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melonjar melonjar is offline
 
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Master's degree blues
Old 10-29-2013, 08:46 PM
  #1

I'm taking my first grad. class toward my Master's degree. I had no idea how hard it would be. Coursework + teacher work + being a mom + being a wife (neglecting this big time!) = MISERABLE!!!!!

I am run down, sick (literally) and overwhelmed. Because I'm run down I can't get caught up because I have to rest. I've had flu, major colds that put me out and total fatigue.

Reading 80 - 100 pages a week, then posting a response online, then replying other student responses over and over again is awful.

This along with my teacher observation this week (when am I going to prepare that lesson?)

It's all really too much and I'm rethinking the whole thing and realizing all grad. courses and all master's degree can't be the same. I know there are other degrees that do not require this work load. Ugh. Why did I take this route?

Thanks for listening to my vent. I don't know how I'm going to do it!

Are you getting your Master's? If so, what is your experience? Next semester I have to take TWO classes in order to get my loan!


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My advice is to slow down. You don't need
Old 10-29-2013, 09:41 PM
  #2

to do everything at once. Let the master's program wait a few years. Enjoy your family. If you are neglecting your husband and child so you can work and get ahead, what's the point? You are making yourself sick. To everything, there is a season.
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Old 10-30-2013, 02:27 AM
  #3

Funny that you posted this. I just finished grad school this summer and have never been more relieved!

This came across my facebook feed last night :http://joannarenteria.com/2011/12/13...his-hilarious/

By the way...it was awful while I was in it...and I finished my last two classes with an infant at home..but It was totally worth it. I've never been more proud than when my degree showed up in the mail!
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Old 10-30-2013, 03:18 AM
  #4

I worked full time teaching four different grade levels between two schools while completing my state internship. I took 1-2 classes a semester, and I had to drive 40 miles round trip to class that lasted from 6-9 in the evening. I got my degree in 2 years.

I was in the English department, not education, so I read and wrote papers constantly. I'm old, so no computers involved. That meant that I was in the library researching often.

I don't remember it being that bad, but I was young. Maybe I didn't know any better. I'm glad I did it early because I've gotten an extra $3000 a year since January of 1997.

You can do it!
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Go as slowly as you can.
Old 10-30-2013, 03:27 AM
  #5

I highly recommend taking classes as slowly as your master's program, district or state will allow. I did the same thing a few years ago. It is hard, but you can do it. In my district, it does make a huge difference in pay. That may be a worthwhile payoff for your family down the road. I did love my program and I am a very different, and much better teacher now. You can do it!


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Old 10-30-2013, 04:05 AM
  #6

I agree that it totally depends where you get it and what you get it in. My Master's was mostly busy work. I put in some extra hours on the weekend and spent an evening in class once a week. I also did it in my first years of teaching...lived with my parents still and didn't have kids to care for. When I hear about what other people have to do for their Master's it does seem unfair...not that mine didn't involve work, but it was not nearly as challenging as what others do. However, you get out of it what you put in, so hopefully you are learning a lot!

Do you get a stipend that makes it worth it? Are you learning a lot? I guess those are questions I'd seriously think about when thinking about if you want to continue. I know you CAN make it work. It's just a matter of if you want to make the sacrifices (time with family, health etc.) to make it worth it.
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Hang in there!!
Old 10-30-2013, 05:26 AM
  #7

I know its cliche, but if it was easy everyone would have a masters!

I just graduated in May this year and I always say the last two years were "rough"!! It was very challenging and I felt pretty similar to how you feel now. It is soooooo worth it at the end though. If you can make the sacrifices now it will pay off later. My family, hubby included were EXTREMELY awesome in supporting me in any way they could. With that being said I am pulling for you and hope you can stick it out however you know your limits and have to do what works for you and your family.

An analogy I liked that the school head told me when I talked to him about changing from the two year program to the four program (see I told you I felt the same way! I was going to slow down at one point too!): no matter which program you go with, it will still be hard and challenging. Think of it like taking off a band aid. If you take it off slowly it pulls the hair and still hurts (4years), pull it off quick and just get the pain over with (2 years)! For me that made a lot of sense!

Good luck with whatever you decide!
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Old 10-30-2013, 08:50 AM
  #8

melonjar, I'm a grad student too, but NOT a wife & mother yet. I honestly don't know how women in grad school & work who are mothers & wives do it all! I couldn't do it. How many years is your grad program? Aren't they usually 3 years?

I know my grad program warned us at the orientation meeting that for those who have young children, they should seriously consider not doing this program.
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Old 10-30-2013, 09:05 AM
  #9

As pps have said, all Masters programs are not created equally! There is an incredible difference between different programs, with some being more busy work and light assignments, and some being really intense and difficult and time-consuming. You need to decide if it's worth your time and effort to continue right now- maybe connect with someone who has taken the classes you will next and see if the load is as heavy as your current class. It might not be-- 80-100 pages a week for one class is a lot. Only you can decide if it's worth it to complete at this time.

That being said, I'm getting my PhD right now- carrying 15 credits, with three kids at home, no dh in sight, and working 25 hours a week. It's challenging for sure. And stressful, especially coupled with my undesirable living situation But to me, it's worth it and I will make it work.

(I did my masters the same way, years earlier, except I had a dh and no kids at the time... what a world of difference the kids make!!!)
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Masters
Old 10-30-2013, 03:03 PM
  #10

The first class is the roughest. It was for me, at least. I didn't think I would make it through that one and questioned my ability to make it through, but after that I figured out how to pace myself and just do it. I earned my masters in 2 years through an online program. There were times I felt like throwing my laptop out the window because I was so frustrated and tired. However, once you reach the end of your program and get the extra in your paycheck it does seem worth the time.

It's not easy, but you can do it.


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Gosh...
Old 10-30-2013, 04:53 PM
  #11

Thanks so much everybody.

Interestingly enough, while at work today I had a sudden panic attack! It lasted 45 min. with 6 -7 major episodes of uncontrollable crying and trembling. That has never happened before. So, doctor ordered the next two day off from work to recover and heal up. Much needed! This was a wake up call to evaluate what I'm doing and either make a big change or rework my routine to accommodate all that I am trying to achieve.

I hope that this course is tough because it's my first. I hope that after this semester things "feel" easier. I do want my Master's and I have put it off for 9 years. Now is the time.

Thanks again for the advice, suggestions, and opinions.
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I feel you
Old 10-30-2013, 05:09 PM
  #12

I am on my second year. Lat year I was starting a new job, grad school and planning my wedding. I cried...A LOT!!! I don't have children, but I became a VERY neglectful girlfriend/fiance/wife in the first year. My DH was SO supportive and he only needed to be reminded to do laundry and pick up the house every once in a while. (The tears helped.) This is my second year and it's not any easier, but I just keep reminding myself how quick last year went so this will be the same. DH and I wanted to be pregnant by now so that we could plan a baby around it, but since I am not I'm almost kind of glad. I'm not sure how I would handle that too.

Just remember, somethings have to give. But you have to be the one to figure out what is worth the sacrifice or not.
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