Friday, January 22, 2016


I am angry. I am rarely angry but today I am.

I wrote today about how I use the title 'Dr' in my work life. It was personal about my neuroses and receding impostor syndrome, but in no way related to my belief that I don't deserve to use the title just because I had a tough viva and major corrections. Imagine my reaction when I read this comment:      
You shy away from the title? I find that hard to believe as you're actually one of those types that insert it into your Twitter handle so that every tweet has it. I find this post particularly amusing considering you had MAJOR corrections to what must have been a poor and flawed thesis. Let's be real, you're going alt-ac because that was your only option and you love that title.
At first I was upset, but now I am just indignant for a whole host of reasons.
  1. Firstly, how dare anyone judge the quality of someones work based on knowing that they got major corrections?!? In my case, major corrections is anything which will take over 4 weeks to complete. So screw you!
  2. Secondly, major corrections does not have ANY bearing on the quality of the work. Never once did my examiners say that my work was flawed and poor. Rather, my external had different expectations of what my thesis would be and so I catered to their suggestions because YOU HAVE TO! Another examiner could have led to another situation. And if it was flawed and poor, why then has it been accepted for publication?! So again, screw you!
  3. Thirdly, don't you dare conclude the reasons I went into alt-ac! You suggest that it was because I was a failure without knowing any of my circumstances or reasoning.  I went into alt-ac as a choice. My choice. I wasn't forced to. I wanted a break from academia. And nobody should think less of someone for that. Nor should you think less of someone who took an alt-ac job to pay the bills when academic jobs are thin on the ground. 
  4. Finally, I don't love that title and bandy it about to impress people. I earned it, it is my right to use it how and when I see fit. I'll say it again, screw you!
You commented as 'anonymous' which says everything. I believe you have left other comments calling me childish and whinging. I will engage in a meaningful debate/conversation, but mean-spirited and spiteful comments have no place in my blog.

If I have learned anything from writing this blog, it's that you have to stand up for what you believe in and for how you feel.


  1. Fiona,

    I'm sorry to see you're so upset but I do hope you can get over that lone, negative comment. It's unfortunate that people feel the need to comment anonymously on a public blog, but there are adversities in life and some embody that of a grumpy/rude commenter.

    Pay that person no mind. You are doing a tremendous job sharing your experience of a young academic/alternative-academic career. Your blog is interesting and inspiring. Good luck and keep up the great blog.

    Best, Justin Reash

    1. Thanks Justin.
      I'm not upset at all, but more angry and disappointed that there are people like this who want to belittle the achievements and honesty of others.
      I am currently happily enjoying a glass of wine and reveling in the awesome supportive power of social media!

  2. Good on you Fiona but the world has many of this type you've answered him now ignore and forget him

    1. Why are you assuming it's a him? I mean it could very well be, but I don't like that you're assuming the commenting party is a man.


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