I am from a poor Asian country and I completed my masters in math in July 2020. I really wanted to do a PhD in mathematics outside my home country as in my country there is too much politics and discrimination and quality of research is low. So, I prepared for 2 years (except a period of 6 months during which depression kept me from studying) reading many extra courses. I didn't worked for much time during these years. In 2022 I was admitted to a 1 year masters program with scholarship (but no PhD program) in a European country X. Due to medical issues( depression came back, severe accommodation issues)I failed the master degree. I had to submit a lot of documents to get the visa and arrived in the host country late after classes had started.

I again tried to get admission for a 1 years masters and got accepted, this time without funding in the same European country. I inquired if the language of instruction is English and they assured me it is. On day one of classes I came to know that the language is not English though, but the official language of that nation. I have learnt that language but not up to B2 level, so I had to translate a lot and refer to a lot of books for reference in English. Due to this my speed of learning became slow and I dropped out in December of last year as I wasn't confident enough to pass the course.

I am thinking of applying to masters degree in Europe again in some other nation (Mathematics 2 year masters). I am stressed about my future because I don't have much work experience( some part time teaching, some restaurant work, some online form fillings and user testing) and not passing the course will be regarded badly in my country.

Is going back to Europe to get a masters degree funded by my family a good idea?Given that I am 26 years old or am I chasing an obsession?

**I don't have much guidance in real life unfortunately and career councilors are not available in my country. **

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    I'm sorry that you're in the situation, but this seems to be a personal matter/depends strongly on individual factors that isn't suitable for the scope of this site. Please try to find a professional, real life counsellor to help you. Commented Jan 18 at 14:04
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    Please make your post shorter. Commented Jan 18 at 14:04
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    related/duplicate academia.stackexchange.com/questions/19424/…
    – Sursula
    Commented Jan 18 at 14:58
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    "I enquired if the language of instruction is English and they assured me it is. On day one of classes I came to know that the language is not English though, but the official language of that nation. " Nothing to loose from your side, please write an email to the head of the course complaining that you received wrong instructions. Ask to be allowed to take the exam in English, or at least to have refunded your tuition fees, at the very minimum. Make a fuss, because they put you in a very uncomfortable position.
    – EarlGrey
    Commented Jan 18 at 14:59

2 Answers 2


I will be rather direct, I do not want to be mean so if my words offend you please consider me a rude harsh person and do not transfer on yourself my rudeness. If I am rude is not because you are something, is simply because I am rude.

Why do you want to do a PhD if you have already a big burden of stress? Pursuing a PhD is a highly stressful activity. See this non-peer review article https://blogs.lse.ac.uk/impactofsocialsciences/2022/01/12/is-doing-a-phd-bad-for-your-mental-health/

You really really really want to pursue a PhD, but you probably have no idea what a PhD is. Additionally, although investigating the "far away" thinking is often useless, I still wonder what is your plan, what will you do with your PhD? Do you want to be a researher? a teacher? a professor? What is your motivation to become a Doctor in Philosophy in Maths?

Since your current boundary and initial conditions are dysfunctional, especially because of your dependence on your family, I suggest you to build up a solid financial basis. Get a job where your Master title is put at use (financial sector, maybe?), work for 3-4 years, save enough to be independent from your parents'money, then reassess your situation.

Do you think Math is a young' person game? There are many paths and each one got its own ... see this article "Mathematical Menopause, or, A Young Man's Game?" for some food for thoughts.


If you have a masters already, I'm not sure why you want another. But it seems to me that the more important issue is to deal with health, family, and emotional issues before you make serious decisions about the future. If you can get that under control then you will probably make better decisions.

Beyond that, an analysis of why you get rejections would be helpful. Perhaps there is a trusted professor that can help you figure out why that is, whether it is a matter of weak background or just inadequate application materials. That, also, will help you make better decisions about the future.

And, finally, figure out what your career goals are and try, with help, to find a path to that end. Or, find alternative career options that would bring a satisfying life. There is more than one way.

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