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Any single parents studying?

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#1 Nebula

Posted 04 December 2019 - 10:57 PM

I start studying next year and have no support network so it's just me and the kids (one special needs). I am wondering how you juggle it all, keep the house clean, keep the kids happy and spend that quality time with them and study all at the same time? My psychologist keeps at me that I need to stop fearing all the what ifs but I can't help it. I really want this to work but just fear it all becoming too much for me.

Any tips? Suggestions?

#2 IamtheMumma

Posted 10 December 2019 - 09:11 PM

I will be too. I'm really organised. I have an inside clothes horse and I wash twice a week and hang it inside. Bedding needs to be hung outside.

Menu plan or I buy the diet frozen meals from the supermarket.

I buy my textbooks for kindle or whatever app reader they require so I can read at night.

I keep track of everything and everyone via a calendar on the wall. I put all assessments onto the planner and I write in everyone's appts so it is up on the wall. I also do a duplicate on my laptop that syncs with my phone.


If I need to get an extension, I ask a few days before the due date. Usually places are very happy to help you out but not if you're asking at the 11th hour.

Create a reference list as you start. Any time you've used a reference, put it in a master list in the correct format. You can then copy and paste for future assessments. Referencing is the pits.

Take regular days off. Depending on what works for you, two days a week are study free and one of those days must have family fun time. It can be a trip to the park, a swim somewhere, playing with paint at home or slip n slide in the back yard. Something that is fun, active and stress relieving. My kids like it when we dance in bubbles. Whenever you have a success with your study, celebrate it with the kids so they see that you're studying is also having a positive on them. Mummy got 89% of her test - woohoo ice cream time to celebrate. Go family!

Except that sometimes, no matter how hard you juggle, it will all fall apart. You will survive. You will get back up, swear a few times and then get back at it.

#3 just roses

Posted 10 December 2019 - 09:22 PM

I was in different circumstances, but studying while working full time and I had little kids. So still pretty busy.

I'd make good use of end of semester breaks to fill up your freezer (and if you don't have one and can afford it, it's a good investment). Lower your expectations around cleaning. And carve out time to study. For me, it was late at night after the kids were in bed. But if you're a morning person, you might be able to get up before they do.

Also, I used a pomodoro timer pretty religiously. It's just a simple app that times short bursts of study for you (about 20 mins at a time) with a short break between each one. I found that kept me on track.

Finally, a friend who did a PhD gave me the great advice to have a list of different things you need to do, grouped by how much attention they required. So she had 10 minute jobs (referencing, for instance), 20 minute jobs (reading a journal article). That meant that when she had a bit of spare time, she was able to use it wisely.

I found that I just never had proper big bursts of time available and so it was important to make good use of the time I did have. That said, I wasn't particularly good at it and did still end up slaving to the point of tears over my final thesis.

Good luck! It'll be worth it :-)

#4 jkate_

Posted 10 December 2019 - 09:56 PM

Justroses has said almost everything I was coming in to say!

#5 Nebula

Posted 08 January 2020 - 12:49 AM

Wish me luck, I THINK I have all the supplies needed, kids ready, freaking out, hoping I will settle into a good routine and thrive

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