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clown college anyone?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by shireen, Oct 17, 2001.

  1. shireen

    shireen Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 9, 2001
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    I've posted a couple of other times and each post was basically the same in that it dealt with my lack of ability to not have a major panic attack with all of this "getting into med school" stuff (I was the one who wrote in about laminating my notes so I can study and shower at the same time). I really appreciated all of the posts that I got and suggestions on destressing.
    But now I'm reading through the messages and seeing that some of you have gotten back great MCAT scores, and some of you have been accepted to schools already, and that uneasy feeling is setting in again.
    A few years back, I developed an eating disorder. Every aspect of my like suffered, including my academic career. I went into recovery and rebounded. My grades have gone back up. If these schools were looking at my record, they would see that I have shown an extensive interest in medicine (I even went to a Medical Academy high school and did rotations in the ER, Radiology Dept, and PT dept). I'm taking my MCAT in April and if all of my studying pays off, I'll do well on that. But I'm so worried that the schools will look at my GPA and say "Did you seriously think that we were going to let you in?." My perfectionist dad has pretty much told me that I'm living in a dream world and because I screwed up 2 semesters of school, I'm wasting my time even thinking that I'm going to get in to Med school. Medicine is the only thing that I've wanted to do for my entire life. When I was doing those rotations in high school and actually got to do CPR and work with a team of doctors and nurses, I remember thinking "oh my god, I belong here." And now I just feel like I'm sinking and being a doctor is out of reach.
    Do you think that with an upward trend in my grades, a stellar MCAT score, and an obvious display of interest in medicine will be enough OR should I start thinking about my essay for clown college?
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  3. tBw

    tBw totally deluded 7+ Year Member

    Oct 6, 2001
    infront of an iMac
    Hi Shireen,

    You seem concerned by being comforted/reassured by people that had their acts together. Well, I haven't got an excellent MCAT, haven't even sat it yet, haven't got a perfect GPA, haven't even (almost but not quite) finished pre-reqs though I do have a BA already, and I'm older than most going through this. So will my 'not-got-my-act-together-myself' reassurances help?

    It sounds like you are doing fine - clinical experience, rising GPA, etc

    The truth is the people that get to be Doctors fall into two categories - geniuses, and those who just wouldn't give up. Speaking for myself I fall into the 2nd category (well...I haven't yet...but I have to believe I will). If you keep persevering you will get in.

    You have two problems at the moment - worrying too much about how you are doing in comparison to everyone else, and worrying too much about what other people think. These two problems boil down to just "worrying too much".

    If you are going to be a doctor you are going to be the person (eventually) making possibly critical decisions about the health care of your patients. Sometimes you will also make mistakes. The worry attached to such decisions and mistakes will be far greater tha anything you are facing now (GPA and your Dad's opinion will fade in comparison, trust me...if they don't then you have even bigger problems!!). If you think you can't cope now, you might want to consider do you WANT to try to cope with the stresses of being a could just make you really miserable. If you are sure though then you need to take a step back from your current state of mind and see it in perspective. I know that's a challenge but view it as just as an important step in becoming a doctor just like doing the pre-reqs or getting a good really need to learn to de-stress, accept your own humanity/mistakes/imperfection, allow yourself to strive, sometimes succeed, sometimes fail. If you don't learn now, you will not make a good or a happy doctor even if you do get in. Try focussing on outside interests a bit...exercise, relationships,'s only natural to obsess if you only focus on one thing.

    good luck!
  4. lilninja

    lilninja Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 8, 2001
    Re-read the last two lines you wrote (up to the part about the clown college thing) and ask yourself if you were an admissions officer, would you be interested in that kind of candidate.

    Medical students are NOT perfect - Every med student I know has told about some bad grade they got or something picky in their applications they thought would come back to bite them in the behind. I shadowed a doctor who went to my school, and I told him how much trouble i was having in Genetics - he asked me who I had, and when I told him, he said "Oh my gosh, is he still there?! I got a C in his class, man, I hated that!"
    It made me feel so much better to hear that (and this guy was a pediatric oncologist at Children;s Hospital L.A, who was also working on his PhD).
    No offense, but you really have to relax a lot. I'm not sure that someone who is so strung up on getting into medical school will make the impression I think you could be making instead. I think adcoms like to know that applicants have other things that are important in their lives that won't feel like the world depends on their acceptance to medical school.
    I even think your low grades can help you, especially if you did something about it, like you did - you brought them up - med schools like active reparation of mistakes. As long as you took action and came out on top. Study hard for that MCAT, and if you do well, I'm sure you'd be all set. (Just stay sane - it won't help if you giv ein to all the stress).
    Hang in there and good luck.
  5. cm7b5

    cm7b5 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jun 20, 2001
    Washington DC
    Schools definitely like the upward trend.....especially if you take initiative and do honors your senior year...I got off to a slow start in college.....with a 2.6 science GPA my freshman year.....but then I studied hard and got a 3.90 my other years and a 36 on the MCAT. Even though my cumulative GPA may be below the average of some of the top schools-----I think the upward trend helped a great deal..... I have managed to get interviews from some pretty good schools including UPenn... I wish you luck...and would like to say that getting into med school is not all about is about sincerity and motivation, and judging by your post I am sure you have both. :D :D
  6. SMW

    SMW Grand Member 7+ Year Member

    Jul 12, 2001
    anchorage, ak
    And ignore your father (I know, easier said than done!). He is sabotaging you. Don't bother arguing with him. Just smile sweetly and go ahead quietly doing what you're doing, which will get you into medical school one day, if you find a way to constructively manage your stress level (exercise is a must, plus some fun things too). The people who post on this board are the super go-getters (also the nicest of the super go-getters) and a very tiny fraction of the total applicant pool, or even of those who will ultimately be accepted. Do not be intimidated. You sound like a wonderful applicant to me. If your MCAT is even solid (doesn't have to be stellar) and you have a life outside of school and trying to get into medschool, you will get in somewhere.
  7. praha12

    praha12 Junior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jul 22, 2001

    If you continue to put yourself under that kind of pressure, it won't matter whether you get into medical school or not--you will end your life as a miserable wreck either way. Relax. Keep plugging away, and maybe you will reach your goal; but if you do not enjoy the process of getting there, you're missing the point. Make your life worthwhile even if you don't become an MD. You will not have an opportunity to relive your youth.

    -Been there
  8. Trek

    Trek Grand Uranium Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 23, 2001
    The Big House
    YOu have a real defeatist attitude, which ain't healthy. Just work on doing WELL, leave exceptional to the lucky few. You'll be fine. --Trek
  9. MiamiMarmot

    MiamiMarmot Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jun 25, 2001
    Northern Tundra
    If you really want to be a doc, just keep working hard and getting good grades. As long as you can explain to ADCOMs clearly and honestly why you messed up a couple semesters, you will be fine.
  10. Grace

    Grace Junior Member

    Aug 13, 2001
    San Francisco
    RELAX!! My parents tell me the same thing, that i'm a piece of **** (well, kinda) and that i should apply to grad school instead. and pharmacy. and nursing. the point is, you don't have to be a perfect applicant to get into med school. my gpa sucked my sophomore year (too much partying) but i brought it up after studying, (only to 3.3) and did well on the mcat (37). i've already had 4 interviews, and waiting on some schools. when you do apply, just be realistic in the schools, and apply to ones with stats more similar to your own. even if you don't get in the first time, do research, take a year off, or consider a post-bac. chicago med gives interviews to their post-baccers before their regular interviews! if you really want to do it, you will...
  11. praying4MD

    praying4MD 2K Member 10+ Year Member

    Feb 20, 2001
    The amount of stress you put yourself through must be taking its toll on you. You need to take care of YOU first and make sure you are as healthy as you can be, both physically and emotionally.

    Don't compare yourself to people on these boards. There will always be someone better than you, but there will always be someone worse off than you as well. Not everyone has a 42 MCAT & 4.0. In fact, I'm willing to wager that those people are in the minority. Everyone has apprehension about the application process. That's natural. What is detrimental is for your health to suffer because of it.

    You sound like a very determined person, so I have no doubt that if you put your mind to it, you can concentrate on things that matter most in life-- not grades or MCATs, but staying sane and keeping your eating disorder a thing of the past. That is key!! It will be challenging, no doubt, but you cannot let yourself fall into that rut again.

    Upward grade trends impress adcoms so as long as you keep improving, there shouldn't be a problem. In fact, it could work in your favor if you show ongoing progress.

    Above all, keep your personality, health and peace of mind in check throughout this trying process. Good luck.
  12. Thumper

    Thumper Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Sep 8, 2001
    Hi Shireen, If I am guessing correctly, you are probably persian, or at least middle-eastern. Trust me when I say ALL MEern dads
    are like that. I am sorry to hear that you had an eating disorder, and I don't mean to sound too harsh, but I bet it was because of all the pressure you were under from your family (read. DAD) I was in the exact same situation as you. My dad even went so far as to say that everything but being an MD was "bull****", even optometry or pharmacy!However, I finally sat my dad down and asked him what he wanted from me and for me. We talked, and I realized that he just wanted me to establish myself and have a successful, well-paying job. I explained to him that I am trying my hardest, but that all his constant nagging and lack of support was hurting my work and well-being. He finally cooled off a bit, and we now have a better relationship. Trust me, you will never be happy until you confront him and tell him how you feel. It is only then that you will start to feel better about yourself and live you own life! ;)
  13. SMW

    SMW Grand Member 7+ Year Member

    Jul 12, 2001
    anchorage, ak
    Wow! I take back my advice. EllieR, that was awesome! Are you considering psychiatry?
  14. isa

    isa Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    May 9, 2001
    Hi Shireen,

    Like you, I also overcame an eating disorder. I agree with EllieR who said that it was largely due to the external pressures. In the end, I realized that I was adopting everyone's expectations and it was my own pressure that made me miserable. I know it's hard not to worry when there's so much to think about and I don't deny that you're going through real pain, but take it from someone who learned the hard way-- life's richer when you relax a bit. Rarely do we do any one thing that messes us up for life. As you've shown with your schoolwork, you learn and do better next time.

    Trust yourself first before listening to other people's opinions. Lead a balanced life. Surround yourself with supportive people. Take care of your health and good luck.

  15. shireen

    shireen Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 9, 2001
    St. Paul, Minnesota
    You're 2 for 2 :) Yes I'm Half Persian and Yes I agree most Middle Eastern fathers can set their expectations pretty high for their children. You have no idea how many times I've heard "I came to this country with one suitcase and put myself through college and made something of myself. You were born in this country and so you will do better than I did." He really takes all the fun out of my quest to become a doctor. Sometimes I think for a milli-second that he is going to back off, but then all of the sudden it's back to "you made yourself sick by not eating and YOU want to be a DOCTOR???"
    Deep down I think you are all correct when you say that schools like people who rebound and have upward trends. I don't think I can change cold turkey because I've been like this for as long as I can remember. Baby steps. I just got a gold fish (that counts as an extra curricular activity, right?) and I might join my boyfriends gym later this month.
    Thanks for being so understanding.
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