- Posts: 131
- Thank you received: 1
English wrote: Interesting points--- I think there are many men in medicine who would like to have some level of work/life balance. I know a couple male physicians whose wives work very part time (so it is not an issue that someone unreliable is providing childcare) who still would like more time with their families/children. My husband often worries about having a strong relationship with this next child just because he is so much busier with his practice now. I think fathers understand that you have such a limited time with children and to cultivate that relationship before they leave your home for good is vital. Is it mandatory to be a SAH parent to have a relationship with your kid-- of course not! But you can't be away for weeks either and never see them.
I don't think guilt is inherent with medicine but medicine is a very varied field. Some docs work 20 hrs or less a week while others like my husband work 100+ (and he's an attending!). I think it depends on the area you live in, your supports, your own standard of living (and any compromises with it), your speciality, your practice, your partners, your personal level of energy, etc. It also depends on when in your training you have children-- I had children when I was an attending and it worked out pretty well for me, but that is my normal. Other people have a different normal. I also am well aware that many people can't have children at my age so that is not something that I take for granted. Guilt itself is also very subjective in some ways-- some people feel guilty about everything even when it's out of their control and some people feel guilty about nothing even when they are to blame.
I know personally, though, that if my kids got into some issue that required me to re-evaluate working and I was financially able to do so then I would step away from it-- if my kids needed me I would drop the career in a heartbeat. Regardless of the end product-- you have to be able to go to bed at night and say that I did everything I could (with the resources that I have) to raise this child right. In the end, though, they as human beings are responsible for their own actions and my kids will be held accountable for that.