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I'm not talking about owning a yacht, flying by private plane, or something like that. I'm talking about never worrying about food or rent, job stability, being able to support your family (or friends), retiring in your 50s, and essentially never worrying about money.

Salary, job security, and lifestyle are what most motivate me about medicine. Money is not my only motivation, but it's up there.

I have a large family; lots of people that I really care about. If my Uncle breaks his back and can no longer work, I want to be able to support him and his kids/my family. If my Mother is ill, I want to able to hire a private nurse to watch over her when I'm not there.

I'm no stranger to hard work. I'm taking a challenging calc class and this week (monday-friday) I've spent about 40 hours (no exaggeration) in the library and I feel awesome. It honestly feels great to work hard. I don't want to be a mathematician, but I enjoy wrestling with difficult concepts and overcoming a challenge.

The idea of me spending my 20s studying medicine really does not bother me. If I never had to work, I'd spend my days playing jazz and reading philosophy. Knowing that I do have to work, pursuing medicine and learning about the human body doesn't seem so bad. Especially when I know that If I work my ass off during med school, I can get into a lifestyle specialty and pursue my interests on the side.

Why should I avoid medicine?
 
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md-2020

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You shouldn't. Contrary to the moral crusaders who hit up SDN all the time the reality is that heavily considering income is 100% fine when choosing a career.


You seem to have a good grip on what you want out of a medical career, and that's good. Better than the people who enter wanting to change the world, as that's unrealistic.
 

tea guzzling traveler

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I would say the only real difficulty you will face will be what motivates you through those sleep deprived nights? What pushes you through yet another block of human anatomy? If you can find that answer, then there's not a real reason, besides the fact that you might not be satisfied in the job. Life is precious, and to spend it in a job where you don't enjoy yourself seems a shame.
 

Glazedonutlove

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There are faster and easier ways to make a lot more money.
Like what? Any great paying job (to the point where you don't have to worry about money) takes years of hard work--not just medicine
 
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There are faster and easier ways to make a lot more money.
Such as? Most of them are very competitive or risky (low stability).


I would say the only real difficulty you will face will be what motivates you through those sleep deprived nights? What pushes you through yet another block of human anatomy? If you can find that answer, then there's not a real reason, besides the fact that you might not be satisfied in the job. Life is precious, and to spend it in a job where you don't enjoy yourself seems a shame.
During those nights I'd think of my nights spent working at Walmart amongst kind people with little opportunity. Those guys worked their asses off for very little pay. I'd think of the Mexicans who cross the border and risk their lives to work for minimum wage.

I'd hopefully realize that 8 years (medical school and residency) of hard work is absolutely worth the job security and income of being a doctor. I'm also pretty personable and I generally care (sometimes too much) about people. Being able to make decent money whilst actually caring for people, and increasing my knowledge/understanding of human biology, is pretty attractive.

You shouldn't. Contrary to the moral crusaders who hit up SDN all the time the reality is that heavily considering income is 100% fine when choosing a career.
You seem to have a good grip on what you want out of a medical career, and that's good. Better than the people who enter wanting to change the world, as that's unrealistic.
Although medicine isn't my first choice, if/when I do get into medical school, I would still want to become a good doctor. I'm not planning on discovering penicillin, but I do want to learn a very valuable skill/knowledge, provide good care, and make sure my loved ones are safe.
 

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NotASerialKiller

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You will likely regret your decision in residency if you don't have a great deal of drive and passion. Even people who love medicine can get worn down and bitter during these hard years. It's not fair to say "Oh well I'll be doing some work no matter what, why not medicine with a decent payoff in the end?". I've spoken with many people who went into it for the wrong reasons and hate their lives when they're getting no sleep and being worked like dogs. I'd ask people who are actually in the thick of it. Pre-meds theorizing about what the job training vs. income tradeoff is like is fine, but those who have actually been through the hardest parts will be able to give you some perspective.
 

tea guzzling traveler

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Such as? Most of them are very competitive or risky (low stability).




During those nights I'd think of my nights spent working at Walmart amongst kind people with little opportunity. Those guys worked their asses off for very little pay. I'd think of the Mexicans who cross the border and risk their lives to work for minimum wage.

I'd hopefully realize that 8 years (medical school and residency) of hard work is absolutely worth the job security and income of being a doctor. I'm also pretty personable and I generally care (sometimes too much) about people. Being able to make decent money whilst actually caring for people, and increasing my knowledge/understanding of human biology, is pretty attractive.



Although medicine isn't my first choice, if/when I do get into medical school, I would still want to become a good doctor. I'm not planning on discovering penicillin, but I do want to learn a very valuable skill/knowledge, provide good care, and make sure my loved ones are safe.
Seems valid to me. But it's the constellation of factors that draws you to medicine, and not just the money. Our point was just that we didn't want you to be miserable in the profession. As long as you think you would have a satisfying life with medicine, then go for it!
 
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OP
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Yes there are a variety of reasons, money being one of the large ones. But the knowledge itself is also important. There's the simple fact that what Doctors study is important and will always be useful.

When ISIS starts killing hostages and innocent people, they may hesitate to kill a surgeon or emergency medicine doctor. I doubt that Doctor would be happy among ISIS, but I wouldn't be surprised if they kept him alive.
 

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Medicine is in a very tumultuous time. If you're looking for job security, you're about 10 years too late.
 

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bearintraining

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Medicine is in a very tumultuous time. If you're looking for job security, you're about 10 years too late.
The world is in a very tumultuous time. I don't think Medicine is particularly worse off. In fact.. likely better..
 

JustintheDoctor

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As others said, It can be a reason, but it shouldn't be the main one. I mean who the hell would put themselves 300k+ in debt but only make ~100k for the rest of your life?
There is good money and some of the people i see on these forums say you can NEVER consider the money even though plenty of people do when they choose their specialty
 
OP
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Medicine is in a very tumultuous time. If you're looking for job security, you're about 10 years too late.
I agree, but compared to other careers would you say medicine is pretty high? Salaries will probably decline, but it'll be a long time until doctors are being laid off or struggling to feed their kids.


I think what @Glazedonutlove is trying to say is... uh... what?
I was just providing an example of the usefulness of medicine. It's a bit ridiculous and is not a situation people would find themselves in, but my main point is skills/knowledge obtained throughout school and university may be useful outside of work.
 

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As others said, It can be a reason, but it shouldn't be the main one. I mean who the hell would put themselves 300k+ in debt but only make ~100k for the rest of your life?
There is good money and some of the people i see on these forums say you can NEVER consider the money even though plenty of people do when they choose their specialty
You're getting a lifetime of freedom from financial stress that most middle and lower class people face. How are you complaining about this rn lol.
 

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You're getting a lifetime of freedom from financial stress that most middle and lower class people face. How are you complaining about this rn lol.
what.
If doctors weren't paid good, and went 300k+ in debt I don't see any freedom there.
 

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I was just providing an example of the usefulness of medicine. It's a bit ridiculous and is not a situation people would find themselves in, but my main point is skills/knowledge obtained throughout school and university may be useful outside of work.
I'm sorry but I can't take you seriously when you bring up perhaps not being slaughtered by a terrorist organization because of your occupation as a useful aspect of medicine. That's just insane, but good luck with your decision.
 

JustintheDoctor

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Whatever doctor is making $100k, they're either part time or doing something very, very wrong.
nonononnnoonnonononoonnonoon it was an example. it was meant to be who would go 300k+ in debt to only make 100k for example, that lead to the obvious money is a huge consideration for most people inference.
meaning, majority of people wouldn't consider becoming a doctor if the pay was crap.
 
OP
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I'm sorry but I can't take you seriously when you bring up perhaps not being slaughtered by a terrorist organization because of your occupation as a useful aspect of medicine. That's just insane, but good luck with your decision.
Think abstractly. The specific example doesn't matter; my point does. Disregard the ISIS scenario and imagine a family medicine physician noticing something's wrong with a family member, or a dermatologist spotting what looks like a melanoma and pressuring someone to go get medical attention.

What was my point? That skills obtained are useful outside of the hospital and can legitimately help someone preserve their life. What is silly about this statement?
 

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nonononnnoonnonononoonnonoon it was an example. it was meant to be who would go 300k+ in debt to only make 100k for example, that lead to the obvious money is a huge consideration for most people inference.
meaning, majority of people wouldn't consider becoming a doctor if the pay was crap.
How exactly do you know what majority of people would do
 

JustintheDoctor

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How exactly do you know what majority of people would do
Just a guess. So you think majority of people don't consider money when taking out hundreds of thousands of dollars in loans? hmmm strange if you ask me.
 
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You shouldn't. Contrary to the moral crusaders who hit up SDN all the time the reality is that heavily considering income is 100% fine when choosing a career.


You seem to have a good grip on what you want out of a medical career, and that's good. Better than the people who enter wanting to change the world, as that's unrealistic.
I would agree with this post. In no other profession will you be guaranteed 200k income after a set amount of years. There's a level of comfort that comes with that that is unparalleled.
 

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I'm not talking about owning a yacht, flying by private plane, or something like that. I'm talking about never worrying about food or rent, job stability, being able to support your family (or friends), retiring in your 50s, and essentially never worrying about money.
Lol if you are going to support family and friends, then you won't be retiring at 50 or ever. Your life is going to be a living abusive hell.

http://www.ramsondemand.com/threads/ex-nfl-player-my-mom-demanded-one-million-dollars.36580/

Ignore the attention grabbing headline and follow the story which is how this always plays out:


I eventually learned how to deal with the numerous "family emergencies." Early on, I found myself in too many situations where some relative would come to me and claim they needed something fixed. So I'd write them a check; of course, the problem never got fixed. The check, however, always got cashed. By trying to fix a problem, I created an additional one for myself.

I finally learned how to cope with this type of request. I paid the bills directly to the company or handyman doing the work. It was amazing to see how my family responded when I told them I would take care of it. They tried to lay the heaviest guilt number on me. I can still hear their muttering tones with tinges of disgust: "Nah, man, I'm cool. Forget about it." This response meant they knew I was on to what they were up to. I had caught them red-handed, committing an act of adult abuse.
 
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My family members are fairly educated. I wouldn't be the first doctor in the family; just another safety net. I understand your point though. I'm not planning on taking people out to dinner everyday or buying them cars.
 

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Keep in mind that it's going to take you up to ten years before you start making the big bucks, and unless your family pays for your tuition, you'll probably be $250-350K in the hole.

Just saying.

EDIT: @Law2Doc, @mimelim..sage counsel needed!

I'm not talking about owning a yacht, flying by private plane, or something like that. I'm talking about never worrying about food or rent, job stability, being able to support your family (or friends), retiring in your 50s, and essentially never worrying about money.

Salary, job security, and lifestyle are what most motivate me about medicine. Money is not my only motivation, but it's up there.

I have a large family; lots of people that I really care about. If my Uncle breaks his back and can no longer work, I want to be able to support him and his kids/my family. If my Mother is ill, I want to able to hire a private nurse to watch over her when I'm not there.

I'm no stranger to hard work. I'm taking a challenging calc class and this week (monday-friday) I've spent about 40 hours (no exaggeration) in the library and I feel awesome. It honestly feels great to work hard. I don't want to be a mathematician, but I enjoy wrestling with difficult concepts and overcoming a challenge.

The idea of me spending my 20s studying medicine really does not bother me. If I never had to work, I'd spend my days playing jazz and reading philosophy. Knowing that I do have to work, pursuing medicine and learning about the human body doesn't seem so bad. Especially when I know that If I work my ass off during med school, I can get into a lifestyle specialty and pursue my interests on the side.

Why should I avoid medicine?
 

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Mentors have told me this, and I agree with them.
"Medicine is a calling, not a job"
Having to miss Christmas with your family, not getting to enjoy a meal, or perhaps even missing your kids sports games is priceless. No money can justify missing family time, or those special moments with your kids.
This holds true for other professions too, being a LEO, Paramedic, Firefighter, etc..
Guess what? All of em' are callings too. I haven't met a single police officer who did it for the stable paycheck.. They tell me they did it because they had a calling to serve. Same with being a marine, soldier, etc..
 
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I haven't met a single police officer who did it for the stable paycheck.. They tell me they did it because they had a calling to serve. Same with being a marine, soldier, etc..
How would you meet a person who thinks otherwise? Saying "I became a police officer because I like guns, action, and adrenaline" is not exactly kosher... Yet you and I know both know there are numerous officers and soldiers who joined for that very reason.

Assuming that everyone, or even a majority of the people, in a profession are in there because of a "calling" is as bad as assuming that everyone is in there for the money or privileges. I'd imagine it's a mixture of both.

Soldiers join for wide variety of reasons. Some who join for the excitement, tax/college benefits, patriotism, or maybe even the rare case of a sociopath who wants to kill people with impunity.
 

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How would you meet a person who thinks otherwise? Saying "I became a police officer because I like guns, action, and adrenaline" is not exactly kosher... Yet you and I know both know there are numerous officers and soldiers who joined for that very reason.

Assuming that everyone, or even a majority of the people, in a profession are in there because of a "calling" is as bad as assuming that everyone is in there for the money or privileges. I'd imagine it's a mixture of both.

Soldiers join for wide variety of reasons. Some who join for the excitement, tax/college benefits, patriotism, or maybe even the rare case of a sociopath who wants to kill people with impunity.
People who make a career out of these jobs generally aren't in it for the money.
People who just want fun/money burnout a lot faster.. Dealing with death, violence, etc has some harsh impacts on ones mental health. Likewise as a Doctor you will be dealing with death also.. It's a lot easier to burnout when you are just doing a job versus doing what you love.
 
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You haven't really responded to my criticism of selection bias. You're less likely to hear someone say "I became a cop for the money/tenure/power" than you are to hear someone say "I love protecting people."

People who make a career out of these jobs generally aren't in it for the money.
People who just want fun/money burnout a lot faster.. Dealing with death, violence, etc has some harsh impacts on ones mental health. Likewise as a Doctor you will be dealing with death also.. It's a lot easier to burnout when you are just doing a job versus doing what you love.
This belief is a direct result of that selection bias. There are many good people who become disillusioned by bureaucracy or horrible system and also burn out.

There are no doubt loads of medical students who upon becoming residents, are surprised to find out that many of their patients don't take their medications, do not try to lose weight, and that a lot of their work doesn't involve saving lives.
 
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Dr.Sticks

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You haven't really responded to my criticism of selection bias. You're less likely to hear someone say "I became a cop for the money/tenure/power" than you are to hear someone say "I love protecting people."
Yes, because nobody faces death every day for a measly 50k a year salary.
There no doubt loads of medical students who are surprised to find out that many of their patients don't take their medications, do not try to lose weight, and that a lot of their work doesn't involve saving lives.
Yeah, and guess what? They get up the next morning, and do it all over again.
You know why? Because they love their job..
It's a career, you don't pick a career for money. Jordan Belfort was gonna be a dentist for the money, but he decided to do finance and made a lot more.
 

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Yes, because nobody faces death every day for a measly 50k a year salary.


Yeah, and guess what? They get up the next morning, and do it all over again.
You know why? Because they love their job..
It's a career, you don't pick a career for money. Jordan Belfort was gonna be a dentist for the money, but he decided to do finance and made a lot more.
you live a very sheltered life
 
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Spoken like a true sheltered child of priveledge.

How would you meet a person who thinks otherwise? Saying "I became a police officer because I like guns, action, and adrenaline" is not exactly kosher... Yet you and I know both know there are numerous officers and soldiers who joined for that very reason.

Assuming that everyone, or even a majority of the people, in a profession are in there because of a "calling" is as bad as assuming that everyone is in there for the money or privileges. I'd imagine it's a mixture of both.

Soldiers join for wide variety of reasons. Some who join for the excitement, tax/college benefits, patriotism, or maybe even the rare case of a sociopath who wants to kill people with impunity.
 
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Spoken like a true sheltered child of priveledge.
privilege*
Will you spare a moment to to criticize my childish ideas? I think criticism will do more than calling someone a child but what do I know, I'm still a child.
 

Goro

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I have friends who have been in the military or have been policemen. Ditto students who have done the same.

Your pontificating statement of "everyone knows that they do this..." is dripping with ignorance. You might as well say everyone knows people want to be doctors because they love blood, sharp things and cutting people open.

privilege*
Will you spare a moment to to criticize my childish ideas? I think criticism will do more than calling someone a child but what do I know, I'm still a child.
 
OP
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I have friends who have been in the military or have been policemen. Ditto students who have done the same.

Your pontificating statement of "everyone knows that they do this..." is dripping with ignorance. You might as well say everyone knows people want to be doctors because they love blood, sharp things and cutting people open.
I do not understand your interpretation of my words... Which of my words led you to that conclusion?

I said that people join the military for a wide variety of reasons: patriotism, adventure, action, etc. I also said that you can't assume that everyone who joined had the same motivations nor that a majority of the people who joined had positive (patriotism, service, etc.) motivations.
 
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I do not understand your interpretation of my words... Which of my words led you to that conclusion?

I said that people join the military for a wide variety of reasons: patriotism, adventure, action, etc. I also said that you can't assume that everyone who joined had the same motivations nor that a majority of the people who joined had positive (patriotism, service, etc.) motivations.
How do they last though? Do they retire?
Like I said, you burnout a lot quicker if you aren't in it because your heart is.
 

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How do they last though? Do they retire?
Like I said, you burnout a lot quicker if you aren't in it because your heart is.
Not everyone has the privilege to go into a career for the fun of it. many people need money to make a living and don't have the privilege to care about burn out as long as they are able to feed their families. Hopefully you can get around your privileged life and understand this.
 
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How do they last though? Do they retire?
Like I said, you burnout a lot quicker if you aren't in it because your heart is.
And I said there are many good people who become disillusioned or burnt out by a bureaucratic and inefficient system.
We had a back and forth. And i recommended we agree to disagree.

Clearest example of good person becoming disillusioned would be Marine Corp Major General (winner of a Medal of Honor) Smedley Butler. These words are what he wrote:

War is a racket. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.

War is just a racket... I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing else.

A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small "inside" group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.

Let's agree to disagree.
 

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Medicine is in a very tumultuous time. If you're looking for job security, you're about 10 years too late.
I'm hoping my sarcasm detector is broken.
 

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Whatever doctor is making $100k, they're either part time or doing something very, very wrong.
MD/PhDs with research heavy careers are often paid like their PhD counterparts meaning around 100k-ish depending on the specialty and research and what not. It's not totally unheard of.
 

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MD/PhDs with research heavy careers are often paid like their PhD counterparts meaning around 100k-ish depending on the specialty and research and what not. It's not totally unheard of.
If "heavy research careers" means they don't do any clinic/patient work at all, sure. Otherwise that pay is still exceedingly rare.
 

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@writing we might as well. It's just an opinion anyways, there is no hardcore research behind it.
Not everyone has the privilege to go into a career for the fun of it. many people need money to make a living and don't have the privilege to care about burn out as long as they are able to feed their families. Hopefully you can get around your privileged life and understand this.
You know, you should stop making assumptions about me. I never had a privileged life..
I never went to a private school, my parents never bought me a car, my parents aren't contributing anything to my undergrad, other than an occasional 5 bucks for lunch, and generally my family was middle class. Sometimes a little less than middle class when money was tight..

I'm just a realist.. I also have very minimal needs.. I don't care for fancy things at all..
I could very easily live on 20k a year... Heck, my ultimate life goal is to just live in a small cabin with no electricity.. Of course that has to wait..
I'll tell ya.. If I wasn't into medicine I'd drop out of college, and hitch hike out west!
 
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