I work in aeronautics as a structural engineer building large military UAVs. I can't really speak about software jobs personally but IMHO, aeronautical engineering isn't really as glorious as some people make it out to be. Sure, you get to work on some high-profile projects and use some fun software, but ask anyone in aerospace what they *actually* do and you'll usually hear something like "You know the X aircraft, right? Well on the wing there's a series of smaller Ys that do Z and I analyzed several of those" or "I designed the tooling fixture that locate the Ys on aircraft X". Sometimes you do get to do the "cool stuff", but that's usually not the norm and it takes a long while before anyone will trust you enough (i.e. promote you high enough) to design the important (read: cool) things. I personally like the challenges I get faced with and how much I'm learning, but that's not to say that software is any less interesting or challenging. Plus, unlike what your parents seem to think, aerospace engineers look at computers all day. CAD, simulation software, and Microsoft Office-type work is all we ever do, really (other than the other menial work of looking up specs or reading tech manuals online). Also, engineers aren't really people-persons. I'm an extrovert, but I have to go down to the shop floor to get any real human interaction (okay it's not all that bad, but you get my point). Also, more often than not, you're not going to be picking up a wrench or going into the machine shop and building anything. It's numbers work. That's why you get a higher salary than the shop guys. Plus, IMO, programming can be more stable. Aerospace is about having lots of money to do new things. It takes millions to build a simple airframe, so when the economy's good there's a lot of work to do. When it tanks (like in the US in 2008), there's a lot of unemployment. It's a roller coaster. The upshot is that stuff has to get made even in a down economy, so usually there's something in consumer products you can find work in. I'm not trying to make this sound unattractive, but just paint things a bit more realistically so you can get a better picture of what the choice looks like.
I love to develop software (mostly mechanics simulation software) because of the problems I get to try to solve, but I couldn't ever see myself doing that professionally. IMO, if you make your hobby your job, it can get old fast. Sure, some days you'll love to go to work and get excited about it, but on the days you don't want to do it, you have to force yourself to do it. I like to unwind by thinking about something other than work, which programming lets me do. However, it's obvious that enough people love it more than I do that they've made their career doing it. It's really all about what you'd rather do all day.