Wednesday, December 6, 2006

Here's the rub

I'm not usually very tolerant of other people's whining, but damn it, when I've got my own whining to do it's a different story! Feel free to ignore the following, although commiseration is always appropriate in these situations.

Okay. So I really really dislike having to work two jobs so that I can pay for tuition and rent and food, so that I can finish my PhD, and then the two jobs interfere with getting the dissertation writing done, so I end up paying more tuition and still don't finish. I mean, I try not to get upset when people I know tell me how hard it is for them to finish up when that's the only bloody thing they've got to do and their entire committee is down the hall.

Try doing it while working two jobs, I want to cry out indignantly. Try doing it after your supervisor and one advisor leave for other universities before you're done! Try doing it alone, with no support! But then I realise that all this makes me sound like a whiny loser, so I keep my mouth shut and fester internally.

8 Comments:

Anonymous MM said...

...those who can afford a position in a virgin or whore dichotomy remain largely unaffected by the consequences, whilst those who cannot are asked to give something up...

Don't give up–keep going little salmon!

07:24  
Blogger Collin said...

There are times when I wonder if it wouldn't be better for all dissertators to be in your kind of situation for a semester as they start.

My own situation was a little different, but I was a couple thousand miles away from my committee, and teaching 3 writing-intensive courses, as I finished, and because I left my uni before finishing, I had to pony up out-of-state tuition, driving me deeper in debt. I say this not to compare hardships (because I had some really supportive friends and mentors), but in order to say that, later on, when I had chances at summer stipends and a sabbatical, I knew how much of a luxury they were. Struggling through my diss situation made me a much more productive and efficient writer later on.

It doesn't make your present situation any better, I know, but I can all but guarantee that the struggle now will pay off in the long run. In the meantime, good luck with your writing...

cgb

11:00  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Forget about there is a reason for everything!

I believe from what little i have gathered about you that this is a dream that has been set in motion a long time ago.

So stay in motion, keep ur chin up! and know that there are people that love you.:)...And then of course there are people who wonder if there are really people like you who like the way you do with such words:)

Michael

14:59  
Blogger e-tat said...

So that's what whiny means, eh? Maybe it seems so to people who are not in the same postion. But from my position, where three part-time jobs don't cover the bills, and the writing veers wildly, unevenly between fine and fucked, voicing such thoughts sounds more like an attempt to gain recognition for the realities of the situation.

In your case it's clear that everyone loses if you don't finish, and that whoever makes decisions about deadlines etc. should have special dispensation for people in your position.

Do what you can, and let everything else fall by the wayside, including concerns about whether you finish or not. It's much less distracting that way.

02:48  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your "whining" - scholarly, reflexive discourse, as I call it - is not lost on many and is entirely justified.

Full time job, teaching adjunct at a community college, part-time job every other Saturday, family of four combined with a 37 mile, one-way commute to work all while being 70+ miles from Univ, advisor etc. If you don't already, read www.phdcomics.com - it helps from time to time ;-)

08:47  
Anonymous orange. said...

Dunno--I can well understand reasons to not express material difficulties publicly, but if noone ever did it, how would all the others being in comparable situations know that theres people going fighting through similar oddities ?
Theres this saying in Germany, geteiltes Leid ist halbes Leid, which won't help you, but which says that you help others--I'm sure.
And of course you'll make it.

12:42  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just take it one day at a time, be forgiving of yourself and stubborn. You can do it!

04:05  
Anonymous lilly nguyen said...

as a first year grad student, i love hearing from other people further along. so far, it seems like the PhD process itself breeds whining from the get go, so i'm sure you're not among the first to do so. ;)

i just came across your blog and i really love your writing style. will you presenting any time soon? i would love to hear you present on your research if you will be doing so in the near or not so near future.

20:09  

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