Law School Discussion

"Family time" v. law school - please share your stories

"Family time" v. law school - please share your stories
« on: December 21, 2006, 10:58:38 PM »
How much "family time" does a 1L have?  Does it get any better once you're a 2L?  Any personal experiences you might have to share would be most appreciated.

Re: "Family time" v. law school - please share your stories
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2006, 03:45:55 PM »
I just completed my first semester...I've got a significant other and his daughter is here on weekends.  Aside from right around finals, I was able to treat 1L as a job. Get there by 9, leave there at 5, occasionally take work home.

I should add: I'd been a writer/editor for 8 years before coming to law school, so writing and research wasn't as big of a time suck as most people found it to be. (I got an A on my first memo, too, so I know my relatively quick completion of it didn't harm my grade.)

Do remember: Many of your traditional-age peers spend a good amount of time drinking (including preparing to drink, actually drinking, traveling between bars to maximize drinking variety, then heading to all-night restaurants to stave off the hangover, then recovering from the hangover anyway) and negotiating hook-ups. You, in all likelihood, will be spending that time with your family. Especially if you do not move to go to law school -- you won't need to spend time negotiating a new city, making friends, buying curtains.

I found I actually had more "family time" while in school than I did while working...your mileage, of course, may vary.


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Re: "Family time" v. law school - please share your stories
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2006, 04:26:00 PM »
The answer to this question is like the answer to most question in law school...It depends.

I'm married and live about 2 hours away from my law school.  Because of her job (she pulls in about $70k), we can't relocate to where my school is, so I live on campus.  I stay on campus about 4 days a week and live at home the other 3.  It varies depending on what is going on (memos, finals and such), but for the most part I'm able to keep to the 4/3 split. 

For me and the wife, It is important to stay in regular contact with each other as much as possible.  She's on my IM, so if I'm in class, she can get a hold of me.  We also talk on the phone at least three times a day and when I'm home, she gets most of my attention (my dog needs love too).  The key, though, is to get the spouse involved as much as possible.  I had mine help me study for finals and included her in a lot of what was going on and it prevented her from getting mad at my focus being on work all the time. 

The previous poster is also correct that the majority of your peers will be out drinking and trying to hook up.  So the free time is definitely more than you may have heard it is and should provide you with a decent amount of QT with the significant other.

Good Luck.


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Re: "Family time" v. law school - please share your stories
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2006, 02:06:30 AM »
It's true how much time you spend on class as a 1L depends on what you expect to get out of the experience.  Like another person said, I also treat it as like a job.  I leave my house at 5am for a 2 hour commute, had 3 hours of classes a day and spent about 4 hours studying at school before leaving campus at 5pm to get home at 7pm.  My wife would usually have dinner made and fed our infant son, we eat and spent some time together before she and the baby go to bed.  After which if I need to catch up on some school work, I would. 

I only spent about 4 hours a day studying instead of the 10 my classmates spent, because that's all the time I have.  YMMV.