I just found out my bro's friend works for Traffic, an international organisation dealing with illegal trade in animals.
Called him last night, discussed at length...found the information rather comforting.
Glad to know someone took the road not taken and emerged unscathed.... He took a course in biology in1997....he assures me that opportunities abound today...much more compared to 1997so, I shouldn't worry!
Today......Turns out that, his mom is a mutual friend of my parents. Just Approached her for further information about the path her son took, and she says she will help talk my mum out of her obstinate opinion...yooohooo... I have another ally in my cause!!!