Feedback on: Life of a late 30s/early 40s med student

I love medicine and the idea of teaching it as well, but I hope someday to do the family thing. I’m 31, soon to be 32. I might be accepted by the time I’m 34, get out of med school at 38, then finish residency at 42 or 43. For those with families, do you regret the decision to have gone through medical school around those ages? How has the financial strain been? I worry a little about being a 43 year old man with 300+k of debt to my name, not being able to provide well for a family or even have a home likes many other people who are a bit more settled in life. I guess I just have fears and want some feedback. Thank you all.

Wow! I have the exact same question.

Wonder if it is all worth it from time to time…

  • Julio Cesar Said:
Wow! I have the exact same question.

Wonder if it is all worth it from time to time...

What's your story, JC?

Pretty much the same. Late bloomer, started with an EMT cert then moved on to a Paramedic cert, then to an RN degree.

I’ve been in medicine for the greater part of my life. Now I’m 32, planning to apply at 33, matriculate at 34. Hoping to graduate at 38 and thinking about a 4+ year residency.

So yea, I’ll be done at about the same time with a huge amount of debt BUT I don’t have a wife or kids…yet, so we’ll see what happends when that little variable is thrown into the mix.

So here I stand, still pushing through my pre-reqs wondering from time to time…“is it worth it”

Hmmm, yea it is! :slight_smile:

Hotrod and JC:

I had the same type of concerns in 2009. Two years later (Fall 2011), I started my Post-Bacc program.

It is a year later and the 1st year will end in 3 weeks. There are two things that you will realize for sure:

  1. You will age regardless, so you might as well age while attempting something that you like!

  2. There will be weeks of self-doubt followed with periods in which you TOTALLY get what you are doing!

    Don’t become discouraged with the process and follow your heart. Sometimes the best advice comes from within!

    Good luck to you both.

I can totally relate. It feels that life is too short to be able to get everything you want out of it.

I feel it is worse for a female, since there is this huge pressure to have kids before you are 40.

I am in a professional career, middle management, went through a divorce a year ago and one day I realized that I really want to go to medical school. I am almost done with my year of inorganic chemistry and thinking to take MCAT in spring of 2014. By that time I will be 36.

My parents put a lot of pressure on me to have a kid, soon. But there are so many questions/ concerns:

  1. would I be able to make it through the med school as a single mom? I would like to have a kid in a marriage, but who knows how long it will take to get married again.

  2. Should I have a kid now while I am working on my pre-requisites and have a good medical insurance and a good paying job?

  3. Should I postpone having kids until I am in medical school or even when I am done with medical school?

    And then again, who long would it take to re-pay all that medical school debt?

    Any practical advise?


If this is what you want to do, then it will be worth it. I was working at Charles Schwab when I decided to go back and become a physician.

I remember very distinctly going to swipe my badge to leave the building and feeling this sense of completeness that I had made the decision to go for it and I have not looked back once. It took me three applicaitons cycles, post bacc (which I failed), and a lot of tears and sweat and sacrifice to get here. Now that I am here I can’t imagine going back. I am 37, finishing up my intern year and about to start a EM/IM combined residency. So the point of this is that if this what you really want to do, you will find a way to do it.

Hope to meet you all in June at the conference,