Aug 31, 2017
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Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
Hi I'm planning on applying to a medical school this October, and for the past year I've been almost certain on medicine and have been preparing accordingly. But recently I've been talking with med students who've disclosed some key new information about becoming a doctor.

Whilst I knew full well, being a doctor requires a lot of sacrifices and is a huge commitment, I never realised that it involved having to change hospitals every year or so around the country and switching deaneries until I'm fully trained to be a consultant. This means by the time I'm done with med school, foundation years and specialty training, I could be well into my 30s. This is something I (foolishly) never even considered, because for most of my life, I'd imagined settling down by 30 and having children around this age, but if I'm moving around, this seems improbable.
My question is essentially just that are my wishes unreasonable - is it rare to see people managing a family whilst doing specialty training? Thanks

edit: I'm from the UK btw, but any advice would be great as I assume doctors in the US are also in a similar situation of having to balance work and family life
 
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hamstergang

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May 6, 2012
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I never realised that it involved having to change hospitals every year or so around the country and switching deaneries until I'm fully trained to be a consultant.
You'd probably get a bit better help if you named the country. We can probably guess, but then we might not be as helpful as you'd want.
 
OP
D
Aug 31, 2017
2
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
You'd probably get a bit better help if you named the country. We can probably guess, but then we might not be as helpful as you'd want.
Yeah sorry forgot to mention I'm from the UK
 
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Kurk

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A physician once said, "if you want to be a doctor be a doctor. If you want to be a parent pursue ____. )
 

Mad Jack

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Hi I'm planning on applying to a medical school this October, and for the past year I've been almost certain on medicine and have been preparing accordingly. But recently I've been talking with med students who've disclosed some key new information about becoming a doctor.

Whilst I knew full well, being a doctor requires a lot of sacrifices and is a huge commitment, I never realised that it involved having to change hospitals every year or so around the country and switching deaneries until I'm fully trained to be a consultant. This means by the time I'm done with med school, foundation years and specialty training, I could be well into my 30s. This is something I (foolishly) never even considered, because for most of my life, I'd imagined settling down by 30 and having children around this age, but if I'm moving around, this seems improbable.
My question is essentially just that are my wishes unreasonable - is it rare to see people managing a family whilst doing specialty training? Thanks

edit: I'm from the UK btw, but any advice would be great as I assume doctors in the US are also in a similar situation of having to balance work and family life
We've got MUCH longer hours and worse conditions than you have in the UK over here in the US. Plenty of residents get married, start families, and live fulfilling lives despite it all. The idea that your life is over until you finish training is unfounded, but you will have a harder life than those outside of medicine without a doubt.
 

Gilakend

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Aug 24, 2012
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Give "Hot Lights, Cold Steel" a read. The guy worked like 100 hours a week and ended up having like 7 kids. Granted he had a rough time in residency, but it shows it can be done if you prioritize what you'd like.
 

FlameBroiledDoc

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Feb 9, 2017
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You can make anything work. It'll depend on your spouse, your living expenses, your available child care options, and what help you can get from family (your or your spouse's parents, mainly).

Every career comes with tradeoffs. Few, if any full time doctors, in particularly specialists, can really be the parents they want to be. Simply aren't enough hours in a day. The real question is whether medicine is really your "thing". If you can't see yourself satisfied as anything apart from medicine, you need to follow your dreams or it will make you just as unhappy in the long run as working yourself to the bone away from spouse and kids for a job you don't enjoy.
 
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Sharknad0

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Oct 9, 2016
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A physician once said, "if you want to be a doctor be a doctor. If you want to be a parent pursue ____. )
@drcrah

I don't know if that's just a joke saying or an actual one, but my parents are physicians and have 4 kids. The got married abroad but moved to the States right after med school for residency so they were ~23 and 30, and didn't have kids for like 8 more years. Now three of us are in our 20's and the youngest is starting college. If you marry another physician I don't see it as an impossibility to have kids when you're both 30-33.

That advice was honestly geared towards males, but even if you're a female it's possible to have kids. Will it be harder as a female neurosurgeon or orthopedic surgeon (SURGICAL SPECIALTIES) than say a GI, neurologist, endocrinologist, or cardiologist (MEDICAL SPECIALTIES)? Yes, but it is still very possible to start a family.
 
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