× Thinking of a Becoming a Doctor

Nurse or MD I am Confused

9 years 6 months ago - 9 years 6 months ago #75038 by studentmamasf
Hi I am a 23 year old mother of a four year old daughter. I am a child and adolscent development major and have dreams of being in a white coat surrounded with kids in a pediatric hospital. I have wanted to do this my entire life, but I had a really bad childhood where I was moved and moved and moved from school to school and sometimes was not even taken.

After a I became a teenager I got my ged and started volunteering in the NICU at the local hospital, that all stuck with me and so I went to A 6 year medical school in mo for that allows direct entry from H.S grads to talk to someone about getting in and the requirements and the lady told me that I should be a cna instead because I had no support.

These words stayed with me, eventually I became pregnant and started taking general classes in cc college, I transferred and now I am a CD major, I feel drawn to healthcare, nursing feels like settling and medicine feels far away, any thoughts that can help?

Last Edit: 9 years 6 months ago by .

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9 years 6 months ago #75041 by Melbelle
Your best bet is probably to get some shadowing in. Shadow nurses, doctors, NPs, PAs... I know you've done some volunteering, but get more time in with the intention of seeing how the lifestyles and personalities work out. Ask some questions about lifestyle, time at home, debt, etc.

Other than that, you can do what you want without "support." It just won't be easy, especially as a mother. Depending on what you want to do and how much time you want to spend with your child, you might choose a career besides doctor. Don't think of it as settling, though. Consider it finding a career that is a good fit for you, and making a choice to balance the many priorities in your life. I think as you read these forums you'll see that the life of a doctor may not be as ideal as it appears, especially for a mother. On the other hand, you may find that it's exactly what you're looking for. Just stay open-minded until you have had a chance to see what it's like.

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9 years 6 months ago #75047 by studentmamasf
Thanks for the advice :)

My family is full of nurses and so I have a pretty good understanding of thier family lives. Also I have talked a lot doctors and nurses in the hopsital about this. I was hospitalized for a while and they answered a lot of my concerns about be a non-traditional student as well as a mother. My only weakness are the words that were said to me while I was young, I wanted to be a doctor then, and when she told me I should just be a cna it just crushed me. Yesterday I was feeling pretty low when I wrote that post. Its been about a couple of weeks since I have allowed my real dreams to surface. And now, after doing all the researching and creating an effective plan and stragety I am excited and ready to go. :)

I was reading the an inspiring story about a Doctor on aspiringdocs.org
and she had this to say:

"As one of only five African-American, female, board certified cardiothoracic surgeons in the country, I have faced some discouragement. There are a lot of people that will discourage you. Avoid the naysayers; don't tell them your dreams. Surround yourself with people who support your ambitions."

Inspiring Story

Thanks Again :)

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9 years 6 months ago #75054 by snowflake
It sounds like you've already made your mind up about what career you want.

My only advice would be to explain to a listener WHY you want to be a doctor rather than a nurse or anything else (mommd can be a good soundboard for this). Give as specific reasons as you can, and then you can analyze what you're saying, and gauge how much you're basing your decisions on things that you know and things that you think (e.g. impressions that you have), and keep your net as wide open as possible. Figure out your non-negotiables in a career, and figure out what careers meet that criteria.

For instance, I've heard a lot of people say that they want to become a doctor so that they can "help people." Lots of professions help people. Nurses help people, teachers help people, wedding coordinators help people, housekeepers help people. Some people want to become a doctor because they want to save lives. True, some doctors do save lives, but what does saving a life mean? LOTS of professions save lives, some doctors, some not. Most people think of ER trauma doctors, but saving a life could mean controlling someone's blood pressure so they never have an MI or a stroke in the first place (as in family practice doctors), or it could mean working as a youth worker to help a teenager get out of a gang so he doesn't get shot in 6 months, it could mean working in public health to control the winter influenza outbreaks and make vaccines to protect fragile people so they don't die of pneumonia, or it could mean working as a cleaner in the OR and making sure that the room is clean, so the patient who goes in for surgery doesn't get a surgical infection and die. Other people want to become doctors because they like human biology/human sciences. In this case, why not become a medical scientist? You'd spent a lot more time learning/practicing science in this career than in medicine.

Even practicing medicine isn't so specific as becoming a MD or a DO. Physician assistants and nurse practitioners also practice medicine (PAs do so as part of the medical team, reporting to the attending doctor, and not taking complete responsibility, in a similar way to junior house staff). Dentists practice medicine and preform surgeries of the mouth. Podiatrists diagnose, treat, and surgically repair feet and ankles. All of the jobs are really practicing medicine, just in different ways.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that when people suggest other careers, try not to be put off, and PLEASE don't become a doctor so that you can prove that you could to all those people who doubted you. Life is far too short to waste time trying to prove anything to other people--do what's best for you. Even if you do decide to be a doctor, at least you will have thought about all your options, pros and cons very carefully (this will also come across in interviews, and convince your interviewers that you KNOW what being a doctor is like, WHY other careers aren't as suitable for you, and you know what you're getting into).

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9 years 6 months ago #75055 by southernmd
Extremely good reply, snowflake. I actually have two friends who became anesthetists (not nurse an., but rather the cool program at ex. Emory or South etc.) and are married to each other. They both had the scores/grades to go to medical school, yet, they didn't want the debt, length of training, responsibility etc. They currently travel frequently to exotic places, live in a really nice house, and experience more of life than I do. Meanwhile, it will be years before I am practicing independently as a doctor. Again, they could have easily gone the MD route, but they wanted more of a lifestyle than being doctors would have offered them as a couple. It has worked wonderfully for them.

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9 years 6 months ago #75095 by studentmamasf
Thanks for the advice, I am taking it all in thinking about what you guys said. :)

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