Anyone working on a doctorate and feel like you want to quit?

Hi all,
I was diagnosed with breast cancer last September, about 3 weeks into the academic year. At that point, I was optimistic and excited to begin work on my dissertation proposal and I was starting my fifth year in my doctorate of education program. 10 months later and after chemo, surgery and radiation, I was initially excited to move on and "make up for lost time." That was a month ago, and now I just feel dread thinking about how I'm ever going to collect my data and write my dissertation  and have lost all interest in reading for my literature review. Sometimes I feel trapped and feel like quitting would relieve anxiety and pressure. But, what I'm worried about is that maybe this is momentary and if I quit now, I might regret it later. Other issues-- I'm planning to TA and my health insurance (which is really great) is through my institution. I can't take a leave of absence because I lose my health insurance, though I can go slower and "adjust the academic clock" because of my situation. There are accommodations and my advisor has been supportive, so those are not problems. It's more a matter of self-motivation. So, just wondering if anyone out there has experience with trying to do their dissertation through their cancer treatment and shortly thereafter? 


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  • mort85mort85 Community Member
    Unfortunately I cannot speak to working on my doctoral degree while undergoing treatment, but I am a cancer survivor that is now working on a dissertation, so I can only imagine what your going through right now. Treatment is hard enough, but do be trying to do this work as well is incredible. I noticed you posted this a while ago, so I don't know if you are still working on your degree or not, but if so I would simply keep plugging along and you will get there. Good Luck.