AllWeatherAgent

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So it seems that the majority of threads like this have been started by women ... so I figure how about one started by a guy.

I'm a pre-med student, looking to enter into med-school spring 2010. I'm 26, wife is 27. We've been married 5 years this May and are debating the best time to try to have children. She's the bread winner right now and will be until I'm done. I'm an analytical type who views the situation as a calcuated equation.

So, here's the deal. She wants children now ... I respect that, but she's also the one who has encouraged me to go back to school to pursue this dream. She was just diagnosed with PCOS and so all the possible complications involved with that play into her mind and I understand that. I see an already tough situation with me being in school full time and working full time only becoming more complicated with a baby added into the mix.

My concern is that I will not be the father that I want to be if we try and have children now. With me being holed up in a library somewhere or working, I just don't see how I can accomplish that (being a father who is actively involved).

I feel like it's a catch 22 ... we have kids now, but things are really and, in my opinion, unnecessarily difficult or we wait until I'm at least into my 1st year of med school and take the risk of her not being able to conceive due to complications arising from PCOS .....................

I guess ultimately my question is, is it an easier decision for a guy than it is for a woman entering the world of medicine when it comes to having children? After all, I'm not having the child, but I do consider all factors ... finances, etc.

Thanks in advance, sorry for the length.
 

LadyMoreta

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My husband is about to finish his fourth year of medical school, and I wouldn't say that time should be a major concern. There were some periods of time when he had to spend a lot of time studying or at the hospital on a rotation, but there have been other times when he had much more free time than I do with my 40 hour week.

I am a little concerned about your plan to work full time and attend medical school. Medical school is pretty much a full-time job. During some semesters or rotations, you might have the chance to do some moonlighting, or maybe get part-time or contract work, but many will require unusual schedules that most employers are not willing to work around. (Overnight call every three days means you are at the hospital pretty much every waking moment.)

If you choose to start a family during medical school, either your wife will need to work, or you will need to get on some government assistance programs. (This may depend on the program. Ours didn't offer enough financial aid to support a family, in part because we were required to submit my husband's parents' income information to FAFSA, which created a high estimated family contribution.)

As for our decision, we've chosen to wait until after his residency, or possibly late in the residency, to have a baby so I can stay at home. We are not facing the time limitation of PCOS, however, so I'm not sure what we would do in that situation. It might be worth it to use day-care if it came down to that or not getting to have a baby at all. It is a very difficult decision, and I wish you the best.
 

BabyPsychDoc

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We had a kid when I just started graduate school, though after I completed med school (yeah, I just can't get out into the real world:D). The timing was not great, but over the years it dawned on me that there is NEVER a great time to have a child. Having a child is always inconvenient in some way; they have colds, they wake up thirsty in the middle of the nights, they get in the way of the snuggly weekend morning, they puke all over the place, they are expensive to run... There will always be other things you could do with your time and money, and to a certain extent, it is a matter of sorting your priorities out.

having said that, I do agree it is more difficult to have a kid when you are a medical student than at any other time in your life. But...you are a guy. And it puts you into a more difficult position. If you insist that you do not want to have a kid now, and your wife is not able to have a kid several years down the line, this may seriously affect your relationship. Talk to her about the issues. Explain your concerns. See if you can work out a reasonable agreement ("eg, we can have a baby now, but I will need to be living in the library two weeks prior to Step 1, and you need to appreciate and accept that"). Discuss the practicalities: does she earn enough to cover the daycare AND have some money left if the kid goes to daycare? I do not know many people who successfully completed medical school while working their way through it, so be careful about it.

On the other hand, being a guy also means you are not quite so involved in the process. You do not have to go through pregnancy, labour; oh, yeah...you do not have to breastfeed.:idea: Which kind of makes it easier to disappear if you need to study.

I am a mom. And I am not there as much as I want to be for my kiddo, because I am the main breadwinner. And I have regrets about it. And I cry each time I hear "The Cats in the Cradle", thinking about my son and wondering what our relationship will be like in 20 years time. But, I would not give up the joy of seeing my child's smile at the end of the day for anything in the world. And when I do have some time, I always try to spend it with him as much as I can. I guess, we can only be so perfect.

Good luck!
 
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RosesRainbows

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This is not an expert opinion, I'm not even married, so take my advice with a grain of salt.

Because of your wife's health, I think it would be wise to have the kid now. Having one kid with a FEW years of his life where he didn't see you all that much is much better than having no kid at all. Plus, children don't remember the initial few years of their lives, so you'll have more time to see the child when he (or she) can actually remember you.
 

xanthines

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I agree with BabyPsychDoc, there's no easy time to have a kid. When is it easier? Applying to med school? In med school? During residency??

If it makes you feel any better, I know several medical students that have kids in school and they seem to be OK. I know several MD/PhD students with more than one kid. One student has 3! Talk about having no time!!

Also, most med schools are also pretty amenable to leave of absences (for a short while) to take care of family stuff.

-X
 

MD Helper

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We had multiple friends, especially slightly older student (like you) with kids in med school. Plan on living very modestly and you'll be fine, assuming you don't live in an insane cost of living area (NYC, Boston, San Fran, etc).

Just my $0.02.
 

Millville4Life

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My husband will be starting med school this August so I have no idea about how it will really be. But we already have 2 kids and are planning on having our third when he finishes his third year of med school. It will be rough having kids while he'll be so busy but when is a good time to start having kids? Something will always be going on in your lives and there will always be an alternative to starting your family. Whether it's school, work, or traveling. If it feels right, don't put it off. It might be hard but if you wait too long, you might miss the chance.
I hope this helped. Good luck.
 

veggie lee

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I am married to a 1st year med student and we are planning to start trying to get pregnant during 4th year. That way I can stay home with the kiddo while my hubby earns the big bucks in Residency:laugh: Anyways, the reason we are waiting is mainly financial. We have some consumer debt we need to pay off and once that is done, his income from Residency should be enough to support us. He is 30 and worries about being an older dad so we usually revisit this topic about once every few months. My thing is that it's very important for me to be home with my babies atleast for the first few years...hopefully longer. Also, I am only 25 with good health and feel that waiting 2-3 years is not too scary at this point. But, enought about me...I think you need to consider a few things...

1 Your wife's age and physical condition
2 Med school is not so all-consuming that your family must beneglected
3 You wouldn't be the first to do it and you won't be the last

Having watched my sister struggle with infertility, and being a woman I think that if she has a health problem combined with the fact that she is not super young now you need to seriously conseider that if you wait there may be no baby. Second, I would work as much as you can now to get yourself situated before medical school because I don't think it's very realistic to work a full-time job in med school. I imagine a partime gig at most and would say do that only if you are either a)a super genius or b)interested in a relatively noncompetative specialty. However, my hubby has lots of time for me oustide of his studies and is maintaining above a 3.5 GPA. I actually think med school could be a good time to start having kids cuz it doesn't seem nearly as bad as some people lead you to bellieve. Also, DO schools overall are more family friendly from what I understand. Some even have independent study like what my husband is doing, which allows a lot of flexibility and time for family. Whatever you do, be sensative to your wife's biological clock. She sounds like a kind and supportive wife..a rare find these days...she'll probably do what you want if you push it . So just be careful you aren't the reason she misses her window of possible fertility. Oh, also, try to get in touch with Drs who have already done this with kids. I know talking to a few wives has really helped me to see it is doable. Best of luck in everything.
 

SoCuteMD

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So it seems that the majority of threads like this have been started by women ... so I figure how about one started by a guy.

I'm a pre-med student, looking to enter into med-school spring 2010. I'm 26, wife is 27. We've been married 5 years this May and are debating the best time to try to have children. She's the bread winner right now and will be until I'm done. I'm an analytical type who views the situation as a calcuated equation.

So, here's the deal. She wants children now ... I respect that, but she's also the one who has encouraged me to go back to school to pursue this dream. She was just diagnosed with PCOS and so all the possible complications involved with that play into her mind and I understand that. I see an already tough situation with me being in school full time and working full time only becoming more complicated with a baby added into the mix.

My concern is that I will not be the father that I want to be if we try and have children now. With me being holed up in a library somewhere or working, I just don't see how I can accomplish that (being a father who is actively involved).

I feel like it's a catch 22 ... we have kids now, but things are really and, in my opinion, unnecessarily difficult or we wait until I'm at least into my 1st year of med school and take the risk of her not being able to conceive due to complications arising from PCOS .....................

I guess ultimately my question is, is it an easier decision for a guy than it is for a woman entering the world of medicine when it comes to having children? After all, I'm not having the child, but I do consider all factors ... finances, etc.

Thanks in advance, sorry for the length.

If you truly are planning on working full time while in medical school, you should read some of the posts in the Allopathic forum about this. Medical school isn't like college or most graduate programs - it's intended to be more than full time on its own. I've known a few people who worked. In general they were single people who didn't need much sleep in order to function - so they sacrificed sleep and social life for work. They still looked permanently exhausted, and usually stopped working during 3rd year.
 

MD Helper

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:eek:

I missed that part too. You can NOT work during med school, unless it is MAYBE part-time as the med-student library monitor or something.
 

Coastie

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Have babies now.

What do you do for a living?

If money is an issue, join the military. At least you'll have a decent stipend and no loans.

So it seems that the majority of threads like this have been started by women ... so I figure how about one started by a guy.

I'm a pre-med student, looking to enter into med-school spring 2010. I'm 26, wife is 27. We've been married 5 years this May and are debating the best time to try to have children. She's the bread winner right now and will be until I'm done. I'm an analytical type who views the situation as a calcuated equation.

So, here's the deal. She wants children now ... I respect that, but she's also the one who has encouraged me to go back to school to pursue this dream. She was just diagnosed with PCOS and so all the possible complications involved with that play into her mind and I understand that. I see an already tough situation with me being in school full time and working full time only becoming more complicated with a baby added into the mix.

My concern is that I will not be the father that I want to be if we try and have children now. With me being holed up in a library somewhere or working, I just don't see how I can accomplish that (being a father who is actively involved).

I feel like it's a catch 22 ... we have kids now, but things are really and, in my opinion, unnecessarily difficult or we wait until I'm at least into my 1st year of med school and take the risk of her not being able to conceive due to complications arising from PCOS .....................

I guess ultimately my question is, is it an easier decision for a guy than it is for a woman entering the world of medicine when it comes to having children? After all, I'm not having the child, but I do consider all factors ... finances, etc.

Thanks in advance, sorry for the length.
 

THP

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I agree with Coastie - start having kids now. You can continue to work while your wife is pregnant for 9 months - and save all of that money. Cancel your cable and cut any other costs you can.

As everyone else has said - there is never a right time to have kids. When you think you are ready, you definitely are. Actually, the first 2 years of medical school is a great time to have kids. I had more free time than I knew what to do with and I probably spent as much time or more with them than my wife did.

Life definitely gets harder - more responsibility with less free time as you move through.

Go to a school in an are that has a low cost of living and see if you can determine where the family friendly places are. Ask students during interviews, etc.
 
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