in a very small town, and she's definitely the most talented in this town.....but if we lived in a major city, she'd have a lot of competition, not to mention Broadway! I used to be able to keep her expectations realistic, but now the comments from others are influencing her.

So, am I a dream killer? Should I let my daughters pursue these goals? Does anyone have a similar story to share?
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:20 AM   #2
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I agree, definitely a dream killer.

Many try to reach for the stars, only a few make it, but the only failures are the ones who didn't even try.
So what if your daughter doesn't become a vet or a broadway star? There are many opportunities on the journey, but they won't find them if they don't take the first few steps.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:23 AM   #3
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Yes. They are so young, please stop telling them all the reasons they should not pursue their dreams. They might surprise you someday. Be thankful they have aspirations. So yes, you are definitely a dream stomper. Quit doing that.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:25 AM   #4
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Our oldest son was a very shy kid. He wanted to go to UCLA and major in cinematography. We thought it was a horrible choice because of his shyness-he was choosing a career that would require networking, would not have steady work, etc.

We never voiced our opinions to him. He followed his dream.

He is 37 now and happily working in his career. Every time I hear him talk of his interesting work I'm so grateful we kept our mouths closed.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:25 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acklander View Post
I agree, definitely a dream killer.

Many try to reach for the stars, only a few make it, but the only failures are the ones who didn't even try.
So what if your daughter doesn't become a vet or a broadway star? There are many opportunities on the journey, but they won't find them if they don't take the first few steps.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:26 AM   #6
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Yes, you are a dream killer.

You seem very convinced that both of your children, despite evidence proving otherwise (good grades, obvious talent), "don't have what it takes."

I think that is their lesson to learn if you're right and these career choices aren't for them. And you are wrong about one thing... one does not have to start there own practice to be a veterinarian. Plenty of vets work for others. And Vet school isn't competitive really, she just has to keep what she is doing and be prepared for her lectures and continue to apply herself, which she's already proven she can do.

Have a little faith in your kids.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:27 AM   #7
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"A dream is a wish your heart makes."

I struggled with this with DD, who had huge aspirations to be a Hollywood makeup artist. She was a sick child, battling conditions that most adults would find difficult to deal with. So her dreams seemed far-fetched and terribly unlikely. But she overcame her illness (it's not gone, but certainly managed now) and is in college and, by golly, is becoming the adult that I didn't believe she could be. So I listen to her dreams now and encourage her. I, of course, highly recommend a solid backup plan, but now I can't help but believe that anything is possible.

If these are their dreams, dream with them, but don't make them your dreams. They need your support no matter where they end up. Support, don't push, and everything will work out in the end.

Just my humble advice, of course. . But I remember my life was more "magical" when I had dreams.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:27 AM   #8
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I had a nice reply all typed out and then I hit something on my laptop and deleted my whole post.

My re-type will not be as elegant!!!

I've been accused of being called a dream killer. I think it is our job as parents to help our kids be realistic about planning their career path. For instance, both my kids wanted to be veterinarians at one time; however, neither are suited for it. One--my DD scraped by in her science courses in high school. College biology nearly did her in. She is not science oriented AT ALL. Around the time she became a senior in high school and in her first semester of college she knew that the vet path was not right for her as much as she wanted it.

My son is very good in school but not thrilled with science. He is also allergic to many animals. He has realized that being a vet is probably not the best choice for him.

I have tried to steer them both into educational tracks that work on their strengths--even if it meant discouraging the vet path.

Now, your DD is only in 10th grade and she seems to be a very good student. Strong in all subjects. I'm not sure why you are discouraging this. So, she's a little laid back now. A lot of high schoolers are. I am amazed at my DD, who was a terrible high school student, has now become a very motivated college student with a 3.5 GPA. She has matured and changed SO much. I just don't think you can make that call right now.

As for your theater arts daughter, I do understand your fears with that. It's hard field to "make it" in even for the most talented. But she loves it and is good at it so I don't think you should discourage it at this point. Depending on your finances, I think it might be time for you to put her in some summer theater groups/camps that are away from home where she might come in contact with more competition. See how it plays out from there.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:30 AM   #9
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I am leaning towards dream killer as well. But if you want to remain realisitc you need to have them research themselves throughly esp the vet school. And then have your realistic side also talk about Plan Bs, what else can they do if Plan A does not work. Or what other ways can they make their passion pay a decent living. Remember at that age most kids have no clue what it takes to have a decent place to live, food on the table, kids to support etc.

DH's goddaugther wanted to go to art school, she is very talented. Her dad sat her down and said yes he would help her pursue her dream but that she needed to make that passion pay the bills. They explored options. She eventually decided on teaching art. She loves it! She dabbles in other areas and sells or gifts some of her work. She does calligraphy on the side and is trying to make a side business of charcoal portraits she does. But dad made sure that she understood that being the "starving" artist was not an option he would support fininacially.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:32 AM   #10
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I think at this age, yes a dream killer. Honestly, its ok for a parent to view things realistically. However, I don't think we should express the view that our children 'can't do' something.

I have a dd who wanted to be a nurse. I was very hesitant because honestly, I didn't think in my head being a nurse was the correct career field for her in many ways. She didn't even like to be around blood! But, off she went to college with her eyes set on nursing. I, otoh, was hoping she would realize somewhere that she probably could be a great teacher or social worker. Sophmore year with a few labs under her belt, she has now changed her goals to be a teacher. Without any input from me.

I think its ok to let them at least try. If they find out for themselves that something is not what they thought, making the next choice will be realistic and they will have done it in their own way. Without harboring resentment for a parent who says they couldn't do it.

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Old 01-26-2013, 07:35 AM   #11
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They are a bit young to be shoving reality at them IMHO. It will hit them soon enough and other people will try to crush their dreams along with their spirit. With all that being said, I think maybe you should channel this energy elsewhere. Can you find a vet that will mentor your older daughter or at a minimum talk with her about everything involved in the career path? If the younger one wants to be a star she realistically should be pursuing options outside of your immediate area -- maybe a theatre in a larger city.

I am rambling a bit but my point is to maybe create some opportunity for them to see your side of the argument. Maybe they will or maybe they will be more convinced in their career path. The way you are going about does seem to be a big downer..sorry to say.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:43 AM   #12
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For your older DD, how about having her volunteer somewhere like a shelter, or ask a locla vet to talk to her about what the career entails.

DS15 thinks he wants to be a lawyer or pursue business, I am encouraging him next year to join Mock Trial so he can see what at least some of it is all about. I told him that he will either love it or he will find it is not what he wants to pursue. I also just found out yesterday there is a Stock Market club at his school. Once again I told him he should join, that is only one part of business but it is important for him to know about. We have also talked about how he can combine the two, and that lawyers are not all about what you see on Law and Order.

I have also empahsized that he does not need to make any decisions right now and he may change his mind along the way. I also have pointed out that many times the career we think we might have is not the one we end up with. DH was a biology major, he is now in sales, in the medical field, so his degree certainly helps, but DH did not intend to sell, yet he is made for it and really good at it. You just never know.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:43 AM   #13
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Dream Killer.

It's our job to encourage, not kill, their ambitions. Maybe your daughter that wants to be a vet can get a job at a local clinic and see how it is. Maybe she will come to the conclusion that it's not for her. But that's HER decision to make.

Your Broadway-bound daughter might never win a Tony, but she could be very happy being in the background of any number of productions and make a very nice living doing it. Or maybe she will get the opportunity for a lead role. Who knows? But she has to be there to find out. Maybe she will meet a stock broker and raise three kids in NYC and never make it to Broadway. But that's HER path to choose.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:46 AM   #14
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I have also wrestled with the reality vs dreams for my ds, although it's with sports, so I have no advice really....I am interested to hear what others are saying.
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Old 01-26-2013, 07:50 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acklander View Post
I agree, definitely a dream killer.

Many try to reach for the stars, only a few make it, but the only failures are the ones who didn't even try.
So what if your daughter doesn't become a vet or a broadway star? There are many opportunities on the journey, but they won't find them if they don't take the first few steps.
I agree Dream Killer.

On the journey to their dream they may discover another dream. I had dream killer parents and now at 47 I regret not following it anyway. Don't let your girls at least try. At 15 it's not a little girl saying I love animals it's a young woman.

A funny vet story to share though. I had a friend that is a Vet. She said first day of vet school about half the class dropped out. They handed them all gloves - told her to shove her hand up the rear of a horse. up to her elbow! She did it though and is now a Vet and loves it.
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