Double Doctor Families

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    Are any of you out there doctors and also married to a doctor?

    My boyfriend is in his second year of medicine. So far, he is planning on going into orthopedics. I’m considering the medicine path as well, but am worried about how it may impact having children. I’m about a year or so away from applying to med school.

    I was thinking that a physician’s assistant program would be more feasible; however, we’re in Canada and they don’t exist here! My boyfriend said if that’s what I really want to do we’ll go back to the States (I’m American and he’s Canadian).

    I’d love to hear about anyone’s experiences…


    My husband and I are both in our 4th year of med school and have 1.5 children. Sometimes we have to coordinate things as far as call and whatnot, and we have some family help for emergencies. I am going into family med and he is going into surgery, so we are looking for programs where family life is a priority. I still realize that I will be doing the lion’s share of the child care, and I am OK with that. :p


    I’m a private practice psychiatrist and he’s an academic neurologist and a very active dad. It works for us. If he’s going to be a surgeon, it might be a lot harder. One of my good friends is a doctor married to a surgeon, and he is honestly hardly ever home. It is not even close to a shared parenting situation. SO I think you would have to honestly evaluate what level of support you will need. One of the main reasons I chose this man because I knew he was going to be an involved dad. That decision has paid off big time and helps my career significantly, although I worry sometimes that it hurts his. My :twocents:


    I’m a pathologist and my husband is currently a GI fellow. We met in med school and couples matched for residency. We had 2 kids during our residencies. They are now ages 2 and 3.

    This situation works if both people are willing and able to be as flexible as possible. For example, my residency was a little more flexible than his as far as night and weekend hours, so this worked for us. However, I am still very busy, and he really does help out around the house and with the children etc., so I don’t have everything on my shoulders.

    Sacrifices will have to be made by both of you, and if you are lucky, it won’t be mostly you. But I must warn you, because you are the woman, it may be mostly you making sacrifices. For example, children get sick and day care closes at 6 pm. In my experience, during my residency, most of the time, it was me that had to tell/beg/plead to my staff for some flexibility in my schedule to take care of my child duties. I hated having to do this, but when one of us had to, it was usually me. Part of the reason was because pathology is more flexible, and also because it is more socially acceptable for a woman to sacrifice at work than a man.

    It is easier now for me not being a resident because I make my own schedule.

    My advice to you would be to make sure he is really supportive and respectful of you and your goals. And it helps if he is a neat freak, too (like my husband).


    I totally agree with doski. It works when both of you are willing to work together to make good choices for the family. The other thing that is worth talking about in DEPTH before a double-doctor marriage is how you are going to manage money and whether you agree on spending money for “luxuries” that might be closer to essentials with both of you working, like housecleaning, prepared food, etc. It has been a big help for us to be on the same page about those things, because they certainly help us spend our home time with our kids and not ALL of it just working on the house/food/laundry/etc.


    My husband is a Dermatologist and I am in oncology- sometimes I wish I had done the PA training (no call, less responsibilty, better hours)- I think some of it depends on the type of person you are and how much responsibilty you want– Do you mind taking orders and running things by docs or do you want more power–or do you just like to be with patients. But there are definitely certain specialties with good lifestyles– my husband always tries to talk med students into Dermatology– he loves it and the hours are great- the residency is easy too- If your boyfriend really wants to do ortho I would try you find something you like that is less intense- I know one physician couple who are both doing a surgery residency and they have a 2 year old- It sounds like they have a crazy schedule (her mom lives with her) and she never sees her son. anything is possible, you just need to decide what type or lifestyle you want and what will make you truely happy– I know some guys from med school who went into ortho because that was the “cool” thing to do- I know some now are regretting it because they never see their families. Hope this helps!!!

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