February 22, 2018 at 3:24 am #372
As a source of inspiration for future applicants, maybe we can publish our stories on this forum…address when we first got interested in OB/GYN, what sorts of reactions we received from people in our lives who found out that we were going to be applying to OB/GYN and yet not prescribe birth control, did we encounter any speed bumps when we went to get our home school’s administration on board with our application, what our general experience on the interview trail was, etc.February 24, 2018 at 4:40 am #376
The people who traditionally guide a student were the most against me attempting to do OBGYN as a faithful Catholic: my home institution program director, clerkship director, dean of students, and my father.
Luckily I was fairly knowledgable about other faithful Catholic OBGYNs when I discussed with the above people; otherwise, any one of these conversations could have convinced my that the idea was imprudent.
My home institution PD and clerkship director told me that while they were Pro-Life, they could not have a resident not write contraceptives or do sterilizations simply do to the logistics of it. How would clinic go? How would you discharge postpartum patients from the hospital without contraception? What if you must do a cesarean with tubal? “You did great on our service. You worked hard and did well. The nurses loved you – and that’s rare for a student! But you’ll have to determine your priorities; we cannot have a resident who can’t do much of the required work. Just think about it and pray about it.”
With my combination of below average step 1 score and desire to practice in accord with my faith, the dean of students assured me I would not match to OBGYN, and strongly encouraged me to apply to another speciality in addition to – if not in lieu of – OBGYN. Overall, I agree it was good advice to apply to a “backup” specialty, but it was still discouraging to hear.
My father relayed a story to me when I told him about my desire to practice in accord with Catholic teaching: “Seafood restaurants have always done well in this town. However, there was once an owner who opened a seafood restaurant but did not want to sell beer for religious reasons. That business promptly failed. If you want to open a seafood restaurant, you have to sell beer.” In other words, you’re going to fail as an OBGYN if you don’t intentionally sterilize and contracept.
At interviews, I only brought this up with PDs. All but my home institution and one other stated that it would be fine. The other stated that she’d have to look into it, then later emailed and said essentially that it would not be a good fit. I do wonder how many of those PDs were giving me a truthful answer vs a legally protective answer to prevent accusations of faith-based discrimination. I used the following question: “As a Catholic, there are certain procedures that I would prefer not to perform. Would this be a problem at this program?”
I’d encourage everyone considering the specialty to contact one of the administrators here, and they’d be happy to chat about all aspects of applying to OBGYN.March 19, 2018 at 1:34 am #415
But you had a happy ending, right?March 23, 2018 at 2:19 pm #451
I certainly did have a happy ending! I matched to my number 1 spot!
I realize my previous post focused on the troubles of applying, but I was trying to help future applicants know that the process may not always be smooth.January 18, 2019 at 10:17 pm #2784
And to add to the story, there’s now a resident in the year above me who does not prescribe, and a resident in my class who now no longer prescribes!