My Sports Injury Changed My Life, by Dr. Robert Wallace

DR. WALLACE: I’m the quarterback and star player on my college football team, but I recently suffered an injury that doctors say will sadly end my football career at all levels.

I’m devastated and don’t know how to handle this major life change. I feel like my world has been turned upside down and I have no direction to move forward. Honestly, if it wasn’t for football, I don’t think I would have even gone to college. I was never very serious about academics, and football was the one area of ​​my life that I felt I really excelled in. Where do I go from here, and how can I find the best way to do it? — Game-changing injury, via email

GAME-CHANGING INJURY: I feel bad for you considering your situation. However, I am also very encouraged for your future prospects. The fact that you have taken the time to write to me here indicates that you are already committed to moving forward.

At this point, I encourage you to stay in college. Take a close look at the topics you are currently studying to see which ones might interest you. Talk to every teacher you have on your current schedule. Explain your situation and ask for their best advice. Now is the time for you to solicit as many unbiased opinions as possible.

Since you have such an interest in football, there might be an opportunity for you in this field. Would you be interested in coaching? Or working with athletes as an agent or financial advisor?

Also talk extensively with your head coach and any assistant coaches on your team. They all know you well and will be interested in helping you in any way they can.

I suggest you approach your quest for the next chapter of your life as you would a great football game. Study your playbook; read your cards; watch tapes and videos from all areas that interest you. The good news is that you already possess a desire to succeed, as evidenced by your athletic successes, so do your best to channel that motivation into your next endeavor.


DR. WALLACE: I’m 18 and about to enter my freshman year of college. After many ACT studies and hours of writing essays for my applications, I finally received my admissions decisions.

I got into my best school as a communications major and I’m super excited and proud of myself. My parents are excited too, but aren’t exactly thrilled with my major pick. They worry that there aren’t many careers or a lot of money in the jobs my major leads to and that it may turn out to be a waste of time and effort.

I want to work in social media marketing, which I don’t think they fully understand due to how new this type of job is in today’s digital world. They say they want me to major in math, science, or business so they’re guaranteed a “good” job after college. I understand why they say that, but I’m passionate about communications and how I envision working in that field. Would it be wiser to go into another area, or should I stick with the one I already know I like? — Journalist at heart, by e-mail

JOURNALIST AT HEART: Your parents seem very old-school to me. I always advise young people to follow their passions as long as the path they want is ethical, legal and legitimate. Your selection qualifies on all accounts.

I suggest you take the time (and use your modern skills) to make a personalized “presentation” for your parents. You can set this up on your computer as a video and graphic presentation that lasts no longer than five to 10 minutes. In it, I suggest you present the selling points you see in this industry and do it in a way that your parents can both grasp and understand.

Part of being a good journalist is knowing your audience and doing your best to present your materials in a way that benefits your readers and viewers.

Also, get a few letters of recommendation from some of your professors and ask them to at least slightly detail what field you have chosen and why it makes sense in today’s modern world.

Ultimately, I see this decision as an easy decision for you. It is your life, your potential career and your time that will be spent in a job in this industry. Follow your heart for as long as it makes sense to you in this area. Take the time to explain this to your parents as best you can. Give each of them a big hug, tell them you love them, then look them in the eye and ask for their support. I hope you can get them to better understand what you plan to do!

Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he won’t be able to answer each of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. Email him at [email protected] To learn more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read articles by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at

Photo credit: Nomad369 on Pixabay

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