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Feel bullied in Postdoc

Hey, this sounds eerily familiar. I encountered something very similar within my first postdoc job. I stayed within my first part time postdoc job for 1.5 years and was eventually reduced to feeling very unhappy and miserable following a bullying supervisor who would bad mouth me at every opportunity. This supervisor made my life so very difficult. I obtained a second postdoc position at a more prestigious university and resigned from my first postdoc job and worked out my notice.

Sadly, I made the catastrophic mistake of putting the bullying supervisor as a reference who provided me with such a bad reference they withdrew the job offer a few days before starting this new role. I had to cancel my accommodation plans, lost money in the process which then put me into additional tumbling state of distress and despair. It took me several months (and a career break to Australia) to recover (and still recovering to some extent).

OP, please don't make the same mistake of adding this bullying supervisor as your referee.

I'm now channeling energy into my peer review publications to improve prospects and enhance my reputation beyond my awful postdoc experience. I'm trying my best to move on from that awful experience, but I do have flashbacks of how badly I was treated. In hindsight, I should have put in a compliant. But, I was in such a bad place, I literally lost the fight in me to take things forward.

I'm ok now though, absolutely loving my NHS psychologist position, so things have worked out for the best.

Big hugs OP. You're not alone.

How long after submitting minor corrections did you hear back?


Congratulations :) delighted for you!

My minor corrections were approved in 3 days to enable me to attend my summer PhD graduation ceremony. I think timing varies.

Best of luck

:( Revise and resubmit PhD thesis in 12 months!!! Success stories?

This post brings back memories ;)

Congratulations Dr butterfly and sending all my best wishes to those of you waiting :)

Following my r&r, I was kept waiting for my results for 5 months without any idea what was going on or why there was a delay (despite my efforts to find out). The wait nearly broke me as I was left to cope alone, but thankfully it was good news. About to start my second postdoc job so the verdict had no impact on job prospects whatsoever.

Best of luck x

Research Fellow interview!

Hello forum,

Lots of things have happened over this year!

Well following on from my PhD dramas and eventually completing and graduating with my PhD, I'm pleased to say that I've just accepted a full time Research Fellow position at a London based university. Yay. I will be resigning from my current research fellow position.

I hope this shows that obtaining an R&R verdict isn't the end of the world. IT IS possible to obtain postdoc jobs! :) My R&R verdict has never come up in any interviews so hope this helps any PhD candidate out there fearing the future because of major corrections or R&R verdict.

Looking forward to completing my practitioner doctorate next year......

Keep going PhD folks............

PhD Resubmitted: How Long Before Examiners' Report?

Congrats Locke

5 month wait (very unusual with no explaination for the wait- seriously was going out of my mind with worry, but the wait had everything to do with my busy external examiner), email from postgrad officer, minor corrections verdict, 3 months to fix corrections.

Can be done

Happily childfree?
Happily childfree?

This article seems very relevant to this post. Also had me in tears as was virtually spot on! http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/savvy-auntie/201201/my-secret-grief-over-35-single-and-childless. Taking each day as it comes...

Happily childfree?

Quote From marasp:
I noticed that the childfree groups on FB are full of academics. It must be an academia-related epidemic.

I've come across several female childless Profs (including my current sup). One of them during my PhD used to frequently comment and complain about the length of time involved with maternity and paternity leave for academics with children, yet, childless staff are not usually entitled to similar leave entitlement of similar duration.

One of my trainee psychologist friends recommended freezing my eggs this year (oh dear, as it come to this?!) and I guess there's always sperm donation and adoption. Simple fact is that I don't have the resources to cope with a child and there's no way I'm bringing a child into my current living environment (living with dad and brother to save for a deposit). Pretty embarrassing really! :S

Happily childfree?

I'll be 34 early next year and increasingly think about children etc. I'm very aware that almost all of my school friends are married and/or with children and it's starting to sting a little. Not sure how the future will pan out, but I guess if I really want to have children then I'll need to make some changes to my current situation (and sharpish). Meeting the wrong sort of men doesn't exactly help matters and if anything deters me even more from relationships.....

I'm childfree due to a breakdown of a very long term relationship and subsequent reluctance to find a new relationship. I would love to have children, but I don't see that happening in the near future. Trying to stay optimistic, again, not always easy. We shall see.

New job, research, and a long wait

Congratulations on the new job Marasp.

At least you have some idea when to expect your result! I submitted in August with an expected Nov result date, which turned into December, then mid January, with no explaination as to why. :( Got there in the end and now up to my eyes in postdoc stuff and lecturing. IT IS possible to pass after this nightmarish phase. All the best with the wait- try and keep busy x

I was in a similar situation Marasp, ie working in a poorly paid position before starting my current posts. I just handed my notice in and left it at that. In hindsight, probably should have provided them with feedback as they treated their staff terribly, but not sure they would have taken any notice to be honest.

MRes after MSc ???


If it helps, I completed an MSc in a specific part of psychology followed by a MSc in research methods (similar to an MRes) at UCL. I self funded both of my MScs. Both MScs compliment each other really well, first one provides stage 1 in a professional training pathway and the second included detailed research methods training to support future professional training (and/or a PhD). I then obtained a PhD scholarship (+3 esrc scholarship) and obtained my first postdoc post immediately after PhD graduation. I'm now completing stage 2 professional training following from the stage 1 MSc training (and using skills from PhD etc to support my professional training).

In my experience, possessing multiple MScs seemed to improve my prospects rather than tarnish it!

Can I submit PhD thesis without supervisor's approval?


I was under considerable time pressure so there simply wasn’t time for them to provide detailed feedback. I also had to pretty much rewrite the entire thesis in about 3-4months (ie 100,000 words) which required me basically isolating myself and working really long hours to complete it in time. I was working shortly after my viva and my motivation was very low after viva, so progress was slow. My own fault perhaps in leaving things to the last minute!

I knew if I kept in close contact with sups, I would panic, so I needed to stay positive and just get it done by working independently. It obviously was a massive risk, one of which I wouldn't recommend at all, but I pulled it off :) Just before resubmitting my thesis, I knew the content was strong enough and my sups knew that it was unique enough and worthy of a PhD given length and complexity. Sups provided me with enough help (which they stated towards the end) so their was a reluctance from them towards the end.

However, the fear of an MPhil or outright fail was a very real fear and I was in tears before the viva expecting that outcome. The 5 month wait after the resubmission just confirmed that something was wrong- but luckily for me, there was nothing wrong with my thesis and obtained my PhD shortly afterwards.

I knew my sups would have really affected my anxiety levels, so I requested that they not attend. Sups probably hated me during the process, but I got through it :) Sups helped with examiners. No real support with the stress of RR and/or the waiting game. It IS possible to get through it! :) Took massive strength to cope with it all alone (pretty much!).

I'm just so pleased it's all behind me! I’ll never forget it! :) Everyone had pretty much given up on me at university, but I kept on fighting! :)

Onwards to completing a much less stressful professional psychology doctorate :)

Can I submit PhD thesis without supervisor's approval?

Due to pressure to submit within a specific time frame, I submitted without my sups approval and obtained the resubmission verdict. Unlike the general conclusions on this page re R&R, I wanted the R&R verdict as it provided me with a second chance to reduce my thesis to 100,000 words. After a long wait after resubmitting, I received minor corrections verdict, submitted corrected thesis within 2 months (again without sups approval), obtained my PhD shortly after submitting corrected thesis and started my postdoc research job a week after graduation. R&R isn't the end of the world.

PhD number two - an experiment of merry madness!

Hey :)

Wow, I couldn't imagine taking on another PhD. All the best with it.

Following my PhD, I'm half way through my professional doctorate (ProfDoc) in psychology and can appreciate your questions re undertaking a second doctorate. Although my ProfDoc is in some ways, very different from a PhD, I'm finding it easier to cope with as I've seemed to have picked up vital skills from my PhD to pull me through (ie process, writing, being able to manage multiple pressures and I have some useful understanding into vivas etc), so seem to managing ok. I also have the added the bonus of completing a PhD/doctorate, which is wonderful for any dwindling motivational or confidence crises and all round boost to self efficacy. I'm therefore able to remove myself from all the anxiety shown by my fellow ProfDoc candidates who seem to be stressing over their forthcoming submissions and vivas. I know it's not going to be easy, but I definitely more calm and at peace with myself having successfully completed my PhD and seem to be able to work through these interim assessments without any difficulties. I try to contain my anxieties and PhD experiences as much as possible, but I think it definitely helps having some experience of what's ahead for doctoral study.

Also, the delays with marking and surrounding examination with my PhD revealed how unpredictable and uncontrollable doctorates can be, so I'm trying not to pressurize myself into completing by next year. Having said that I'm hoping to finish by Sept 2015 but that will depend on my ProfDoc thesis and other challenges. Fingers crossed.

Best of luck OP.

I resubmited my thesis

Hey Marasp. Of course I remember you! :)

Aside from my hellish wait for examiners verdict following my resubmission, I got through it with no problems and graduated soon after. It IS possible to obtain a PhD after a resubmission. . My viva was also in 2011 and with all the waiting and delays, I obtained my PhD in 2013. Despite the delays and journey, I started my postdoc research fellow position days after my PhD graduation, so my resubmission had no impact on career progression (thank God!).

Wishing you all the best.

Massive congratulations for getting through it and submitting.

Send as many PMs if it helps. I can totally appreciate the unique stressors entailed with this resubmission process.

I sincerely hope they inform you of a decision shortly.

Thinking of you! x