Having a wobble :((3 Posts)
I'm meant to be starting a degree in primary education in a couple of weeks but the closer it gets the more I don't want to do it. My dd is 3 and I just feel like I'd be choosing the degree over her- I'll have a long commute so will be leaving for uni before she wakes up and getting home after she's gone to bed. I'm an absolute mess. I don't want to leave her, I have depression and she's the only thing that keeps me going. It wouldn't be fair to her if I fuck off every day for 3 years and end up missing everything. I don't know what to do!
This is your fear talking, I think you know this.
You will not be out of the door 'every day' or even every week day during term time. Most Unis have 12 week terms, many only teach the first two with an exam period after Easter. So, your working weeks are 24-36/ 52.
Add to this that most Unis have a "reading" or "research" or "non-standard teaching week" each term, so for up to three of those 24-36 weeks (can I just say that it's really really unusual to teach the whole 36 weeks, the most of any institution I've worked in is more like 28 weeks) you won't have to be on campus for exact class times but more likely will have group or individual research work to do for a piece of work. Add to this that many individual modules will have an additional week 'off' teaching either for exams, presentations or for individual tutorials.
Within the teaching weeks left, you are unlikely to have more than 15 hours of contact time, i.e. 15 hours where you absolutely have to be in a specific place at a specific time, the rest of your time will be reading and research that you will be able to do a lot of from home. You could easily get to the library and get home in time to see your DD. It's also standard to have all of Wednesday afternoon off (for society and sports activities) and most timetabling will attempt to be sympathetic so you'll probably get a whole day where you aren't on campus for classes at all (but in which you should be doing your reading and research, class prep, note conversion and assignment work, obvs.) You could stay at home for this day, if you have been organised and got what you need from the library. In addition to this, most Unis have extensive electronic libraries which you'll be able to access from home.
Doing an undergraduate degree is really workable for the age that your child is. In fact, I have quit my lecturing job to be a full time student while my children are small (1 and 3). This is totally strategic on my behalf - I wanted to find a way to further my career which was sympathetic to family life.
Plus, and I mean this kindly, keeping your mum going is a bit of a burden for a three year old. Perhaps a clear sense of purpose and direction which is sympathetic to your parenting but allows you to invest some of your positive identity away from your role as her mother would be really useful.
Don't let the depression take this off you.
Which uni at? You may find there isn't as much using hours as they suggest, plus hopefully you can arrange your placements closer to home. It might be doable!
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