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jna1929

Why do you want to be a doctor?

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I bet for at least 95% of you it is one or more of these 3 reasons:

- to please parents

- to have high social status/money

- to help people

But let us deconstruct them:

please parents: being a doctor is not the only job in the world. I am sure you can please your parents by being something else. If they are so traditional to only be happy with doctor, well it is the 21st century, do not base your life decisions on your parent's archaic, outdated, and irrelevant thinking of the 20th century. Their thinking stems from post-WW2 thought in which developing countries were encouraged to follow the Western model, and one of the requirements was the need for many professional such as doctors and engineers. That is why many immigrant parents want their children to be doctors and engineers. In 21st century Canada, this simply doesn't apply anymore.

social status: Sure, being a doctor will give you social status, but it is not the only job with high social status. Plus, in my eyes, it would insult my intelligence to be given social status for being a doctor. The reason doctors are given social status is because society needs doctor, so society dangles social status to trick people into being a doctors and fulfilling the needs of society. So for me, it would not be an honour to be given social status: I would feel like I have been tricked. I would be a doctor if I want to be a doctor, not because society fooled me into fulfilling a necessary job by dangling the doctor prefix over me. Also, I don't think the actual job duties of a doctor are too high in terms of social status: you have to touch people and deal with wounds and blood and infections and encounter all kind of undesirable scenarios on a daily basis; in this regard, the only difference between a doctor and a PSW is that the doctor went to med school.

money: Sure, it is a high and stable income, but we live in a capitalist system. To me, it is an insult to my intelligence to go to medical school then have a, say, real estate agent  make 20 times my salary. In our society, if you want money, you don't need intelligence or education: you only need to know enough/the right people.

To help people: I think this is the only genuine reason one should have for going to med school. If you would truly like the job and want to help people, then by all means go for it. But if it is more about pleasing your parents or social status/money, there are much more efficient routes to fulfill those requirements.

Personally, my GPA is high enough for admission to all med schools except U of T (and it was as early as 2014). But for the reasons listed above, I choose not to go to med school. However, I do like to help people, but just not as a doctor.

Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against people who want to be doctors, and I am not saying you should not be, but I just find that many people I know who want to be doctors are misinformed prior to making their decision, so I just wanted people to keep the above in mind when deciding whether they want to become a doctor.

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19 minutes ago, jna1929 said:

I bet for at least 95% of you it is one or more of these 3 reasons:

- to please parents

- to have high social status/money

- to help people

But let us deconstruct them:

please parents: being a doctor is not the only job in the world. I am sure you can please your parents by being something else. If they are so traditional to only be happy with doctor, well it is the 21st century, do not base your life decisions on your parent's archaic, outdated, and irrelevant thinking of the 20th century. Their thinking stems from post-WW2 thought in which developing countries were encouraged to follow the Western model, and one of the requirements was the need for many professional such as doctors and engineers. That is why many immigrant parents want their children to be doctors and engineers. In 21st century Canada, this simply doesn't apply anymore.

social status: Sure, being a doctor will give you social status, but it is not the only job with high social status. Plus, in my eyes, it would insult my intelligence to be given social status for being a doctor. The reason doctors are given social status is because society needs doctor, so society dangles social status to trick people into being a doctors and fulfilling the needs of society. So for me, it would not be an honour to be given social status: I would feel like I have been tricked. I would be a doctor if I want to be a doctor, not because society fooled me into fulfilling a necessary job by dangling the doctor prefix over me. Also, I don't think the actual job duties of a doctor are too high in terms of social status: you have to touch people and deal with wounds and blood and infections and encounter all kind of undesirable scenarios on a daily basis; in this regard, the only difference between a doctor and a PSW is that the doctor went to med school.

money: Sure, it is a high and stable income, but we live in a capitalist system. To me, it is an insult to my intelligence to go to medical school then have a, say, real estate agent  make 20 times my salary. In our society, if you want money, you don't need intelligence or education: you only need to know enough/the right people.

To help people: I think this is the only genuine reason one should have for going to med school. If you would truly like the job and want to help people, then by all means go for it. But if it is more about pleasing your parents or social status/money, there are much more efficient routes to fulfill those requirements.

Personally, my GPA is high enough for admission to all med schools except U of T (and it was as early as 2014). But for the reasons listed above, I choose not to go to med school. However, I do like to help people, but just not as a doctor.

Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against people who want to be doctors, and I am not saying you should not be, but I just find that many people I know who want to be doctors are misinformed prior to making their decision, so I just wanted people to keep the above in mind when deciding whether they want to become a doctor.

You say you don't want to go to med school, yet you're making a defensive post on a pre-med website, which just makes it seem like you're feeling insecure about that decision. In reality most people in my class don't think being a physician has anything to do with "status", nor do they care what their parents think of their career choices because they're adults. That fact that you need to tell a pre-med forum that "95%" of students want it for these mostly childish reasons is pretty revealing of your own fragile psyche. I wish you luck in trying to convince yourself that people only go to med school to try to prove something to their family and friends. It's not true, and no one cares that you're apparently very proud of yourself for not pursuing a career that some people think is prestigious.

Also your one "genuine" reason is nonsense as well. Helping people in and of itself is not a reason to go into medicine, there are a million and one careers that let you help people. If your "why medicine" answer in an interview is that you want to help people and that's it... you're going to have a bad time. If you want to know why someone would want to be a physician, think about why one might want to help people through medicine.

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40 minutes ago, Hellothere77 said:

You say you don't want to go to med school, yet you're making a defensive post on a pre-med website, which just makes it seem like you're feeling insecure about that decision. In reality most people in my class don't think being a physician has anything to do with "status", nor do they care what their parents think of their career choices because they're adults. That fact that you need to tell a pre-med forum that "95%" of students want it for these mostly childish reasons is pretty revealing of your own fragile psyche. I wish you luck in trying to convince yourself that people only go to med school to try to prove something to their family and friends. It's not true, and no one cares that you're apparently very proud of yourself for not pursuing a career that some people think is prestigious.

Also your one "genuine" reason is nonsense as well. Helping people in and of itself is not a reason to go into medicine, there are a million and one careers that let you help people. If your "why medicine" answer in an interview is that you want to help people and that's it... you're going to have a bad time. If you want to know why someone would want to be a physician, think about why one might want to help people through medicine.

On the contrary, it seems that you are insecure because you feel what I said contained truth; why else would you be lashing at a neutral piece such as mine?

As for my "genuine" reason, perhaps I could have clarified, but I thought that pre-med or med students would be intelligent enough to infer the obvious: if you look at my choice of wording, you will see that I wrote: 

"To help people: I think this is the only genuine reason one should have for going to med school. If you would truly like the job and want to help people, then by all means go for it. But if it is more about pleasing your parents or social status/money, there are much more efficient routes to fulfill those requirements."

This is further bolstered by the fact that I went on to say that I personally like to help people, but just not as a doctor.

Therefore, your assertion that I said or implied "helping people in and of itself" is clearly incorrect, and is worrying in terms of your reading comprehension abilities. But I like to see the best in people, so I feel that your insecurity and ego got the best of you, and clouded your judgement.

 

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I think many people go into medicine for many reasons, inclusive of those you had mentioned. End of the day, one needs to be satisfied with one's choice. Those factors you had mentioned can be accessory or main reasons for one's entry into medicine, but who is to say they won't end up enjoying it? Many of my friends went into medicine for a multitude of reasons, again inclusive of those you had mentioned, and all have become very competent and caring doctors and are very satisfied with the path they chose.

By virtue of being a doctor, one has privileges and obligations to society. That is basically it. Who are we to judge anyone's particular motivation(s)?

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I think 95% is too high of a number for your listed reasons. 

People choose to pursue medicine for a variety of reasons. Though they may the ones that you mentioned, some other examples could be: 

-they had a serious illness which inspired them

-ailing family member

-passion to discover new cures

-inspired by a doctor

etc.

I’ve met many many doctors who did not enter medicine due to your listed reasons. Many are selfless and inspiring.

Also, many applicants spend years applying to medical schools, averaging 3 or more tries per applicant. I’m sure the superficial reasons (except to help people) you listed would not give someone enough extrinsic motivation  and resilience to endure this grueling application process. 

Wish you the best on your own journey.

9 hours ago, jna1929 said:

I bet for at least 95% of you it is one or more of these 3 reasons:

- to please parents

- to have high social status/money

- to help people

 

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1 hour ago, Butterfly_ said:

I think 95% is too high of a number for your listed reasons. 

People choose to pursue medicine for a variety of reasons. Though they may the ones that you mentioned, some other examples could be: 

-they had a serious illness which inspired them

-ailing family member

-passion to discover new cures

-inspired by a doctor

etc.

I’ve met many many doctors who did not enter medicine due to your listed reasons. Many are selflessness and inspiring.

Also, many applicants spend many years just to apply to get into medicine, average taking 3 or more tries. I’m sure the superficial reasons you listed would not give someone enough extrinsic motivation  and resilience to endure this grueling application process. 

Wish you the best on your own journey.

 

1

Agree. I was 8 when I decided I wanted to be a doctor. And it was because my grandmother had cancer. All she and my family went through, the help and the support we had from physicians, and several other reasons, made me decide at such a young age what I wanted to do later as a career. 

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"Personally, my GPA is high enough for admission to all med schools except U of T (and it was as early as 2014). But for the reasons listed above, I choose not to go to med school. However, I do like to help people, but just not as a doctor."

- This, my friend, is music to an interviewer's ears

 

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6 hours ago, jna1929 said:

why else would you be lashing at a neutral piece such as mine?

I don't give a rat's @ss about your opinion, but what confuses me is your claim to be helping the people of this forum--warning us that we may be falling down some sort of cognitive hole that you, with your incredible intellect, are able to rise above. In other words, you are an arrogant and generally unlikeable fellow for simultaneously overestimating your own wisdom and underestimating the wisdom of the people of this forum who work very f***ing hard and take great personal risk to pursue the mere possibility of a career as a physician. And no, even if your GPA is "high enough for admission to all med schools," you are not one of us. In other words, you cannot claim that your decision to abstain from attending medical school is virtuous if you never applied and never got in. And to be frank, with the size of chip on your shoulder, I would really avoid applying because you are going to be shut down hard if you ever make it to interviews. 

To dig a little deeper, I think your use of language is odd--you throw around some vocabulary that connotes logical discourse, yet your argumentation is wrought with emotion. Simply put, there is no such thing as a 'neutral' statement. This is 'bolstered' by the fact that you often mention your own opinion--we all have an epistemic position that is deeply influenced by our phenomenological experience. Speaking of personal experiences, let's get psychoanalytic. You keep mentioning this "insult to intelligence" thing. It really makes me think that that's what this whoooole thing is all about. Are you so scared of not being smart that you feel the need to walk into the room with all of the smart people and start hitting them over the head with your copy of Atlas Shrugged? In other words, shame on you for coming onto this forum in order to get a rise at the expense of others. I see on your profile that you are looking at becoming an OT... I would consider reorienting your career choice away from a livelihood that entails helping others and instead towards one that accommodates your complexes without putting you in close contact with others--maybe a blog where you talk about how smart you are, yet ultimately never do the personal work to realize that, somewhere along your life's journey, you mistakenly identified relative cognitive capacity with your own self worth, thus making even the mere thought of someone smarter than you such an unbearable sensation that you need to do what you have done here.

Also, the reason I am making fun of the language you used in your post is because using pompous language is something that was beaten out of my system in the first year of my philosophy undergrad--it's just annoying to readers and actually detracts from your argumentation. So, just consider my being a dick as, actually, a very good willed attempt to make you a better writer.  ...or, maybe I am just trying to get a rise out of you, like you were to Hellothere77? 

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20 minutes ago, LiconC said:

I don't give a rat's @ss about your opinion, but what confuses me is your claim to be helping the people of this forum--warning us that we may be falling down some sort of cognitive hole that you, with your incredible intellect, are able to rise above. In other words, you are an arrogant and generally unlikeable fellow for simultaneously overestimating your own wisdom and underestimating the wisdom of the people of this forum who work very f***ing hard and take great personal risk to pursue the mere possibility of a career as a physician. And no, even if your GPA is "high enough for admission to all med schools," you are not one of us. In other words, you cannot claim that your decision to abstain from attending medical school is virtuous if you never applied and never got in. And to be frank, with the size of chip on your shoulder, I would really avoid applying because you are going to be shut down hard if you ever make it to interviews. 

To dig a little deeper, I think your use of language is odd--you throw around some vocabulary that connotes logical discourse, yet your argumentation is wrought with emotion. Simply put, there is no such thing as a 'neutral' statement. This is 'bolstered' by the fact that you often mention your own opinion--we all have an epistemic position that is deeply influenced by our phenomenological experience. Speaking of personal experiences, let's get psychoanalytic. You keep mentioning this "insult to intelligence" thing. It really makes me think that that's what this whoooole thing is all about. Are you so scared of not being smart that you feel the need to walk into the room with all of the smart people and start hitting them over the head with your copy of Atlas Shrugged? In other words, shame on you for coming onto this forum in order to get a rise at the expense of others. I see on your profile that you are looking at becoming an OT... I would consider reorienting your career choice away from a livelihood that entails helping others and instead towards one that accommodates your complexes without putting you in close contact with others--maybe a blog where you talk about how smart you are, yet ultimately never do the personal work to realize that, somewhere along your life's journey, you mistakenly identified relative cognitive capacity with your own self worth, thus making even the mere thought of someone smarter than you such an unbearable sensation that you need to do what you have done here.

Also, the reason I am making fun of the language you used in your post is because using pompous language is something that was beaten out of my system in the first year of my philosophy undergrad--it's just annoying to readers and actually detracts from your argumentation. So, just consider my being a dick as, actually, a very good willed attempt to make you a better writer.  ...or, maybe I am just trying to get a rise out of you, like you were to Hellothere77? 

Honestly I think OP is just trolling, and thinks he is more clever than he is.  Its as if he thinks that "medicine to help people?!...you can help people in lots of careers!!!!!" is some revelation that we all haven't heard a million times.  Its just stale.  Same with the "you can also make money in other careers!"  Whether its true or not, he almost personifies someone trying to justify their intelligence or inability to gain admission, and he thinks hes being edgy.  I recommend ignoring it.

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Altruism and "helping people" is something that is held highly in our society partly as influenced by religion (Who's more altruistic than the man above who died for all of our sins). We need to chill with the "helping people is the only reason people should go into medicine". Medicine is also so broad, theres clinical practice, but also management, public health, consulting, etc. So when we take a deep look at why people are wanting to pursue a career in medicine, it doesn't matter!!! AS LONG AS THEY DO THEIR JOB WELL. 

Some people can want to help people so much, and be horrible as a surgeon. Does that make them a good doctor?

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