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pregnant-will it hurt me to take a yr off??

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11 years 10 months ago #3609 by emcogirl
Hi, I am currently pregnant and about to graduate from med school. Will residency programs look down on me if I take a yr off and reapply for residency next yr? I did not match and am trying to decide what to do next yr(yr off, intern yr, etc). Has anyone been in this situation??

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11 years 10 months ago #3610 by emcogirl
anyone???

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11 years 10 months ago #3611 by residentmom
Do you have more details? What are you trying to do? Did the pregnancy keep you from matching, or something else? Are you geographically limited?

ResidentMom<br /><br />"If you bungle raising your children, I don't think whatever else you do well matters very much." --Jackie O.

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11 years 10 months ago #3612 by Cabinbuilder
I am chief resident at my program. We are looking to have a lady start with us who took a year off to be with her baby since her husband was military and knew the timing wasn't right to start a residency then have to stop in the middle. THAT IS NOT HELD AGAINST HER. In fact it shows responsiblity and courtesy to not start and stop a program in the middle. I don't think it will be detrimental to you to wait a year. I think you will cherish the time with your baby without having to worry about getting up and going to work exhausted every day. I would stay home. I have two kids and cannot imagine trying to to residency too with an infant. I have a friend who had twins during intern year and lives like being on call every day. She is lucky to get 4 hours of sleep at night since they don't sleep at the same time.

I have another friend who took a year off to have her baby since autism runs in her family. She was wise to take off since her second child has moderate autism with behavior issues and multiple food allergies. She did not have a problem matching into neurology after her intern year.

LECOM Class 2006
Osteopathic Family Practice Resdincy 2009
Locum Tenens: Urgent Care/Rural Medicine.

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11 years 10 months ago #3613 by asunshine
Just bumping--I'm interested, too!

I talked to financial aid, and you get a 6 mo grace period for your loans, and then you can apply for hardship or something similar for the rest of the year. The only bummer is that when your colleagues are starting their intern year, they'll have that grace period, but you will have already used yours up.

Hope that helps--I know it's not answering your question, but that's all I can offer! Taking a year off btw residency and school for a baby always sounded like a good idea to me, FWIW. I guess it would depend on specialty/program whether it's looked down upon?

asunshine, pregnant m1

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11 years 10 months ago #3614 by plum
I took 10 months off in med school (now am an MS-3/4 hybrid) when I had my daughter. For a long time I was going to go into radiology, a competitive field and I talked to lots of people who said it would be no problem. Better to to do it and then come back and be able to work then try and struggle through. And basically, if it is a problem for where you want to be, are you sure you want to be there?

If there is one thing I have learned from being a mom in medicine it's that you have to do what is right for you. The medical field will never tell you to step back and take some time, there is always work to be done. YOU have to step back and do what is right for you and your family and although I have found people to be very supportive, not everyone is and I have just developed a "well, I can't please everyone" mentality. Doing right by my family and doing a good job at school can be a precarious balance at times but it works most of the time. I am probably harder on myself about missing or not doing extra school stuff than anyone else is. I say this as I had to take today off since my daughter is sick but I will make the day up.

I had my 6 months grace period and then we paid back my loans for 3 months, which sucked, but I figured that was better than forebearance. I'm lucky to have had the choice since my spouse is a (non-physician) professional.

So when I start residency I will have to either payback loans right away or defer/forebear depending on the laws at that time.

I have decided to change fields into psychiatry, but that is because of aptitudes/likes/geographic and family reasons. I didn't want to do all the moving that radiology would entail. And I do think in general psychiatry is a more supportive field of motherhood than others.

I guess that is a long winded way of saying NO they shouldn't look down on you. If they do, you don't want to be there.

Remember that 20% of medical students take 5 years to complete med school, whether it is for family, academic, personal reasons, whatever.

Remember that residency programs want happy residents who can work. I took my time off because I didn't want to be freaking out about getting back to school right away with a baby. Now I am back and she is a year and it is fine. That said, no matter when you go back it is not an easy transition.

I am working with a physician right now who took a year off to travel. It was no problem for her.

Best of luck. Sorry for the rambling answer.

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