Law School Discussion

Thinking about leaving Law School.

Thinking about leaving Law School.
« on: January 17, 2007, 09:58:12 AM »
Is anyone else seriously thinking about leaving Law School? I have just completed my first semester and I am really unsure if I want to continue. The problem isn’t my grades – I’ve received two out of four, and they are really quite good – but I just don’t know if I want this enough. I work FT and study PT (what a misnomer – 4 classes is hardly PT) and the rest of my life just falls to the wayside. I just keep thinking “This isn’t what life is about.” Where is the time to eat dinner with my husband, walk the dog, catch a film with friends? There just isn’t any.

If I thought that the hard work ended after 4 years, I think I’d feel better. But I imagine there are few first-year associates working a 40 hour week. I have a full scholarship, which is one of the reasons there’s a voice telling me to stick it out, but another voice says “Why bother if you’re not totally committed.” I go round in circles every day with this. If I don’t maintain a B average I will lose the scholarship; in which case, I am done. I know I am not willing to incur $60K of debt (for this or anything else). A friend told me that if I wasn’t committed enough to pay for Law School, that answers my question. 

Does anyone else feel the same way – or does anyone have any words of wisdom?

Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2007, 10:18:29 AM »
I'm not surprised you're so busy with working FT and attending 4 classes. Sounds like hell. But your situation is particular, the typical law school experience isn't that bad. It doesn't sound like you dislike Law School, you dislike working fulltime and going to Law School part-time. If you have a full scholarship, then why are you working?

Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2007, 10:27:48 AM »
Because I have a mortgage to pay. And because my job (and the company I work for) is too good to give up. I am also 30, and married, and giving up work to study seems almost indulgent to me. But of course I am left with being pulled in 10 different directions.

Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2007, 11:42:53 AM »
I'm in a similar situation, married, attending school at night while working during the day.  I was fortunate that my work allowed me to drop down to 30 hours per week during school.  The ten hours goes a long way towards sleep and studying.  One of the things that helps with the marriage balance is I study at home and on the weekends, I make sure I eat lunch and dinner with my husband.  Studying is more efficient if you take a long break every few hours plus, there is a point of diminishing returns, e.g. you can study too much.  I also stop studying around 10:00 every night and spend a couple of hours with the hubby before going to sleep.  The program I am in does not meet for classes on Friday and last semester I noticed that Friday's I tended not do any school work.  This semester I am going to try and meet up with friends for dinner at least once a month on Friday night.  I am also going to hire someone to come and clean my house.  Overall, you have to learn to sneak in time with the hubby and friends otherwise you will go bonkers.


Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2007, 11:52:45 AM »
i'm 46 and gave up work to go to school full-time.  since i did both my undergrad and masters while working full-time, its about time i indulged myself.

especially if youre on a full scholly - i think a jd will still open doors whether you ever practice or not.  in three years you'll be 33, and done.  if you drop out, in three years, you'll still be 33.

you have a lot of life left.  i'd love to be 30 again.

hell, i'd love to be 16 again  :D

Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2007, 11:13:53 AM »
I agree rev.  I worked like crazy (and did a lot of volunteering) while I got my BA.  I decided to quit my job in order to truly be involved and part of my law school's community.  I don't regret it at all. 


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Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2007, 12:26:22 PM »
Oh man, I can really relate.  My last year-and-a-half of undergrad I was married, taking a full load (actually, more than a full load hours-wise) and working full time.  I can only imagine how much more difficult it would have been had I been in law school. 

That said, I think you should stick it out.  From what I've read here and heard elsewhere, it is quite normal to feel overwhelmed after the first semester.  Heck, most will tell you that the entire first year is like that.  I've heard of relationships ending as a result of couples not spending enough time together while one or both is in law school, but it sounds as though you at least have the advantage of having an understanding husband (unless there is more to the story that you're not telling us).

I'd say follow your heart, ultimately, but if there is any way at all that you think you could tough it out...stay.  I have a feeling you'll wind up regretting it one day if you don't. 

Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2007, 03:53:29 PM »
I can somewhat relate. I'm 33 and will be 35 when I graduate next year. My husband and I have made a LOT of sacrafices for this, but I never question whether it is worth it. But it still is frustrating that we spend so much time apart. I am fortunate to go full time, but something my Dean said to a seminar for non-traditional students really helps me put this into perspective: "There is LIFE AFTER B's." In other words, when you're a NT student, often you're doing law school as career enhancement, and your goals don't necessarily require you to be top 1% of your class. PLUS you have past work experience to offer future employers. It's OK to give a some weight to your relationship, and it's RIGHT to do so. I know that there are times that I COULD have worked harder to get better grades, but frankly, I'd rather keep my marriage together. But that doesn't mean you or I have to give up law school altogether, either. It's about balance and what you think is important.

Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2007, 12:39:34 AM »
i came back this semester with such a feeling of DREAD i considered dropping out. but, like you, it was due to the lack of having a life, not the fact i didnt like the courses.  once i realized that, i felt it was more importnat to me to restructure how i studied/make mroe time for myself then drop out of law school..

however, im also not married and not working full time so what do i know

Re: Thinking about leaving Law School.
« Reply #9 on: January 20, 2007, 05:25:37 AM »
I say stick it out. I'm around the same age, work full time, and I'm in the PT program. Sometimes the thought does go through my head that I"m missing out on life while working and going to school at night, but when I think about quitting, that seems a hell of a lot worse.

Focus on the positives, you have a pretty good situation. You do have a scholarship. I on the other hand have to go through the same thing and actually pay pak 150K in loans afterwards.  :D