Medical Degree(18 Posts)
I'm at a wonderful uni and completed my access course here. Currently on maternity leave deferral with an 11 week old. For full discourse I have MH issues they're well aware of and effectively a single parent. OH works away and comes up once a month for a weekend and 6 hours from any sort of family support.
I'm getting terrified about returning next year. Whether I can justify the expense and emotional stress of the course is actually worth it. Just sort of needing some rational advice.
How far into your course are you? I think that would be the clincher for me. Plus with an eleven week old, any sort of major decisions are going to be influenced by the abundance of hormones that are currently present in your system.
She's 14 weeks and still tremendously easy. Sleeps through, and so chilled out.
I'm only a year through but late 20s. Concerned I've wasted my chance
I'm doing nursing. I'm exhausted. I have a one year old. It's manageable most of the time. My husband is at home. I am having lots of melt downs when essays are due in. Like one today. I'm grateful for Christmas break.
As for age. No you haven't wasted your chance. I'm nearing 40. You have time x
I'm considering transferring into nursing as it's not as life disruptive as medicine. But feel just a bit trapped for decisions until OH is here. No family, no extra income, nothing, when it comes to looking after our child.
What happens after med school if you qualify?
48-56 hours every week. Possibly more hours per if Hunt gets his way. Moving town/hospital every year.
I'm nhs but not a Dr. I was talking to one of our SHOs this evening who is very close to quitting because she says although she loves the job she has no life outside work. My job 37 hrs is full time. I can't imagine having to do another 11-19 hours per week. She worked out her last months hourly wage and she's getting £12 an hour.
I used to be NHS and do roughly 40-55 hours p/week. Which was fine. In my old life.
The whole Hunt thing caused my doubts originally but increasingly I think medicine may be the wrong choice right now. Seeing why most people start at 18 not 28!
I feel your pain. Started med school at 29 with two kids and a husband, also undergoing a career change, in tow. We've recently had our third child but as a result of being pregnant in my fourth year and an exacerbation of some underlying mental health issues I failed the first part of my finals and ended up dropping out of the year. I could have restarted fourth year last August but my dc would have only been three months old and I didn't feel well enough to return. So I'm now on leave watching all my friends sit their finals and apply for jobs for this August while I'm still facing resitting fourth year.
Also no idea if I really want to go into medicine after all of this, I'm in Scotland though so no Hunt to contend with, but no clue what else I want to do. I'd also be gutted with myself if I didn't finish my degree but my MH isn't good enough I don't think to return. Completely dented my confidence
I'm an nhs hospital doctor. Medical school is a breeze compared to the next ten years. Unless you're well motivated and highly organised individual with good support from family and OH you may struggle to achieve a happy work life balance. Frequent changing of hospitals, tough specialty exams, always working at weekends/nights/bank holidays when it seems none of your mates are. Then the need to do extra stuff out of your working hours e.g. audit, papers, diplomas, simulation, teaching... To do well you can't just do the day job, you need to give it extra.
Once you're a consultant there are different challenges but I have found life more enjoyable with better balance.
Not sure I would do it again. Think carefully!
I did three years of medicine (started age 19) and decided the work/life balance wasn't for me as I wanted a family ASAP.
I started midwifery aged 22, I am now about to graduate aged 27 with two beautiful children (2 maternity leaves). I will be working 23 hours a week (2 shifts) and enjoying my family, 3yo DS and 2yo DD. Largely my medic friends wish they had made different choices.
Nursing/ midwifery is tiring, but different to medicine. Difficult if you don't have good support nearby to help with childcare during shiftwork. Academically, it hadn't been particularly challenging which is good because I have two small people to think of.
Have a good think about it. OH is a dr and while training post- degree he frequently got placed 90 mins-2hrs or more away from our home meaning he was staying away for days at a time due to shift patterns. At least 2 female colleagues of his that I know of dropped out of medicine after getting their degrees because it's just so incompatible with a family life (unless you opt for GP pathway or staff grade jobs but even then you have years of training before being able to opt for that.)
It's definitely not a career to go into unless you are 100% passionate about it as its so tough and stress is off the chart.
I just want to be honest with you about how hard it has been for us as a family.
I think back to when I first qualified (many years ago) The hours were really long, but I was single although with my now DH, and all my friends were the same. We made the most of it and it was mostly ok.
The thought of doing all that with children would be so difficult. I now work as a specialty doctor, having been a GP for years, as it's the best way to spend some time with my family but still do my job (which I still love!)
Bear in mind that even in nursing you would be doing shift work which I know our studen nurses can find really tricky with childcare.
3rd year medic here and returned to uni 2 weeks after giving birth, hardest thing I've ever done but I wouldn't have ever went back if I didn't. Uni tries to help as much as possible as they understand my situation by when it comes to placements etc it's a nightmare.
I'm sure you'll be able to do it
I left medicine after qualifying and a short period of working as an FY1 because it was incompatible with the sort of family life I wanted (actual work life balance, biggish family, long maternity leaves, decent time with DH). I also found it really stressful.
I now work in academic medicine. One day a week, satisfying work, lots of time with young DC and DH. It was such a hard decision to leave the training at the time but I have never once regretted it.
If you're seriously thinking about leaving, talk to your course coordinators etc. See what others have done in your position. And don't make any quick decisions 11 weeks after childbirth . Good luck
I feel like my post looks really pushy I'm sorry I didn't mean to make it look that way. It was basically if I can do it.. Type of thing because I'm what can only be described as a mess at the best of times!
Another JD - I used to love my job. Still do, in parts but the political situation and ever-increasing pressures with poorer and poorer staffing levels makes it hard to recommend medicine these days... Which is really sad.
I also considered switching to nursing (though I reality I'm not convinced that would have been much better) - I suppose if I knew then what I know now I wouldn't be doing the job.
It is doable (I work 60% FTE, registrar in hospital specialty with 3 children) - but it's hard and involves many sacrifices. If you genuinely love what you're doing and are as confident as you can be that the job will be right, then keep going. If not, may be best doing graduate entry further down the line once you're sure - it's not now or never, but the further you go, the greater the financial obligation to stay (assuming you need loans etc - I graduated in 2008 with about £40k debt, so much more overall with interest, assuming I ever clear it!). So almost obligated to stay, but considering other options in case of contract imposition.
I'm trying not to be negative... It can be a fantastic, fulfilling career and the current morale and conditions might be temporary.
I'm a nurse. Only transfer into nursing if you actually want to be a nurse, not because it's an easier option. Although it may not be as academically tough you'll be expected to work shifts throughout your training, could you get childcare for night shifts etc? Nursing is a tough job and very different to medicine.
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