If you could go back in time would you do it all over again?

This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.

Pablo94

Full Member
7+ Year Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2016
Messages
503
Reaction score
164
Hello,

I am 22 and will be entering my first year of medical school this fall and am getting a little nervous. Today a friend of mine who is currently in med school posted a video on facebook (I believe from KevinMD) that says the majority of physicians regret going to medical school (due to stress, debt etc.). I was wondering if a lot of current medical students, residents or attending physicians actually feel that way and figured this would be a good place to ask. If you could go back in time would you do it all over again?

Thanks

Members don't see this ad.
 
bruh, this is one of the most common questions asked here. Use the search function
 
  • Like
  • Angry
Reactions: 3 users
Hello,

I am 22 and will be entering my first year of medical school this fall and am getting a little nervous. Today a friend of mine who is currently in med school posted a video on facebook (I believe from KevinMD) that says the majority of physicians regret going to medical school (due to stress, debt etc.). I was wondering if a lot of current medical students, residents or attending physicians actually feel that way and figured this would be a good place to ask. If you could go back in time would you do it all over again?

Thanks
Matched MS4 here. If I knew what the last 4 years would be like, the ****ty moments i'd go through, I probably wouldn't have done it.

BUT, I don't regret my decision to come. I've learned and grown more than I could have imagined, and I met lifelong friends on this journey. Despite the many lows, I've had a few highs that almost nothing else could compare to. For that, I'm thankful and I felt the sacrifices and hardships were worth it because they resulted in those moments, and made me a stronger person. Regardless of what I end up doing or not doing, I feel the time I put in so far did not go to waste.

As of now, I'm excited for the specialty I'm doing, and I love the program I was accepted to. But, I know more hardships and challenges will come with residency and being an attending. Will I stay through all that or walk away at some point? I honestly don't know. Some days I feel like I made the right decision to pursue medicine, other days I'm not so sure. But I don't regret the last 4 years, and I'm happy for the opportunity to keep going.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users
Members don't see this ad :)
20 years ago, when I was in high school and shadowing a doc, he told me don't go into medicine. Don't do it. Insurances are a hassle, the pay is less, patients don't respect you anymore, etc.

After 4 years of college, 4 years of med school, 3 years of residency, and 4 years of practicing in the military, on my very first shift, I called to admit a patient and that same doctor was on call and took the admission. Now at the end of his career, still practicing medicine long after he financially didn't have to anymore. He still practices in his 70's. No matter how burnt out we get, its very hard to give up being a physician.

We all have frustrations, medicine is hard. Its certainly not everything we want it to be, but a lot of jobs are really hard. But we make an extraordinary amount of money compared to most people in society, and we have the awesome responsibility of actually sometimes making a huge difference in peoples lives., while also fostering an environment where we can pass our knowledge on to future generations of docs if we are inclined to do so.

I'd definitely do this all over again without regrets.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 55 users
20 years ago, when I was in high school and shadowing a doc, he told me don't go into medicine. Don't do it. Insurances are a hassle, the pay is less, patients don't respect you anymore, etc.

After 4 years of college, 4 years of med school, 3 years of residency, and 4 years of practicing in the military, on my very first shift, I called to admit a patient and that same doctor was on call and took the admission. Now at the end of his career, still practicing medicine long after he financially didn't have to anymore. He still practices in his 70's. No matter how burnt out we get, its very hard to give up being a physician.

We all have frustrations, medicine is hard. Its certainly not everything we want it to be, but a lot of jobs are really hard. But we make an extraordinary amount of money compared to most people in society, and we have the awesome responsibility of actually sometimes making a huge difference in peoples lives., while also fostering an environment where we can pass our knowledge on to future generations of docs if we are inclined to do so.

I'd definitely do this all over again without regrets.
wow I really appreciate that post. It's motivating
 
  • Like
Reactions: 5 users
Not saying I agree 100% but there is a lot of truth in here:
Med School Hell – 101 Things You Wish You Knew Before Starting Medical School

1. If I had known what it was going to be like, I would never have done it.
2. You’ll study more than you ever have in your life.
3. Only half of your class will be in the top 50%. You have a 50% chance of being in the top half of your class. Get used to it now.
4. You don’t need to know anatomy before school starts. Or pathology. Or physiology.
5. Third year rotations will suck the life out you.
6. Several people from your class will have sex with each other. You might be one of the lucky participants.
7. You may discover early on that medicine isn’t for you.
8. You don’t have to be AOA or have impeccable board scores to match somewhere – only if you’re matching into radiology.
9. Your social life may suffer some.
10. Pelvic exams are teh suck.
11. You won’t be a medical student on the surgery service. You’ll be the retractor bitch.
12. Residents will probably ask you to retrieve some type of nourishment for them.
13. Most of your time on rotations will be wasted. Thrown away. Down the drain.
14. You’ll work with at least one attending physician who you’ll want to beat the **** out of.
15. You’ll work with at least three residents who you’ll want to beat the **** out of.
16. You’ll ask a stranger about the quality of their stools.
17. You’ll ask post-op patients if they’ve farted within the last 24 hours.
18. At some point during your stay, a stranger’s bodily fluids will most likely come into contact with your exposed skin.
19. Somebody in your class will flunk out of medical school.
20. You’ll work 14 days straight without a single day off. Probably multiple times.
21. A student in your class will have sex with an attending or resident.
22. After the first two years are over, your summer breaks will no longer exist. Enjoy them as much as you can.
23. You’ll be sleep deprived.
24. There will be times on certain rotations where you won’t be allowed to eat.
25. You will be pimped.
26. You’ll wake up one day and ask yourself is this really what you want out of life.
27. You’ll party a lot during the first two years, but then that pretty much ends at the beginning of your junior year.
28. You’ll probably change your specialty of choice at least 4 times.
29. You’ll spend a good deal of your time playing social worker.
30. You’ll learn that medical insurance reimbursement is a huge problem, particularly for primary care physicians.
31. Nurses will treat you badly, simply because you are a medical student.
32. There will be times when you’ll be ignored by your attending or resident.
33. You will develop a thick skin. If you fail to do this, you’ll cry often.
34. Public humiliation is very commonplace in medical training.
35. Surgeons are *******s. Take my word for it now.
36. OB/GYN residents are treated like ****, and that **** runs downhill. Be ready to pick it up and sleep with it.
37. It’s always the medical student’s fault.
38. Gunner is a derogatory word. It’s almost as bad as racial slurs.
39. You’ll look forward to the weekend, not so you can relax and have a good time but so you can catch up on studying for the week.
40. Your house might go uncleaned for two weeks during an intensive exam block.
41. As a medical student on rotations, you don’t matter. In fact, you get in the way and impede productivity.
42. There’s a fair chance that you will be physically struck by a nurse, resident, or attending physician. This may include slapped on the hand or kicked on the shin in order to instruct you to “move” or “get out of the way.”
43. Any really bad procedures will be done by you. The residents don’t want to do them, and you’re the low man on the totem pole. This includes rectal examinations and digital disimpactions.
44. You’ll be competing against the best of the best, the cream of the crop. This isn’t college where half of your classmates are idiots. Everybody in medical school is smart.
45. Don’t think that you own the world because you just got accepted into medical school. That kind of attitude will humble you faster than anything else.
46. If you’re in it for the money, there are much better, more efficient ways to make a living. Medicine is not one of them.
47. Anatomy sucks. All of the bone names sound the same.
48. If there is anything at all that you’d rather do in life, do not go into medicine.
49. The competition doesn't end after getting accepted to medical school. You’ll have to compete for class rank, awards, and residency. If you want to do a fellowship, you’ll have to compete for that too.
50. You’ll never look at weekends the same again.
51. VA hospitals suck. Most of them are old, but the medical records system is good.
52. Your fourth year in medical school will be like a vacation compared to the first three years. It’s a good thing too, because you’ll need one.
53. Somebody in your class will be known as the “highlighter *****.” Most often a female, she’ll carry around a backpack full of every highlighter color known to man. She’ll actually use them, too.
54. Rumors surrounding members of your class will spread faster than they did in high school.
55. You’ll meet a lot of cool people, many new friends, and maybe your husband or wife.
56. No matter how bad your medical school experience was at times, you’ll still be able to think about the good times. Kind of like how I am doing right now.
57. Your first class get-together will be the most memorable. Cherish those times.
58. Long after medical school is over, you’ll still keep in contact with the friends you made. I do nearly every day.
59. Gunners always sit in the front row. This rule never fails. However, not everyone who sits in the front row is a gunner.
60. There will be one person in your class who’s the coolest, most laid back person you’ve ever met. This guy will sit in the back row and throw paper airplanes during class, and then blow up with 260+ Step I’s after second year. True story.
61. At the beginning of first year, everyone will talk about how cool it’s going to be to help patients. At the end of third year, everybody will talk about how cool it’s going to be to make a lot of money.
62. Students who start medical school wanting to do primary care end up in dermatology. Those students who start medical school wanting to do dermatology end up in family medicine.
63. Telling local girls at the bar that you’re a medical student doesn’t mean ****. They’ve been hearing that for years. Be more unique.
64. The money isn’t really that good in medicine. Not if you look at it in terms of hours worked.
65. Don’t wear your white coat into the gas station, or any other business that has nothing to do with you wearing a white coat. You look like an a**, and people do make fun of you.
66. Don’t round on patients that aren’t yours. If you round on another student’s patients, that will spread around your class like fire after a 10 year drought. Your team will think you’re an idiot too.
67. If you are on a rotation with other students, don’t bring in journal articles to share with the team “on the fly” without letting the other students know. This makes you look like a gunner, and nobody likes a gunner. Do it once, and you might as well bring in a new topic daily. Rest assured that your fellow students will just to show you up.
68. If you piss off your intern, he or she can make your life hell.
69. If your intern pisses you off, you can make his or her life hell.
70. Don’t try to work during medical school. Live life and enjoy the first two years.
71. Not participating in tons of ECs doesn’t hurt your chances for residency. Forget the weekend free clinic and play some Frisbee golf instead.
72. Don’t rent an apartment. If you can afford to, buy a small home instead. I saved $200 per month and had roughly $30,000 in equity by choosing to buy versus rent.
73. Your family members will ask you for medical advice, even after your first week of first year.
74. Many of your friends will go onto great jobs and fantastic lifestyles. You’ll be faced with 4 more years of debt and then at least 3 years of residency before you’ll see any real earning potential.
75. Pick a specialty based around what you like to do.
76. At least once during your 4 year stay, you’ll wonder if you should quit.
77. It’s amazing how fast time flies on your days off. It’s equally amazing at how slow the days are on a rotation you hate.
78. You’ll learn to be scared of asking for time off.
79. No matter what specialty you want to do, somebody on an unrelated rotation will hold it against you.
80. A great way to piss off attendings and residents are to tell them that you don’t plan to complete a residency.
81. Many of your rotations will require you to be the “vitals b****.” On surgery, you’ll be the “retractor b****.”
82. Sitting around in a group and talking about ethical issues involving patients is not fun.
83. If an attending or resident treats you badly, call them out on it. You can get away with far more than you think.
84. Going to class is generally a waste of time. Make your own schedule and enjoy the added free time.
85. Find new ways to study. The methods you used in college may or may not work. If something doesn’t work, adapt.
86. Hospitals smell bad.
87. Subjective evaluations are just that – subjective. They aren’t your end all, be all so don’t dwell on a poor evaluation. The person giving it was probably an *******, anyway.
88. Some physicians will tell you it’s better than it really is. Take what you hear (both positive and negative) with a grain of salt.
89. 90% of surgeons are *******s, and 63% of statistics are made up. The former falls in the lucky 37%.
90. The best time of your entire medical school career is between the times when you first get your acceptance letter and when you start school.
91. During the summer before medical school starts, do not attempt to study or read anything remotely related to medicine. Take this time to travel and do things for you.
92. The residents and faculty in OB/GYN will be some of the most malignant personalities you’ve ever come into contact with.
93. Vaginal deliveries are messy. So are c-sections. It’s just an all-around blood fest if you like that sort of thing.
94. Despite what the faculty tell you, you don’t need all of the fancy equipment that they suggest for you to buy. All you need is a stethoscope. The other equipment they say you “need” is standard in all clinic and hospital exam rooms. If it’s not standard, your training hospital and clinics suck.
95. If your school has a note taking service, it’s a good idea to pony up the cash for it. It saves time and gives you the option of not attending lecture.
96. Medicine is better than being a janitor, but there were times when I envied the people cleaning the hospital trash cans.
97. Avoid surgery like the plague.
98. See above and then apply it to OB/GYN as well.
99. The money is good in medicine, but it’s not all that great especially considering the amount of time that you’ll have to work.
100. One time an HIV+ patient ripped out his IV and then “slung” his blood at the staff in the room. Go, go infectious disease.
101. Read Med School Hell now, throughout medical school, and then after you’re done. Then come back and tell me how right I am.

http://www.medschoolhell.com/2007/04/24/101-things-you-wish-you-knew-before-starting-medical-school/
 
  • Like
Reactions: 10 users
I would not do it again. The amount of stress, sacrifice, misery and abuse I've seen preclude me from ever recommending medical school to anyone. All of that, plus the fortune it costs (both in money and time) make it not worth it. On top of that, you're trapped by debt and lack of marketable skill. Even if you want to leave, very few would be able to without tremendous cost. I'll tell you what I will tell my children; If you want to see patients, become a PA or NP. Otherwise, pick something else.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users
Hello,

I am 22 and will be entering my first year of medical school this fall and am getting a little nervous. Today a friend of mine who is currently in med school posted a video on facebook (I believe from KevinMD) that says the majority of physicians regret going to medical school (due to stress, debt etc.). I was wondering if a lot of current medical students, residents or attending physicians actually feel that way and figured this would be a good place to ask. If you could go back in time would you do it all over again?

Thanks

No big surprise. There will always be some who would and some who wouldn't. Follow what makes you happy and don't listen to the public masses...

-signed 42 year-old 3rd year medical student with 15 years of nursing experience.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 6 users
I would not do it again. The amount of stress, sacrifice, misery and abuse I've seen preclude me from ever recommending medical school to anyone. All of that, plus the fortune it costs (both in money and time) make it not worth it. On top of that, you're trapped by debt and lack of marketable skill. Even if you want to leave, very few would be able to without tremendous cost. I'll tell you what I will tell my children; If you want to see patients, become a PA or NP. Otherwise, pick something else.
:rofl:
 
When @Pathman1000 says "lack of marketable skill" I think they mean once you're an attending physician it's really hard to leave and find a comparable career path in terms of the same or similar compensation and other benefits as an attending physician. I wouldn't go so far as to say it's impossible, such as in specialties that aren't patient-facing, but we're trained to take care of patients, and that's difficult to translate into another realm for comparable compensation, benefits, etc. Maybe someone could go into healthcare consulting, become a hospital exec, etc., but even these might mean further training (e.g., MBA), and they might not really be doing what doctors do anymore if that's the full-time job now.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
Lol. No. I would go teach high school English or French where I'd be home at 3:30 every day, have summers off and breaks throughout the year, time to travel and time to read/study things outside of medicine.

Oh, and where my colleagues and culture weren't so insufferable.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 9 users
Yes. Without a doubt I would do it again.

Not to say I love every minute. Certainly there are moments (middle of the night emergencies especially) when I envy my family members with 9-5 jobs. However, on the whole, I love what I do and couldn't do anything else.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users
KevinMD is a loop recording of a sad song played on a tiny violin.

What else are you going to do with your life? Is there some bright and sunny path with promise and payment at the end that we've all missed? I doubt it. Do what you want to and don't look back
 
  • Like
Reactions: 18 users
Members don't see this ad :)
Lol. No. I would go teach high school English or French where I'd be home at 3:30 every day, have summers off and breaks throughout the year, time to travel and time to read/study things outside of medicine.

Oh, and where my colleagues and culture weren't so insufferable.
But arguably a lot less money to do so.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
But arguably a lot less money to do so.
Plenty of high school teachers are making ~100k (in the suburbs, usually). Having double the salary but no time to use it isn't doing a whole hell of a lot for me.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Plenty of high school teachers are making ~100k (in the suburbs, usually). Having double the salary but no time to use it isn't doing a whole hell of a lot for me.

Lol my mom makes around $50k working as a high school teacher in the suburbs. She's at work by 7:15 each day, has a 20 minute lunch break, and isn't home until 4:30 normally. Then she spends a few hours a week at home grading papers. It's not a cake lifestyle, though obviously better than med.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 26 users
Plenty of high school teachers are making ~100k (in the suburbs, usually). Having double the salary but no time to use it isn't doing a whole hell of a lot for me.
Although true, That's definitely not reflective of that population. Would you be able to guarantee that you'd be one of those 6-figure earning teachers? Now, if time-off is that much of a priority, why not choose a specialty or schedule that allows for that?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
There are incredibly few professions that offer the security and pay of doctoring. For every teacher or engineer breaking 6 figures there are dozens making half of that. Physicians routinely are in the top income brackets nationwide and you'll have to be pretty lousy to not made 120,000 minimum. Just like the patient who thinks she has cancer because her best friends mothers bridge partner does, the ideas that because someone knows someone that got a nonreproducible sweet gig does not make it the most likely denomination here
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users
Lol my mom makes around $50k working as a high school teacher in the suburbs. She's at work by 7:15 each day, has a 20 minute lunch break, and isn't home until 4:30 normally. Then she spends a few hours a week at home grading papers. It's not a cake lifestyle, though obviously better than med.
That's more like it. However, I know someone who made 96k as a high school math teacher 10 yrs ago (Probably broke 6 figures by now). But, he also had a PhD in Math and since he enjoyed working with HS students more than with college and grad students, he chose to work at that level. so again, definitely not reflective of teachers in general.
 
I would definitely do it again. If you asked me during second year... maybe not. After finding the speciality I want to do and really getting to focus on it fourth year, I definitely feel like this was all worth it. Fourth year is the best and I actually feel like a human again. Just in time for residency to start! Haha


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile app
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
I would definitely do it again. If you asked me during second year... maybe not. After finding the speciality I want to do and really getting to focus on it fourth year, I definitely feel like this was all worth it. Fourth year is the best and I actually feel like a human again. Just in time for residency to start! Haha


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile app
Mind sharing what specialty that is?... (Really hoping it's Path so I'm not the only going against the stream and shutting my eyes and ears to the doom and gloom :whistle:)
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Lol. No. I would go teach high school English or French where I'd be home at 3:30 every day, have summers off and breaks throughout the year, time to travel and time to read/study things outside of medicine.

Oh, and where my colleagues and culture weren't so insufferable.
Not that cut and dry. Hours usually aren't so static.
Plenty of high school teachers are making ~100k (in the suburbs, usually). Having double the salary but no time to use it isn't doing a whole hell of a lot for me.
"Plenty". Bit of an overstatement. My sister has her masters. She teaches but also has administrative responsibilities sprinkled in and her salary doesn't touch that. Ive always made more as a nurse. Luckily her husband has a fantastic job.

She takes her work home with her constantly as well. It's an enjoyable job for her because she loves her kids. But such an overstatement to think most or plenty are off every day by 4pm, make 100k and have every weekend and summer "off".

Sent from my Nexus 6P using SDN mobile
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
If I could go back in time, I'd use that time machine for other things, not pontificate about the gravity of my decision to do medicine.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 6 users
Lol my mom makes around $50k working as a high school teacher in the suburbs. She's at work by 7:15 each day, has a 20 minute lunch break, and isn't home until 4:30 normally. Then she spends a few hours a week at home grading papers. It's not a cake lifestyle, though obviously better than med.
Although true, That's definitely not reflective of that population. Would you be able to guarantee that you'd be one of those 6-figure earning teachers? Now, if time-off is that much of a priority, why not choose a specialty or schedule that allows for that?
Not that cut and dry. Hours usually aren't so static.

"Plenty". Bit of an overstatement. My sister has her masters. She teaches but also has administrative responsibilities sprinkled in and her salary doesn't touch that. Ive always made more as a nurse. Luckily her husband has a fantastic job.

She takes her work home with her constantly as well. It's an enjoyable job for her because she loves her kids. But such an overstatement to think most or plenty are off every day by 4pm, make 100k and have every weekend and summer "off".

Sent from my Nexus 6P using SDN mobile
I'm referencing the pay scale of the teachers in my district, which is where I likely would have taught (given that alumni receive hiring priority). I'm not saying this would have been a logical route for everyone, but the question asked was what I would have chosen if I could make a different decision, and given the cush lifestyle of the teachers I had growing up, this would have been a good alternative for me, personally. I have friends who chose this route and are making more than my friends in nursing, their hours are better, they have more scheduled breaks, and they have multiple free periods every day to work on grading so they aren't bringing home piles of **** every night.

As for going into lifestyle-friendly specialties, most of them sound like the nine circles of hell to me. I don't find them interesting, don't like the patient populations in a few of them, etc. The fields I find most stimulating are, unfortunately, some of the most taxing. For this reason, knowing what I know now, I don't think I would make the same decision again, but that's just me. You can refute it all you want but OP asked for our perspectives, and that's mine.

OP, I once talked to a recently retired surgeon on here before I started medical school, and I wish I would have paid closer attention to what he said. I remember him telling me that he didn't realize how draining medicine was on him until he reached the end of his career, and then he noticed how much it really took out of him. At that point, I had no interest in surgery and was euphoric over getting in, so I didn't mind much attention to it. Now that I'm here, I think of that comment often and fully feel how spread thin I am and will continue to be for years and years. I'm still not interested in surgery, but the fields I like routinely work their physicians 70 hours a week, and I don't particularly want to spend my life working it away. That's not to say I don't love medicine or the learning, I just have other interests and strongly dislike the idea of sacrificing them for a job.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 7 users
I'm referencing the pay scale of the teachers in my district, which is where I likely would have taught (given that alumni receive hiring priority). I'm not saying this would have been a logical route for everyone, but the question asked was what I would have chosen if I could make a different decision, and given the cush lifestyle of the teachers I had growing up, this would have been a good alternative for me, personally. I have friends who chose this route and are making more than my friends in nursing, their hours are better, they have more scheduled breaks, and they have multiple free periods every day to work on grading so they aren't bringing home piles of **** every night.

As for going into lifestyle-friendly specialties, most of them sound like the nine circles of hell to me. I don't find them interesting, don't like the patient populations in a few of them, etc. The fields I find most stimulating are, unfortunately, some of the most taxing. For this reason, knowing what I know now, I don't think I would make the same decision again, but that's just me. You can refute it all you want but OP asked for our perspectives, and that's mine.

OP, I once talked to a recently retired surgeon on here before I started medical school, and I wish I would have paid closer attention to what he said. I remember him telling me that he didn't realize how draining medicine was on him until he reached the end of his career, and then he noticed how much it really took out of him. At that point, I had no interest in surgery and was euphoric over getting in, so I didn't mind much attention to it. Now that I'm here, I think of that comment often and fully feel how spread thin I am and will continue to be for years and years. I'm still not interested in surgery, but the fields I like routinely work their physicians 70 hours a week, and I don't particularly want to spend my life working it away. That's not to say I don't love medicine or the learning, I just have other interests and strongly dislike the idea of sacrificing them for a job.

Yeah. Such a good fit for my sister. Not sure how it'd be if my brother in law didn't have such a good job. Her work has definitely allowed her to spend a considerable amount of time with her kids as well (they all go to the school she teaches at).


There are some days she is a bit down. If she was more flexible with location (again, her kids) she could really utilize her degree. She definitely chose for the happiness aspect. Funding, one size fits all mandated lesson plans - some of the things she hates.


Sent from my Nexus 6P using SDN mobile
 
Lol. No. I would go teach high school English or French where I'd be home at 3:30 every day, have summers off and breaks throughout the year, time to travel and time to read/study things outside of medicine.

Oh, and where my colleagues and culture weren't so insufferable.

As a son to a teacher and a friend to numerous others, you are making it seem WAY easier than it actually is. I guess if you get tenure and want to skate by, then the picture you're painting is accurate. But being a good teacher is HARD and can easily take 12 hours of your day spent with kids that mostly don't give a **** about you.

I imagine K-12 schools would take an MD-graduate as a teacher. It sounds like medicine has taken it's toll on you, why not try to teach if that's what you want to do?
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 8 users
Mind sharing what specialty that is?... (Really hoping it's Path so I'm not the only going against the stream and shutting my eyes and ears to the doom and gloom :whistle:)

Peds :) One of my best friends is doing path though. If it's what you love, you'll make it work.


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile app
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
I had another career (which I hated) already; I made enough to not have to work ever again if I didn't want to. Going to med school was my way of "getting more" out of life and giving back. So yes, at this stage, I would do it all over again because I'm not using medicine as a means to make a living.

That said, if I could go back to being 18, I would move to an exotic location and bartend at a resort until I died. I'd never marry or have children. I'd just enjoy the outdoors, live simply, and ignore everyone that told me I needed to "do something" with my life.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 8 users
I had another career (which I hated) already; I made enough to not have to work ever again if I didn't want to. Going to med school was my way of "getting more" out of life and giving back. So yes, at this stage, I would do it all over again because I'm not using medicine as a means to make a living.

That said, if I could go back to being 18, I would move to an exotic location and bartend at a resort until I died. I'd never marry or have children. I'd just enjoy the outdoors, live simply, and ignore everyone that told me I needed to "do something" with my life.

What was your previous career, if you don't mind answering?
 
Lol my mom makes around $50k working as a high school teacher in the suburbs. She's at work by 7:15 each day, has a 20 minute lunch break, and isn't home until 4:30 normally. Then she spends a few hours a week at home grading papers. It's not a cake lifestyle, though obviously better than med.
Summers off is nice though.
 
What was your previous career, if you don't mind answering?

Went to law school then worked in finance for a while. Made a good living but most of my earnings came from a startup I invested in that eventually went public.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Hello,

I am 22 and will be entering my first year of medical school this fall and am getting a little nervous. Today a friend of mine who is currently in med school posted a video on facebook (I believe from KevinMD) that says the majority of physicians regret going to medical school (due to stress, debt etc.). I was wondering if a lot of current medical students, residents or attending physicians actually feel that way and figured this would be a good place to ask. If you could go back in time would you do it all over again?

Thanks

The first thing to do is never click on a KevinMD link ever.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 7 users
As a son to a teacher and a friend to numerous others, you are making it seem WAY easier than it actually is. I guess if you get tenure and want to skate by, then the picture you're painting is accurate. But being a good teacher is HARD and can easily take 12 hours of your day spent with kids that mostly don't give a **** about you.

I imagine K-12 schools would take an MD-graduate as a teacher. It sounds like medicine has taken it's toll on you, why not try to teach if that's what you want to do?
Easiness is all relative. Being a high school teacher in the suburban high school that I attended is nowhere near as draining as being a physician in any of the fields I'm interested in. This isn't a slight against teachers, despite the fact that you seem to take it that way, it's just an objective observation that their lifestyle is much, much better than that of a physician in a competitive specialty.
 
Easiness is all relative. Being a high school teacher in the suburban high school that I attended is nowhere near as draining as being a physician in any of the fields I'm interested in. This isn't a slight against teachers, despite the fact that you seem to take it that way, it's just an objective observation that their lifestyle is much, much better than that of a physician in a competitive specialty.

Oh I didn't take it as a slight at all. I just think it's a classic case of "grass is greener" sometimes.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
If I could go back in time, I'd use that time machine for other things, not pontificate about the gravity of my decision to do medicine.

bingo. My husband and I are Catholic and not even we pontificate. Live and let live, is our view

On that note, I wouldnt change a darn thing if I could do it all over again. Otherwise I wouldnt be me... and I cant do anything well other than be me.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
20 years ago, when I was in high school and shadowing a doc, he told me don't go into medicine....
I'd definitely do this all over again without regrets.

I am really glad you shared this story. Thanks for that.

All of my former bosses (cardio thoracic surgeons), clinical perfusionist here 9 years, told me not to go to medical school....except one. He was a Lutheran Minister for his first career and went to medical school in his 30s. He eventually became Chief of CT Surgery and we called him affectionately "the Boss"...and he was an inspiration. He would pray with his patients silently, he specialized in peds and he sweated all of his pediatric patients like they were his. When asked about his own children, he said his wife got all the credit since he was MIA. When he retired our hearts were broken. The other CT surgeons were miserable, a few addicts, philanders and just really dark people. I hung onto the imagery of the Boss as my example.

When I switched careers and went into industry (biotech) for 11 years, half of my physician clients told me not to go into medicine. I did so anyways and couldn't be happier.

We need more stories like yours. The negativity of physicians is toxic and IMO they were not cut out for medicine. They should have been screened in the training process.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 4 users
Stop ingesting the toxic sludge of KevinMD. Go watch scrubs, it will teach you more about medicine than anything else. No regrets. Yes, it is hard. Yes, sometimes you will ask yourself why the hell you're doing this. But in the end, it is worth it. I have the best job on earth. :)
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 13 users
OP, a lot of these "would you do it all over again" posts come down to a few factors. One of them is what specialty people eventually match into and if it was the specialty they really wanted to be in or a specialty they had to settle with. If you end up doing what you want to do, then maybe it will have been worth it for you. But there's no guarantee you'll match into the specialty you really want to be in. Not everyone gets to do derm even if they badly want it.

That said there are people who had to settle in a specialty but then found it was the specialty they were really meant for and are happy. So another factor is your attitude or personality. Some people won't ever be happy unless they can do a certain specialty, while others find happiness despite their circumstances (e.g., maybe they can see themselves happy in several different specialties, maybe they see their specialty choice less about medicine as an all-consuming "calling" and more about medicine as a good and stable career to pursue other goals in life or maybe there's a better balance between the two). Point is, know yourself.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users
I am really glad you shared this story. Thanks for that.

All of my former bosses (cardio thoracic surgeons), clinical perfusionist here 9 years, told me not to go to medical school....except one. He was a Lutheran Minister for his first career and went to medical school in his 30s. He eventually became Chief of CT Surgery and we called him affectionately "the Boss"...and he was an inspiration. He would pray with his patients silently, he specialized in peds and he sweated all of his pediatric patients like they were his. When asked about his own children, he said his wife got all the credit since he was MIA. When he retired our hearts were broken. The other CT surgeons were miserable, a few addicts, philanders and just really dark people. I hung onto the imagery of the Boss as my example.

When I switched careers and went into industry (biotech) for 11 years, half of my physician clients told me not to go into medicine. I did so anyways and couldn't be happier.

We need more stories like yours. The negativity of physicians is toxic and IMO they were not cut out for medicine. They should have been screened in the training process.
addicts? how
 
Oh I didn't take it as a slight at all. I just think it's a classic case of "grass is greener" sometimes.
Lol I think I have a healthy sense of my own perspective, thanks. No offense, but I'm not sure what experience you have to decide that I have classic "grass is greener" syndrome. I like medicine a lot, I like learning, and I like taking care of patients, but I had a career before medical school that objectively did provide a healthier lifestyle and the salary was fine. I think pre-meds have a tendency to view being a physician as something much more glamorous than it is, likely because of the pay and prestige, but it comes with a significant amount of sacrifice that I don't think can truly be appreciated until those sacrifices are actually made.

I don't mean to sound so negative. I truly do love medicine and I know that I'll have a stable and comfortable income, but I'm not going to kid anyone here and pretend like I wouldn't be happy in another field with admittedly less sacrifice. I really believed (prior to medical school) that I couldn't see myself doing anything else, that I needed the intellectual challenge of medicine that other careers wouldn't provide, but that's just not true. There are pros and cons to every career, I'm aware of that, but what may seem like a case of "grass is greener" may actually be someone deciding they are more comfortable with the cons of one career over another, and there's nothing wrong with that.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 6 users
Lol I think I have a healthy sense of my own perspective, thanks. No offense, but I'm not sure what experience you have to decide that I have classic "grass is greener" syndrome. I like medicine a lot, I like learning, and I like taking care of patients, but I had a career before medical school that objectively did provide a healthier lifestyle and the salary was fine. I think pre-meds have a tendency to view being a physician as something much more glamorous than it is, likely because of the pay and prestige, but it comes with a significant amount of sacrifice that I don't think can truly be appreciated until those sacrifices are actually made.

I don't mean to sound so negative. I truly do love medicine and I know that I'll have a stable and comfortable income, but I'm not going to kid anyone here and pretend like I wouldn't be happy in another field with admittedly less sacrifice. I really believed (prior to medical school) that I couldn't see myself doing anything else, that I needed the intellectual challenge of medicine that other careers wouldn't provide, but that's just not true. There are pros and cons to every career, I'm aware of that, but what may seem like a case of "grass is greener" may actually be someone deciding they are more comfortable with the cons of one career over another, and there's nothing wrong with that.

Every pre-med should read this. And anyone that "can't see themselves doing anything else" is either full of **** or embarrassingly naive.

I have my own personal moral reasons for entering medicine, fully expecting to sacrifice and be miserable doing it. Would I ever choose this profession if I was trying to provide for a family or derive happiness from life? Hell no.

If anyone is entering medicine for the pay/prestige, please PM me and I'll give you 5 other ways to put $1 million in your bank account in half the time it takes to become a physician.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

KevinMD is just the same emo whining you'd see in Xanga or Livejournal 15 years ago, but by the same exact writers 15 years later and with an ounce of pseudo-credibility because they now have medical degrees.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
Every pre-med should read this. And anyone that "can't see themselves doing anything else" is either full of **** or embarrassingly naive.

I have my own personal moral reasons for entering medicine, fully expecting to sacrifice and be miserable doing it. Would I ever choose this profession if I was trying to provide for a family or derive happiness from life? Hell no.

If anyone is entering medicine for the pay/prestige, please PM me and I'll give you 5 other ways to put $1 million in your bank account in half the time it takes to become a physician.
So what if the only other career I can see myself doing is being a professional musician lol.
 
I'm only a first-year, so I have plenty of time to change my mind on this, but so far I could not imagine myself doing anything else.
 
This is why I got this:

700713-34e6b144-6a0e-11e3-b1c2-12026a975936.jpg
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Top