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best time for children ?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by determined little korean girl, Apr 16, 2002.

  1. determined little korean girl

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    I'm guessing having a child during medical school would be incredibly difficult . I'm studying to become a pediatric cardiac surgeon , and by my calculations I'm going to be in school for about 15 more years . By then, I'll be 35 . I read the post "Babies in med school" and someone said that it would be better to have a child after your 1st year of residency . What do you think ? When do you believe is the best time for children ? During Med School ? After 1st year of residency ? During Surgery fellowship ? After all my schooling is over ? Never ?
     
  2. Doctora Foxy

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    Last week's issue of Time was about women with careers and families. At age 27, the risk factor goes up, and at age 35 it goes way up. I guess I plan to have a baby at the beginning of my residency so I'm still young and have healthy eggs. :D
     
  3. CANES2006

    CANES2006 Miami chica
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    I cannot believe how some people can manage having a child during their first year of medical school!! That is just way too difficult. I think the best time would be during the later part of your residency or during your surgery fellowship. That's what I'm thinking about doing. Of course, first I would have to find my ideal guy/soulmate. But, that's an entirely different topic. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
     
  4. determined little korean girl

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    ARRGGGHHH ~ being a girL sucks ! haha .. but then again there are perks . Hey Doctora and CANE I'm new to SDN so I haven't really been able to read much, but what kind of doctor are you studying to become ? Do you think others would see having a child during your residency/fellowship as a lack of commitment to your medical career ?
     
  5. Jewely2177

    Jewely2177 Member
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    At one of the schools I interviewed at, this subject came up...the 4th year student leading the tour said that a number of students in his class planned their rotations in such a way that they had several months off (I think 6 or 7) at the end of 4th year, and then planned to give birth at the beignning of the time off. This seems like an OK plan, if you're able to leave your 7 month old to begin residency, but then again, thats about the most time you could get off till after residency. Have you ever watched Women Docs? It seems like all the docs on that show either dont have kids b/c they never had time or wait till they're like 40 and then decide to adopt. How depressing! Does anyone know of a good way to do it?
     
  6. barb

    barb Senior Member
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    I am also thinking of doing a surgical specialty and since I'm already 26, I am becoming increasingly concerned with the timing of starting a family. The problem I see is not just having the time to have the child, but then being around enough to be a good mother. Although I probably won't finish my residency until my late thirties, I don't think I could have a child, and then stay away in the hospital 90 hours a week during my residency to let my child be raised by a nanny or babysitter. Even the thought of having my husband stay home with our children does not alleviate my concerns of spending so much time away from home. At least after my residency, I could have more power to adjust my schedule to be more "normal", say 40-50 hours a week, which I think would be pretty fair both to my family and to my own career aspirations.
     
  7. CANES2006

    CANES2006 Miami chica
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    Hi and welcome aboard!! :D I'm currently leaning towards Emergency Medicine or General Surgery. I really could care less if some people would believe that I am less committed to the medical profession just because I decide to have a family. That's just their stupid ignorance. I am a very driven and committed person, and if they want to believe such an erroneous thing, then that's their problem. People have to accept me as I am, and if they don't like it tough. Besides, there are many women out there who are surgeons and mothers, and they do a great job of it. Also, remember that your mate had something to do with reproduction. If both of you are doctors, then he will have to help out too. If not, then you should knock some sense into him. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
    Cane
     
  8. determined little korean girl

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    Hey Barb and Cane .. what do you guys think about Jewely's plan ? Jewely do you plan on having a child in your 4th year and taking the 6 - 7 months off ?
     
  9. CANES2006

    CANES2006 Miami chica
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    Personally, I don't think I would go for this plan. First of all, I would have to meet my future husband in medical school (this is what I'm hoping for <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> ). Since I'm the old-fashioned type, I would have to get married before thinking about having a child. Also, I wouldn't get pregnant quickly. I would want to enjoy my marriage first and enjoy being together (just the two of us :D ). After a couple of years of marriage then I would have a baby. I just don't want to rush into having a baby so early on in the marriage. So, the 4 year time-line of medical school and having a baby is extremely unlikely for me.
     
  10. Mylaina

    Mylaina Senior Member
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    I like this topic-- because other than medical school, family is a priority in my life. My potential gameplan is to have children either during or after my residency. However, I am not aspiring to be a surgeon of any sort. I think that with the field I hope to go into (geriatrics) I will only have my few years of residency and then just some "specializing" for a year. So that puts me at 29 when I finish that. And then I would hopefully be able to find a place to work that's not a million hours a week, which I'm wondering if that's likely at all.
     
  11. souljah1

    souljah1 Attending
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    If you want a family, Emergency Medicine is the bomb. The residency is either 3 or 4 years (depending on the program)and most ER docs only work 3-4 days out of the week (12 hour shifts). A friend of mine matched in Emergency Medicine at Jacoby in the Bronx. He'll be doing 20 12 hours shifts per month the first year. Then, after four years, he'll be STARTING at 180,000/yr and working with patients for 36 hours/wk. That isn't that bad. It is a very stressful area of medicine, but rarely are you ever on call. A relatively short residency and a career that gives you more days of the week off then on..Hmm sounds pretty good.
     
  12. Aggiemaj

    Aggiemaj Member
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    At each interview that I attended last year, when it came time for the med student panel, I would always ask the question of children. Several of the med students said that they DID plan their children after their 3rd year because they could arrange their 4th year schedule however they wanted. Also, most schools offer a certain amount of maternity leave, up to 12 months. You might not want to take off a year for the baby, but you do have an option if you need more time.
     
  13. reesie0726

    reesie0726 Senior Member
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    I am glad someone posted this topic. Now that I am accepted to medical school, I have been thinking about children alot especially after reading that Time article this weekend. I will be 26 when I start so I am a little older than alot of the entering med students. If I find a husband soon, I think I will try to have my first baby during my fourth year also.
     
  14. hannacanna

    hannacanna Addicted
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    i've been wondering how possible it might be to have a kid during premed. i am in a 6 yr long relationship and i'm 26--going for my post-bacc full time this fall (hopefully). one of my best friends had a kid while in undergrad and thought it was the best--she planned it that way because she could stay home with them most of the day and night and would only be gone for class for about 5 or 6 hours a day. what do you think?
     
  15. hi, i'm 24 now, and i've already met the man of my dreams, so at least that's out of the way. but assuming i get in this time around, i'll be 28 when i start my 4th year, and i don't think i (or he) will be ready to have kids for at least a couple of years after that. also we probably won't be together during my fourth year, because he'll be starting his first year of residency then. i was thinking maybe when i'm 31 or 32 for the first one, but i'd like two. does anyone know anything about how easy/hard it is to have kids during later residency or in your first years of practice? i've been worrying a lot about this, too, because i want to have two kids before i'm in my mid-30s, and the timing just seems all wrong.
     
  16. determined little korean girl

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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by hannacanna:
    <strong>i've been wondering how possible it might be to have a kid during premed. i am in a 6 yr long relationship and i'm 26--going for my post-bacc full time this fall (hopefully). one of my best friends had a kid while in undergrad and thought it was the best--she planned it that way because she could stay home with them most of the day and night and would only be gone for class for about 5 or 6 hours a day. what do you think?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">hey hanna .. I also thought about having children during my undergrad, but the thing is I don't think I'd be ready to have a child at 21 or 22 . My boyfriend and I plan to get married but I don't know if it's going to be that soon . I think we're going to get married when I'm about 24, and have a child when i'm 25 or 26 . Having a child in undergrad seems a little too early for me . =)
     
  17. hannacanna

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    hi korean girl...yeah, it might be a *bit* too soon for you :p ! but for me it might work...i don't know. it's so hard to balance this huge committment and change with the challange we are all facing to become doctors. i almost think it might be easier if i would just have the decision made for me--i.e. i'd wake up pregnant! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="eek.gif" /> at least then i could begin adjusting/planning instead of worrying about timing. i really want to have a kid--just one. but i want to be able to have the time to spend with the kid and be an active available parent. it's so hard.
     
  18. hawkeyes

    hawkeyes Senior Member
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    for those others that are currently over 25... kudos to us! I'm sure that you also get some squinted eyes and furrowed brows preceding questions like "what about your family" when your friends/family know you want to go to med school. I REALLY do not think that they are incompatible. It happens all the time. For those of us who have not yet met the man of their dreams, in a way, I see it as simpler becuase we don't have the option to think of children (assuming that you want marriage first). For those who have, you also have it better becuase you have an ideal partner with which to plan and be excited with. I work with a doctor who married at 32 years old (you really can't plan when you fall in love, see), and recently became pregnant (not in the plan becuase of loan repayment issues, ... another factor worth considering if you want to consider all factors) and though they are very happy, they will need to find a nanny. She is an OB and that comes with a very un-family friendly call schedule. I agree with a previous post re: ER being a great specialty for family. I am thinking of either that or Peds. Peds would be VERY practical. My love is currently OB though. Anyway, I think that if you have the option to plan, that's great, and many others have shared alot of considerations. If still single, just please don't forget to enjoy yourself in dating, family, school... <img border="0" alt="[Clappy]" title="" src="graemlins/clappy.gif" /> Us type A's are predisposed to plan and organize way too much. while that may be a benefit with regards to career... it takes alot of the fun out of life. :D
     
  19. groundhog

    groundhog 1K Member
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    In the end, we all tend to find a way to do what we really want to do in the way that we want to do it. Some will adopt, some will take mutilpe breaks in their careers, some will hire nannies, some will send them off to boarding school, some will be supermom, some will be in over their heads, some will opt out. Good luck to all of you.
     
  20. E'01

    E'01 1K Member
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    Arrrrghhh I just read her book - Hewlett is the last name (Sylvia Ann Hewlett?). I was so depressed after reading that. Since then I've picked up and read 3 books by women surgeons (I've been thinking a alot about cardiothoracic surgery although I'd settle for General and skip the 3 extra years of fellowship). Only one of those 3 surgeons I read about had children (2) - and she got married at about 34.

    I think the first step is to reaffirm that we as women and aspiring physicians, we ARE entitled to wanting it all (career, marriage and family) and that with some careful planning we can do it. I mean I was talking to another pre-med friend who was saying, it was all about career first then she'd start having kids in her late 30's/early forties. Unfortunately that's the prime time of being susceptible to having a difficult birth. I guess I'm a type A person because I love to organize and plan and some things - well you just can't - at least not 100% which is the most frustrating thing about trying to assess how you can balance family and career. But you can still set goals. I'm 25 and I feel the clock sort of ticking away already, but I know for sure I could not handle having children right now in this time of my life. Plus, I have to find a hubby first! : ) Actually that Hewlett book suggested that one spends active time looking for a husband so that one will be married by 30. She made it sound so easy!

    Anyway, 2 things keep me going:
    1. Knowing a female OB/gyn who is married to another doctor and has 4 children and 2 succesful practices!
    2. Hearing a married couple speak at this panel - both were residents and had a newborn and were managing
     
  21. sorrento

    sorrento Senior Member
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    I have heard lots of different things from women docs, but they all concur on this: DO NOT try to be pregnant during your internship. It is way too hard. They all said that if you can wait a year, residency does ease off a little and then being pregnant is not so arduous.

    I have never been a big planner but this particular issue brings it out in me! I'll be 31 when I graduate med school, add another year for internship, so I guess I'll start popping them out at 32. Oh yeah, need to find a suitable man sometime in there, too. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> I always imagined I'd start a family sooner. The best laid plans of mice and men ...
     
  22. lola

    lola Bovine Member
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    just wanted to say thanks for posting this topic!! this has really been worrying me lately. i will be applying to medical school this year for entry in 2003. when i start i will be almost 28 -- sounds so old :( i really want to have kids at some point but have decided not to let that affect my decision to go to med school. people do both all the time. it may be difficult, but i think it is doable.
     
  23. Nanon

    Nanon An urban myth.
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    I'm 33, and have a year to go for undergrad before applying to med school. My husband and I decided to try to get pregnant sometime this year.

    The most appauling thing about all of this has been the reactions I've gotten - "Are you still planning on going to medical school?" "Where are your priorities? You CAN'T be a good mother and a good doctor at the same time!" "Well, I guess you'll be one of THOSE moms, who don't really raise their kids, but leave it to a nanny." No one ever asks my husband how much time he plans to spend with the kid, or how he'll juggle his career with a family. In fact, I got into an hour long "discussion" with a friend of ours who's a stay at home mom, and he was sitting right next to me. She flat out told me it couldn't be done. She told me that nothing less than a year of breast feeding was good for the kid, that I would never be able to bond with my child unless I stayed home with it for the first three years, that an epidural was the worst thing I could do to my kid :rolleyes: , etc. She never once addressed any concern to Scott.

    I'm relating this story, because I think it has a lot to do with the fact that women ARE waiting so long. There's a lot of guilt-tripping around being a mom, even if you don't have a career. If you listen to it, you can be made to feel like a monster for even considering having a kid and a career.

    It hasn't detered me, and I'll tell you why. I grew up without a stay-at-home parent, and I'm fine. In fact, I grew up much of the time in foster care, and I turned into a functional, happy adult anyway. Regardless of what was going on in my care-takers lives, I knew I was loved and respected and wanted, even by the mother who couldn't take care of me. So I am led to believe that that's what's important, not whether or not I breastfeed for a year.

    One more point - a LOT of women put off children because their HUSBANDS aren't ready. That was our situation, and the situation of many of my friends. If you want kids early in a marriage, make sure that your prospective husband is either older (in his 30's) or really wants kids right away (in his 20's).

    Just another opinion,

    Nanon
     
  24. commymommy

    commymommy *reformed commymommy*
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    This is the toughest issue...it REALLY is...and it is definately one that is not well understood by our male counterparts, who have us to do all of the work. I do believe that it is really difficult for women to have a high-profile, professional career, like medicine and balance it well without something suffering. I have three children and I planned on applying to med school when my youngest enters school. Really, I thought that I had the "perfect plan"...hahaha..I chuckle at myself now...the best laid plans of mice and men...

    I thought that things would be "easier" when they were older, but I find that though certain things ease up, like they are able to dress themselves and go to the bathroom on their own...other issues become much more challeging: emotional issues and school "stuff". My two oldest are in school and there is an undending stream of homework, issues like teasing, friendships,etc that I feel that I really need to be there for.

    Women really get the short end of the stick in this regard .... and I don't say that to sound moany..but the reality is what are the options? A man doesn't think twice about going to work for 14 hours and coming home after the kids are in bed...the schools never once consider that your child is acting out because daddy is doing a fellowship and is never home..and when he is, he's tired...it's all about mom...When I was doing my masters, the schools called me selfish and blamed me for any adjustment issues the children had (forget the fact that the kids had just moved, changed schools, and dad was working 100+ hours a week. I, on the other hand, was there daily to pick them up when the bell rang). My profs in grad school thought it was a shame that I wasn't doing the "right thing" by staying at home with the kids...I felt like I was constantly swimming upstream....and don't misunderstand...they talked about the med students who were pregnant or having children in the same way...for the most part these things are still very much a patriarchy...what med schools are chaired or run by women? NONE...because there is still discrimination AND if they do end up having children, they have no choice but to scale back to meet their children's needs or pay someone else to be a surrogate parent...

    Don't misunderstand me..I'm a driven, motivated person...I have two undergraduate degrees and a post-bacc (all for fun!) as well as a masters in mol. biology...I am a perfectionist and always saw myself as a career woman...but having children changed this in a way that I never realized that it would...childcare providers are fine for some things, but the emotional needs of the kids must be met by us...and that's damn hard to do when we're working 14 hour days........doing any less results in a lack of respect by colleagues...doing more means the kids suffer.

    I'm in a real and genuine quandry about how to proceed with my own career righ now...I haven't lost my desire to pursue med school and now I'm just not sure if it is the right thing to do anymore for the sake of my family...I worry every day about the emotional consequences of putting my needs first and wonder if my initial "plan" so that I could maximize my time with my children in the early years was the "right" plan....

    At the end of the day, for a woman with career aspirations really, no time is the right time, I'm afraid...isn't that an awful thing to say? But all of my friends who went into law or medicine and then had children work part-time...every single one of them....

    things that make you go hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

    Kris
     
  25. hannacanna

    hannacanna Addicted
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    maybe i won't have a kid after all...wow. that was very eye-opening, kris. thanks for sharing that. i don't know if i could knowingly walk in to what you are dealing with. i never thought of it that way--that co-workers would criticize me for not spending enough time at home and then discriminate against me for not doing enough at work. and the social issues of school age children--i haven't thought past age 4. i guess we just have to do the best we can--but our best is never good enough when it comes to kids. they could always use more time with us, and time will be in short supply.

    my partner has agreed to take on the majority of caregiving...but i always thought i would be the one who did that! i was raised by 2 parents and my mom stayed at home--quite the beaver cleaver residence. i want to be able to give my kid the same care. that's probably muchos unrealistic. but maybe with my dr. salary we can afford to live on one income.

    there are no right answers, and i want one! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Frown]" src="frown.gif" />
     
  26. commymommy

    commymommy *reformed commymommy*
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    I want more answers now too, and I'm sorry to have been sooo upfront with my thoughts..this was not meant to terrify anyone about having children...I guess I never really thought past the first few years myself because I thought that once they got in school that I'd have it made in the shade! :) Now there are also the ballet classes and recitals, soccer practices and games, I have a child who quite unexpectedly has an anxiety disorder and is also doing schoolwork in math at the 4th grade level even though he is only in first grade. That sounds like a great thing, right? WRONG! I had to fight the school all year to get him tested. They blamed his walking around the classroom on anything but boredom, called me in regularly to discuss the BIG issues...you know "your child can't button his coat, has trouble putting his snow pants on" (we just moved her from Florida, for God's sake!!!) and I have felt exasperated. I had to spend time with him at home working on math until it finally happened that they tested him...now they aren't sure where to put him for next year, and I know that regardless of what happens if I want to keep encouraging him that I will need to be the one to do it.

    On the flip side, my daughter quite unexpectedly is having trouble with letters and reading....and needs help in the other direction...so it is mommy to the hooked on phonics rescue again.

    Also, we've lived through chicken pox, broken bones, two unexpected surgeries...just when you think things are rolling along ok, something else happens.

    I'm in no way complaining....I love my children to pieces and I'd do anything for them...but I struggle every day with the choice that I've made to stay home...especially when I'm looked down on by working moms or women who haven't had children yet...despite my accomplishments, I'm really of no real "value" anymore....I'm sure that even my username "momofthree" conjures up steotypical images...I remember madanraj once implying that I was some 45 year old fat woman..........

    {sigh}

    answers, answers, answers........plllleeeeeeeease!

    Kris
     
  27. BushBaby

    BushBaby Nipplelina
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    I think it's best if I start having kids at the beginning of my residency...I would be 25/26yrs then. But first I have to meet the man of my dreams, get married...etc.
     
  28. Nanon

    Nanon An urban myth.
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    Kris, I pm'ed you!
     
  29. CANES2006

    CANES2006 Miami chica
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Nanon:
    <strong>I'm 33, and have a year to go for undergrad before applying to med school. My husband and I decided to try to get pregnant sometime this year.

    The most appauling thing about all of this has been the reactions I've gotten - "Are you still planning on going to medical school?" "Where are your priorities? You CAN'T be a good mother and a good doctor at the same time!" "Well, I guess you'll be one of THOSE moms, who don't really raise their kids, but leave it to a nanny." No one ever asks my husband how much time he plans to spend with the kid, or how he'll juggle his career with a family. In fact, I got into an hour long "discussion" with a friend of ours who's a stay at home mom, and he was sitting right next to me. She flat out told me it couldn't be done. She told me that nothing less than a year of breast feeding was good for the kid, that I would never be able to bond with my child unless I stayed home with it for the first three years, that an epidural was the worst thing I could do to my kid :rolleyes: , etc. She never once addressed any concern to Scott.

    I'm relating this story, because I think it has a lot to do with the fact that women ARE waiting so long. There's a lot of guilt-tripping around being a mom, even if you don't have a career. If you listen to it, you can be made to feel like a monster for even considering having a kid and a career.

    It hasn't detered me, and I'll tell you why. I grew up without a stay-at-home parent, and I'm fine. In fact, I grew up much of the time in foster care, and I turned into a functional, happy adult anyway. Regardless of what was going on in my care-takers lives, I knew I was loved and respected and wanted, even by the mother who couldn't take care of me. So I am led to believe that that's what's important, not whether or not I breastfeed for a year.

    One more point - a LOT of women put off children because their HUSBANDS aren't ready. That was our situation, and the situation of many of my friends. If you want kids early in a marriage, make sure that your prospective husband is either older (in his 30's) or really wants kids right away (in his 20's).

    Just another opinion,

    Nanon</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Nanon, tell your friend that she belongs in the caveman era. The woman is a complete moron. I bet she also is totally against the woman's movement ever happening and that women should continue being subservient to men. :mad: What nerve!! I grew up in a single parent household, and my mom had to leave me at home while she went to work. I grew up just fine, and I am pleased to say that I have a very loving relationship with my mother. I bet you many kids, who had their mom stay at home with them, would envy the close relationship that I have with my mother. She also never breast fed me. I can't believe the stupidity of this woman in implying that this is the only way for a mother to bond with her child. I am sorry, but at that age, the infant does not know the difference between a nipple and a bottle. All he or she cares about is getting milk!! Nanon, you don't worry about a thing. You will be a great mother and doctor because of the simple fact that you are worrying about this issue. Oh, and about the epidural: I am signing up for it in the future without a second thought. It's medical technology at its finest. Use it!! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
    Cane
     
  30. Nanon

    Nanon An urban myth.
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by CANES2006:
    <strong> </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif"></strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Nanon, tell your friend that she belongs in the caveman era. The woman is a complete moron. I bet she also is totally against the woman's movement ever happening and that women should continue being subservient to men. :mad: What nerve!! I grew up in a single parent household, and my mom had to leave me at home while she went to work. I grew up just fine, and I am pleased to say that I have a very loving relationship with my mother. I bet you many kids, who had their mom stay at home with them, would envy the close relationship that I have with my mother. She also never breast fed me. I can't believe the stupidity of this woman in implying that this is the only way for a mother to bond with her child. I am sorry, but at that age, the infant does not know the difference between a nipple and a bottle. All he or she cares about is getting milk!! Nanon, you don't worry about a thing. You will be a great mother and doctor because of the simple fact that you are worrying about this issue. Oh, and about the epidural: I am signing up for it in the future without a second thought. It's medical technology at its finest. Use it!! <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
    Cane[/QB]</font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Cane - Here's the kicker - she was a woman's studies major! She prides herself on being a liberal feminist!!! In fact, many (almost all) of the comments I've recieved have been from women who identify themselves as being feminists.

    Here's what I think is going on a lot of the time in these kinds of conversations. Mothering has become (maybe always has been) a competitive sport. From the get-go, before you even get pregnant, you are given 3 million messages about what's best for your child. There are obvious no-no's - you don't want to smoke a pack a day and drink a bottle of wine every night while your carrying someone else in your body. But most people trying to have a kid don't, so then the stakes get higher. No caffine. You must gain x amount of pounds, no more and no less. No analgesics during delivery. In fact, have it at home. This is where it begins... and it continues through until the kid is graduating from college. I call it the "sacrifice games." Who ever sacrifices more for their kids, wins.

    Which, IMO, is stupid, because all mothers sacrifice without even trying to. Aren't sleepless nights, dirty bedrooms, loud music, huge phone bills and clothing bills and unrequited crushes enouph for anyone to deal with? Does the parent with the career worry any less when jr. gets his licence than the one who doesn't have the career? When did sacrificing everything become equal to loving your child completely?

    That being said, I have HUGE respect for women who stay home with thier kids. Who knows? I may end up being one myself. But it's hard, hard work, no pay, little respect from the outside world... not everyone can do it. Not everyone SHOULD do it. But those who can't or won't shouldn't be excluded from having kids. Having a career shouldn't be equated to smoking crack while you're pregnant.

    But I rant.

    Nanon
     
  31. Jewely2177

    Jewely2177 Member
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    I do think that the 4th year would be a good time because its likely that if its a school where you can arrange your year the way you want, then other people will be doing it too, which provides a good supportive environment. There are also several schools that will understand this and give you time off as needed (Emory being one). There are also special guidelines provided at schools for pregnant women to follow during rotations--you dont have to treat certain patients, etc.
     
  32. barb

    barb Senior Member
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    At one of my interviews, my interviewer told me his mother had been a doctor, and she struggled throughout her life with the decision she made. Not only did colleagues and friends deem her a bad mother for spending so much time away from home, she, herself, felt bad for not being home more often. However, he said she had been an amazing mother and that even though she wasn't at every little league game and missed a few school plays, she was the best mother a child could have. I agree that the mother's role in a child's development is much more dominant than the father's role, (especially in early development) I don't think we all need to be stay at home moms in order to be good mothers. Even stay at home moms do not spend 24 hours a day focused on their children; they cook, they clean, go grocery shopping - all time consuming things that take time away from your family. As doctors, we can hire people to do those things, so that this time would be dedicated to our families.

    As far as timing goes, I think we've shown that it really depends on where you are in your life. For me, although I'm already 26, I'm willing to risk the increased chance of birth defects and infertility, so that I will not have to be away from my children 90 hours a week during residency. I don't think that would make me a bad mother if I chose otherwise, I just think it would be hard on me emotionally.
     
  33. Hopkins2010

    Hopkins2010 Membership Revoked
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    I'm male, and me and my wife (she's not involved in medicine) would like to have kids before 8 years go by (I'll be starting an MD/PhD program this summer).

    I think part of the problem with balancing family life with career is that even though women complain that they face an unfair burden (which they do in most cases) they dont DEMAND that their husbands to take up some of the slack.

    If husbands are willing to take a possible career hit, then it IS possible for women to have it all. But I dont think its possible for BOTH people to have it all at the same time.

    If its a single dad raising a child, then he cant expect to have it all either.
     
  34. determined little korean girl

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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by barb:
    <strong>At one of my interviews, my interviewer told me his mother had been a doctor, and she struggled throughout her life with the decision she made. Not only did colleagues and friends deem her a bad mother for spending so much time away from home, she, herself, felt bad for not being home more often. However, he said she had been an amazing mother and that even though she wasn't at every little league game and missed a few school plays, she was the best mother a child could have. I agree that the mother's role in a child's development is much more dominant than the father's role, (especially in early development) I don't think we all need to be stay at home moms in order to be good mothers. Even stay at home moms do not spend 24 hours a day focused on their children; they cook, they clean, go grocery shopping - all time consuming things that take time away from your family. As doctors, we can hire people to do those things, so that this time would be dedicated to our families.

    As far as timing goes, I think we've shown that it really depends on where you are in your life. For me, although I'm already 26, I'm willing to risk the increased chance of birth defects and infertility, so that I will not have to be away from my children 90 hours a week during residency. I don't think that would make me a bad mother if I chose otherwise, I just think it would be hard on me emotionally.</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Hey Barb ,
    The story about your interviewer and his mother really eased some of the tension I had about having children while being a doctor. I know that I would do my best to spend every second of my free time with my child (if and when I have one), and it's heart wrenching that I'd have to be away from my baby for almost all my waking hours, but I would definitely not risk my child having birth defects by having a child too late . And I would seriously regret with my whole heart if I was infertile by the time I was done with all my schooling. I think I'd rather be away from MY HEALTHY child than away from my child that may have a birth defect or even no child at all . I don't know .. I might not even have a child, who knows . I have hyperthyroid, otherwise known as Graves' disease, and I read somewhere, on the Johns Hopkins website that there were birth defects related to mothers who had hyperthyroid. I'm not too sure how true this is, but it was on the Johns Hopkins website, so I'm guessing it should be credible. I just really want to bring a healthy child into the world, raise her/him well, and love him/her to death. =) . I still don't know when I want to have a child . I talked to my boyfriend about it . He's in the process of opening his own business so he said that he was willing to stay home and take care of the baby , if and when we have one . He's great with children so I'm not too worried . We'll see how things go .
     
  35. SuperGrover

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    Hannacanna, if you are out there, I PM'ed you. :)
     
  36. barb

    barb Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by determined little korean girl:
    Hey Barb ,
    The story about your interviewer and his mother really eased some of the tension I had about having children while being a doctor. I know that I would do my best to spend every second of my free time with my child (if and when I have one), and it's heart wrenching that I'd have to be away from my baby for almost all my waking hours, but I would definitely not risk my child having birth defects by having a child too late . And I would seriously regret with my whole heart if I was infertile by the time I was done with all my schooling. I think I'd rather be away from MY HEALTHY child than away from my child that may have a birth defect or even no child at all . I don't know .. I might not even have a child, who knows . I have hyperthyroid, otherwise known as Graves' disease, and I read somewhere, on the Johns Hopkins website that there were birth defects related to mothers who had hyperthyroid. I'm not too sure how true this is, but it was on the Johns Hopkins website, so I'm guessing it should be credible. I just really want to bring a healthy child into the world, raise her/him well, and love him/her to death. =) . I still don't know when I want to have a child . I talked to my boyfriend about it . He's in the process of opening his own business so he said that he was willing to stay home and take care of the baby , if and when we have one . He's great with children so I'm not too worried . We'll see how things go .[/QB]</font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">I think as far as the hyperthyroid thing goes, you should definitely talk with a doctor to find out what your options are. It may just mean taking some extra precautions while pregnant.

    The fact that we are spending so much time thinking about what would make us the best mother possible, strongly indicates that all of us will be excellent mothers, regardless of the time we spend away from our children. I don't think there's a right way and a wrong way to have and raise a family.

    I guess as far as waiting until I finish my education to start a family, I'm kind of counting on the Madonnas and Cheryl Tiegs of our generation, who are having healthy children well into their late thirties and early forties. However, this is a decision I second-guess everyday and will continue to question throughout school. The thought of waiting too long and it being too late kills me. My boyfriend is such a good person and is so good with children, that to not give him children of his own would tear me apart. I guess what I'm trying to say is that for me this decision is a work in progress, and will constantly be re-evaluated until the right time comes around.
     
  37. SMW

    SMW Grand Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by baylor21:
    <strong>I think part of the problem with balancing family life with career is that even though women complain that they face an unfair burden (which they do in most cases) they dont DEMAND that their husbands to take up some of the slack.</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">I think women have been demanding without much result for some time now. It's great that your wife won't have to demand, but you're an unusual guy. All the studies point to the fact that it's the woman who shoulders most of the burdens of childcare, even when husband and wife work similar hours.
     
  38. gooloogooloo

    gooloogooloo Senior Member
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  39. tater tot

    tater tot Member
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    aaahhhh! this topic is freakin' me out <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="eek.gif" />

    I try to put these thoughts aside. There's nothing I can do to predict the future. All I know is that for years I have wanted to be a doctor--- no question!! I'll be at least 30, when/if I start med school. :( :(
    Nothing I can do about that now, although I always kick myself in the ass thinking "why couldn't I have done better from the start..."
    I'd give anything to finish residency in the early 30's-- perfect I think.
    I also have a very strong pulling towards surgery, that's what I am aiming for now. It may change, but I've been pretty firm on this speciality for some time. This choice is all the worse for my timeline of life....tick tick!! It would really suck to have to settle for another choice b/c of my withering eggs. I love being a chick but this bites. :mad:
     
  40. Kimya

    Kimya Senior Member
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    Oh, I missed this thread- sometimes the premed forum moves so fast! I've really been thinking about this too, and I think that recent Time article really crystallized it for me. I have been getting more and more frustrated on how to balance career and family, and have been realizing that there are these conflicting messages for society that make it so difficult!

    I wanted to pass on a couple of resources, firstly, momMD is a website that is devoted to being a mom and physician (www.mommd.com). I've read some good information there for prospective mom physicians.

    Secondly, and I think I have momofthree to thank for this- I think I remember you mentioning this book in an earlier post- there's a great book called The Price of Motherhood- Why the Most Important Job in the World Is Still the Least
    Valued. It's by Ann Crittenden, a former New York times reporter and Pulitzer prize nominee who was struggling with the issues of career and baby. I read it and it's really a wonderful book, talks about some of these critical issues.
     
  41. kafka79

    kafka79 Member
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    Anyone out there who just doesn't want to have kids? Just curious
     
  42. YBee

    YBee Member
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    Not to worry ladies - I am one of six children, three of whom were born while my mother was in her general surgery residency (and this in an era when women had to wear heels, nylons and skirts in the operating room!!!).

    Did I have a perfect childhood? No, but that had more to do with the personalities of my parents than the fact that both of them worked!

    You can do whatever you want to do just remember that nothing ever comes out exactly how you think it will, no matter how well you think you've planned it.
     
  43. commymommy

    commymommy *reformed commymommy*
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Mothering has become (maybe always has been) a competitive sport. </font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">This is the truth....and it won't matter if you are a stay-at-home mom or a working mom....whichever path you choose, you'll find that the moms around you will break into their clubs and try and prove that they are still better than each other in some way....it's just the way that many choose to deal with their insecurities, I guess..but as a sahm, I've heard mothers berate other moms because they dress their children in polyester, they don't breastfeed,they breastfeed too long, etc etc...working moms end up comparing work hours and saying things like "at least I always make it to the school functions" or "I only worked 39 hours this week"..it's all about comparisons so that our weeknesses don't seem quite so bad...and so at the end of the day, you have to be happy with your choice.

    just another thought,
    kris
     
  44. Pinki

    Pinki Sassy Member
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    This 30-year-old applicant has also been bothered about this subject, almost more than anything else, as of late. Damn you Time Magazine! My 89-year grandmother emailed me on Friday, the day before the MCAT (even though she's an emailing Granny, she's kind of out of it!) with the terse one liner "Read Time this week and think about it." I nearly cried...

    Then...my wonderful husband brought home a care package for the MCATS later on Friday night, complete with flowers, a card, dark chocolate (my fave!) and this week's People Magazine - featuring the cover article "Women over 40 Having Babies!" He wrote on a posty note on the top of it, "Whatever it takes, we'll achieve our dreams TOGETHER."

    Remember that, ladies, it takes a STRONG, CARING and GIVING partner to make a family work, no matter your age or your occupation! I am blessed...let's hope my scores will be blessed too!
     
  45. </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by determined little korean girl:
    [QB]ARRGGGHHH ~
     
  46. serpiente

    serpiente Senior Member
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    Just to add my .02, I'm not so sure that 4th year is the best time to have a baby. Think about it...this whole application process we're going through now, we'll be doing it then. I wouldn't want to travel to interviews while pregnant. And I can't imagine that "looking pregnant" will help your cause, especially with male interviewers, I think there will be a bias there (ie that you won't be able to give your all to residency) unfortunately :(. Also if you choose to relocate (or are forced to) I would think that would be hard to do while you are (or soon after) having a child. I think also that first year of residency (for most residencies anyway) is hard as hell, tough call schedules etc. I wouldn't want to have a baby and then never see him/her at all during the next year. I think that sometime after internship would be more ideal, if one is young enough (&lt;32 maybe? to wait that long and I think that applies to most people here) Of course, I'm starting medical school in Aug., so I dont' know really...any other thoughts?
     
  47. commymommy

    commymommy *reformed commymommy*
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    OK...here are some more questions to ponder....the biggest concerns for many seem to be...what will happen if my pregnancy shows..ie I can't hide it during interviews...I sort of relate this to the fact that the only thought in my head while I was pregnant was my fear of giving birth....after raising 3 children, I realize that giving birth was the least of my worries :D And to be honest, whether or not you are showing is the least of your worries too...the reason that the people that you are interviewing with are raising an eyebrow is because they know what comes after the last stage of labor....the challenges of being a parent and also of keeping a marriage healthy and strong when you're a parent and add on med student/resident...maybe the image in their head is of hiring a resident, or admitting a med student who won't be getting enough sleep, who may be having marital problems due to lack of time and the additional stress that come with babies, who may have issues like needing time off for sick children, etc...I'm not saying that I agree with it..because I think it's damn unfair...but it's the reality.

    So...here's a question to toss about...when would be the best time for the child to be born....instead of looking at your schedule and saying...March is good for me...ask yourself what time would be in the best interest of a child who will need your devotion, dedication to them, love and attention.

    Sorry to be a party pooper folks, but children need their parents and they need their moms...and as much as I'd like to believe that you can have it all as a woman..you just can't. Something will have to give at some point and it will either be your children...or you'll have to step down a notch professionally.

    Can you have children and be a med student or resident...technically ...of course. Can YOU personally survive and do well academically..well yah...Ask yourself what you will have to do to maintain your study habits and to continue to excel...and compare that to the needs of a baby....where will your priorities rest the night before the big exam when the baby has a fever of 104 and has to go the ER...and your husband isn't available to help? Ask yourself who will stay home with your child when they have the chicken pox, break an arm, need surgery, etc....WILL it BE your husband? Be clear on this right now...run to that man and find out! Because if it will be you ... how on earth will you be doing a surgical clerkship or taking 1:3 call?

    I know that I've said some sort of upsetting things...and I don't mean to come across in any way to hurt anyone's feelings...I'm just interested in the answers to these questions....because the only needs that have been addressed here are our needs. And don't get me wrong....I'm right in there with you wanting to find a way to make it work...but I'm farther along in mothering and realize the enormous commitment and demands of parenting....

    Maybe it depends on what you value and want for your family? There will always be the anecdotal stories of kids brought up in daycare or who took care of themselves afterschool from the time that they were 5 and turned out alright..but take a step backwards and look at the bigger picture of our country right now..are children suffering because parents aren't involved enough?

    {sigh}

    Kris
     
  48. Zack90

    Zack90 Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by momofthree:
    <strong> </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Mothering has become (maybe always has been) a competitive sport. </font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">This is the truth....and it won't matter if you are a stay-at-home mom or a working mom....whichever path you choose, you'll find that the moms around you will break into their clubs and try and prove that they are still better than each other in some way....it's just the way that many choose to deal with their insecurities, I guess..but as a sahm, I've heard mothers berate other moms because they dress their children in polyester, they don't breastfeed,they breastfeed too long, etc etc...working moms end up comparing work hours and saying things like "at least I always make it to the school functions" or "I only worked 39 hours this week"..it's all about comparisons so that our weeknesses don't seem quite so bad...and so at the end of the day, you have to be happy with your choice.

    just another thought,
    kris</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Well..... I'm very happy my infant daughter has two Dad's - no hypercompetitive mothers in this family of three!
     
  49. Zack90

    Zack90 Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by momofthree:
    <strong>
    Sorry to be a party pooper folks, but children need their parents and they need their moms...
    {sigh}

    Kris</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">I agree, children need their parents.....
    but who says they "need their moms".... Some children have only one Dad, some have two Dad's, some have one Mom, and some have two Mom's... This is all OK... please, if you are going to be a physician, toss the stereotypes, and be respectiful of others.....
     
  50. SMW

    SMW Grand Member
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    Yes, some kids don't have a mother, but that's sad, hard on the kid, and not something you plan. We're talking about planning here. This thread is about when to have babies so is mainly for women who are planning on having and raising a baby. More power to you if you've adopted a motherless child, and I'm sure one Dad or 2 Dads can do a great job of raising a child. But given that the child has a mother, the child needs that mother (and a father, or another mother, and as many supportive friends and relatives as possible).

    Kris, thanks for the voice of experience.
     

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