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Uni course vs home demands WWYD?

(18 Posts)
ibangthedrums Sat 23-Oct-10 13:03:47

Hi eveyone

I am doing a REALLY intensive MSc which bascially means me studying or at uni Mon-Fri with the DC in childcare. I will also have three 10 week full time placements over two years.

I am only actually in Uni 1.5 days and study at home the rest of the time. We decided to do it like this so I would still have most evenings/weekends free for DH/family time.

I am really enjoying the course and it is the start of a whole new career. However, DS1 is not settling in pre school and we get hysterics or at the very least sad silent tears every morning and he keeps asking for me to pick him up rather than nusery (he goes there in the afternoons).

I am relying alot on DH to help out and he works approx 45hrs per week so often has to start at 6am to compensate for days when he has to do pre school drop off and goes in late. MIL also helps out loads just to faciltate my uni attendance.

I feel like I am being totally selfish and I should give up the course and go back in a few years when things are more settled (perhaps at BSc level). On the other hand I feel I am really lucky to have this chance and don't want to give it up and not get the chance again, esp as the NHS pays the course fees at the moment.

I hve spoken to Uni and whilst sympathetic they have said there's not alot they can do to help!

Can anyone give me some words of wisdom?

reddaisy Sat 23-Oct-10 13:16:56

How old are your children?

I would definitely stick with it as you have started on that path and I'm sure everyone will adjust to the new routine in time.

I realise you have to do a lot of studying in your own time but are the commitments of the course any different to working full time?

ibangthedrums Sat 23-Oct-10 19:20:48

DC are 1 and 4.

I know it is just like a full time job but this feels like a choice so the guilt is worse - esp as I only want back part time after DS1 was born so not used to not being around full time.

I gave alot of thought to whether to do it this year and it just feels like the wrong decision in a way (heart talking) but on the other hand I should just get on with it (head talking).

Mspontipine Sun 24-Oct-10 00:13:40

Are you using all these reasons to give up?

Though you say you are enjoying your course your first sentence was "I am doing a REALLY intensive MSc"

I say this because for similar reasons as you I have quit uni course started this month. I have just emailed my Access tutor, yet another person to explain my reasons to. It goes on and on and on. Every day since I quit I feel like crying. I thought I would feel huge relief but I don't. I feel sadness and grieve for that person who started that course, thought she could do it then panicked and ran before even giving it a chance. I don't cry though as I keep telling myself I did it for the right reasons - my stress levels, my sanity, my family.

But I'll never know. I never gave things chance to settle down into another familiar routine - we all struggle with change but it soon becomes common-place. What feels so hard now may seem so much easier in a month or two. Are you scared you're not up to it? Because I was. But now what haunts me everyday is not that I wasn't up to it but that in fact I probably was but now I'll never know.

Going now.


Give it time.

onadietcokebreak Sun 24-Oct-10 09:39:56

I think it's only natural to feel like it's not worth it. Been having the same conversation with myself-not helped by the fact I am very broody.

My ds has been similar in not wanting to go to nursery. He used to go no problem. Plus I only actually get him to myself-well acually I have dscs too- one day a week as he spends 2 days with his dad.

onadietcokebreak Sun 24-Oct-10 09:40:58

MsP if you think you have made wrong decision can you go back?

ibangthedrums Sun 24-Oct-10 12:06:54

Thanks everyone for the advice - we all seem to be having the same issues!

Ons DCB - what do you think you will do? What are you studying?

MsP as OnaDCB says can you go back? Alot of what you say resonates with me. I do worry I am not up to it, or at least need to do loads of work to get to MSc level - I simply cannot give it all my time as others on the course are doing.

It is also costing a fortune is childcare which is not good either. I wish the Uni could could compromise and let me do it over 3 years rather than 2. I took time out of work to spend more time with the DC and now I seem to have lost that totally.


onadietcokebreak Sun 24-Oct-10 13:25:24

Hi I am doing a social work degree. This is 3 full days in uni- no free periods from 9 to 4 or 5. Other two days spent on placements.

Think I will Stick with it and see how I go. Finances means we are better off me being a student.

Also left work to spend more time with son. Seems like I'm spending less but he will have a mum with a reasonable career who isn't on the poverty line.

hockeypuck Sun 24-Oct-10 13:36:01

Hi, I had a similar dilemma a couple of years ago and while I can't advise you what to do, maybe my experiences will give you a point of view.

I starte an intensive MSc when my DCs were 1 and 4 and like you thought of giving up. I decided to deal with it, by taking things a week (and sometimes a day) at a time. I would think - can I do this today? is it manageable? will the kids get through this? will I get through this? and tried not to think of years down the line.

To cut a 3 year story with lots of wobbles and second thoughts short, I passed the MSc with flying colours, I got a distinction, the children gradually accepted it an learned to enjoy their childcare and I got the very competitive funding place to do a PhD, paid for four years. When I finish I'll be in a much better position to raise the children than I would have been had a given up - not to mention the inevitiable resentment I would have felt to people around me and myself for not giving it a go.

When I am with the children I am properly with them, playing, going to the park etc and because I am doing something to fulfil myself and bring in some money (and more in the future), I am a happier mother than I was when I wasn't doing it and was working in a part-time job that didn't fulfil me.

I'm sure that had I made the other decision to drop out, I would still be able to tell you something positive about that - so I am not telling you to carry on. What I am telling you is that if you take it a step at a time and treat it as a family change - one which you all play a part in, then you will find it more manageable.

Either way, I hope that you come to a decision you are completely happy with. :D

BOOsy Wed 27-Oct-10 15:44:37

It's a very tricky one. I wouldn't worry about DH or MIL, they are supporting you because they want to, and if they didn't they could always talk to you and say it's not really working. The only person who doesn't really have the option of negotiating with you like that is DS1, who does sound a bit sad. Is there anything you could do to make it better for him - maybe the promise of some special Mummy/DS1 time on the weekend, or always make time to read him a story in the evening? (not implying you don't do this already, just random ideas).

It does sound like a difficult decision between an investment in your career, which makes sense for all kinds of reasons, and spending a lot of time with DC, which again is something you only get to do once. I'm lucky in that I'm taking a very slow and not particularly stellar academic route, it's not all or nothing for me. Is there definitely no way that uni could allow you to do it over three years? It might be worth asking for a meeting to put your case for why it would work?

madwomanintheattic Fri 29-Oct-10 22:32:08

ask for a one year deferral.
re-start the course next year?

it doesn't have to be now or never - and by giving yourself a year you can work up your knowledge levels so that you don't have to spend m-f at uni. (lord knows what you're doing lol, i don't know any msc students that are there 5xdays 9-5 grin)

that's what i did anyway - i had to buy some time.

ibangthedrums Sat 30-Oct-10 23:24:58

It is occupational therapy. They say it needs 40hrs or more a week and indeed it does!

DH and I have decided to give it the rest of this term and see how it goes. Just handed first assignment in so that will tell me how well I am doing. Good advice to take it day by day.

DH took DCs to his mother's today and DS1 totally lost it and pleaded with me to go. Screamed and screamed. He has never done that before and usually I don't get a second thought when he going to see MIL. I wish I knew what was going on in his head!

madwomanintheattic Sun 31-Oct-10 18:01:45

sounds like good decision to give it a term. the dcs will be more settled anyway - and as long as you are keeping to your hours and not trying to study whilst you are with them they should come round to the fact you are coming home/ to collect them etc. grin

hope your assignment marks are good x

everyone needs a good ot.

ibangthedrums Mon 01-Nov-10 22:50:01

Was talking to a friend about all this today and she said she had noticed a change in DS1. He used to go off and play with her DS with no trouble, but now he always wants to be close to me and won't go off on his own.

If I expected probs it was from DS2 not DS1. This has totally floored me.

madwomanintheattic Tue 02-Nov-10 14:59:18

but he'll get used to it - it's a perfectly normal stage - you aren't around as much, and they are subconsciously a bit nervy about you disappearing. you aren't storing up any problems for them later - you are teaching them that you love them very much, and will always come back. smile

once they get the hang of the 'coming back' bit, you'll not see them for dust.

it's very early days to be worried about that sort of thing - it sorts itself out given time.

littleducks Sun 12-Dec-10 11:14:38

How is it going ibangthedrums?

EverybodyLovesWine Thu 16-Dec-10 11:27:29


It's IBTD following a name change!

Things are a bit better now and managed to get to the end of term having passed two assignments. DS1 has been better and now I may have the option of a year out so it has given me alot to think about!

DH has is keen for me to carry on as he is increasingly unhappy in work and if I were in work he could get a job with less pressure.

So, bascially a whole new set of problems - I am not normally this high maintance I promise!

snowfallinthesahara Tue 28-Dec-10 00:02:54

hello all
i have two-ds(6) and dd(11mo)
i was just going to start a thread with a similar q,so im glad i found this!
i started an nhs 4 yr bsc while 6 m preg(basically found out i was preg the day after i got accepted!!!)
and took a year mat leave at 9m.i am now due to go back in jan when dd will be 11.5 mo and older ds is 6.will be back 4 days this term,9-4
im worried about-
1)the early mornings.7.45 drop-offs,how much of a shock to the system will it be to them?(hated doing it with ds,but then again he was only 7mo when i went back to work).

2)how do you manage all the assignments with 2?
b4 dd was born,it was just ds and he was in bed for 7.30;dd now falls asleep by 9.30/9.45...which leaves me little time to do really terrified of not being able to do much at all in the nights.and this course def needs atleast 1-2 hrs every night.

i really really need some pointers for this one..

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