Thanks so much for coming by and sharing your experience . .. . I am not a med professional but perhaps some suggestions for you to consider . . .
First, you had a traumatic experience as a child that you are just processing now as an adult . . . add to that, you were betrayed by the circle of friends that you thought you could trust at a time when we are most vulnerable let alone dealing with being raped . . . right now, you are concerned that you are betraying your family's faith in you . . . so, in other words, you are a bundle of emotions . . . at 22, our brains are still maturing so it is a good time to start a recovery process . . .
Second, the fact that you failed 2 subjects for the first time is an indicator to me, a former professor, that you are probably an overachiever in order to compensate for seeking outside approval of your worth . . . rape will have that impact . . . it sometimes does not appear until later in life and, I think, in your case, it is mixed into a lot of other unresolved issues . . . often there is a sense of abandonment when the person does not feel that she is meeting external expectations and this can lead to both anxiety and depression, which are two sides of the same coin . . .You told your family but you did not mention what their reaction was . . .was it to simply move on and forget about the rape? Did they seek help for you? Did they confront the perpetrator? Depending on their reaction, this could also have had an impact on how you interpret your experience . . . for example, if they told you to move on, you may deep down have felt that you caused the event . . . this often happens in domestic abuse / rape . . . .
Third, if you love Art, pursue it . . . there will always be people who are better in any field . . . that does not mean that you should not follow your passion . . . .Art is probably calling you as a means to externalize all the feelings that you have kept inside of you and that is a good thing . . . we need to get those emotions out in one way or another . . . .and just what does being better mean? Perhaps you are developing your own style. . . . so think about returning to Art . . . You need to stop comparing yourself to your friends . . .. we all travel our paths in different ways and at different speeds . . . .
Fourth, you need to deal with issues that have been with you for a very long time and now is a great time to do it . . . there may be some options . . . and, if not, then there are some decisions that you need to consider . . . can you take a semester off from your thesis and seek some professional intervention? I know that you do not want to disappoint your family, but perhaps a semester off will allow you to get over your depression . . . often, in writing a thesis, it looks like an impossible task . . . do you have an advisor who can help to direct you in how to chunk out pieces and work on it bit by bit . . .each bit finished will give you added confidence . . . .
Fifth, daydreaming about other careers is not bad unless it is an escape from dealing with your anxiety and depression . . . you may just be afraid of the possibility of failing and anxiety and depression love that . . . . sometimes we just have to decide that we cannot let anxiety and depression manage our lives . . . .and you said it yourself . . . you feel guilty . . . .and that is why I think you need some professional intervention to guide you in dealing with your past and also in deciding on what you want to do with your life . . . .
You are a very caring and sensitive person but sometimes our pasts do manage our presents and we have to do something about it . . .right now, whether you recognize it or not, I feel that you have a lot of suppressed emotional turmoil that needs to be brought out so you can see it for what it is . . . .the good news is that at 22 your brain is still maturing so now is a good time to start the recovery process . . . and it is a process and not an event . . . .your thesis is just an event . . . . personally, I think that you have the inner strength to go forward and complete it . . .hey, it might not be the thesis that changes the world, but that does not matter . . . it will be your thesis and your accomplishment . . . at the same time, if you decide (and remember, this is about you and no one else) to pursue another career path, then that is what you need to do . . . you will be a success and when you are, then you can repay your family for the tuition . . . I am sure that they would rather have a happy and healthy young adult . . .yes, they may not understand immediately, but they will eventually . . . .
Whatever your decision, know that you do not have to prove your value to anyone but yourself but I sincerely feel that you do need professional intervention to guide you in the decision making process and to support you . . . .you may have to try out a couple of professionals before you find one that is guiding you and not telling you what to do but the result will probably be well worth it . . .
As always, if you think we can support you, even if it is just to chat, come here and let us know . . .we cannot resolve your problem, but we certainly can support you . . . and remember: It is not the number of times we fall down, but the number of times we pick ourselves up and continue that counts . . . . you can only fail at something if you do not learn from the experience and you are showing immense insight and strength of character to come here and share your story . . .take care, kc