Ruby...
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#1
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#1
I’m in my first year of alevels and the plan up to now has been to do medicine. However after moving to a grammar school and taking chemistry, biology and psychology Ive kinda struggled with my mental health due to lots of pressure and feeling very overwhelmed. I feel as if I’m starting to feel better However I just don’t know if I can cope with 14 years of exams as I’m already dreading my alevels and the constant revision. However I’ve paid to book my UCAT, bought medical school help books and had to tell everyone for the past couple years that I’m planning to do medicine. So my issue is it feels to late to back out but I’m not fully sure what I really want to do.

I’d always wanted to do obstetrics and gynaecology but maybe I’d thrive better in midwifery with shorter course and qualification time and more sociable hours. But I feel like if I don’t become a doctor I’ll feel like a failure the whole time and working around doctors will be a constant reminder of what I couldn’t do or what I didn’t try? I also don’t want to feel like I’ve wasted my potential (not because I think of midwifery as less of a job but just because my teachers tell me I can achieve more than this and I don’t want to feel like I wasted and opportunity because I’m unsure of myself)

Any advice would be appreciated sorry for waffling but UCATs a couple months away and I’m going to open days as I speak so I’m getting really worked up about this really!?
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Scotney
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#2
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#2
(Original post by Ruby...)
I’m in my first year of alevels and the plan up to now has been to do medicine. However after moving to a grammar school and taking chemistry, biology and psychology Ive kinda struggled with my mental health due to lots of pressure and feeling very overwhelmed. I feel as if I’m starting to feel better However I just don’t know if I can cope with 14 years of exams as I’m already dreading my alevels and the constant revision. However I’ve paid to book my UCAT, bought medical school help books and had to tell everyone for the past couple years that I’m planning to do medicine. So my issue is it feels to late to back out but I’m not fully sure what I really want to do.

I’d always wanted to do obstetrics and gynaecology but maybe I’d thrive better in midwifery with shorter course and qualification time and more sociable hours. But I feel like if I don’t become a doctor I’ll feel like a failure the whole time and working around doctors will be a constant reminder of what I couldn’t do or what I didn’t try? I also don’t want to feel like I’ve wasted my potential (not because I think of midwifery as less of a job but just because my teachers tell me I can achieve more than this and I don’t want to feel like I wasted and opportunity because I’m unsure of myself)

Any advice would be appreciated sorry for waffling but UCATs a couple months away and I’m going to open days as I speak so I’m getting really worked up about this really!?
Hi Ruby,have you considered taking a gap year so you can try some different things before making your mind up.You could get some work experience in either a medical setting or something completely different but it will buy you time.it is a big decision to make at 17 and in reality you probably have no idea what you want to do.
You have many other options open to you,you could become a vet,optomotrist,physio,or something in a different field like banking or teaching.It's your life so it really does not matter what other people think.Go along to the open days but relax and try and enjoy them.Regard them as a fact finding mission to see if the prospect appeals to you or not.Going to open days does not sign you up to anything.Perhaps you could look into other courses and do a couple of visits for those too.You can even defer your entry to med school for a year while you explore your options.It does feel like a conveyer belt in year 13 but you can step off and take a breath and a look at what else is out there.
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micholate9
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#3
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#3
The advice above is excellent.

Don’t forget that your education has been massively disrupted by the pandemic, which may be one of the reasons you’re feeling so overwhelmed. I think taking a step back to reassess your options over a gap year is not a bad idea at all.

Regarding it being too late to back out, it’s definitely not! You haven’t even applied yet. Don’t worry about what you’ve told people and what your teachers think you should be striving for. You need to do what’s right for you. Only you know that. Basing major life decisions on other peoples’ opinions can often be a recipe for an unhappy life.
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Ruby...
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#4
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(Original post by Scotney)
Hi Ruby,have you considered taking a gap year so you can try some different things before making your mind up.You could get some work experience in either a medical setting or something completely different but it will buy you time.it is a big decision to make at 17 and in reality you probably have no idea what you want to do.
You have many other options open to you,you could become a vet,optomotrist,physio,or something in a different field like banking or teaching.It's your life so it really does not matter what other people think.Go along to the open days but relax and try and enjoy them.Regard them as a fact finding mission to see if the prospect appeals to you or not.Going to open days does not sign you up to anything.Perhaps you could look into other courses and do a couple of visits for those too.You can even defer your entry to med school for a year while you explore your options.It does feel like a conveyer belt in year 13 but you can step off and take a breath and a look at what else is out there.
Thank you so much for this. I was planning on a gap year yes, so hopefully I will feel more set then, as it certainly feels like a conveyer belt right now. Fact finding is a great way to look at it!
Many thanks
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Democracy
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#5
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#5
(Original post by Ruby...)
I’m in my first year of alevels and the plan up to now has been to do medicine. However after moving to a grammar school and taking chemistry, biology and psychology Ive kinda struggled with my mental health due to lots of pressure and feeling very overwhelmed. I feel as if I’m starting to feel better However I just don’t know if I can cope with 14 years of exams as I’m already dreading my alevels and the constant revision. However I’ve paid to book my UCAT, bought medical school help books and had to tell everyone for the past couple years that I’m planning to do medicine. So my issue is it feels to late to back out but I’m not fully sure what I really want to do.

I’d always wanted to do obstetrics and gynaecology but maybe I’d thrive better in midwifery with shorter course and qualification time and more sociable hours. But I feel like if I don’t become a doctor I’ll feel like a failure the whole time and working around doctors will be a constant reminder of what I couldn’t do or what I didn’t try? I also don’t want to feel like I’ve wasted my potential (not because I think of midwifery as less of a job but just because my teachers tell me I can achieve more than this and I don’t want to feel like I wasted and opportunity because I’m unsure of myself)

Any advice would be appreciated sorry for waffling but UCATs a couple months away and I’m going to open days as I speak so I’m getting really worked up about this really!?
It's not really 14 years of continuous exams though. Most medical schools will have yearly exams but once you qualify you may go several years before even doing your first postgrad exam and there may be gaps of a year or more between each of those exams. I wouldn't overthink it.
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InArduisFouette
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#6
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#6
i think the suggestion to take a gap year ( or two ) may be a good one

applying to whichever course you may (or may not) study with your actual results is useful, you just need to demonstrate how you used your Gap year(s) to develop as both a person and a future practitioner.
Last edited by InArduisFouette; 1 month ago
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Spelunker
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#7
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#7
i feel you on the "too late to back out" thing i was working towards doing medicine basically since primary school with my parents giving me extra tutors and sending me to special young medics groups to help me. when i got to the end of my first year of a levels i realised that medicine just wouldn't be for me and i would rather do biomed. i was very conflicted since my parents had put alot of time and money into me becoming a doctor but ultimately i am so happy that i decided against it because i know i would be so miserable now if i stuck with it. I'm not saying you should "quit" or anything because if medicine is what you want to do then you should go for it! just know that its ok to have second thoughts and the most important thing is that you pick something you are happy with.
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