Blaubaer wrote:Happy New Year! I thought I should provide an update.
My boyfriend's really rather nice, even though he seems overly bossy sometimes. His whole family's a bit like this, so I think it's just their way of communicating.
Anyway, he did come around eventually. Partly he was upset because he was afraid that I was giving up on my career so I could live in the same country as him again and he didn't want me to give up my dreams. So I had to convince him that they're not my dreams anymore.
Now it's my turn to be unsure of his intentions, because he's saying he doesn't want to do a postdoc either when he finishes his PhD (also in math). After looking at job opportunities for him, it seems like we might end up moving to my hometown, where I might be able to get lecturing work instead of admin work while I make a career change because I know people. It's really hard to tell how things will work out, since it won't be time for me to come home for several months. I do have a new career dream, but it might take some time before I can make money from it and maybe I never will, so I'll need to find a job for the meantime.
To galactic, you're right that a mentor would help. I think it's perhaps too late for me now, but it would have been good a year ago. I've found that's the main difference between doing a postdoc and doing a PhD. Everyone around me is someone I don't want to embarrass myself in front of, and it's hard to find someone to ask if they think my research plans have obvious flaws.
On the other hand, I think perhaps the postdoc is intended as a test of your ability to work independently, and this just means I've failed at that. I thought that was one of my strengths but I was taking my PhD supervisor's guidance for granted.
Also thanks again to everyone for your advice. I really appreciate it, and some of the comments were really complimentary. I'm really not good at math and you can get a PhD with plain persistence and curiosity, but you probably won't believe me.
I'm curious...before you and your boyfriend spent all that time, and money on your Ph.D's did you first determine what opportunities, pay and demand would be for such a degree? It sounds like the prospects are not good, or am I wrong? And if this is the case, then the lesson for you (and others reading this) is to determine the ROI (return on investment) before pursuing a degree in a particular discipline. I hope your education loans are not massive...