thisloveisours
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So I want to be a doctor....but this morning my biology teacher had a big speech on how her brothers did medicine but it was exam after exam after exam and they had no life and no time to themselves ever. Even after they qualified it was still exams and long long hours and no social life at all.

So I was just wondering what is it actually like at medical school? How much free time do you get? And being an FY1 & FY2?

Just she said dont go in blinkered because you just want to do something sciency and help people cause that is stupid because there are plenty of other jobs that you can do that in!

So honest opinions, is it worth it?
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Kingbradley6
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Sounds like someone is jealous of their brother I would say.

Sure there are bound to be some negatives in medicine but there are also a host of positives that your teacher failed to mention which attracts people every year (and keeps them to, as the drop out rate is low).

Just my view although I can't speak on a personal basis as not quite yet studying medicine
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hoonosewot
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It's fine, your average medic socialises just as much as anyone else. F1 and F2 may be pretty hectic, but it gets better, and you're pretty well remunerated for it.
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cosmobear92
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(Original post by thisloveisours)
So I want to be a doctor....but this morning my biology teacher had a big speech on how her brothers did medicine but it was exam after exam after exam and they had no life and no time to themselves ever. Even after they qualified it was still exams and long long hours and no social life at all.

So I was just wondering what is it actually like at medical school? How much free time do you get? And being an FY1 & FY2?

Just she said dont go in blinkered because you just want to do something sciency and help people cause that is stupid because there are plenty of other jobs that you can do that in!

So honest opinions, is it worth it?

Clues in what's in bold, she sounds a bit bitter tbh.
My cousin is a registrar surgeon, he's not old btw late 20s, he has plenty of time for socialising, travelling, doing what he wants do etc. Yes there were times when he couldn't come back from work (he lives in Scotland) due to exams or night shifts, but he's happy and loves what he does and he tells me he wouldn't change it for the world.

Your teacher sounds like an idiot imo, exams or long hours shouldn't stop you from doing what you want to do in life.
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chloemo14
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Being a preclinical student at least isn't nearly as exciting as a lot of applicants presume it will be. Think science A-levels...just...more. A lot more.
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modini
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I have medic friends and I see them plenty, so socialising doesn't seem to be a problem. I think your teacher was exaggerating a bit.
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Democracy
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What is it with school teachers and trying to put people off medicine?
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Pride
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(Original post by Democracy)
What is it with school teachers and trying to put people off medicine?
but you can understand why though. Especially biology and chemistry secondary school teachers, if you ever speak to them, ask (I know you're a medic, so that's pretty unlikely now, but perhaps you might...). They get through so many medicine hopefuls, beginning of the AS year, many of em'll go I want to do medicine I want to do medicine, yet most of them don't get in. In fact, many don't even get the 3 As to even bother applying. You can understand the frustration at their students' naivety, it seems like the career to go to if you're good at science.

Obviously there are many great medicine candidates that do or don't get offers, but all these teachers will be thinking is, oh here we go again, yet another one, especially if the kid isn't performing in class.
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rosettastoned
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(Original post by thisloveisours)
So I want to be a doctor....but this morning my biology teacher had a big speech on how her brothers did medicine but it was exam after exam after exam and they had no life and no time to themselves ever. Even after they qualified it was still exams and long long hours and no social life at all.

So I was just wondering what is it actually like at medical school? How much free time do you get? And being an FY1 & FY2?

Just she said dont go in blinkered because you just want to do something sciency and help people cause that is stupid because there are plenty of other jobs that you can do that in!

So honest opinions, is it worth it?
For me, yes. I'm still glad that I'm doing what I'm doing, but your teacher is right, the exams don't stop for, like, decades, so if you get really stressed out by exams, that part won't be fun. My housemate is always saying that he wishes he had picked another course - he thinks he would have enjoyed doing something else just as much and he'd still have time for a life as well He didn't feel that bad about it in first year though - second year is a stressful one.

I definitely wouldn't recommend people not go into medicine, it's definitely awesome in a lot of ways. But it is definitely a good idea to be realistic from the beginning. If you don't want to be constantly stressed about exams, maybe don't aim to be a maxillofacial surgeon. If you like science and like people and think medicine might be kind of a fun combination, but you don't want to be massively stressed, is there actually nothing else you could ever see yourself doing?

Work experience is the best way to find out if it would be worth it for you personally
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Democracy
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(Original post by Pride)
but you can understand why though. Especially biology and chemistry secondary school teachers, if you ever speak to them, ask (I know you're a medic, so that's pretty unlikely now, but perhaps you might...). They get through so many medicine hopefuls, beginning of the AS year, many of em'll go I want to do medicine I want to do medicine, yet most of them don't get in. In fact, many don't even get the 3 As to even bother applying. You can understand the frustration at their students' naivety, it seems like the career to go to if you're good at science.

Obviously there are many great medicine candidates that do or don't get offers, but all these teachers will be thinking is, oh here we go again, yet another one, especially if the kid isn't performing in class.
Well, yes, I mean when I was at sixth form (a fair few years ago, but I'm sure it's the same now), during AS year about 20 people wanted to do medicine and in the end only 4 or 5 applied the following year. So I see your point however my issue is with sixth form tutors or careers advisers giving plain incorrect advice (e.g. telling kids that maths A level is a must) or by misrepresenting life as a medic like the OP's teacher seems to be doing. It's something I've noticed happening a lot and it's really unfair, teachers should be encouraging not discouraging!
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Pride
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(Original post by Democracy)
Well, yes, I mean when I was at sixth form (a fair few years ago, but I'm sure it's the same now), during AS year about 20 people wanted to do medicine and in the end only 4 or 5 applied the following year. So I see your point however my issue is with sixth form tutors or careers advisers giving plain incorrect advice (e.g. telling kids that maths A level is a must) or by misrepresenting life as a medic like the OP's teacher seems to be doing. It's something I've noticed happening a lot and it's really unfair, teachers should be encouraging not discouraging!
that's true, the amount of incorrect info dashed around by teachers is shocking for those who really have read for themselves about the admissions process and about the course.

However, do you think the teachers should be encouraging? I don't know about that, why should they/we be mollycoddled? Those that are strong enough will become more confident that medicine is for them, despite the downsides and difficulties. The majority won't bother in the end, and they walk away before they get disappointed.

that doesn't mean that I think every good candidate gets in though, it's a shame that doesn't happen.
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coconut2456
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It is a constant stream of exams and you will have to put in a good deal more effort than at A level but you do have time to socialise so I don't know what your teacher is on about. Working hours have improved quite a bit recently, they did used to be pretty unholy. As for the subject, a lot of what you're taught appears boring and pointless at first but once you apply it clinically and realise how useful it really is then it becomes worthwhile. I still have a way to go but I honestly can't see myself doing anything else.


(Original post by Pride)
but you can understand why though. Especially biology and chemistry secondary school teachers, if you ever speak to them, ask (I know you're a medic, so that's pretty unlikely now, but perhaps you might...). They get through so many medicine hopefuls, beginning of the AS year, many of em'll go I want to do medicine I want to do medicine, yet most of them don't get in. In fact, many don't even get the 3 As to even bother applying. You can understand the frustration at their students' naivety, it seems like the career to go to if you're good at science.

Obviously there are many great medicine candidates that do or don't get offers, but all these teachers will be thinking is, oh here we go again, yet another one, especially if the kid isn't performing in class.
But what about the good candidates who get put off? These candidates may be able to research the admissions process and such, but they haven't experienced being a medical student/doctor for themselves so when a teacher turns around and starts making up baseless negatives about medicine then it's easy to see how some otherwise good candidates will be put off. There is no perfect career so the teacher should be encouraging their students as much as possible rather than actively trying to put them off for personal reasons. Any teacher who does that has failed at their job in my opinion.
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Pandabär
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She sounds a bit jelly of her brother to me.

To be honest, lots of my friends are medics, and I'm applying for medicine. Yes, it's incredibly hard work and some very long hours, but they all still have lives.

Your teacher was probably just trying to put off those who chose medicine without actually researching how difficult it was to get in/ what the job entails...
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thegodofgod
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(Original post by Democracy)
What is it with school teachers and trying to put people off medicine?
:hmmm:

A couple of years ago on hospital work/shadowing experience, the registrar and consultant surgeons were trying to put me off medicine, but the anaesthetists (on the whole) were telling me to go for it
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tania<3
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From what I can see its pretty damn worthwhile. Unless if you're not in it for the wrong reasons, obviously
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HaNzY
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(Original post by thisloveisours)
So I want to be a doctor....but this morning my biology teacher had a big speech on how her brothers did medicine but it was exam after exam after exam and they had no life and no time to themselves ever. Even after they qualified it was still exams and long long hours and no social life at all.

So I was just wondering what is it actually like at medical school? How much free time do you get? And being an FY1 & FY2?

Just she said dont go in blinkered because you just want to do something sciency and help people cause that is stupid because there are plenty of other jobs that you can do that in!

So honest opinions, is it worth it?
My boyfriend has just finished his 3rd year at medical school (before anyone questions my source, I have been with him for over 6 years). From my experience he has had a lot less time to do what he wants than I have (I am coming to the end of my psychology degree). In the 1st and 2nd year he was doing pre-clinical and it was 9am until 6pm, 5 days a week at uni with maybe an hour or 2 break in the uni day, and then he had a load of presentations to do each week that he had to prepare for and a load of reading on top (not so many essays though). I only really got to see him on the weekend and even then he was working sometimes (bearing in mind my boyfriend is pretty conscientious and is getting mostly As and Bs and a few Cs at uni; just to put in perspective, he got 4 As at A level [before you could get A*]).

Now hes just done his 3rd year which was no better, he was in hospitals from 8 until 6 every day and some nights he was on call until 11pm. I again only saw him on weekends and this year he was working and reading on weekends for his course because there were a lot of projects and a lot of readings he had to do before certain days etc.

He has now found out his holiday for this year will be during May (when every other course in the uni has exams, explains why doctors marry doctors huh) and then he goes back the beginning of June and thats his 4th year started. Compared to other courses who have 4 months off during the summer and don't usually start back until the end of September.

This is the honest truth of our experiences with medicine so far. I used to want to do medicine but I am so glad I didn't go that route now. You really have to want to do it because it is hard work. If you are conscientious, expect to not have a lot of free time, but if you are a bit more relaxed and don't do much reading as you go along then you will have more time. I have cried about how little I see him and how little time he has on so many occasions, I worried about it before we started uni and now its a miserable reality. And I hear FY1 and FY2 is even worse. He is probably going to go the GP route though so hopefully (fingers crossed) he will be able to have a more reasonable schedule than what I imagine surgeons or other specialities have. I would hate him to be on call and have to leave me in the middle of the night to go to work :'( or for him to come home when I've already gone to bed and go back to work before I've woken up, what a miserable life, I don't care about the money, if I don't see him the money can screw itself.

I imagine not everyones experiences with medicine are like this, but you asked for honesty off people and i am providing insight into how it is for us. You really need to think long and hard about it, it is NOT easy. It's a ***** to get into, it's a ***** of a course but its highly paid in the long run. If you are doing it to help people, well there are plenty other ways to help people that don't require so much of you. It feels like they expect you to be superhuman half the time.

You can tell I am having a bad experience with this can't you? And I'm not even the one doing the course!

However it can obviously be a very rewarding career...I was going to balance my argument here with a paragraph of positives, but it's late and I actually can't think of any others than it can be rewarding and it pays highly. I'm sure someone else can chip in with the positives lol!

TL;DR? Think carefully about your choices, don't just jump into it because it's the cool thing to do or whatever.
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digitalis
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(Original post by thisloveisours)
Just she said dont go in blinkered because you just want to do something sciency and help people cause that is stupid because there are plenty of other jobs that you can do that in!
QFT. In fact, a lot of what she says is truth actually.

My opinion on medical school? It was long and painfully boring, filled with long periods of isolation and self sacrifice whilst being belittled almost on a daily basis in hospital whilst learning a lot of stuff that is useless for the day to day practise of medicine.
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Bubble Toes
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Agreed with Digitalis tbh.

I'm a final year too and can't wait to sit my finals and get the hell out of med school, but then chatting with FY1 friends makes me realise that, to quote one of them, 'this (med school) is the easiest it will be for years'. Their lack of time to do anything other than eat, work and sleep is pretty miserable.

Hopefully it'll be worth it eventually... I love the clinical work (diagnosing/managing patients) but the rest of medicine is endless hoop-jumping and can leave you pretty jaded.

I'll finish with another slightly depressing quote from one of my school teachers, 'I think you need to be a strong person to go into medicine as your job is to keep people alive and well, and when you think about it, you will have a 100% failure rate'. Whilst I think that is overly pessimistic as dying is not necessarily a bad thing, and is certainly unavoidable, there are days when that failure hits hard.
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Sherbet
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(Original post by HaNzY)
My boyfriend has just finished his 3rd year at medical school (before anyone questions my source, I have been with him for over 6 years). From my experience he has had a lot less time to do what he wants than I have (I am coming to the end of my psychology degree).
Ok this thread is depressing me now! I'm pretty committed atm but I want a social life, time to do sport, cook, see family and just chill out every once in a while. Some people on here make it sound like you miss out on your youth lol...

Could I just ask where your boyfriend is studying? And is he doing a 4 or 5 year course?
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diamondsky99
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I know as a medical student I probably am still a bit too bright-eyed and bushy-tailed about studying medicine. However, there have been some low points. It's been incredibly stressful at times and there have been many points where I've looked outside at the bin men in the mornings so unbelievably jealous that they don't have to endure the stress that I have had to...

However the sense of satisfaction when;

You take blood / put in a cannula successfully first time around!
A patient says that you've brightened their day just by talking to them
A consultant looks silently impressed with your problem solving of a case
You begrudge revising a lecture and by the end of it you think - not only do I understand that but it is so clever how the body functions!
Your parents tell you how proud they are
You see a pass mark on a piece of paper

For me, it makes it worthwhile. I couldn't imagine doing anything else. I have no regrets about the course I chose or where I chose to do it
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