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Choosing between family and career? NOT !!!!!

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14 years 11 months ago #15760 by Someday
Kris, I'm thankful to read that he has reconsidered his harsh comments. I thought I was going to have to visit and open a can of whoop-a$$ on him. ;)

You are NOT selfish. We have needs too, and we don't happen to find cleaning the house all day fulfilling. Have you guys talked about this since then? I strongly encourage you to follow your dreams. It may not happen quickly, but you do need to listen to your gut. Follow your passion.

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14 years 11 months ago #15761 by amy-k
Wait, wait. It sounds an awful lot to me like he's worried he's going to lose control of the situation. You know -- the woman wants to make a change, fine, but it should be ONE CHANGE. Otherwise, who the hell knows where we're going and what kind of stress there'll be to put up with.

Seems to me you put up with his changes well enough, that he expected you to do that, and that there were plenty of times he was less than gracious about his own decisions. I'm wondering if he's looking for an unrealistic degree of control over his life as part of a family.

amyk

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14 years 11 months ago #15762 by Doc201X

Originally posted by mommd2b:
He said that his fear is that I would get into med school and would realize that family practice and the 'cushy' program here just wouldn't be for me. "You are an ob/gyn or an orthopedic surgeon (huh? :eek: ) not a family practitioner." Then he said he felt we would be back at this same problem again but this time we would have already made the investment in medical school. Then it would be "I don't want to spend the rest of my professional career as a family practitioner listening to people talk about their lower back pain...I want to be fulfilled...and work as an obgyn or orthopedic surgeon, etc".

I think it's great the has decided to go see a counselor. I believe every good relationship needs one!

Perhaps he's a little insecure about having a wife with "proven" competence on his level. I know this is sometimes difficult for some men to handle which may explain why the most powerful/educated women in this country are single (Think Madeline Albright or Dr.Condy Rice). And with the way our society has set up the dynamic betwen a man and a woman, it's no wonder.

I'd say that when ever the issue comes up, reassure him that with HIS full cooperation, the family can stay a cohesive unit depsite your marticulation into med school. Remember, it can be done since it worked well when HE was in doing HIS training!

My Scientist/Physician Journey
www.Doc201X.blogspot.com

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14 years 11 months ago #15763 by mommd2b
Well, at least we are at the point of discussing it...the family DID remain a cohesive unit when he was in training, but that is because I was a full-time sahm and not a busy attending physician. The real issue there is not that I would choose ob-gyn, but that if I did it would require a move. The only residency program in a 2 hour radius of us is the FP residency here....I'd have connections to get into that..but for anything else, I'd pretty much be on my own.

That becomes tricky...my husband is and ID attending making a nice salary with great retirement benefits (great retirement benefits!!!). So...do I say "No, I want to do OB, we are moving" and uproot us to some town where he can't get a job? Do I leave him behind? Would that be selfish? I don't know! At what point do our dreams become ... selfish?

It's all so complicated.

At least a real dialogue about my happiness has been opened and is being taken seriously.

I also don't think he is as worried about me being capable as he is of everything falling apart. Perhaps what I need to do though is really start showing how I can handle doing several diff. tasks.

kris

In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.

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14 years 11 months ago #15764 by Spritz

He said that his fear is that I would get into med school and would realize that family practice and the 'cushy' program here just wouldn't be for me. "You are an ob/gyn or an orthopedic surgeon (huh? ) not a family practitioner." Then he said he felt we would be back at this same problem again but this time we would have already made the investment in medical school. Then it would be "I don't want to spend the rest of my professional career as a family practitioner listening to people talk about their lower back pain...I want to be fulfilled...and work as an obgyn or orthopedic surgeon, etc".

It sounds like he's worried about the same thing my husband is worried about. My hubby has expressed concern that I'd get into med school, then discover I hate it or get sick of studying and drop out. I explained that if you like the material, it's not so much 'work'- take the pre-reqs I'm doing now; it's a lot of work but it's fascinating stuff, I love it. :D Besides, who drops out just because things get a little tough? Aren't we taking this on partly because we appreciate tough challenges?

I think anytime we spouses take on a big mid-life change (and this one is a doozy!) our loved ones can get nervous. I mean, with such a huge investment of time and money, there's really no turning back from it once you're in; and it sounds to me like he's worried that you'd go through all this and still not be happy- thus him being in the same precarious position he's in now with miserable wife. Obviously it's easier for him to say, 'just be happy, darnit!'

Unfortunately, it's impossible for us to guarantee to our husbands that medicine would be the 'ideal career' so to speak and that we'd be happy there, because we haven't gone the route yet. We can only make educated guesses. :boggled:

It also sounds like he doesn't think FP's get much challenge in their jobs. ;) I suppose that's a compliment to you, in a round-about sort of way? Maybe he's right, who knows? Perhaps you could do a dual FP/OB or FP/Emerg program or something, if you wanted to.

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14 years 11 months ago #15765 by amy-k

I also don't think he is as worried about me being capable as he is of everything falling apart. Perhaps what I need to do though is really start showing how I can handle doing several diff. tasks.


Showing yourself, or showing him?

About selfishness: I think maybe you're conflating it with poor planning. If you're about to jump into something without having a pretty firm sense of what it is, and whether or not you really want it, and it'll be expensive for your family, and difficult for your family to recover from if it's a mistake (financially, emotionally, whatever) -- then yes, I'd say that's selfish.

If on the other hand you have a pretty clear sense of what you're after and that you'll be happy in it -- preferably because you already have some experience there -- then no, it's not selfish, it's taking you into account as an important person in your family.

If the doctor thing is still pretty theoretical for you, and your husband is making good money, then why not say, "OK, for six months I'm going to go to a decent-sized city, keep an apartment there, arrange for the kids to be taken care of, and come home weekly for a day or two; while I'm away, I'm seriously committed to volunteering and shadowing docs so I can see if this is something I truly want to do and a life I truly want."

Yes, it'll cost some money, but not nearly as much as four years of med school that turn out to be a mistake. I'm guessing it'll cost around $15K all told, which is a minor addition to the cost of med ed. Your husband will also get a taste of the life he'd have as a doctor's husband, since if things are going askew for the kids, he'll often be the one who'll have to step in and start fixing things -- whether that means interceding in school problems, finding a better nanny or housekeeper, etc. Your children will begin getting used to the idea of your having a life of your own. And you'll have a taste of what it'll be like to be apart from your family to a much greater extent than you've known before, afaik. I think all of those would lend some reality to your vision of what you're after. It'll also give you some idea of how the rest of your family is likely to cope, and how that affects you.

amy

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