You’ve written a very thoughtful and honest letter. What you are describing is typical of many young people who have come from a difficult childhood. As a kid, you just had to go along to get along. Now that you are a young adult, you have the ability to reevaluate what happened to and with your parents and can make some new decisions about how you want to live your life. Art history actually wasn’t a bad choice. Learning about art can be a route to discovering alternative ways to look at the world. It may have served its purpose and you may now be ready to move on.
I’m concerned about the headaches. Yes, they could be caused by stress. But it’s also possible that you aren’t treating your body as well as you should. I hope you are getting a solid 8 hours of sleep every night and making good choices for food and exercise. If not, that’s the place to start.
Then I think you should go back to your counselor. Take your letter and this response with you. You might want to discuss whether it would be wise to take a year off from school to get some new experiences and to explore different career options. You might find some good ideas for broadening your experience in this article. Once you have a better idea about your own talents and goals, you will be more focused when you return.
Please stop being so hard on yourself. You’ve done a good job taking stock of where you are. Now it’s time to get busy and figure out your life’s direction. That task is easier if you give yourself some credit for doing as well as you have in spite of having parents who weren’t the best.
I wish you well.