If you will forgive the DO student for looking through the MD forums, I'll tell you about my experience. I am a 4th year DO student, and when I started school, I had a 2 month old little girl. During the summer of my second year, literally the morning after I completed my Step I boards exam, my son was born. So, when I moved off to do my clinical rotations, I had a 2 year old girl and a 2 month old boy. What I found both in the first two years and in the last year of my clinical rotations is this: while kids are a LOT of work, they are also a built in support system. Some days, I feel beat, but all it takes is a smile from one of my children to make a rotten day into a great day. Sure, it is tough sometimes. Some days all you want to do when you get home from a long day of classes/labs/studying/ or a hard day on the wards is to go home and crash, but you can't because you have to give the kid(s) a bath or help put them to bed. But overall, it is not only do-able, but in fact, I find that I wouldn't want to do it without my wife and kids. Many single students say "I don't know how you can do it." I say "I don't know how YOU can do it." I have a support system that many other medical students don't.
thanx for your reply. i am also applying to DO school- NYCOM. i am thinking of having a baby and deferring for a year, or if my MCATS are bad taking a year to have a baby and take the test. does your wife work, or was she w/ the baby full time? i am interested in childcare/money issues. thanx.
She stays home with the kids full time. Loans can get you part of the way, but we also had both worked for a several years before I started school - through no choice of mine, but it worked out for the best. Still, with maxing out your loans, it is workable. There are a number of things you might look into as far as helping out.
1) Family. They may only help with a meal out every so often, or they may help by sending a couple of hundred bucks a month. It really is not much, but it is a great help. I am not saying you should lean too strongly on your parents/inlaws, etc., and I realize some families can't afford even this - and others just won't help. So....
2) At least in the two states I have lived in during my medical school career - Missouri and Ohio - they have provisions for professional students such as medical students and law school students to be accepted for such assistance as -
a) WIC (Women, Infants and Children) - can help with some of the staple groceries, including milk, cereal, cheese, and formula.
b) Medicaid - don't knock it. It is nice to know that your family is covered and that your expense is minimal.
c) at least in Ohio, if your family makes below a certain threshold income (including loans) and your spouse either works at least 30 hours per week or takes care of your child(ren) full time, they allow for med/law students to have food stamps and/or cash assistance. Very helpful, and I know that I will put back into the system WAY MORE than I am taking out, so while it is a little embarassing and humbling, I know that it is not an abuse of the welfare system. My family really does need the help. Try raising a family of 4 on the loan money that is left over after the school and the loan company takes its cut - that is, about 17,000 per year for a family of 4 before taxes.
Thanx for the great info Douglas. my situation is a little diff cause my husband will start crna school in 2 years and we will have to live of pure loans for 2 years. also, we will have to pay for childcare. not sure how that can happen cause in NY childcare is like $1200 a month. but i am glad to know that you are doing it and that yourkids are helping you. susan
I deferred this year so I could have a baby (I'm due in 3 weeks). So, when I start med school next year, I'll have a 10-month old and a 3-year-old.
Luckily, for us, finances are not THAT big of a concern. School in TX is pretty cheap, and my husband has a job that pays well. We should be able to support the family and have two kids in daycare without going too far into debt (plus we have savings we can dive into). I'm working through next summer so we can save up more money.
People have told me that the classroom part of med school is really do-able with small children. It gets a little tougher when you get to rotations, but you should be able to manage with good support at home (supportive husband, family, or a good nanny).
i have seen your posts on MomMd, congratulations! (things tend to get dead there every once in a while). i think it's amazing that u will get a year w/your baby b-4 going to school. this is why i am thinking i should have one now if i have to retake the MCAT (will find out in 2 weeks) i will be wasting another year anyway and will never get an opportunity to be with a baby full time. i keep going back and forth on this issue- my hubby is all ready. it seems like a catch 22. you want to put of having kids so that u can do wild and crazy travel, but we dn't have the money to do that now. and if we wait till we are older, and then have kids, by the time they are grown up, we will be too old to be wild. it's a tough decision, becasue of financial reasons and not wanting to give up certain freedoms. on the other hand, from experiences on mommd and from a friend who had a baby during internship, i don't think that's doable. and by the time i will be in practice, i will be in my mid 30's- too old to start a family for me. well, i have put of anyt decisions until i get my scores. Good luck Pam, hope everything goes well! Keep us posted.susan
As a Dad who is a first year med student with a 7 month old, I can tell you that it is absolutely great to have an infant and go to med school at the same time. It is indeed a lot of work. But somehow, like an earlier poster said, when you've had a long day of lectures and labs and you want to come home and crash, but instead, you pick your child up from daycare, and she/he gives you a great big smile, then you have all the energy in the world for her/him. Again, as others noted, financing everything is hard but again, this can be resolved too. Good luck!
Not all schools allow a student to take out loans for childcare. Most of the schools that accept high numbers of "nontraditional" students usually do. You should probably talk to the financial aid office of the schools you're interested in to find out for sure. I can certainly relate, as this is an issue for me as well.