So I'm in FM and currently rotating in peds and loving it. I almost went into peds in med school, and since that time became a mom to two little boys. Being a mom has made me appreciate peds so much more. I regret not choosing if as a specialty. I've debated trying to train in peds after finishing FM, but worry about the effect it'll have on my kids. Plus I'm married to a surgeon in training and we want more kids. My two are three and nine months old right now. I just can't see myself happy in FM and would rather see only kids and teens. I wish I had realized this about myself beforehand. My big hang up is that my 3 year old misses me so much as it is. I've debated just putting it on the back burner until they are older but when I'm honest with myself I don't think I will actually go back. Anyone struggle with the same feelings ie picking the wrong specialty? Any thoughts?
How far along in FM are you? Almost done with residency? Just starting? Maybe if you're just starting you could switch through the match this year... Otherwise, I agree that it sounds like it would be hard to feel great about adding 3 more years of training when your kids already miss you and you have a spouse with a really demanding career. Also, I had the same thought as sahmd - can you just focus your practice on kids/teens? Maybe you could even bring some niche interest to a group like childhood obesity or sexual health? (I do anesthesia so I guess maybe that's not really doable but I am trying to make guesses!) Good luck!
I am a FM Dr who has worked in 3 different cities/states and there is no reason that you need to do over a residency to make your practice heavily pediatric. I went into FM with the goal of only doing Gyn type outpatient procedure and adult medicine. I had no intention of doing anything pediatric. Ends up that through the course of my residency I found out I loved taking care of kids and hated doing inpatient adult medicine. Since then I have always had a pediatric population that has started with newborns and I have never had to kick them out of my practice when they aged out since I see adults as well. Some parents are very particular about seeing a pediatrician and this is predominantly I believe due to just ignorance that there are family drs that see children. My partner and I make it known to our adult patients that we see kids and so they bring all their children to us and if your practice took medicaid then you can't stop it from being a pediatric practice-- since there are many children that can't find adequate care.
The only reason I would say to do a pediatric residency is if you want to do a pediatric specialty like cardiology, neonatology, etc. If you just want to practice general pediatrics then just make all your electives in Family Medicine pediatric based (as well as CMEs, etc) and join a practice or start a practice that is predominantly pediatric-- if people who are not pediatric call to be patients then let your staff tell them that you only see under 18 years of age. I know FM drs that only do weight management or osteoporosis management -- there is no reason that you can't just do a pediatric only practice. It's one of the best things about being a FM dr that you can be as generalized or specialized as you would like to be.
I don't have any advice but can empathize. I'm currently in psych and often wonder if I would be happier in pediatrics. Like you, I feel having children gave me a whole new appreciation for the field and if I would've had children earlier I definately would've have chosen it. I have thought of a second residency as well but have the same sentiments about the effect it would have on my two year old. I guess I don't have any good advice but just wanted to say you're not alone.
I'm currently applying for FM residency but had the same thoughts about going into peds (especially now that I have two kids, ages 2 yr and my newbie at 6 weeks). My last elective was with an FM-OB physician whose practice consisted primarily of pediatric patients and women (aka my dream job). After OB fellowship, the doc joined a practice with an OB/Gyn and another FM-OB physician so their entire practice is similar to this (some males, older patients, but primarily women and children). I also completed a pediatric elective where an FM doctor was part of the pediatric practice. The FM doc had their own patient panel and saw only pediatric patients. And both of these practices are in a major metropolitan area. All this to say, these rotations sealed my decision on applying to Family Medicine and hopefully give you more examples of what you can do with FM. As I interview, I'm looking for programs that have a strong peds and women's health curriculum, with the ability to supplement with electives in both if needed/wanted. Hopefully you're in a program where you would be able to do additional electives in peds in order to fulfill your desired training for your future practice.
And even though I'm not yet in residency, I know how much my 2 year-old misses me, especially on tough rotations. So I completely agree about your hang up and can not imagine adding an additional 3 years to my yet-to-start residency training. Good luck!