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New developments in the "wife is not supportive" fight

Discussion in 'Spouses and Partners' started by agent, Oct 12, 2002.

  1. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    We had sort of a blowout.

    She now says that she won't do it bottom line.

    I can't believe it and am really upset. I thought we had an argreement.

    She says I now have some really tough choices to make. I don't understand what she expects me to do. I'm realy f*cked. I currently work full time and go to school full time. I work really hard to get all A's and am very passionate about pursuing med school.

    My wife doesn't work. She takes care of the babies which I think is good, but it puts all the pressure on me. We barely can afford the 3 bedroom apartment we live in. Without any type of advanced degree, I doubt ill be making more money than I do now. I swear I feel like I'm gonna have a breakdown.


    Sorry about the rant everyone but I dont know what to do. Maybe she's just having a bad night but I think she's really serious. She wants me to be a teacher, which I think is a really noble profession, but I know I'll never be happy as I will feel like I sold myself short. The expression, "those who cannot do, teach" haunts my mind.

    I love my baby boy very much. I dont want to get a divorce, but things are looking pretty grim and im still an undergrad. yikes!!!!

    I don't know what to do. :(
     
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  3. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur
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    Agent,

    I recommend a site for you and your wife...

    www.marriagebuilders.com

    Get the book about the "4 gifts of marriage" and "Give and Take". Most of the site is geared towards infidelity; however, these two books explain the most fundamental basics of marriage. One of the rules I've learned is the rule of "Joint Mutual Decision": never do ANYTHING unless BOTH agree to do it.

    I truly believe marriage and your son are more important than anything else in the world. Your wife has fears about you training in medicine. It's a long road and will cost dearly, financial and emotional. There's no guarantees that you would finish or even get in to medical school; thus, this might be the root of her fears too. What if you spend all this energy, effort, and money that you don't have, and don't gain acceptance? What if you do get it, then how is the family going to live? She may fear the time commitments all physicians must dedicate to their profession. These are some of the questions she may want to have addressed before she can accept your decision of becoming a physician.

    I also suggest marriage counseling. This may cost a lot but worth it. If you don't have the money, then try to use your local church. Marriage counseling could help her listen to you without feeling threatened. I anticipate she has fears about you going into medicine, and she won't accept your dreams untill those fears are addressed.

    In the end, if she cannot accept you training to be a physician, then I strongly suggest you find another career that will make you both happy. Divorce is hell for you and your children. Don't do it!

    Good luck.
     
  4. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    We have started going to a marriage counselor that knows my wife...

    through him I thought we had come to a compromise.

    Now she's backing out.

    If I don't become a physician I don't know what i'll do. I really feel like this is what im supposed to do, but without her support I feel like Im slipping into a hole of darkness for which I am lost.

    I'm really scared. I suppose its time to go back to the marriage therapist.
     
  5. Nic_machiavelli

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    Marriage counseling now!
    Being a doctor is as much as a vocation as the priesthood - if you ask me. I became a computer engineer because I liked the pay and enjoy programming. My wife became a physician because she was called to do so.

    One has to be a bit crazy to become a doctor these days, and so I really believe that it is a calling. You are being called evidently - and I would really hate to be your wife right now because she is either getting a doctor now or one unhappy, unfulfilled husband later.

    All I can tell you is from my own experience so far, my wife hasn't left the family. Sure she's studying like a lunatic, but she still is the first one there when the kids are sick. Most of the time she is at home at a reasonable time in the evenings. Hell she's even doing the laundry and most of the house-cleaning even though I try to do it (my cleaning is never good enough for her).

    Is she really prepared to accept the consequences of stopping you? If you divorce she will have the parenting responsibilities PLUS have to work outside the home. If you give up on your dream, you're going to be hell to live with and honestly, divorce will probably be in your future anyway.

    Divorce sucks; I'm a New Traditionalist who believes that kids need two loving parents. I grew up during the 1970s when divorce seemed like a right of passage for my peers. I hated it then and I hate it even more now. I've weathered storms with my wife that have wrecked other marriages, and honestly, med school and doctoring don't hold a candle to those things.

    I don't know what to say beyond my first line above. Good luck from a complete stranger and I hope that things work out for your.

    Regards
    Nick Machiavelli
     
  6. isidella

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    I hate to hear this agent, you know what you want, you have the profession so deep in your heart. But then there is your entire family at stake and the lives of your beautiful babies.

    I know you have talked about this in other threads, so forgive me if these question have already been covered. . .

    Is your wife secretly jealous that you may achieve happiness. . . I hope that is not it because true love should be based on altruism.

    Is she afraid you won't have time with your family. . . because teaching can be just as demanding physically and emotionally as medicine.

    Is she bent about the time commitment. . . four years is nothing, nothing, residency is nothing, the time will fly by regardless of what you are doing.

    People do this everyday, they conquer the world and still have a family. Yesterday, I talked with a woman who gave birth as a single mom during her second year of medical school and still graduated, on schedule, #1 in her class (the child is not currently an ax-murderer either.)

    I wish you all the best. I just shake my head at the problem though; I cannot even fathom the amount of turmoil you are in.

    Isid
     
  7. rose13

    rose13 Member
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    Agent,

    Sorry about your marital troubles. :(

    I strongly suggest marital counseling and hopefully you and your wife can work it out. Realistically though, you can not make someone else happy unless you are happy with yourself. You will only be happy with yourself when you decide to live your true self. Unfortunately, being true to yourself sometimes means being selfish to those we love (i.e., the realization of your dreams and aspirations with out a loved one's support). Sacrificing your dreams for someone else only breeds regrets and resentment, thus compounding your problems in the long run.

    Good luck. I hope things will work out for you and your wife.
     
  8. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    Hi Agent,

    I'm going to have to disagree with some of the posters here. I've already been through what you're going through so I feel like I can probably better comment on the situation. First, I don't know where people get the idea that if you choose medical school, you're picking a career over your family. This is so ridiculous! What kind of love dares you to fulfill your goals? You have mentioned it before that no career is perfect. Take my word for it if you "settle" for being a teacher one day you'll look back on your life and wish you had at least tried to become a physician.

    I'm no marriage counselor, but I'd bet that the "should I or shouldn't I" debate is only a small part of a larger problem, at least that was the case for me.

    I also don't know if I agree with the "divorce is hell for you and your children" statement (nothing personal Optho-Mudphud). I think unhappiness is true hell on earth.

    Finally and I don't mean to rant, but suppose you become a teacher and your wife decides when she realizes how difficult it is to be a good teacher, that she doesn't want you to be a teacher anymore? What then? You could spend your ENTIRE life trying to please her to no avail.

    I think some personal counseling for YOU would help you a lot in this situation(It did wonders for me)!! Good luck and I'll be praying for you!
     
  9. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    yeah isidella, i feel like she cant see the light at the end of the tunnel..

    and she also feels like my job as a doctor will be more important to me than my family.

    I always told her no matter what the family will come first. One thing I will do is put that into consideration if I ever make it so far as to choosing a specialty.

    I believe she has insecurity issues and secretly feels like if I do this I will end up leaving her because I will see how lowly she is having no undergrad education and since she's a stay home mom.

    This is insane because my wife had a 4.0 gpa in high school and had several honors. She did all sorts of volunteering and probably couldve gotten accepted to many different schools and done very well. When it comes to writing I think I do fairly well, but she is great. She always corrects my essays, etc.

    Anyway, I feel these insecurities are the root of the issue.

    And btw, thanks everyone.
     
  10. lola

    lola Bovine Member
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    why don't you encourage her to pursue her interests as well? if she wants to go to college, encourage it. maybe she could go part time or at night. it's starting to sound like she feels trapped in the relationship and jealous of your ability to pursue your dreams while she has to stay home with the kids. i would love to stay home with kids part time, but i think it can get very suffocating when you do it full time -- especially in today's society where women are often looked down upon for not having a career or education. anyway, just a thought. maybe i'm way off here since i don't know you or your wife!
     
  11. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    no you're right, but she doesnt want the babies to be put in day care either though, so thats her predicament. i would be totally supportive of whatever she wanted to do.
     
  12. srabulldog

    srabulldog Member
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    Hey Agent! I think I've posted earlier when you had the first post on this issue. My question then was this: Before you got married, had you suggested the possibility of pursuing a medical career? If you had, then she is obligated to go along with it. It would be, sort of, part of her vows. If you "sprung it on her", then you two have a lot of work to do... My husband wanted to be a doctor before I knew him, and I was crystal clear that that was his goal, no matter what. He graciously postponed pursuing his goal to get married, spend our savings adopting my daughter from a previous relationship, then spend any other savings, plus borrow some $, to apply to school. Well, he's in the application phase now, and it looks like it's going well, and I'm excited for him, but I don't fool myself into thinking that this is going to be the same life we have now, where he works less than 50 hrs/wk! But, I signed up for it and new a medical career was in the making...

    Earlier you said she would only allow you to go to a Chicago school. THat told me that she really didn't want you to go to med school at all.

    Did she agree to your pursuing medicine before you got married?

    Also, you may want to look for a counselor who doesn't know your wife at all! Someone completely unbiased to sort it out.

    Finally, I am also a stay at home mom with 3 kids. I have twin 1 year olds, and a 1st grader! Staying at home is suffocating at times and any support group thing (MOPS, play groups, etc.) all end up being times where you talk about your kids, which at the time seems insignificant compared to the loftiness of whatever work your spouse may be doing in the world. People don't ask me about parenting struggles, they ask me about what my husband's up to. But, I decided to stay at home, and now with one in school all day, I realize how quickly time goes...

    BTW, I also did college completely as a parent. It's doable. But I would try to have her think of a career that she may like to do, or a college she may like to plan on attending, and then get her excited about that possibility after the kids are older, and you're in residency or something.

    Finally, this is so long I doubt you are reading it anymore, but anyway, look into USUHS! If you show her how much money they pay, etc., that takes a big strain off of the marriage- or even the HPSP for that matter. I know she doesn't want to move, etc, but I don't think that's it at all. I think she doesn't want you to be a doctor. I hope this isn't a deal-breaker for you two!

    Well, good luck with all of it! Would she like to come onto SDN or somewhere to talk to spouses of current med students?
     
  13. Wifty

    Wifty Eccentrically Silly
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    Hi Agent!
    I am really sorry that you and your family is going thru this....turmoil is never fun and can even be frightening.

    I am a spouse and I know that one of the difficulties in being a spouse is the possible loss of your own identity. However, there are many options for your wife to pursue her own dreams/goals.

    Almost all of the spouses here are mothers....and stay at home mothers at that. For the most part, they do not have as much education and few have a BA degree. However, what I have found, is that they are still highly intelligent in comparision to the general population. College and degrees are simply different life choices that do not necessarily equate with intelligence.
    So, your wife would actually be the norm for a med student spouse......and in being the norm sometimes, is validation and maybe it would help her not feel so insecure.

    There are a few people that are taking college classes online and more and more colleges offer whole degrees that you can get online. This would mean she could take what interests her without leaving the children.

    My own experience has been great. Partially, this is because hubby is going to a school in a very small town where it is cheap to live. We are able to survive on what they budget for him thru financial aid. What that then means, is that I have time to pursue my own interests and I made a huge list of things that I wanted to learn or dabble in.....things that simply make me happy to be alive.

    That is what if boils down to for me.....learning to be happy to be alive and doing those things that bring it. Medicine would do that for you, your wife sounds like she hasn't found those things that really give her happiness (other then family). Med school can be a wonderful time for her to do that.

    I am pretty anti-divorce and I do think your family comes first. However, in making your family first is the ability to take the direction that will lead to financial security and your own happiness. Both those decsions are showing you are thinking of your family. Becoming something that you do not want to be will only lead to your own unhappiness eventually and trust me, that will hurt your marriage and family more then just about anything else.

    Though, have you thought of other options as a compromise? Such as becoming a PA which would let you do medicine, make more then a teacher and is a much less time commitment?

    Sorry for the ramble.......let me know how things go and if there is anything else that I can do for you.....including having your wife email me about what it is like to be a student spouse.

    Good luck!
    Wifty
     
  14. Kimya

    Kimya Senior Member
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    Of course I don't know your situation very well, but as I was reading through this it started me thinking. You mentioned that your wife may want to further her education/career in the future, but that she doesn't want to use daycare. It seems like this might be another fear of hers. If you are doing demanding schooling for medicine, that might make it very difficult for her to pursue something in the future. If your schedule is very irregular (like the 3rd and 4th year of medical school and residency), she will have to be the primary person to be there for the kids. She might not be able to take night/day classes because of childcare issues (I don't know if you have family to help out)- your schedule might not allow you to take up some of the parenting at those times. Sometimes online classes are a possibility, sometimes they are not. If you are a student or resident, there might not be enough money for childcare for her to do this, especially if she is not working.

    Again, I don't know your timetable, but is there some sort of interim compromise that you can work out with your wife - like you will wait for medical school and take on perhaps some more of the parenting so that she can get started on her interests, and find out a way to balance it? Perhaps she could get some education now, and then she can start working part time when your kids start going to school, and then you could pursue medical school. Maybe if she can be reassured that her interests are important too you can work out a better balance of pursuing both your goals.

    Best of luck in whatever you two decide- I know it's hard.
     
  15. jhug

    jhug 1K Member
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    my two cents-- i'd really dig in and find the doubts, don't settle for "classic" answers, but have a sincere, clean-out-the-wound-so-it-can-heal type of talk with her. I agree that a totally unbiased/unknown therapist is best-- it may eliminate certain emotions. My two older bro's are divorced, one before even applying to med school, the other during PA school--both had deeper issues than schooling. Time will fly and before you know it school is over- marriage should last forever. I wish you the best and hope things work out for you!!!
     
  16. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    yeah i agree.. thanks.

    there hasnt been anymore talk about it between us since the other night. this weekend is our 2 year anniversary.
     
  17. Doctor Peloncito

    Doctor Peloncito Family Physician
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    do something extraordinary for the anniversary. Make sure she knows that you are committed to your relationship. You have a long way to go before you need to apply, so let the issue rest a bit. Fortunately, you have a lot of options with a pre-med education, and you have time to work things out. See an unbiased marriage counselor. Your family should comes first. My uncle was gung ho pre med back in his college days, but fell in love with a christian scientist. She told him that she would leave him if he went to med school, so he became a science teacher. He loves it. So don't sell your other options short.

    Fortunately for me, my wife knew what she was getting into when she married me. There was no argument about whether I was going to med school (as long as someone would accept me). I am in the middle of a 2 year sabbatical after graduating from college, and have a med school interview coming up. I really think taking the time off has done wonders for my relationship.

    Good luck,

    Russell
     
  18. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    things arent looking too well.

    the more we discuss it the more she gets convinced that she doesnt want me to do it and solidifies a laundry list of reasons..

    i think shes starting to break my resolve.
     
  19. sms921

    sms921 New Member

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    Agent,

    First, let me commend you on being so responsible and loving towards your family. This is obviously an extremely difficult situation and I agree with other posters that you need a neutral therapist/religious counselor, etc.

    Only you and your wife can decide what is the best path for your family, but let me share with you a few observations based on watching my husband (who is now in residency in Chicago) and many friends who are now practicing doctors.

    I think that at a certain time in your life, usually your 20s, people tend to think that there is one single job that will make them happy. For a minority of people that is true. For most people, it isn't.

    I think if you talk to people who are in school/residency most of them will describe medicine as a dream/passion/vocation - but bear in mind that they are incredibly invested in the process (all those sacrifices and it had better be a dream job!) and that they have very little experience outside of the relatively exciting realms of medical school and teaching hospitals. I would suggest talking to doctors who are practicing. The majority of doctors work in private practice, the majority of medical students/residents have very limited exposure to private practice. Personally, I know quite a few happy doctors and quite a few unhappy doctors. Lifestyle tends to be a major reason for the unhappiness as well as boredom in private practice and lower earnings than expected. Make sure you do your research!

    Also, on the money issue, I have to say that I think your wife is right regarding your finances across the next fifteen years - - your son's entire childhood. This has been our experience. My husband went to a state school and the average debt burden there was well over 100,000-125,000. Between my husband's loans and my student debt, we have 150,000 in debt and just bought a condo in Chicago (not an inexpensive proposition but since you would be living in the city I think our numbers will be useful to you). I have a very comfortable job. Our joint income is $200,000 per year but will increase when my husband finishes residency. On our 200,000 a year (which let me emphasize is approximately double the starting salary a general practice doctor would make) we live paycheck to paycheck -- we live in a nice, convenient neighborhood in the city, which is expensive but we don't live extravagantly. We are also in a high tax bracket so we only see a little over half of that $200,000. We are frequently stressed about finances. And, we don't have children. If we had children, it would be a struggle. 150,000 worth of debt translates, depending on interest rates, into $2000 per month in payments on a ten year repayment schedule. We are paying the loans now, which most residents can't afford to do, to avoid having my husband's debt grow - - that is collect interest, while its in forebearance/deferment. Then we spend another 3500 on our living expenses (mortgage on a 2 bedroom condo, car, insurance, all household expenses, food etc.), and max out our 401Ks (so we do save alot - - but you really need to save alot or you are going to wind up like alot of doctors I have met who can't afford to retire!). I don't know what we would do if we had a child at this point considering that we would need to save and invest approx. $500 per month to fund a child's college education in 18 years and that we would need to budget at least an extra $500 per month for general costs for the child.

    I think given increasing tuition and the fact that no one in the family would be working you should expect at least 125,000-160,000 in loans from medical school. You won't be able to pay this for 3-6 years while you are in residency so it will grow to 140,000 to 170,000 (approx). Very few doctors make 150,000 to start and most primary care providers will never make that much. That 150,000 figure you have seen averages radiologists, cardiologists and specialty surgeons etc. with general practice doctors. Because of your family and lifestyle concerns and your wife's unwillingness to move you would likely end up in pediatrics or internal medicine or family practice or psychiatry. Surgery would be a brutal schedule; opth, radiology, etc. are very difficult to place in and usually require another move, often out of state.

    In Chicago, as in most major cities, medical salaries in general are lower than the average. The internal medicine attending doctors at my husband's residency make about 95,000. Even doctors in private practice in internal/peds/family practice would make either under 100,000 or just over it to start. I think your salary would go up if you worked away from the city (e.g. a rural area) or in a state with less HMO penetration.

    So, your short-term finances would indeed be brutal. And, by short-term, I mean for about 10-15 years until you pay off those loans. That said, I think as a doctor you do have a lot of job security and across your whole life, this would be a positive financial step. You would ultimately retire more comfortable financially than if you were a teacher, or even a PA or nurse. But, it would come at an enormous cost to your family across those 10-15 years - - basically, your son's childhood.

    I agree with other posters that you should look very, very seriously at PA programs. Since your family and lifestyle situation seem to be pushing you in the direction of a primary care schedule anyway, you have more options in terms of what type of health care provider you become. My husband and I talked very seriously about him pursing a physician's assistant or nurse practitioner degree. We didn't choose that path because he was relatively sure he wanted to be a specialist and do procedures (he is interested in cardiology) but if he wanted to be a generalist physician it would have been a great option. Being a PA or NP can have drawbacks in terms of less autonomy and more routine work, but these jobs would allow you to treat diseases, have a good lifestyle, and make enough money now to provide for your family's needs. My understanding is that NP training is longer but they can prescribe and in some state's hang out their own shingle; PA training is shorter but less ability to prescribe without having a doctor in the office. Take a long, hard look at these programs. NPs and PAs see their own patients and prescribe treatments, although usually under a doctor's supervision (which means there is a doctor in the office or within some geographic radius who can be consulted with). Also, PAs and NPs are in high demand - - we have physician friends in Chicago that are having a hard time finding jobs.

    A non-MD job in healthcare seems like a wonderful compromise solution for you and your wife. I know other poster's have talked about your wife not supporting your goals, but I do think you have to consider that if the baby is the focus of her life, then your going through medical training is equally non-supportive of her goals. Most of my MD friends are women, but among the male MDs I know, I have seen alot of "medical wives" get totally screwed over - - an absentee spouse, no time together as a family, etc - - not to mention that about 50% of these stay-at-home support system type wives will be divorced by their MD husbands and left struggling financially. Based on my "real world" observations of medical couples, your wife is perhaps extreme in her reaction, but considering her own earning potential and life goals and your financial situation, I don't think she is being irrational.

    Good luck!
     
  20. srabulldog

    srabulldog Member
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    AGENT- Hey - I posted earlier, but I've been sort of pondering your situation a little. I feel like I can really empathize with your wife, b/c I was a 4.0 in HS too and even though I have my BS from college, I just don't use the school stuff at all and am constantly inundated with diapers, etc. Have you convinced her (better yet, are you convinced) that your family is your top priority? have you said something like "I would like to go to med school and be a doctor because I feel that's the career I'm meant to have, but I will always choose you and the kids and our marriage over anything else". If you seem so willing to fight and fight about this when she expresses legitimate fears, you're perhaps sending a message that some things are more important to you than your marriage and family. And if that's your mentality, then she's right to fear you becoming a doctor, because if you aren't firm in setting priorities to be there for your family as much as possible, the medical profession will eat you up. Moonlighting, dictations during dinner time, etc. I hope you work it out, really! But maybe you two should declare a "cooling off" period of say, a month, where you don't discuss it at all! Then she'll have time to research and soul-search on her own, and you'd have time to examine your priorities. At this point fighting over it every day isn't probably very helpful.
     
  21. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    sms921 -

    that was very insightful. you have very valid points, in fact your argument against was the most applicable/strongest of any arguments I've heard so far.

    I have considered nursing. I thought about PA, but I dont know what schools in the chicago area do that kind of training. Your strongest points have been my biggest concerns as well. I'm not completely selfish.

    srabulldog -

    great post as well. i really appreciate you all.
     
  22. DoubleDoctor

    DoubleDoctor Ceder Dog's Daddy
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    Blitz,

    I have seen you post that never ever get divorced stuff a couple of times and I realize you are speaking from your experiences and I respect that but I too was raised by a single mother (who by the way, did NOT believe in divorce....he cheated on her and she was considering taking him back but he decided to stay with the girlfriend), and thank God she did get a divorce. We (my Dad) have a toxic relationship(very competetive and he tears me down every chance he gets.....he's this way with everyone). I am 100% sure that had I been raised around my father I would never have achieved all that I have because he would have ate away at my self confidence. My Mom is great and a wonderful support and I'm glad she raised me even though she had to work and things were hard at times. I'm a better person for it.
     
  23. isidella

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    Well, from the opposite side, my parents stayed together, faught constantly, basically hated each other because they crushed each others dreams. I think they would have been a lot happier if they would have split up. The fact that they "stayed together for the kids" put a lot of guilt on me and my brother and we feel partially responsible that our folks were so unhappy all the time. Me and my bro have both been in a series of yucky drawn out tortourous relationships that I am sure we learned so well from our parents.

    My point, every situation is different Blitz. (sorry about yours though-you sound pretty emphatic). :(
     
  24. srabulldog

    srabulldog Member
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    Agent- if your wife isn't interested in doing any pm's to other spouses on this board, she may be interested in browsing at the medical spouse general hospital board

    http://www.medicalspouse.com/forum/

    I like that site because they deal with lots of concerns of spouses ranging from military spouses to pre-med to people under the full stress of residency. She could also get advice on moving and stuff like that. Plus lots of those spouses have kids.

    Also, I know that my husband feels he's being very open and supportive of me by asking me what I want to do with the rest of my life when the kids are in school, and I am just not at all in a place to even consider that time! I have no idea! So probably your wife perhaps has no idea at this time now. I actually get a little ticked off with my husband at times when he goes down that road, because unlike him, I have not known what I wanted to be from the time I was an embryo. Now, I have no imagination to consider a life beyond where I am at! Just a thought.

    To those of you who recommend against divorce at any costs: I would agree because Agent seems to be a responsible father who genuinely cares for what's best for his family. I'm sorry so many have suffered through parents behaving badly by constantly arguing in front of their kids, or worse suffered from an outright destructive parent (this is evil and I totally agree that if a parent's goal is to destroy his own child this "father" must be avoided at all costs). But, let's not forget that Agent seems to be a responsible man who wants to father his children lovingly and provide for his family financially- both wonderful goals...

    In response to the wonderful thoughts by sms921- that is precisely why my husband is going the military route. This will decrease our debts, and with the future of medicine apparently trending more towards increased malpractice insurance costs with decreasing salaries, the financial incentives for becoming a doctor just aren't there if you have a family, need to save for your kids college educations, and need to pay off your own debts.

    Agent- I hope you all sort through this mess! Perhaps it will make you stronger in the end...

    Best of luck
     
  25. hey agent, i am sorry about ur situation.
    first i want to say if ur wife doesnt want to take the kids to day care centers dont u have relatives that could take care of them while she is at work or at school.

    i am not really familiar with relationship stuff, but i dont think u should give up ur dream of being a doctor, i have read ur other posts and u are probably the only person i know that is this excited about being a doctor. i know there are suggestions about pa school, just remember some people still leave pa schools to go to mediacl school, u might just be dragging it.

    i think u love ur wife and ur son too, dont ruin that by compromising more than u can, i can't really tell u what to do cos i am not profeesionally capable, whatever decision u chose , good luck,okay?

    and about the divorce thing, not that i am suggesting it, but people that have a difficult experience are probably those who were neglected or abused by another parent, and u dont sound like u would do that, in the end just plan on a less demanding specialty.
     
  26. Newdoc2002

    Newdoc2002 Senior Member
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    Why are you soliciting advice on a basically anonymous forum? You have no idea who posts here, what their backgrounds are or even how their basic values and morality compares to yours. Further, to air out your dirty laundry to complete strangers is a worry of its own.

    I'd spend more time talking with your wife, less time on this board and please, if you need help, get it from someone you can trust.

    We doctors, medical students and pre-meds are among the worst people on earth from which to receive relationship advice.
     
  27. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    ^
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    whatever.

    the more people i talk to the better. i have talked to my wife, thanks for the attitude.
     
  28. DoubleDoctor

    DoubleDoctor Ceder Dog's Daddy
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    My Mom has been a nurse for 25 years so she has known alot of med students and doctors throughout that time. I guess fairly often doctors leave their wife after they get out of med school. It is probably due to the stress of school and lack of communication but it's viewed as that whole "she stuck by him through med school and then he left her once he got out" thing. I think she is probably just very fearful of a whole hosts of things like will you outgrow her? will you have time for your family? will the stress of school change how you interact with her and the kids? I totally agree that the best way to handle this is through communication and lots of it. Don't go into it trying to change her mind but instead let her know how much you need her support. I think she will probably eventually come around just keep those lines of communication open. Good Luck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  29. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    i think i need to be clear that I do not want a divorce.

    i am currently exploring all options. thanks for the tips everyone.
     
  30. Celiac Plexus

    Celiac Plexus Senior Member
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    Hey agent,

    Well, everyone else threw their 00.02 in so here's mine:

    I really don't know what you should do as far as career choice. Med school is not going to be any easier than right now. You're gonna finish way in debt (probably), and in residency you're gonna make around 40K which isn't gonna go very far three kids and a wife. Then again, teaching doesn't pay a hell of a lot either, and the hours can be pretty long too.

    Ya just gotta lay it out for your wife. Tell her that it might not get a lot "better" for the next several years in terms of free time, and cash, but that you guys are a family unit that has to stick together. I mean, you and her created three kids together. You guys have duties and responsibilities. You guys have to subjugate your own dreams to a degree for your children cos they need two stable parents who are gonna be there for them.

    Don't give up on your dream to be a doctor. In the long run I think that it is the best bet for the family unit that you and your wife have created and are responsible for. That said, if your wife is adamant about you not going to med school then be a man, and do the right thing by pursuing another career. There are a lot more jobs out there besides doctoring and teaching. Ultimately you should think about your kids and their happiness above your own.

    Personally, I chose not to get married and have a bunch of kids until after med school because I was afraid of getting in your situation so don't think I haven't considered all the angles. But you chose to get married and have kids so now you gotta get your wife on board, or get off the ship.

    Good luck.
     
  31. chessgirl

    chessgirl 856 mi
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    Agent,

    I am completely sympathetic to your dilemma. I too am struggling with the "less than enthusiatic spouse" about pursuing a career in medicine (PA for me). My husband and I have toughed out split shift schedules for the past 6 years of work and split schedules for 3 years finishing our undergrad while raising a daughter (we got pregnant at the ripe old age of 19). It has taken all of the 6 past years for him and I to even discuss the possiblility of it. We are deliberately waiting until our youngest is into school because we also don't want to deal with daycare. Don't lose faith! I could write a littany of the things that him and I had to go through-and still do- in our relationship to make just the day to day things work, not to mention the fears about our future and choices. The two comments that I agree with from others are get counselling together. I would also get some sessions alone if possible, it would help to develop the skills that you need to diffuse her fears when you don't have any intervention. I also agree with the statement that she is having issues of her own, maybe or maybe not related to your career, that she is not telling you. If she keeps dragging up the same arguments there is something deeper-time to dig. You two may be talking but you don't sound like you are communicating!

    If you want an indepth conversation, I'd be happy to help out. PM me, I live in chicago too!
     
  32. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    Right now im going to get a degree majoring in biology and minoring in secondary education from Roosevelt University in Chicago.

    Ill probably teach for awhile until I either go to med school or not.
     
  33. Tyra

    Tyra Member
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    Agent

    I only found this site a few days ago and have spent countless hours reading through the different forums, as they are very interesting and I feel I can relate to many of them. Out of all posts I've read, this one really saddens me. As I was reading the 3 pages of replies, I found myself talking out loud! I probably won't remember everything I wanted to cover, but here goes:

    1st of all your last post about "majoring in biology/minoring in secondary education", almost made me cry because of the sadness I could "hear" through the words. I know that's not what you want to do. I'm a 30 year old woman with 5 children and my husband is "unconsciously unsupportive". I know about divorce; my parents divorced when I was 14 (finally, after I made my dad understand that my mom didn't want to be with him, so instead of going through a breakdown, he should leave). I was pregnant at 17, married at 18, 3 kids by 20 and divorced that year. Remarried at 23 with a total of 5 kids by 25. I always knew I wanted to be in the medical profession- either a veterinarian or optometrist, but my dreams were always placed on hold because what everyone else thought: my mom, friends, husband, etc. Because of this I came to resent the world. I got so stressed that I developed ulcers, stayed sick, and because I was a stay at home mom for the longest, being with 5 kids all day 24/7 was ruining me. No one understood. No one. Every good thing that happened to my husband or anyone else fired up this horrible jealous feeling within me and I found myself blaming everyone for my horrible life. I love my children, I love my husband, but why do I have to be unhappy? After I couldn't bare being at home all day with children, I found a few jobs here and there, which paid little and I truly hated. Then, in 1999 I began working for a big cellular company in customer service making excellent money for having no degree. I HATED THAT JOB. My husband decided to pursue his dream of being a barber and went to school for 10 months of which I paid his monthly tuition of $250 and all bills and had to work a total of 60-70 hours a week with overtime to pay all the bills. Each day that went by, I hated him more and more. I worked to death, he spent easy days at school, had a social life and I was nothing more than a customer service rep; not that doctor I wanted to be, but a cust serv rep.

    This May, I was rushed to the hospital where I spent 2 weeks of which many specialists came and went but couldn't find out why, my temp wouldn't leave ( I was admitted with a temp of 103), and why I was confined to a bed with killing headaches. This changed my life. While being doped up on Morphine, the nurses visited me each nite. I told them of my dreams and aspirations, long gone I thought, and they convinced me to return to school.

    My husband cannot make me happy; I have to do what makes me happy.

    We don't have much money now, and probably won't have much for a very long time, but I'll have my happiness and in turn my children will know Mommy is happy.

    Agent, children aren't dumb. They will know as they grow that you are not happy. I have a feeling I know different reasons why your wife is acting as she is; I am a woman myself. She may feel you are living your dreams out while she is "stuck" at home. She may have a fear of you broadening and thinking one day she is not good enough for you. She may know of the statistics of Dr.'s that have women throwing themselves at them and end up leaving their wives. It is a possibility and it's scary for her. But I don't think she knows how lucky she is to have a husband like you who sounds as if he loves her and the babies so much. Some of us are not that lucky. Hell, I have friends that are complaining that they wish their husbands were Dr.'s or were going to med school.

    I'm not saying that divorce should be an option in your case. Divorce is for those that do not love each other anymore. It sounds like you and your wife love each other tremendously or you wouldn't take the time to get help from others in your predicament from this website.

    YOU MUST MAKE HER UNDERSTAND. Be open; be truthfull. Address this issues with her for I know this is part of the problem. Don't be afraid to be blunt. Let her know you have an idea of what she is feeling and that that will not happen. Let her know that when your youngest is in Kindergarten you will support her dreams no matter what they are or where they take you, for you are truly interested in her making herself happy.

    If you can't find a way to help her understand this dream of yours and you bow out like you are speaking of doing, I will almost be willing to bet a lot of money that this marriage will ultimately end in divorce. Resentment is a killer to a marriage. You may love her tons now, but you will forever blame her as you wonder what your life would've been. If she truly loves you, as it sounds she does, she will somehow find it in her to understand she can't put limits on your individuality. You must be what you are, not what she wants you to be. Believe me, she wouldn't like it if you started to put a lot of stipulations on her, for instance, telling her to put the kids in daycare, she'd better get a job, picking what profession you wanted her in, telling her how to dress, etc. Couples today must realize that the other person in the partnership is to be a complement to them. You complement each other. You're not going to be the same, the same dreams will not apply to both of you, and the same things in life will not make you happy. Marriage is the coupling of two INDIVIDUALS.

    Good luck, Agent.
     
  34. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg 1K Member
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    I am a better person as well considering that my mother and father got divorced..but only after he cheated on her and did other horrible things...getting divorced for any other reason, IMHO, isnt the way to go.
     
  35. dph201

    dph201 Senior Member
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    Agent,
    My heart goes out to you. I just recently got married and I can tell you this situation makes things really frightening for me. My husband is very supportive that I follow my dreams. But,I have been back and forth about pursuing medicine. I am afraid of what may happen to our relationship if I do. Right now we have no kids but I am also scared of what will happen if we do have kids. He says no matter what I do he will be behind me 100%. However, I'm afraid things will change.

    My question to you is why didn't your wife pursue her degree after highschool? Was it because you had children already or she just wasn't ready?

    Divorce is definately out the question. I think you do need to have a very open, no holds bar talk. Just let out everything you feel and fear. (And please make sure that the kids are not around to hear this conversation. Because I am sure some hurtful things may come out, and you don't want them to hear that.) That is the kind of relationship my husband and I have now. Believe me its not easy hearing certain things but it does help. It stops all the assumptions and miscommunications.

    Hope this helps
     
  36. maysqrd

    maysqrd Go A's!
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    Agent,

    I have been reading your thread for a while and there is a million things that it brings to mind. It is obvious from your comments that you love your wife and family very much. Good for you! That is sometimes the hardest thing to admit to yourself and as a result you are obviously in a struggle with what to do. Do you pursue your own dream and risk losing your wife or do you take another career path and risk being miserable?

    I can't tell you what to do but I can tell you what I've gone thru and maybe you can gets something from it. I wanted to be a doctor, go to med school, etc. I had it very difficult financially, trying to work full time and go to school full time as well. The strain was really difficult on me and I never realized how much stress it put on my relationship. My husband and I weren't married yet but we had been together for about 5 years so it wasn't a new relationship by any means. I felt a lot of guilt over how my "dream" was causing us financial hardship and emotional strain on our relationship. In my situation, I was afraid that if I continued down this path, I would lose my relationship. So I dropped the idea of going to medical school. I pursued a degree that had nothing to do with medicine. I went out and tried several different jobs and ended up making excellent money.

    After the seventh job change in five years my husband told me I was not allowed to go back to work until I found a job I really loved. I was making money and able to provide for my family but I was driving my husband mad. It took time, but in the end he realized how miserable I was and he asked me "What do you really want to do? If money was not a consideration, what would you spend the rest of your life doing?"

    I knew the answer and so did he. I did not rush back to school right away but we set out a plan and came up with compromises. I agreed to wait until our daughter was old enough to be in kindergarten. We saved and paid off debt and got "ready" for me to go to med school to prepare for the financial burden. I even went part-time at school for a while and still worked full-time until we could make the adjustment. When we were ready, I applied to an early decision program at the local school to try increase of not having to relocate. I compromised and agreed that if I got rejected by the local schools, then I would wait two more years before applying to out-of-state schools. This would give my husband time to finish his degree and he would be able to secure a better job when we did need to move.

    My husband completely changed his mind about medical school and he is 100% supportive of me. He now views the stress and the time constraints as the "investment into a good future." Even my daughter is old enough to start understanding what I am doing and she is excited. She loved coming to visit me when I was working at the hospital and she keeps asking me when do I get to go back to the "doctor work". I am going to a family friendly school next fall and when I get ready for residency, I will be seeking out a family friendly residency program as well. In the end, time is what I needed to be able to pursue my dream and it has all worked out.

    I know that it might seem like a complete end to your dream to say wait a few more years but maybe your wife just needs more time to grasp the idea of medical school. It may not be in a week or a month but it may take a few more years. Maybe you will need to sacrifice a few years of staying at home with the kids at night while she finishes her own undergrad degree before you apply. That isn't such a bad compromise. I know that my school has a 53 year old MSII this year and 10 MSII students over the age of 35. I know many mothers that didn't go to med school until their children were in high school or even college; fathers should be willing to do the same thing if necessary.

    Definately try to continue therapy and make sure it is an objective third party that won't be biased to support one of you over the other. Good luck and I sincerely hope it all works out.
     
  37. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    thanks maysqrd.

    your story is inspiring. i am exactly doing what you suggested at the moment.

    I plan to just finish my bs in bio and maybe teach for a few years.
     
  38. pathdr2b

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    Hi Agent,

    I know you have made your decision but after rereading this thread I think I may have an option that no one else seems to have considered as a solution to your delimma(SP?). Have you thought about taking 6 years instead of 4 to complete medical school? Many medical schools allow for this type of schedule. I know of a few single parents that did this (I'm leaving this option open for myself as well) and it seems to have worked for them. I even know a medical student (MD/PhD) that completed the first year in 2 years and worked part-time in the ER the entire time! With this type of schedule you could spend the summers working in a lab or fellowship that could pay decent wages. You would also have time to do your family thing as well.

    I know people are going to ask about money and I've got an answer for that as well. You could fund medical school through a health service or military scholarship. Also, I know at the NIH there are loan forgiveness programs for MD's that do research fellowships. I think if you're willing to be flexible in where you attend medical school, you could make this work without worrying so much about the financial hassles. Just be sure to include your wife in the "brainstorming process" so she doesn't feel left out.

    Good luck again!

    Kim
     
  39. DoubleDoctor

    DoubleDoctor Ceder Dog's Daddy
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    That's an excellent idea pathdr2b and I don't think many know of this option, I had never heard of it. I'm hoping to go the MSTP route and I'm single so I'm able to be flexible but it's good to know that stuff exists like this. Thank you for your creative input.
     
  40. Newdoc2002

    Newdoc2002 Senior Member
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    Agent,

    Maybe you should e-mail Dr. Phil. I think he can solve all your problems. There may be a book on Amazon.com you can buy. Actually, I think your full of s#@!. It makes for good reading though and we all need a little excitement in our internet lives.

    I came to this realization when I figured out that no sane person would ever post this personal spew on an internet forum to which literally 4,000,000,000 people have access.

    And I actually love all the woe is me stories everyone else is sharing. We all have our obstacles and we all have decisions to make so for the love of God, please either crap or get off the pot.

    P.S. I can't remember, did you tell us you already have a medical school slot? How do you know you you will get in. Fifty percent each year don't. So Whatever!:p
     
  41. Tyra

    Tyra Member
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    Newdoc

    So called "woe is me stories" do help some people to see they're not alone in different situations and obstacles can be overcome. Something my parents used to tell me (maybe it'll help you some)--- if it doesn't apply to you, don't respond. If his story is irritating you so much, um... why did you read this thread? hmmm.....

    If we all need inspiration from time to time to help answer the question, "why am I doing this; is it worth it?", let us have our little ray of light if you don't mind. There's plenty of other threads, I'm sure, that may hold your interest much better and won't have an aura of "Dr. Phil" attached to it.
     
  42. pathdr2b

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    You gotta love a doctor like newdoc2002. Let's all hope he/she went into pathology (to be a medical examiner) so that this person won't have to deal with living, breathing, human beings with feelings.

    And Agent, least we not forget one of my favorite SDN mantra's; "Under 30, no house, no spouse" for folks like newdoc2002. I'd also like to add no sex!!!!:p
     
  43. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    gj newdoc.. now everyone knows you are a d1ck...

    why is this not believable??? its true and if you dont like it then plz dont post in my thread..

    I don't know that i'll get in for sure but in my mind i feel i can do it, but just in case i cannot make it, thats why im minoring in secondary education. If you bothered to read that then maybe you wouldnt have to spew bullsh1t all over my thread..

    you've got a lot to learn buddy.

    on another note, i receieved some info from the local army corps about their FAP programs..
     
  44. isidella

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    Agent,

    I am sorry rat-trolls are taking over the thread. I think you have every right to post this, and I think everyone has a right to respond granted their posts are not malicious and non-constructive. I know many pre-meds will find this thread and it may help them with their relationships (it has helped with mine).

    So lets keep the discussion going for as long as it needs to go on. . . hopefully there will be a resolution soon, but if not, we are here for you agent!

    :clap:

    Isid

    P.S. Rat-troll stay away!:mad:
     
  45. DoubleDoctor

    DoubleDoctor Ceder Dog's Daddy
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    I agree with Isidella. JUST SAY "NO" TO RAT-TROLLS
     
  46. i think he/she should be a coroner.
     
  47. pathdr2b

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    Online name "Pathdr2b", now what on earth could I possible be thinking of for a career?:rolleyes: :rolleyes:

    I'm actually planning on doing testicular biposys without anesthesia, so something like uropathology!:laugh:
     
  48. i was talking about newdocsomething something, u ? me like!;)
     
  49. Newdoc2002

    Newdoc2002 Senior Member
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    Sorry to let your preconceived notions down.

    Over 30, very happily married, two kids, own a house, and HA HA HA HA, I'm in family practice. And if my wife asked me to walk away from medicine because it was making her unhappy as Agents wife thinks she would be then I'd drop it today.

    Let's remember you started the name calling. Actually, I'll refrain from that, but thanks for stooping below my level.

    PS It's the people that put medicine ahead of their spouses that don't get sex.
     
  50. agent

    agent agent, RN
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    I've got a solution to you. Sets troll to ignore.

    Thanks for clearing that up for me :)
     
  51. pathdr2b

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    If she asked you to get a sex change, pull a car with your teeth, and jump off a 12 story building, would you do that too? Dam*, I've gotta ask, to you have any single brothers?:laugh: :laugh:

    Newdoc2002, I gotta thank you for clearing something up for me. If YOU managed to get admitted and through medical school and a family practice residency with that caustic personality, I know dam* well there's a spot in somebody's medical school for me and Agent and Isidella and Doubledoctor and Tyra and the rest of us compassionate souls on this thread!!!! Let the celebrations begin!!!!!!!,:p
     

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