Devil’s Advocate

Dear Devil’s Advocate,

I am a senior in college and my little sister just started her freshman year at the same college. My sister has plenty of friends and is already involved in different campus activities, but she insists on being part of everything I am. She’s pledging my sorority, walking with me to my classes and even bringing her friends to sit with me in the cafeteria. It’s getting really annoying. I see her enough at home; I don’t need to see her every minute at school too. How can I get her to back off?

 

—Leave me alone

 

Dear Leave me alone,

While the thought of a mini-me trailing my every step immediately brings up feelings of annoyance and resentment, I can’t help but feel a bit of sympathy for your younger sister.

As a fellow little sister (and source of dread for my older siblings) I can understand the feelings of wanting to hang out constantly with an older companion. You represent everything that your little sister wants to be when she gets older. Take it as a compliment; if you were a complete loser, your little sister probably would not want anything to do with you.

Also, try to be sympathetic to her position. You will get to do most things first in life, whether it is drive a car, pledge a sorority, move out or graduate from college. She will always be second. However, instead of acting like a total brat towards you because of this, she is choosing to admire you, emulate you, and become more a part of your life.

While it is perfectly fine to tell her to back off once in awhile, try to see all the good points of having a sister. Essentially, you have a built-in friend for life. You probably are not going to remain close with all of your sorority sisters through the years, but you will never be able to escape your real sister. That’s the real beauty of family after all.

 

Dear Devil’s Advocate,

When I started college two years ago, I began work toward a major in accounting. I don’t find the job to be thrilling, but I have always been pretty good with numbers and I figured it was a safe choice. However, music is my passion and recently I’ve been thinking about making it my new major. I know it is hard for musicians to make it big, but it is truly what I want to do. I don’t want to make the wrong decision, though. What should I do?

—Loves music

 

Dear Loves music,

Put the change of major form down and slowly step away from it. You are definitely in danger of making a bad decision.

While I admire that you have a passion in life and wish you much luck with it, I urge you to be realistic about it. How many people really succeed in music enough to make a living at it? I don’t know the answer to this question of course, but I can say with some certainty that it isn’t many.

A career in music, like acting or dancing, is one of those things that are lovely to dream about, but slightly harder to accomplish. And it is not just me that thinks this way.

If you’ve ever told anybody else about your desire to forge a career in music, you might have noticed the slightly forced, pitying smile they bestow on you. This is not the smile of someone who believes your dream is just within your grasp.

It is wonderful that you want to “reach for the stars” or whatever you like to consider it, but it is probably better to have a fall-back plan for yourself.

Why not continue to major in accounting and just minor in music? Or just take music lessons on your own, outside of college? You do not need to necessarily major in music in college to one day make a career out of it.

I bet some of those American Idol losers wished they had majored in accounting. Accountants do not have to worry about humiliating themselves on national television. Just a little food for thought, that’s all.