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Gcdv
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Join Date: Jun 2016
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Unhappy

Looking for advice on waiting. Any female scientists?

Jun 11th, 2016, 16:52 PM   #1
 
​I'm a woman scientist and 25 y/o. I graduated from university in May and found a job developing vaccines from the government.

While I'm entirely excited that my hard work has paid off I am entirely aware of the stigma in my field about getting pregnant. It's a "choose a career or a family, not both" sort of scenario. I just started my new job this month but me and my husband (28 y/o) have been wanting children for a while now. Any women in science/STEM here that could chime in for some advice?
 
 
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tinselcat
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Jun 16th, 2016, 14:46 PM   #2
 
Hi there

Congrats on your job I'm not a research scientist but my degree was in computer science and I work in the male dominated field of computer programming. My field sounds more progressive than yours (ironically) because noone seems to bat an eyelid when I tell them I'm a mother. My workplace let me come back part-time (3 days/week), and I am in negotiation for a new job which will also be part-time (4 days/week).

My advice:

- getting pregnant may take 2 weeks or it may take 2 years (it took us 3.5 years but we were older than you guys)... so don't put your life on hold during TTC
- someone has to blaze a trail to improve conditions for mothers in STEM/your industry & bring it up to date with the norm, perhaps that someone is you? after all, noone queries "oh, you're a father, you can't work here" right?!
- if you're really good at your job then it may make it easier to return - so my advice while TTC / WTT is to become the best you can be in your field (I don't mean work long hours, but work out how to add the most value in the workplace)
- you have 40 years of your life ahead of you to work, and only about 10-15 to sort out a family. I waited too long and ended up having to go down a painful IVF route. The family is a family.. the workplace will hire and fire as suits their needs (not yours). Love your family, not your job! xx

Hope some of this is useful to you xx
 
 

 
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BunnyN
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Jun 16th, 2016, 21:48 PM   #3
 
Not a scientist but I am an older mum. Only you can decide what is right for you. We had our first when I was 33. We now have 2 beautiful children and I am 14 weeks pregnant with our 3rd. I will be 37 when this one is born. In many ways things have worked out well for us. On the negative side we have also suffered 2 heartbreaking losses which I feel are quite possibly to do with my age. After our 1st was born I was so in love that I suddenly wanted a big family. Although I haven't regretted the small age gaps it is hard work and I have felt the pressure of time running out to have more than one. It also makes me a little sad that this is likely our last. Although everyone has to stop somewhere if I were a little younger I would feel that I could give it a break and still go back to TTC in the future if we felt we wanted but going back to TTC at 40 or older has a much higher chance of infertility and MC so I think our TTC days are done.
 
 

 
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advice, female, scientists, waiting

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