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Inferiority complex from friends and family

Unfortunately in my case it also involves parents. In my country phd students or phds are a rare thing to the point that a parent feels like everything you say is meant to put them down or show them that they don't know.

It could be that they perceive me as being proud. I cannot change that as am not that way - its a perception thing. I am contemplating resorting to just distancing myself from relating with people who react to me this way and sticking to my colleagues because that's about the only place one can socialise freely without people wearing their hats on their sleeves.

Inferiority complex from friends and family

Hello people,

Is anyone experiencing this?

I have found that being a PhD student or having a PhD makes those around you uncomfortable (parents, spouse/partner, siblings, friends). Like, you are not allowed to say anything. Its never taken for something you just said. If the same statement was said by a different person, it would get a more favorable reaction. Anyone experiencing this and how are you dealing with it?


Ph.D Failure and dealing with it

i had an almost similar experience and am a Dr. now. don't fret!

what i did was to get a medical letter from a doctor and a psychologist.

before concluding you are the issue... find out it you are OK. Those letters saved me and I was allowed to proceed . Luckily i wasn't doing a PhD that had coursework.

Another thing you could do is interrupt your studies (postpone) on medical grounds. This holds on any action against you for a while, while you get your bearings right.

Publish or Perish

Thank you all for your comments.
How was your week? Did you achieve what you set out to do? It’s been one long week – doing teaching and tonnes of admin work. I did get a lot of admin work done. It will be a working weekend for me.
Dunham and pm133 – your comments are largely presumptuous and I will not dignity each of them with a response, except to say that they do not add or take away from my experience as a woman in academia. It is obvious that you are very unhappy people. If this thread helps you exhale… you are welcome to do that here. I will not be following your comments.
Everyone else – thank you very much for your encouragement! Now let’s press on. This weekend I need to prepare for four classes and set 2 exams. My goals for today are:
1) Work towards my next publication by reading an article.
2) Prepare slides for 2 classes.
3) Set 1 exam.

Publish or Perish

Hi lovelies,
I’m back again. Can’t believe its been five years since completing my phd. You can all do it! Believe me! Superhard, but yes you can. I couldn’t have made it without being part of this forum. I have since joined academia and I am now at senior lecturer level. Teaching has been something else, after focusing on one topic for the six years it took me to complete my PhD (yikes! It still haunts me!) , the teaching world is a different cup of tea. For instance, tomorrow I have a class at 10am and have no idea what I will be telling them. Random allocation of subjects am not interested in but now am kinda used to it. One ends up teaching so much new stuff that one never really gets to publish original work. After three years, I didn’t quite like it so I decided to try industry: never again! Didn’t last the probation period! I didn’t realise there is so much politics in the workplace til I moved to industry. Politics in academia is somewhat bearable because – in social sciences – we don’t work that closely together. So… currently I am being undermined at work. Not getting any admin position and no academic progression either. The former I can do nothing about because I have never been a boot-licker. But maybe there is something I can do about the latter. My goal is to publish as many papers as possible so that in two years I can leave that annoying job by being appointed an Associate Professor somewhere. Age - I’m 34. Where does time go? Not married – but will be getting married soon. Starting a family is also on the cards… Gender – Female. My experience as a woman is that there isn’t an equal playing field for us. Society just takes, takes, and takes from you. We get little support be it on the home-front or at work. It is easier for the guys to progress at work because they get a lot done for them – dinner, laundry, baby-sitting - all they have to do is focus. I do not want to give up on my dream of being at the top of my field because of working in an unsupportive environment. I have come back here to look for support from academics, especially female academics, mature students and those writing up. We can encourage one another by cheering each other on, holding each other accountable and sharing the wisdom we’ve gathered along the way. Lets do this!

Hyper-critical supervisor - reality check needed!

my final supervisor - i had quite a few in my time - never looked at my thesis even once when i was asked to resubmit. i still passed. it was hard but... i just moved forward without them. i think its a good thing you are reading other thesis. you should be ok in the end in terms of the standard expected.

avoid taking this hyper critical supervisor seriously. just go to enough meetings as you need to prove you have supervisor contact. otherwise, forget her!

you can do it on your own. decide to be on top of your area and be an independent researcher.

try to supervise yourself. write a draft. keep it away for a day or two, then come back to it with the eyes of a supervisor. you can get a list of possible viva questions and try to ask yourself these in relation to your chapter. it worked for me.

all the best.

Dr. Jojo.

9 months left and feel I can't complete

hi guys.. am sure you'll all be fine: only believe.

i've been there.. a year on am still recovering... but looking back it was all worth it.

i found that overcoming self was the way i got through writing up. i depended on will power. not how i felt. i realised that i needed to finish this phd and move on.

it was hard.. but it came to an end - and successfully.

you'll be surprised by what you can achieve if only you believe in yourself.

hang in there. xxx

Depressed and demotivated..should I quit?

i dated about 4 guys during my PhD, which took about 6 years. 1st guy lasted 3 months, next one 1 year, next one was a phantom - am the one who loved him. this one lasted 3 months and i was so broken when it ended. my last breakup - with a guy i dated for a year- was in my last month of writing up, and i still wrote up.

what am i saying? there really is life after this guy. really!

am still single but looking back am glad my relationships ended. i ended three of them but was still deeply hurt by that. i tend to attract all sorts of weird guys. last one would try to cause me as much stress as possible so i couldn't finish my phd. i believe he was narcistic. lol the phantom one hurt the most - maybe because he ended it, though it wasn't really a relationship and i never saw this coming.

i locked myself at home for a week and decided to get over him and move on. it was painful yes, i cried, cried and slept but i did get up, dust myself and move on.

my number one break up strategies are:

1) never learn a man's number offhead - never! you can't delete it when it ends.

2) cut off all contact - even if its for a few months. what are you doing still looking at his pictures?

am also from a conservative Christian family. so i understand.

visit your local church and talk to the pastor about it. try to join a group in the church - any group. you might not enjoy it but you'll meet people and take your mind off things. buy lots of movies and always keep your mind busy if you find yourself alone.

finally decide to get over him. you deserve better - you deserve a man who loves you.


Dr. Jojo.

9 months left and feel I can't complete

its so doable. i wrote my entire thesis in 5 months after a horrendous viva. that included doing reading for the literature review. if you put your mind to it, you can have a draft in 3 months. once you have a complete draft, editing is a walk in the park.

my advice is:

1) find a way to shelve your other commitments - can you get a nanny? take time off your fulltime job if you really want this phd - even if its for the initial 3 months when you need a draft.

2) believe in yourself. you're the only one in the world who can deal with your data. am much as you want to hire someone, they should be there to supplement what you are already doing. not to replace you. no one was born knowing anything. they all learnt it. :)

best of luck,

Dr. Jojo

Minor corrections awarded following resubmission

OMG!!!! congratulations Pineapple!!!

Good thing you have started on publications - i just started on mine. Could have done it earlier but am glad i took a year out post-phd. i needed it to recover emotionally.

i was lucky to find a job before i knew the outcome of my phd but had to move countries.. to get into academia.

i just want to say that i'm really really really really (infitely) happy for you!

i think apart from you and i, only Laura has had a disastrous PhD experience and survived.

well done you! ignore the haters! no one can take it away from us now. :)

much love..


Waiting for examiners verdict (post viva)


thinking of you pineapple... hang in there.. :)

Publishing thesis as a book or articles

@docinsanity - thanks. i think i'll do what i think is best not what everyone else thinks i should do. its my 'academic' life to live..

Publishing thesis as a book or articles

@bewildered - in terms of job security, i have a permanent and pensionable position - so my job is quite secure. my HoD isn't that influential when it comes to getting promotions. all the HR need to see is three publications and three years of teaching since appointment.

ps: am so encouraged to hear am not the only one not publishing a book on my phd.

Waiting for examiners verdict (post viva)

hang in there. it'll all end - and end well. i got my phd result 3 months after the expected date.

Publishing thesis as a book or articles

hi all..

would you publish your thesis as a book or a series of articles?

all along, i had decided that on completion, i should publish my thesis as articles. partly because my thesis was on the kind of area that is dynamic - it keeps changing. a book would quickly lose relevance. secondly, i thought that publications would add to my publications record. i should at least be able to get three decent publications out of my thesis.

however, my boss (HoD at the University where i teach) has been insisting lately that i should publish a book. he's never seen my work. he just believesn all phds should be published as books.

which way do you think i should go?

i don't feel motivated enough by my thesis to concentrate on coming up with a whole book (as in redoing the thesis to make it a book). there is also an issue of marketability. i approached a publisher who thought my thesis area was too specific and that a book would do better if it were more general. i actually agreed with this publisher and decided to proceed on publishing articles after my 1 year break post-phd - which starts next January.

i have written two draft books on subjects am teaching. am just not that passionate about academia (my phd thesis especially hehehehe) - i guess - to write a book on my phd that haunted me for six years. at this point in my life, am happy just being a 'teacher'. after 6 years of research, the last thing i want is a big project.

my plan is to publish my chapters as different articles.

should i feel bad about this - as opposed to publishing a book that will only add one publication to my CV?

please advise?

Dr. J.