To The Major-Shamers, Your Opinions Do Not Define Me

I understand that it just came out of your mouth. It's a knee-jerk reaction. You probably do it all the time, without even realizing it. I smiled through it even though I should have fought back because, trust me, I get it all the time. You weren't the first, and you won't be the last.

You don't know that I've come to dread the question "What's your major?" because it is consistently followed by the question "What do you want to do with that?" It's a valid question. I wouldn't mind it if it wasn't dripping with accusation, the judgment practically pouring off of your tongue and out of your mouth. What hurts is that you don't mean it as a genuine question. Your burning curiosity to know me did not inspire you to interrogate me. No, what you really meant to say was, "That's a useless major and you're not going to do anything with it." Hasn't anyone ever told you to say what you mean? Honesty is the best policy, and it sure hurts a lot less.

You don't know that I love what I'm learning. I feel so comfortable when I'm reading and analyzing others' works or writing something myself. I grew up reading at every chance I could: in my bedroom, in the car, in waiting rooms, in front of a TV, etc. I learned to love reading and to appreciate the minds that thought up each imaginative world I read about. When I grew up, I learned to appreciate those who wrote articles and editorials, because they made the real world seem just as beautiful as the fictional ones. Most importantly, I learned the power of words and the double meanings that can come with them, which is exactly why I know what you were actually trying to say and was so hurt by a simple question.

You don't know that I've cried over people like you. I'm already insecure about a lot of things but being subconsciously trained to be insecure about something that I love is completely ridiculous. Reactions from people like you have made me wonder if future employers will look at me like the same way you did when they browse my resume. I've thought so much in the past nine months about changing my major to literally anything else. I thought that maybe I actually wanted to be a teacher, or that eventually, I would learn to love economics. It took me a while to feel comfortable with my own passions, strengths, and decisions, and even longer to realize that no one should feel ashamed about the things they love or feel the need to change themselves to fit others' ideals.

You don't know that I have a full-fledged plan for my future. I know what I want to do, where I want to go, and how I'm going to get there. I know that I want to help people gain a voice, stay informed, and learn to love themselves. I know that I do not want to spend every second of my adult life sitting at a desk in front of a computer until I become an office decoration. And it would be completely fine if I didn't know, because there are plenty of people who don't. Eventually, they will find their place, just like I will. Maybe I won't end up where I thought I would. Only time will tell. I do know one certainty about my future, though. There will be no room for people like you in it.

You don't know that the world doesn't care that you are business or pre-med or whatever major made you think that you have more prestige than another college student. Sure, the job you want might require your major. And I would be just as low as you are if I said that your major wasn't honorable, because it is. I truly believe that. I also believe that any education and job someone pursues with a passion should be accepted and appreciated. The world is in need of so many different types of jobs. There can only be so many accountants.

I'm sorry you weren't taught the same universal kindness that I was. I'm sorry that you judge the value of an individual based off of how much money they are projected to make in the future. I'm sorry you don't see everyone as equals to one another. I hope, for your sake, you will learn the error of your ways eventually. Be glad you insulted me, and not someone else, because I have thicker skin than a lot of other people. At a young age, I learned that what others say about or to me do not define me. You weren't the first, and you won't be the last. I've grown stronger. You can't hurt me anymore.

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