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anyone have a baby while in vet school?

Discussion in 'Veterinary' started by bailey728, Aug 8, 2006.

  1. bailey728

    bailey728 Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Jul 17, 2006
    Philadelphia, PA
    Hi everyone,
    I'm not a vet student yet but I have questions about a situation that will affect me when I am. I was wondering if anyone on this board has been pregnant while in vet school, or known someone who has? If so, which year did you (they) get pregnant and what were your experiences with juggling class/lab/clinicals? Which year do you think would be easiest to deal with a pregnancy? Did you have to take a leave from school? How was the school and/or faculty in being accomodating? Any suggestions or comments?
    I am currently 31 and will most likely have to combine having kids with my schooling. I've read some posts in the med forums but haven't read much about pregnancy and vet school. If anyone has any thoughts they'd like to share, I would greatly appreciate it. :)
     
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  3. HorseyVet

    HorseyVet Senior Member 5+ Year Member

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    Feb 22, 2006
    My very limited info on this is that it seems that it all depends....some schools/classes seem to welcome it...others seem like you'd be better off getting plague. If you're really determined to do this while in school I would select a school that would give you the option of medical leave should you need it.
     
  4. Anggel

    Anggel Junior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Mar 19, 2005
    One of my classmates learned that she was pregnant halfway through the first year of veterinary school. Another classmate of mine started the year with a newborn so I believe it can be done. I would say the first or second year of school would be easier to have a child, but don't quote me on that as I have no children and am not attempting to do so while in school.
    From what I gather I think consulting faculty prior to actually conceiving is a good idea. I think most schools would be relatively accepting of your situation. I know that at least Purdue is fairly accomodating. Hope that helps a little.
     
  5. RkyMtVet

    RkyMtVet CSU PVM 2010 2+ Year Member

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    My experience so far is limited - I'm five weeks pregnant and about to start my first year of vet school at Colorado State - but here's what I can tell you at this point: The two faculty members I've talked with to date have been extremely positive and supportive (one even offered her office as a private place to nurse/pump) and seem to believe I will find the rest of faculty, students and college to be supportive as well. CSU considers pregnancy a natural condition and NOT a temporary disability, and gives you the choice of adjusting your schedule to the degree that is feasible to accomodate you (first two years are pretty set, there seems to be more flexibility in scheduling 3rd/4th year rotations) or withdrawing as a student and presenting a plan for future readmission. I'm told that my OB may recommend I wear a respirator and/or nitrile gloves in anatomy labs due to the formalin used for embalming -- I'll know more on that after my OB appt next week. At my interview I talked with a current student who'd had a baby since starting the program and was planning to have another before finishing and who thought vet school was 'a great time' to have kids.

    My due date is early April, and I intend to go to class until I have the baby and return as quickly as possible afterwards, hopefully only missing a week of class. Having said that, this will be our second child and I'm not sure I would have such an ambitious return plan if it was my first, for several reasons: I know what to expect this time around as far as labor recovery, sleeplessness, the general (and significant) shock of becoming a parent, establishing breastfeeding, etc.; I know that the only things I can expect to be able to do for the remaining month of classes after I return are sleep, study and spend time with the kids - no cooking, cleaning, visiting, shopping, or other grand feats of productivity; and I know that yes, I really can trust my husband and my mother and my mother-in-law with my precious little baby and they will get along just fine in my absence. Having said that, I was intending to hold off on pregnancy until Sept, which would have given me a due date of late May, but apparently that's not the way things were meant to go :)

    My concerns about being pregnant in vet school are morning sickness (I was constantly nauseous for the first four months last time - but they say every pregnancy is different!), sensitivitiy to smells in labs, being exhausted by the time I get home & still having to study, the possibility of being put on bed rest & missing school, the environmental hazards associated with labs...but you do what you have to do, you get through it and - in my case - you remind your husband daily that this is the LAST time you're going to do this!

    Now I'm just hoping it's not twins... :)

    Christie
     
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  6. eaglemeag

    eaglemeag Tufts University V'10 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 17, 2006
    North Grafton, MA
    You guys are killing my self-esteem... At this point I think I'll be lucky if I make it through vet school even without a kid! Kudos to you for managing it :thumbup:
     
  7. kate_g

    kate_g Senior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Interesting point... I wonder how much discrimination you'd face in the application process if you made it clear you intended to have a child while in school. Don't look dedicated, what if you decide to quit, etc. Better to take a young college grad who's still actively working *against* her fertility...

    But then again, most vet students are women, and the mean age of vet students seems to be a bit higher than, say, med students, both of which may make pregnancy during vet school more common. Would be nice if Colo. State's attitude is shared widely.

    Which leads me to wonder... RkyMtVet, where did you go for information on how your program would handle your pregnancy? Your described it as if there's an institutional "pregnancy is natural" policy, so is there an office actually dedicated to that kind of thing, or is it within the scope of student affairs...?
     
  8. UKYWildcat

    UKYWildcat 5+ Year Member

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    Jul 26, 2005

    There's also the opposite...a friend of mine interviewed when she was 7 1/2 months pregnant and said (jokingly) afterward that she'd sue if she didn't get accepted and claim they didn't take her because she was pregnant. She was accepted and is now about to start her second year, her son will be 2 in January.
     
  9. RkyMtVet

    RkyMtVet CSU PVM 2010 2+ Year Member

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    There is an official statement - "Guidance to Pregnant and Nursing Mothers" - that is posted on CSU's web site at: http://www.cvmbs.colostate.edu/cvmbs/Pregnant_Nursing_Mother_Policy1.pdf.
    There isn't a separate office - the Assistant Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs (Dr. Sherry Stewart) is pretty much the point person. I emailed her as soon as I found out I was pregnant just to ask if there was a way to find out in advance which lab sections I would be in so I could make an OB appt...she sent back a very positive and supportive note, attaching the guidance I referenced above and forwarding my note to the lab coordinator (who was also very supportive and helpful). I knew from talking to and hearing about other students who'd had babies while in CSU's program that my pregnancy wouldn't be a problem but it was still nice to have positive firsthand experiences. Hopefully the trend will continue once classes actually start!
     
  10. bailey728

    bailey728 Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Jul 17, 2006
    Philadelphia, PA
    Thanks everyone for the information. I'm mainly interested in Penn (don't want to move for family reasons plus I live right down the street from them so I'm hoping to get into my state school) and wanted to ask around about their policy on pregnancy but didn't want to raise any "red flags" against me if they're anti-pregnancy :rolleyes:. I'll have to hunt around and see if I can find anything.

    Christie ~ Thank you for letting me know your experience. I hope everything goes well for you! I'd be interested to hear your thoughts after you start school with regard to how you handle lab, etc. I was wondering - the person you spoke to who had had a child in school and was planning another before she graduates... did she mention if she had any opinions on which time in the program would be more conducive to planning a pregnancy?
     
  11. RkyMtVet

    RkyMtVet CSU PVM 2010 2+ Year Member

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    She didn't say anything about timing. I don't know how similiar Penn's structure is to CSU's...I definitely wanted to be pregnant during one of the first two years because they are primarily in the classroom vs. being on half-day practicals the third year and all day clinics the fourth year. Just easier to be seated most of the day vs on my feet. A big advantage of being pregnant the first year--I plan to breastfeed and will need to pump regularly when I go back to class, and since the second year is mostly classroom time, I'll have a predictable schedule to work that into.

    I'd be happy to share my experiences once I'm into classes and labs...please just send a little reminder if I haven't posted anything by the end of winter break!
     
  12. MonkeyJunction

    MonkeyJunction Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Jul 9, 2006
    I don't understand why someone would plan on being pregnant while in vet school. When you get to senior year clinics and you have 10-14 hour days, who's "mothering" the child? Or you've been up all night during EC rotations and you want to go home and sleep and dad has to go to work. Don't worry the dad will be there? How about the extra burden that you will be putting on your classmates to help keep you up to speed. They are not paying tuition so you can run home and play mommie. What will you do when your 3 man team is up for spaying and no one can stay with the child, or you can't come to a study group on a team presentation? Will you just bring the baby and not worry about it being intrusive on others. What happens when you bring your 2 yo monster who disrupts everything. I am just saying it's hard enough learning to be a vet but then add learning to be a parent as well? Seems like a recipe for not doing either well.
     
  13. ginkogirl

    ginkogirl Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Deciding to have a baby during veterinary school is a very personal and (I'm sure) difficult decision to make, but with the majority of vet students being female and the average age of the student well into their 20's, vet students becoming pregnant during school is going to be a reality. That being said, it should be no one's but the mother and father's decision to become pregnant, and the comparison between the burden on the mother and father vs. the burden on their fellow vet students is so slanted it is silly to even consider. If you decide to not become a parent during veterinary school, that is your decision and fellow students should respect that. In turn, everyone should have the same respect for the students who do decide to start a family while in school (because it constitues a lot more than simply "playing mommy or daddy).
     
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  14. Bill59

    Bill59 Member 10+ Year Member

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    As far as timing, I think the first few years would be easier -- before hospital duty. The hours are shorter and more predictable. Also when pregnant you won’t be allowed around x-rays and anesthesia gases are a concern.

    As for having a baby in school at all, sure it’s easier not to. But for someone wanting to start a family and career, when IS a good time? You’re first job out of school is usually even more demanding than school. And then what if you’re trying to start a practice? Before you know it you’re 35 years old or older when there’s a bunch of different concerns with pregnancy.
     
  15. RkyMtVet

    RkyMtVet CSU PVM 2010 2+ Year Member

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    Holy cow! I hope you are raising your concerns in such an ardent manner out of a desperate, altruistic, misguided concern for the unborn children of vet students everywhere, who in your view will go painfully emotionally undernourished or run amok in labs across the nation, causing grave danger to themselves and others. Because if it is based instead on some unexpressed angst you harbor either at a classmate of yours or from your own childhood, that's very, very sad.

    If, supposing for a moment, raising a child was the painful, consuming, distracting burden you make it out to be, when would be the right time to suffer this great inconvenience instead of before or during vet school? During an internship or residency? While attempting to prove yourself in a practice or establish one of your own? Or after all those things are finally done and the risk of birth defects and other complications has gone up dramatically? Did you really intend to imply that life after vet school will be radically less taxing?

    Choosing to mix a commitment of any kind outside of the home with children is always a difficult choice. It's not one to be taken lightly and it's not for everyone. However, it is both arrogant and ignorant to believe it is intrinsically different for a vet student than for anyone else. Prudent, responsible parents are going to make every effort in every case to have a near failsafe plan for providing care for their children when they are away, regardless of whether they are going to spay something or going to sweep the floors at Taco Bell. If you think it is more egregious to disappoint a classmate in vet school than an employer, your perspective on vet school is skewed and I sure hope you can be self-employed.

    Lastly, until you have any idea who any of the people currently discussing having a child during vet school on this thread are (I generously assume your advice would apply equally to men), please don't presume to tell any of us what we are going to be able to do "well". You are, at best, basing your statements on a few data points from a very large and diverse population and chances are good based on what you've said here that those data points were at one end of the spectrum. You probably failed to notice or even actively ignored those who had children and were entirely able to maintain their vet school commitments.
     
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  16. MonkeyJunction

    MonkeyJunction Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Jul 9, 2006
    Boy, talk about striking a chord! Let me respond.

    1) I have help raise my 2 children (one is a teacher and 1 still in college) so I have experience on what it takes to nurture a child and what sacrifices one must make for work. You can not learn from a book what it is actually like to live with and "nourish" an infant

    2) My employment did not require me to devote 65-75 hours a week to classes and studying and neither was this required of my wife.

    3) Nowhere did I state the child would be "scarred for life" and that it could not or has not been done. You are over dramatizing!

    4) Comparing disappointing a classmate(who is paying 20-50,000 a year) to an employer (who is paying you or not paying you if you can't work) is ludicrous. Classmates depend on you for their grades (and possible future) during certain rotations/classes/labs

    5) Life after vet school can be less taxing for those who make that choice. You now have the choice of controlling your time.

    6) Unless you have done both (children and vet school) how can you characterize me as ignorant and arrogant? I have already experienced raising children, I work a full time job and my wife is in her 4th year in vet school so I know the sacrifices and time commitment she (and I) have made so that she is in the top 10 of her class. So by having both of these experiences I would not chose to do both at the same time. We know the sacrifices that we will continue to make as she goes on into internship and residency.

    7) I think we have a unique perspective, having seen students having to interupt their education due to the commitments of raising a child and I applaud them. I did not say it could not be done "just difficult to do both well"
    Both endeavors are fulltime jobs on their own.
     
  17. Skippy DVM

    Skippy DVM New Member

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    Aug 13, 2006
    Hi there,

    I am a current third year vet student starting clinical rotations on Monday and I am six months pregnant. Our rotations are scheduled in blocks so I will be taking off the block in which my due date falls and returning to school the following block. :luck:
     
  18. RkyMtVet

    RkyMtVet CSU PVM 2010 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 5, 2006
    Colorado
    MonkeyJunction,
    I appreciate your acknowledgement that, though difficult, it is possible to do both well. I took issue with the implication in your original post that vet school mothers are both crappy parents ("when you have 10-14 hour days, who's 'mothering' the child") and crappy classmates ("will you just bring the baby and not worry about it being intrusive on others"). It seems your wife must have had a tremendously negative experience with a classmate of hers who is also a mother. That's a shame, because she’s obviously working very hard to position herself for a good internship/residency. However, I don't think it can or should be generalized from her individual experience that all vet school mothers are unreliable and inclined to sabotage the education of their classmates.

    I don't want to keep beating on this thread, but I honestly don't understand why you think it’s “ludicrous” to compare obligations to classmates with obligations to employers...? A responsibility to your classmates and a responsibility to your employer are essentially the same -- you said you would perform a task, people are counting on you to do it and you need to come through for them. You're part of a team in both situations, your performance has a direct impact on the goals of others (grades or happy clients/successful practice) and it can have a monetary impact on both. It doesn't matter to me who's paying whom...if I say I'll do something, I'll do it. It’s a matter of integrity. Mothers are paying tuition too, and it seems unjust to single them out versus all of the other things that can go awry in a group situation.

    Finally, I would suggest that to an extent, spending 65-75 hours a week on vet school is a choice. I absolutely believe that's what it takes to be in the top 10 in your class. However, I also believe that you can choose to spend less time on it and still learn what you need to learn to be an excellent clinician.
     
  19. bailey728

    bailey728 Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Jul 17, 2006
    Philadelphia, PA
    I didn't realize when I posted my original thread that I would be opening such a can of worms. First off, let me say that I appreciate everyone's opinions on the matter, whatever side of the issue they are on. When I posted my original post, my intent was to find out what people who had experienced vet school + pregnancy/parenting thought - when they did it, how hard it was, etc. I know that not having experienced either, I am at a disadvantage with regard to knowing what to expect. That is why I am trying to educate myself as best I can.

    However, I will say to MonkeyJunction, as much as I appreciate your (brutal) honesty, your first post took me very much aback. You had some very valid points, but the way in which you presented them seemed very hostile. I understand that combining parenthood and school would be difficult and is a decision that should not be taken lightly. If given the choice, I would not combine them. However, to delay one choice for the other would not be advisable, due to my age.

    I agree with the previous posts that mentioned the fact that no matter what your situation, having children will have to be integrated into the rest of your life, unless you are a stay-at-home parent. I understand that being in school can take up more time than a regular job, but many people with children have jobs that require many more than 9-5 hours, or they work 2 jobs, or they have other obligations (whatever they might be) that take up their time. Are you saying that unless you have the means to greatly reduce your obligations outside of the home, that one should never become a parent? I have personally seen friends with children juggle many things and do them all well. I think it is hard but can be done.

    This is a decision that only my husband and I can make for ourselves. We will be the ones that will need to care for the child and juggle work/school at the same time, and do so in a way that doesn't give anyone (the child, us, employers, classmates, whomever) the short end of the stick. Your points about the difficulty (or possibility) of doing so are well-taken, but the way in which you offer those points could benefit from being more constructive.
     
  20. MonkeyJunction

    MonkeyJunction Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Birdy728,

    Let me start off by saying my comments were a generalization meant for the masses, not to a particular individual. Although some took it personally. Of course there are people who can do both and do both well but you have to admit they are the exception. I can honestly say I wish you the best of luck in any decisions you make, I have no vested interest and no reason not to pull for you and your family. Nor am I trying to make decisions for anyone else.

    I grew up with and learned from a generation where honest opinions "brutal" or not were the norm. I have never felt the need to be "PC" in stating what I thought in such an impersonal environment as an internet message board. I think I can bring a rather unique outlook on this subject because of my status as the primary wage earner/domestic partner of a vet student. It became my responsiblity(by choice or not) of taking care of many of the non-traditional chores of a household male. Many "enlightened" males may not like that statement but the truth is most women(including those with careers) do more household chores than most men.

    Having a child at anytime is life changing, and unless you are very wealthy with an unbelievable support system it would not be something I would wish on anyone while undertaking vet school. Many times through the first 3 1/4 years I have wanted to go out for dinner, movie or community function but been disappointed because my spouse needed to study for an exam, attend a lecture, or was on call. Now we are lucky because I do earn a good income so we don't skimp on neccessities and sometimes treat ourselves. But we are still having to borrow a great deal of money for tuition. We haven't taken vacations although we probably could have financially. So we don't suffer the usual problems couples have when money is tight. There is an old saying "all marriages are great, until there's no money in the bank"

    Like I said earlier these are opinions from someone in a supporting role. I can honestly say that I was surprised with the amount of time that a student spends in class and studying. My spouse is a student who has not spent a great deal of time in extracurricular activities/clubs. Now she is in senior clinics, so to give you an idea of what they are like I'll tell you how her weekend has gone.

    Friday finished up easy 2 week rotation(her words) of dermatolgy(crust and pus). Of course she is on call at the VTH Saturday night. Gets called in at 8pm returns home at 4:15am Sunday morning. She now has patient she is overseeing. Gets couple hours sleep. Goes in at 8am Sunday to do treatment. Gets home at 9:30am, cancels afternoon plans we had so she can get sleep. Goes back in at 7:30pm to do treatment on her case. Gets home at 9:15pm. Does write up on her treatments and goes to bed at 10:45pm. Gets up at 6am so she will have time to go by and do treatment on her case prior to beginning new rotation in Small Animal Emergency which includes being on call and a week of overnights.

    Yes a lot of us have jobs that are not 9-5, but not a lot of us would be willing to do this particular job/schooling on a consistant basis and not a lot of spouses would be supportive over a long period of time. What would happen if you decided to become a specialist(we originally did not have plans for her to do so, but now we do). Just the time constraints and the money issues can be hard on a relationship so when you add children it makes it even more difficult, not impossible but difficult.

    You stated that a lot of people work non-conforming or multiple jobs and that is true....but not usually by choice.

    I wish you the best of luck in whatever you do. Please realize that these are just opinions of a guy closer to 50 than 40 who knows more than some, less than most but has a hard time getting out of the way. :)
     
  21. bailey728

    bailey728 Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Jul 17, 2006
    Philadelphia, PA
    Hi MonkeyJunction,

    Thank you for your last post, it was very helpful. Much more constructive. :) I appreciate hearing your thoughts about being the spouse of a vet student. I will share them with my husband as we have discussions on my going to vet school. I want him to know (kids or no kids) what potentially lies ahead for us both and be okay with that. Thanks for including info about your wife's 4th year schedule also. That is exactly the kind of information I am looking for. Reading a school's curriculum for 4th year rotations does not always give you a good idea of the the actual time/schedule involved.

    If you don't mind my asking.... how do you and your wife feel about her graduating and specializing at this point in your lives after your children have grown up? Had she wanted to go back to school sooner and purposely waited to do so until now? It's hard for me to think about transitioning to a second career and coming out with a mountain of debt. One of the main reasons I don't want to delay going back to school until kids are older (aside from not wanting to stay in a career I don't find fulfilling) is that I don't want to wait too long to go back and then have less years than younger graduates to work to pay the debt back and also to hone the clinical skills that come with time and practice. Since I'm already older than most vet students, I feel a certain pressure in terms of time. I also think I personally would be less likely to specialize (something I think I might like to do) if I was graduating later, because of the debt issue. Any thoughts on the subject? Feel free to be honest. ;)
     
  22. Cygnet

    Cygnet New Member

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    There are pros and cons to being pregnant either first or second year. First year you will need to wear a respirator for anatomy and you will probably have more in-class time. Second year there tends to be less in-class time and no need for a respirator, but then you may appreciate not having to sit in a classroom all day long when you have a newborn. One of my classmates is due any day now with her second baby - the timing was right in that the bulk of the morning sickness fell during the winter break, but she had a hard time during the spring term because she was so pregnant - tired, uncomfortable, etc.

    SkippyDVM - Could you give more info on how you are planning to work rotations around a new baby? Having just finished my first year, I know next to nothing about how 3rd and 4th years go. How much time off are you looking at? And how was school while you were newly PG? We'd love to have another baby, but I am not sure how it would fit in to the last years of school. Thanks! :)
     
  23. NaughtyGirl999

    NaughtyGirl999

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    I went to school with a lady, and I kid you not she was just about pregnant every single year, and she had awesome grades, hardly took off any time, very smart responsible lady. She had about 5 kids by the time she graduated, got a good job, doing great. Her and her husband were NOT wealthy. She wore her respirator. Never asked for any special treatment, never whined.

    SO there!!!

    She was a real inspiration....not that I want to have any kids myself
     
  24. bailey728

    bailey728 Junior Member 2+ Year Member

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    Thanks for the post! Good to know it can be done! If the woman you mentioned could have that many kids and do it, surely having one or two would be doable for us. :)
     
  25. emgibbs

    emgibbs

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    Bumping this post in hopes for more recent advice.

    A little background: I will be a first-year veterinary student at my IS school this fall. Fortunately, I have been able to save up a bit amount of money for tuition by working full time and having my undergraduate tuition covered by academic and athletic scholarships. This week my SO and I found out I am 7 weeks pregnant, with my due date landing right when school starts. He is graduating this spring and has an excellent paying job offer lined up as an electrical engineer. We plan on living together while he works full-time and I attend vet school. The news is a complete shock to us because we hoped to wait until 28 -30 to start a family so that we could be more financially stable/comfortable in our career fields. Also, we have always used protection and both of us have compromised fertility due to health issues so this pregnancy is an anomaly to say the least.

    Has anybody had the experience of going into first year with a newborn? I can not imagine the stress and workload involved in such a commitment. It seems impossible. I feel very anxious for what's to come and would appreciate any advice.
     
  26. pinkpuppy9

    pinkpuppy9 Illinois c/o 2019 2+ Year Member

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    I don't know anyone who has started school with a newborn, I do know someone who got pregnant towards the end of first year and gave birth close to Christmas of second year (right before finals, actually, and she still sat for our exams). She made it work, but she had a 4-week Christmas break to ease into being a new mother too. She really never missed anything due to the timing of it all, luckily.

    That being said, I would talk to your school and let them know. It may seem awkward, but you're going to want them on your side and it helps if they're not caught off guard. First year has a lot of labs that you can't really be missing (anatomy, for example). You're going to want a game plan for that, as you're going to need some time to recover and bond with your baby. Perhaps they will have suggestions for you. Maybe you could come in just for lab sessions and do lectures from home if they're recorded? As some of the posts above touched on, schools actually tend to be fairly accommodating of pregnancy. The associate dean at my school was very supportive of my friend who I mentioned above. Everyone worked with her, but I also want to re-iterate that she made a point not to miss anything. When we did our bacteriology/parasit labs, she couldn't touch anything, but she still showed up. Never missed a quiz, kept up on all material, etc. She was superwoman, but it's okay not to try to be superwoman too.

    I personally would consider deferment if the school allows that, but that's completely my personal opinion. I just don't know if I would succeed during first year if I had a 24 hour/7 day a week commitment that I couldn't physically part from. There are ways to reduce your physical 'commitment' to a newborn (for lack of better phrasing), but I would just see myself missing the first two weeks of first year at the very least and never being able to catch up. That's just me though. Consider all options available to you.

    I don't want to come off as pessimistic or like I'm doubting the capabilities of someone I don't even know. It probably isn't impossible, but yes, exceedingly difficult and stressful. Having a good support system would certainly help you immensely.

    Anyways, congratulations on the pregnancy! I hope you have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy little one this year!
     
  27. meningealworm

    meningealworm

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    Two people in my class had babies right at the beginning of first year. There have since been a handful of other kids born during school, and we have classmates who came into vet school with children already. The school has been pretty flexible with them as far as rescheduling exams and allowing time off without repercussion. I would imagine it isn't too bad to work it into the preclinical years, when it's relatively easy to adjust your schedule, vs. during clinics when you're pretty much at the mercy of whatever rotation you're on.
     

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