Feel like I just don't fit in :((3 Posts)
I started a phd a few months ago. I've wanted to do one for such a long time and after a lot of work & a huge struggle, I finally made it. Thing is, I'm finding it really hard to fit in and relate to the others. I live with DP and have a 4 year old DSS. We have DSS every other weekend and half the holidays and I really love spending time with him, going to parks, day trips or just general playing with trains etc. I don't drink and don't really like spending all my time in the pub. We go to church on a Sunday and when DSS isn't here, DP and I tend to just chill out, watch a film / go for a walk, or I spend time with friends who have children. I view my phd as a job; I try to keep my work in university as much as possible and try to keep my weekends as family / friends time. My colleagues on the other hand are very much in the student frame of mind. They spend every weekend getting drunk and constantly want to meet up to go to the pub and so talk revolves around getting drunk, their sexual conquests etc and there also seems to be that general (what I thought was mainly an undergrad) feeling of cbaness with certain aspects of the work.
I'm finding it really hard to fit in. Nobody wants to hear about trips to the parks / church / times spent on the floor playing. They seem to think I want to be able to lounge around all weekend doing nothing when actually I'd love it if DSS was here more often or if DP and I were in a position to have a baby!
Not sure what I want from this thread tbh. Just feeling a bit down and alone I also suffer from depression and having a bit of a bad bout at the moment so that's making things even harder.
Sympathies. In a similar boat myself with two DCs.
I have found a much more sympathetic and compatible cohort on Twitter and Facebook, in particular a PhD parents group. Happy to show you where.
Alcohol is a big part of academia and if you can you should try and join them in the pub when you can. I am teetotal too so I understand, but maybe meet them half way (for a lemonade ).
Thanks for your reply, it's good to know I'm not the only one. Thing is I feel weird about it all as I'm a stepmum rather than an actual mum. The others just expect me to see my stepson as a burden rather than a joy I feel like I can't really relate to parents who have their children around 24/7 and likewise I can't relate to most non parents either.
Re pub, I went out with them most nights for the first few weeks but it got exhausting constantly having to explain why I'm not drinking. I do go out with them occasionally now but I do feel rather awkward and like I have nothing to talk about.
Tbf our university chaplain has been absolutely wonderful in supporting me through this all but it's not quite the same as having someone you can relate to who's in the same boat is it.
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