From Picking a College Major to Dating Someone Who Spits-July 7, 2003

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”College Major, What to Pick?”


Dear Dr. Gelb:

I read your column yesterday on helping kids with career choices. Thanks. My difficulty is how to guide my son to pick a major when he enters college this fall. He enjoys literature, good foreign films, and theater, but nothing grabs him to study as a major. His high school guidance counselor suggested majoring in what he enjoys, but I worry that “fun interests” may not lead to a positive career. How do I guide him?


Dr. Gelb says . . .

Dear Guessing:

To reiterate my response in yesterday’s column, in my opinion children should be exposed at a young age to areas of study that can ultimately lead to earning a good living.

With that in mind, it may be a little late to counsel a directionless high school graduate, but it is not too late for such an individual to find his direction. A good college counselor could be useful and let’s hope that your son studies hard and that his undergraduate experiences will give him some idea of what to do for a career.

I recall a relevant part of an article on this topic in the Notre Dame Magazine, Winter 1986-87, where author James Burtchaell, C.S.C. writes that “More than two out of every three undergraduates at this University change majors between the time they are accepted and the time they graduate. A good number change two or three times. Any decision that has so many students second-guessing must be tricky and it is [can be].”

”Spitting, What to Do About It?”

Dear Dr. Gelb:

I have been dating a guy for a few months and we like each other. Here’s the problem: when we are out in public, say crossing the street, he spits on the ground to clear his throat and it grosses me out. I don’t think it’s right to correct another adult’s behavior, but it bothers me. Suggestions?

Grossed out

Dr. Gelb says . . .

Dear Grossed out:

Wow, if this guy spits on the sidewalk and has no consideration for your presence or for others who use the sidewalk and may step in it, I can only imagine what his manners are like in a restaurant or at home. I find myself wondering why someone would date a person who demonstrates such a lack of manners or consideration for others.

Would you believe that in a recent Oklahoma case a man received a life imprisonment term for spitting on a police officer? For more information, visit

”’Suzanne J. Gelb, Ph.D., J.D. authors this daily column, Dr. Gelb Says, which answers questions about daily living and behavior issues. Dr. Gelb is a licensed psychologist in private practice in Honolulu. She holds a Ph.D. in Psychology and a Ph.D. in Human Services. Dr. Gelb is also a published author of a book on Overcoming Addictions and a book on Relationships.”’

”’This column is intended for entertainment use only and is not intended for the purpose of psychological diagnosis, treatment or personalized advice. For more about the column’s purpose, see”’ “An Online Intro to Dr. Gelb Says”

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