Jump to content
Premed 101 Forums
anonnow

Want to drop out of med school...advice needed

Recommended Posts

I made a throwaway account for this. I'm an older (late 20s) non-trad in my first year of med school and am seriously considering dropping out before starting second year. I would appreciate any advice.

Why I went into medicine

I was unfulfilled in my previous career path and thought I would be more fulfilled as a doctor. I thought I would enjoy helping people and using science to do so. Plus, there are obviously many practical benefits to the career, including good pay, reasonable hours, and an open job market (I am only aiming for family medicine and have no energy to do a 5-year residency).

Why I want to leave

I am absolutely burnt out. I study ~60-70 hours a week on topics I have never come across (I had no background in the basic sciences or premed courses) and have done this almost non-stop the whole first year. It might just be burnout, but I have not enjoyed almost any of what I've learned thus far. I thought I would like medicine because of the reasons stated above, but at this point, there is no passion in me and the only thing keeping me in is the fact that, on paper, being a family doctor is a good job (~200k, 40-50 hours a week, job anywhere I want).

My mental health is going out the window. I am having palpitations daily and have ended up in the emergency twice because I felt short of breath with chest pain (thankfully, nothing cardiac showed up). I don't think this anxiety will slow down because clerkship hasn't even started, and the thought that I will be responsible for people's lives is terrifying me. I thought I had the strength to uphold that responsibility, but honestly, I'd rather not deal with it. Sacrificing my happiness isn't worth the job, especially when I read that patients are extremely demanding of their family doctors. I don't think I could handle the short appointments and constant need to be perfect. Given that I have no passion, I don't even think it would be fair to patients. My gut is telling me that I'll be miserable as a family doctor.

I am also overwhelmed by the amount of information you have to know as a family doctor. For instance, I am having a lot of trouble remembering the names of medications, their indications, contraindications, etc. I review concepts every day but remembering the details never works. And like I said above, this issue is exacerbated because I have no interest in the material. So I'm constantly dragging myself to learn more. 

On the other hand, there is another career that I could've pursued instead of medicine. I didn't mind that career. It came with a good work-life balance and required ~40 hours a week. It would pay ~120k in 3 years and beyond that, I've realized money doesn't matter to me.

Why I hesitate to leave

This may be a temporary feeling borne out of burnout or the realities of med school (though I have never had more than a passing interest in any topic we've studied so far). I am also feeling extreme shame for taking away the spot from another student who could've excelled in my place. Part of me thinks I need to put my head down and just persevere because I'm older now and can't keep switching careers. I also know there are niches in family medicine that could potentially solve the problem of interest. I don't mind things like sports medicine or addictions. I assume there wouldn't be as much of a need for breadth of knowledge if I just become, for example, a GP sports. But I don't know if I can do 4 more years of this when there is a decent job I could have within a 1-2 years that pays ~100k that I would enjoy more than this.

 

Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Reaching out on the forum is a good step.  It sounds like you're going through a tough time and that even your mental health is getting hit - that's probably the area that you want to start to focus on.  I'd suggest first seeing if there are any psychological resources available to you through the university that would allow you to speak to a professional as soon as you can.  It sounds like you may also benefit from speaking to a/your family physician - a physician out of the academic center may be more discrete.    

In terms of general tips, I'd also check to see if there are mentors or resource centers for med students that could help organize your studying, given your difference in  background and the hours you're putting in.  Hopefully, with a little fine tuning, you may be able to create a better study-life balance  by also adding some activities you enjoy which should prevent the burnout that you're experiencing.  Adding support from family and friends can help too.    

In terms of medicine, I think you're being a little hard on yourself in terms of expectations - you have many years to master indications/contraindications of medications which doesn't really begin seriously until late clerkship and residency.  No one expects you to be perfect right off the bat and that's why you're going to continue to learn throughout the process - and learning in a clinical context with actual patients is quite different than pre-clerkship learning.  

I think speaking to a psychologist may help address many of the issues you're dealing with which many other medical students also experience.  You're in particularly tough spot, far away from the realities of medical practice - pre-clerkship is very different than clinical medicine.  It may be that the difficulties that you're experiencing could also be creating a more negative outlook so if you're studying situation/burnout improves then that may rekindle your interest in medicine.  If after all these steps, you're still unsure, some students take leaves of absences when things aren't going as well as they would like before coming back - this could be an intermediate step before going further.  

Good luck - feel free to DM.    

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
29 minutes ago, indefatigable said:

Reaching out on the forum is a good step.  It sounds like you're going through a tough time and that even your mental health is getting hit - that's probably the area that you want to start to focus on.  I'd suggest first seeing if there are any psychological resources available to you through the university that would allow you to speak to a professional as soon as you can.  It sounds like you may also benefit from speaking to a/your family physician - a physician out of the academic center may be more discrete.    

In terms of general tips, I'd also check to see if there are mentors or resource centers for med students that could help organize your studying, given your difference in  background and the hours you're putting in.  Hopefully, with a little fine tuning, you may be able to create a better study-life balance  by also adding some activities you enjoy which should prevent the burnout that you're experiencing.  Adding support from family and friends can help too.    

In terms of medicine, I think you're being a little hard on yourself in terms of expectations - you have many years to master indications/contraindications of medications which doesn't really begin seriously until late clerkship and residency.  No one expects you to be perfect right off the bat and that's why you're going to continue to learn throughout the process - and learning in a clinical context with actual patients is quite different than pre-clerkship learning.  

I think speaking to a psychologist may help address many of the issues you're dealing with which many other medical students also experience.  You're in particularly tough spot, far away from the realities of medical practice - pre-clerkship is very different than clinical medicine.  It may be that the difficulties that you're experiencing could also be creating a more negative outlook so if you're studying situation/burnout improves then that may rekindle your interest in medicine.  If after all these steps, you're still unsure, some students take leaves of absences when things aren't going as well as they would like before coming back - this could be an intermediate step before going further.  

Good luck - feel free to DM.    

 

.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, anonnow said:

I am also overwhelmed by the amount of information you have to know as a family doctor. For instance, I am having a lot of trouble remembering the names of medications, their indications, contraindications, etc. I review concepts every day but remembering the details never works. And like I said above, this issue is exacerbated because I have no interest in the material. So I'm constantly dragging myself to learn more. 

I don't know anything about your situation so I won't offer advice. I recommend seeing someone for these problems, I doubt you could much useful advice on a forum like this.

I just wanted to talk about this bolded part. I did longitudinal learning for 6-12 months at a family medicine office last year (1st year of med school). From what I see, a lot of what you're going to see as a FM is going to be repeats. After the first month, I pretty much knew what a patient was coming in for after about 20 seconds. Just remember that, when you do the same thing over and over again, it's going to become almost second nature. A big part of your job is going to be dealing with a small range of issues no matter the specialty, don't be intimated by the depth of knowledge we're learning in pre-clerkship at this stage. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, anonymouspls said:

I don't know anything about your situation so I won't offer advice. I recommend seeing someone for these problems, I doubt you could much useful advice on a forum like this.

I just wanted to talk about this bolded part. I did longitudinal learning for 6-12 months at a family medicine office last year (1st year of med school). From what I see, a lot of what you're going to see as a FM is going to be repeats. After the first month, I pretty much knew what a patient was coming in for after about 20 seconds. Just remember that, when you do the same thing over and over again, it's going to become almost second nature. A big part of your job is going to be dealing with a small range of issues no matter the specialty, don't be intimated by the depth of knowledge we're learning in pre-clerkship at this stage. 

But what he/she is also saying is they have no interest in the subject matter studied... honestly that's even more troublesome.

I also don't really agree with the point... I mean yeah there's definitely more things that are cookie cutter but there's also going to be a fair amount of broad topics that you have no experience with but still have to manage in the community unless you never plan to follow them up and have the specialist do everything. 

 

Especially in FM I figure you wouldn't like everything but usually something is interesting enough for you to latch on to... my question is does the OP realllllllllly hate the other topics of medicine that much? I mean it's more interesting in person but the responsibility and let's be fair... the work, is a lot more difficult until you build up a lot of proficiency. 

Have you had opportunities to maybe even shadow or see what residents or staff do often? If even that doesn't interest you I think you'll need to talk to some wellness counsellors at your program and do some tough thinking. 

Like... I know as a future MOH... I don't see many patients unless I do PHPM specific clinics (sexual health, travel, vaccination-based, etc). I will probably still do some inner city medicine or walk ins during my time not as an MOH because I don't want to lose my clinical acumen. I'm not that interested in the medicine per say but I just like to job and seeing people individually. You really don't need to love medicine to do a good job as a doctor. That said... if your mental is struggling then I'd also reach out to someone about that too. 

I wish you luck friend...

- G

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I went through a very similar experience and had a lot of similar thought processes in my first year. 

A few things that may help:

1) Mentorship is incredibly important and you need to advocate for this. Not sure what school you go to but try to talk to student affairs and be connected to residents or docs. Many have had these thoughts related to burnout and they can provide valuable perspective / challenge some of these thoughts

2) When COVID settles down try to get some clinical shadowing in. I found it really helped bring back why we're here in the first place. Preclerkship can feel like a grind when you're stuck in the books and seeing people and how docs operate can be helpful for perspective and be much needed fulfillment

3) Clerkship for me has been 10x better for similar reasons to #2

4) Read through some of these for some more perspective: https://residentdoctors.ca/resident-profile/programs/family-medicine/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you considered taking a leave of absence to rest up, get help, and prioritize what you want in life?

 

in the big scheme of things a year isn’t a lot of time. Leaving Permanently from medicine closes this door essentially forever. 
 

without your health, you won’t be able to do anything...so please prioritize yourself and your health first.

LL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know if medicine is right for you. I think you don't know either. And if it's not, that's ok! Better to get out now instead of years of debt down the road. However if I were in your shoes I would go speak to student services at your school and address your mental health. See if you can take some time off and see a physician. Anxiety and depression are relatively common in med students/residents and you should be professionally assessed. What you're feeling could be due to your mental health, as that will make everything seem overwhelming and it also affects your memory. Alternatively, if you're assessed and mental health isn't an issue, then I would seek out a family doctor mentor you trust and discuss your feelings with them, for a perspective at the end of the grind. If at that point you still don't think you're in the right field, by all means get out and do what makes you happy!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You definitely sound really burnt out.

I think it would be good to chat with a counsellor.

Also, being on clinical rotations is very different than studying in pre-clerkship.

You should try that out first before quitting, you might like it a lot.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it is good to have a honest introspection and see what actually did change during your first year that changed your interest in medicine since I assume you were interested in being a doctor one year prior to that. If it is the volume of work, I think you should kinda accept that medicine is a heavy-load course anyways so you should adapt yourself to putting in a considerable amount of your time if you want to continue in it. If you are fine with putting in time but you only find the materials insufferable/boring, it is better to talk to people who are your senior since the nature of pre-clinical and clinical work is hugely different in medicine. If you feel insecure about not knowing all sorts of medications, symptoms, etc. I am going to reassure you that many people feel like that even being years into medicine as a doctor, see the “The Velluvial Matrix.”  by Atul Gawande. No doctor knows everything and thanks to tools like uptodate, it is rarely needed to memorize stuff that are not common instead it is just one search and click away. Don't look at other fellow students and think they know more than you. Most of people actually try to fake it when in fact, deep down, they are as insecure as you, no matter if they are other med students, residents, or attendings. Finally, there is no guilt in thinking that medicine is not for you. You don't owe anything to anyone. This was a position that you earned it and you decide if you want to stay on it or leave it. Life is full of experiences, last year this time, this was the best decision you could think of based on the information you had. Now with more information and first-hand experience, you have all rights to change your mind about your future.

Good luck to you!!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is interesting to me as I'm even earlier in my journey than you so take everything with a massive grain of salt lol. It seems like the 2 things causing your distress are the subject material being boring and personal goal of memorizing everything being too challenging - and it setting up a vicious cycle that makes it difficult to want to continue. Couple things - for you the science behind the diseases might be interesting but their management might be boring. Kind of hard to resolve in a career that manages health. Memorizing pharm is going to be boring, way too trivial. Anatomy might be more interesting in this category. If you hate pharm then FM might not be your strength but you might like path/rads (look into more specialties before dropping out). I'm seeing classic toxic workplace mentality - goal too challenging, always needing to catch up to accomplish goal, downplaying accomplishments (studying 60-70 hours is an accomplishment in itself), negative self-talk, so you burn out and then feel anxiety that you cannot handle being responsible for someone else's life. Thats also not exactly a common role of FM in the respect that someone will die on your watch regularly if you mess up. Typical FM population/bread and butter is much more doable.

You're at the start of your medical training so give yourself room for mistakes, that's a huge part of the learning process. Understandably you aren't going to retain knowledge well in overly stressful conditions. That's the benefit of residency to begin with, it takes a long time to become independent, not just one year. Even if you dislike the material at least graduate. You can take your MD and do something else instead of residency if you still hate it (medical startup/business). 

Last thing - I've spoken to family docs about how much knowledge they have to know. They all say the same thing. It gets wayyyy easier because you keep reviewing the same things year after year. Plus they have the upper hand of clinical experience too, that's where a lot of their knowledge actually gets integrated and contextualized allowing them to remember what drug they gave, not to give certain medications because of a contraindication, etc. 

TL;DR Give yourself room to make mistakes, learn as you go along, eventually you will gain confidence in yourself and it won't be as terrifying. Don't drop out yet, check out other specialties if FM material is boring, and if nothing resolves your issue, don't waste the coveted MD credential, get it and do something outside of practicing med and earn $$$

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/20/2020 at 9:38 PM, UwoToUo said:

This is interesting to me as I'm even earlier in my journey than you so take everything with a massive grain of salt lol. It seems like the 2 things causing your distress are the subject material being boring and personal goal of memorizing everything being too challenging - and it setting up a vicious cycle that makes it difficult to want to continue. Couple things - for you the science behind the diseases might be interesting but their management might be boring. Kind of hard to resolve in a career that manages health. Memorizing pharm is going to be boring, way too trivial. Anatomy might be more interesting in this category. If you hate pharm then FM might not be your strength but you might like path/rads (look into more specialties before dropping out). I'm seeing classic toxic workplace mentality - goal too challenging, always needing to catch up to accomplish goal, downplaying accomplishments (studying 60-70 hours is an accomplishment in itself), negative self-talk, so you burn out and then feel anxiety that you cannot handle being responsible for someone else's life. Thats also not exactly a common role of FM in the respect that someone will die on your watch regularly if you mess up. Typical FM population/bread and butter is much more doable.

You're at the start of your medical training so give yourself room for mistakes, that's a huge part of the learning process. Understandably you aren't going to retain knowledge well in overly stressful conditions. That's the benefit of residency to begin with, it takes a long time to become independent, not just one year. Even if you dislike the material at least graduate. You can take your MD and do something else instead of residency if you still hate it (medical startup/business). 

Last thing - I've spoken to family docs about how much knowledge they have to know. They all say the same thing. It gets wayyyy easier because you keep reviewing the same things year after year. Plus they have the upper hand of clinical experience too, that's where a lot of their knowledge actually gets integrated and contextualized allowing them to remember what drug they gave, not to give certain medications because of a contraindication, etc. 

TL;DR Give yourself room to make mistakes, learn as you go along, eventually you will gain confidence in yourself and it won't be as terrifying. Don't drop out yet, check out other specialties if FM material is boring, and if nothing resolves your issue, don't waste the coveted MD credential, get it and do something outside of practicing med and earn $$$

Thanks for the advice. I am unfortunately not willing to consider other specialties because location is very important to me. Can you please elaborate (or provide links) regarding how the MD is important for going into business? Do you know if the MD can help with working in admin/management of a hospital?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/11/2020 at 6:22 PM, anonnow said:

I made a throwaway account for this. I'm an older (late 20s) non-trad in my first year of med school and am seriously considering dropping out before starting second year. I would appreciate any advice.

Why I went into medicine

I was unfulfilled in my previous career path and thought I would be more fulfilled as a doctor. I thought I would enjoy helping people and using science to do so. Plus, there are obviously many practical benefits to the career, including good pay, reasonable hours, and an open job market (I am only aiming for family medicine and have no energy to do a 5-year residency).

Why I want to leave

I am absolutely burnt out. I study ~60-70 hours a week on topics I have never come across (I had no background in the basic sciences or premed courses) and have done this almost non-stop the whole first year. It might just be burnout, but I have not enjoyed almost any of what I've learned thus far. I thought I would like medicine because of the reasons stated above, but at this point, there is no passion in me and the only thing keeping me in is the fact that, on paper, being a family doctor is a good job (~200k, 40-50 hours a week, job anywhere I want).

My mental health is going out the window. I am having palpitations daily and have ended up in the emergency twice because I felt short of breath with chest pain (thankfully, nothing cardiac showed up). I don't think this anxiety will slow down because clerkship hasn't even started, and the thought that I will be responsible for people's lives is terrifying me. I thought I had the strength to uphold that responsibility, but honestly, I'd rather not deal with it. Sacrificing my happiness isn't worth the job, especially when I read that patients are extremely demanding of their family doctors. I don't think I could handle the short appointments and constant need to be perfect. Given that I have no passion, I don't even think it would be fair to patients. My gut is telling me that I'll be miserable as a family doctor.

I am also overwhelmed by the amount of information you have to know as a family doctor. For instance, I am having a lot of trouble remembering the names of medications, their indications, contraindications, etc. I review concepts every day but remembering the details never works. And like I said above, this issue is exacerbated because I have no interest in the material. So I'm constantly dragging myself to learn more. 

On the other hand, there is another career that I could've pursued instead of medicine. I didn't mind that career. It came with a good work-life balance and required ~40 hours a week. It would pay ~120k in 3 years and beyond that, I've realized money doesn't matter to me.

Why I hesitate to leave

This may be a temporary feeling borne out of burnout or the realities of med school (though I have never had more than a passing interest in any topic we've studied so far). I am also feeling extreme shame for taking away the spot from another student who could've excelled in my place. Part of me thinks I need to put my head down and just persevere because I'm older now and can't keep switching careers. I also know there are niches in family medicine that could potentially solve the problem of interest. I don't mind things like sports medicine or addictions. I assume there wouldn't be as much of a need for breadth of knowledge if I just become, for example, a GP sports. But I don't know if I can do 4 more years of this when there is a decent job I could have within a 1-2 years that pays ~100k that I would enjoy more than this.

 

Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.

Agree with others about getting counseling and talking to someone.

It sounds like you're putting way too much pressure on yourself - 60-70 hours a week is above average for hours studied for sure. Assuming you're in pre-clinical years, maybe try first focussing on big picture understanding of the disease and management. You don't need to have indications/contraindications memorized yet, all those will come in time. And for the purposes of exams, once you understand the disease, it helps you pick out management/indications/contraindications off a list of choices. Clerkship and residency will help drill in the details

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey to OP, I agree with the other members above. I strongly urge you to get in contact with your healthcare providers and obtain private counselling if you could afford.

For studying, I think that 60-70 hours were a lot. I studied during pre-clerkship mainly to understand the patho-physiology and the fundamentals. There are always so many details that I still forget even as a staff physician. Knowing that you can always look things up on your phone, or use Uptodate before you see a patient; or while you see a patient; no one expects you to know everything. I was not aiming for A+, and I am happy that I did. Residency was brutal and demanding; I am still glad to this day that I was able to enjoy life in pre-clerkship and built friendships with my classmates. 

Other thing is that the diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions are always evolving; but the pathophysiology always remains the same. If you have good basic knowledge of each organ, it would go a long way!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/11/2020 at 6:22 PM, anonnow said:

I made a throwaway account for this. I'm an older (late 20s) non-trad in my first year of med school and am seriously considering dropping out before starting second year. I would appreciate any advice.

Why I went into medicine

I was unfulfilled in my previous career path and thought I would be more fulfilled as a doctor. I thought I would enjoy helping people and using science to do so. Plus, there are obviously many practical benefits to the career, including good pay, reasonable hours, and an open job market (I am only aiming for family medicine and have no energy to do a 5-year residency).

Why I want to leave

I am absolutely burnt out. I study ~60-70 hours a week on topics I have never come across (I had no background in the basic sciences or premed courses) and have done this almost non-stop the whole first year. It might just be burnout, but I have not enjoyed almost any of what I've learned thus far. I thought I would like medicine because of the reasons stated above, but at this point, there is no passion in me and the only thing keeping me in is the fact that, on paper, being a family doctor is a good job (~200k, 40-50 hours a week, job anywhere I want).

My mental health is going out the window. I am having palpitations daily and have ended up in the emergency twice because I felt short of breath with chest pain (thankfully, nothing cardiac showed up). I don't think this anxiety will slow down because clerkship hasn't even started, and the thought that I will be responsible for people's lives is terrifying me. I thought I had the strength to uphold that responsibility, but honestly, I'd rather not deal with it. Sacrificing my happiness isn't worth the job, especially when I read that patients are extremely demanding of their family doctors. I don't think I could handle the short appointments and constant need to be perfect. Given that I have no passion, I don't even think it would be fair to patients. My gut is telling me that I'll be miserable as a family doctor.

I am also overwhelmed by the amount of information you have to know as a family doctor. For instance, I am having a lot of trouble remembering the names of medications, their indications, contraindications, etc. I review concepts every day but remembering the details never works. And like I said above, this issue is exacerbated because I have no interest in the material. So I'm constantly dragging myself to learn more. 

On the other hand, there is another career that I could've pursued instead of medicine. I didn't mind that career. It came with a good work-life balance and required ~40 hours a week. It would pay ~120k in 3 years and beyond that, I've realized money doesn't matter to me.

Why I hesitate to leave

This may be a temporary feeling borne out of burnout or the realities of med school (though I have never had more than a passing interest in any topic we've studied so far). I am also feeling extreme shame for taking away the spot from another student who could've excelled in my place. Part of me thinks I need to put my head down and just persevere because I'm older now and can't keep switching careers. I also know there are niches in family medicine that could potentially solve the problem of interest. I don't mind things like sports medicine or addictions. I assume there wouldn't be as much of a need for breadth of knowledge if I just become, for example, a GP sports. But I don't know if I can do 4 more years of this when there is a decent job I could have within a 1-2 years that pays ~100k that I would enjoy more than this.

 

Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.

I don't know enough about you & your situation to give you adequate advice. But I will leave you with this ... do NOT make a permanent action on potential temporarily feelings. 

You get to defer  for 2 years with no notes/no questions asked - talk to your trusted love ones, talk to your school, talk to a homeless man but for god sakes don't talk to anonymous internet users and take their advice, they do not have any stakes in your real life!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/11/2020 at 8:22 PM, anonnow said:

 

This may be a temporary feeling borne out of burnout or the realities of med school (though I have never had more than a passing interest in any topic we've studied so far). I am also feeling extreme shame for taking away the spot from another student who could've excelled in my place. Part of me thinks I need to put my head down and just persevere because I'm older now and can't keep switching careers. I also know there are niches in family medicine that could potentially solve the problem of interest. I don't mind things like sports medicine or addictions. I assume there wouldn't be as much of a need for breadth of knowledge if I just become, for example, a GP sports. But I don't know if I can do 4 more years of this when there is a decent job I could have within a 1-2 years that pays ~100k that I would enjoy more than this.

If this job is 1-2 years away and is a guarantee or near guarantee, I would strongly consider that option. Burnout is one thing and its true that studying 60-70 hrs a week won't last forever, but what I'm more concerned about is that you seem to be worried about the responsibilities that a family doctor has to have. A lot of it is true, it gets harder and harder and clerkship will be harder than pre-clerkship and residency will be harder than clerkship. Even staff life is not easy as having that responsibility is a huge task. On the one hand, the studying will get easier because you just simply realize that you don't need to know every thing. 99% of the time its the same things that show up and in the 1% you don't know, you can ask others for help. But what doesn't get easier is the sense of responsibility and the work. It isn't easy money for sure. I urge you to think things through some more, when do you need to make a decision? Try to spend less time studying and see how you feel. If it is simply just a work hour issue, that should be manageable, but what you should really consider is this part: 

I don't think this anxiety will slow down because clerkship hasn't even started, and the thought that I will be responsible for people's lives is terrifying me. I thought I had the strength to uphold that responsibility, but honestly, I'd rather not deal with it. Sacrificing my happiness isn't worth the job, especially when I read that patients are extremely demanding of their family doctors. I don't think I could handle the short appointments and constant need to be perfect. Given that I have no passion, I don't even think it would be fair to patients. My gut is telling me that I'll be miserable as a family doctor.

I am also overwhelmed by the amount of information you have to know as a family doctor. For instance, I am having a lot of trouble remembering the names of medications, their indications, contraindications, etc. I review concepts every day but remembering the details never works. And like I said above, this issue is exacerbated because I have no interest in the material. So I'm constantly dragging myself to learn more. 

Don't worry about taking a spot from someone, focus on yourself and what makes you happy. You earned your spot in medical school and you fully deserve to be here. I know the imposter syndrome and the feelings of guilt, but the question is whether you want to be there or not, not whether you deserve it or what others will think. 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/8/2020 at 2:55 PM, i8aSS said:

I don't know enough about you & your situation to give you adequate advice. But I will leave you with this ... do NOT make a permanent action on potential temporarily feelings. 

You get to defer  for 2 years with no notes/no questions asked - talk to your trusted love ones, talk to your school, talk to a homeless man but for god sakes don't talk to anonymous internet users and take their advice, they do not have any stakes in your real life!!

Hi i8aSS, 

I am going through the same thing - could you please elaborate on the defer for 2 years thing for no questions asked? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wouldn't a leave of absence hurt down the line? I know that when you renew your license, you have to indicate whether you took leave and whether you've had a medical condition that could affect you as a physician. Checking both of those boxes sounds like a red flag, but I'm not sure how the college treats you if you check those boxes.

 

Edit: Of course, I'm not suggesting that LoA shouldn't be taken, but am hoping that more experienced members can chime in about whether that will have implications for the career/licensing in the future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/2/2020 at 7:42 PM, gogogo said:

Wouldn't a leave of absence hurt down the line? I know that when you renew your license, you have to indicate whether you took leave and whether you've had a medical condition that could affect you as a physician. Checking both of those boxes sounds like a red flag, but I'm not sure how the college treats you if you check those boxes.

 

Edit: Of course, I'm not suggesting that LoA shouldn't be taken, but am hoping that more experienced members can chime in about whether that will have implications for the career/licensing in the future.

Yes. Taking a medical leave of absence definitely complicates things (which can exacerbate the stress of being ill). Medicine is a very ableist field and some med schools unlawfully discriminate against students with disabilities. Doctors really need to catch up with the law!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/2/2020 at 7:42 PM, gogogo said:

Wouldn't a leave of absence hurt down the line? I know that when you renew your license, you have to indicate whether you took leave and whether you've had a medical condition that could affect you as a physician. Checking both of those boxes sounds like a red flag, but I'm not sure how the college treats you if you check those boxes.

 

Edit: Of course, I'm not suggesting that LoA shouldn't be taken, but am hoping that more experienced members can chime in about whether that will have implications for the career/licensing in the future.

It depends - the CPSO will ask for more information, usually in the form of a doctor's report and depending on what they get will sometimes kick your licensing application to the registration committee for more review rather than rubber stamping it.  There can be some licensing delays due to waiting for the committee to meet, but if you submit your paperwork ASAP and are on top of the documentation, it's usually manageable.  Some people end up being monitored/needing to submit regular reports for a while.  It stays in your CPSO file that that happened.  Ultimately it can make things more complicated but people do get licensed and have careers just fine, and eventually if you demonstrate that you're stable and doing what you need to do, they get bored of keeping an eye on you and leave you alone.

The biggest issue I would be concerned about would be CaRMS rather than licensing - but people do match just fine after leaves.

The thing that causes you more trouble is if you wait and don't take a leave you need, then get more ill and end up in an even worse condition.  In the end, you do what you need to do for your health, you'll face some stigma from the College and some extra annoyances, but from a licensing perspective it's manageable.  The best thing you can do as a doctor is attend to your own health.  Better to deal with the consequences of a leave than the consequences of untreated illness followed by a leave anyway when you're totally incapacitated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...