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Lives of Doctor Wives: Comment post

Friday, June 26, 2009

Comment post

This was a comment made on a previous post. Just thought I'd open this up for discussion since it might not be discussed as a comment. And be sure to read back as there are some previous posts about finances and budgets. Here it is:

I'm new here and just wanted to say "hi" to everyone!! This blog is very interesting and brings up some interesting points! I also wanted to ask a question, how does everyone keep up with finances and budgeting when married to a med-school student?? My boyfriend and I are discussing marriage, however, he is worried about us making it while he is in med-school -- is it do-able?? Please give advice!
My boyfriend, Chris, has one more year of college left then he will (hopefully) be attending med-school fall of 2010. He is taking the MCAT next Thursday! Please keep him in your prayers!He and I know we are going to get married someday. If it were up to me, I would marry him next summer. Which, I think would be great as far as timing. However, he would like to wait until he is about a year or two into med-school because of the financial issues that we would/will have to face, but on the other hand, he thinks we should just go for it instead of waiting. Either way, that's fine with me. He's mainly just worried about financial issues.I currently live on my own, so I know all about living a frugal lifestyle :) However, I am moving back home with my parents so I can save money for when Chris and I start our lives together.


Blogger Ginny said...

I remember when Kody and I first started discussing the idea of marriage. I was adamant that he get through a year of med school first. Well, that didn't happen...thank goodness. Finances are hard at the beginning of a marriage no matter if you are a medical student or both have a career or have a stay at home spouse with kids. Hoenstly, I think financially it makes sense to be married, of course that is just me talking. One mortgage or rent payment, one utility bill, tax breaks, etc. It is a matter of having good dialogue and committing to being smart with your money. We designated me as the money person. I handle all things finance. We took out more than we needed in student loans the first year because I was unsure about my job situation when we moved for school. Now we are thankfully able to just take out loans for tuition and books and we live off of my salary and save everything else we can. Lots of families make it through school with the spouse at home with kids. It is scary to think about paying back all that loan money, but we will all be able to do it someday. Some just prepare better than others! Good luck!

June 26, 2009 at 4:24 PM  
Blogger Melisa said...

I agree with Ginny. Wouldn't it be cheaper to be married? Sharing bills? Besides the medical school stuff, which is all going on loans most likely, your expenses would be the same as a regular person, right?

It if is the wedding you are worried about financing while in med school, well, in my oh so humble opinion, the important thing is who you marry not how many carats your ring is or which designer your dress is. Weddings do not need to be expensive, contrary to popular belief. LOL! We got married 4 weeks after we got engaged. Simple, sweet, and not very expensive. And the only thing I would change is spending more on pictures as we just had a friend do it. :o)

June 26, 2009 at 4:37 PM  
Blogger Desiree said...

I agree with Melisa - splurge on the pictures (or at least get a decent photog - we didn't) but do a simple wedding. We are making it while married and I am happy that we didn't wait. (At the beginning of our engagement we thought about waiting until JM was at least through the first year of med school... that would've been a 6 year wait, all told). Go for it! :-)

June 26, 2009 at 5:53 PM  
Blogger Kim said...

Don't worry to much :) you will both 'make it' through medical school financially- the question is whether you will do it as singles or as a married couple. Are you two planning on living together when he starts school if you are not married? If so, than why wait to get married. If not, than why waste money on paying rent at two different places?

Personally, I'm with your plan to get married next summer. Sounds perfect b/c your hubby won't be stressed out (yet) and you two could actually take time to enjoy yourselves, your honeymoon, and get settled prior to him starting the first year of medical school. I'm sure it has been done, but I can't imagine having planned our wedding in the middle of med school. First year is all new, overwhelming, and lots of pressure to study and do well on tests. Same with second yr which also has the added stress of him studying even more for the board exams he will take that summer.

During med school he will get student loans that are enough to take care of necessities. If you two are married and you are working than having your income will make your budgeting that much easier. Now... not that you asked, but the question of whether to have kids during school is a harder one to make based on the fact that kids will dramatically bump up your monthly expenses. (That being said hubby just started his 4th yr of med school and we have 2 children ages 3 and 18mo- so even that is 'do-able').

If you can't get married before school starts or just don't think you want to than the only better time in my opinion would be the summer after first yr (which is their only and last summer break). Just b/c of the fact that he will have a couple months off and won't have any board exams to study for. However, keep in mind that many med students do volunteer research projects that summer.

I hope this all came out understandable and sincere (I'm a little off today) but no matter what, if you two love eachother than I think you'll be much better off tackling the stresses of this world and this particular journey together. After med school starts it just keeps going and I'm not sure if it ever gets any 'easier'. Good luck with your decisions and sounds like you two have a great relationship- just what it takes to make it through this journey.

June 26, 2009 at 5:56 PM  
Blogger Amanda said...

My husband and I waited until after the first year of med school to get married. It was kind of tough planning the wedding while he studied, and we did it all ourselves for various reasons. However, we had a simple wedding and a fairly simple reception, and we were able to schedule everything so we could honeymoon in those few weeks between the first and second years. We were able to live off his medical school loans and what I made while I was a teacher's aide or working as a receptionist in a medical office. Also, he received a grant every year from the hospital where his mom is a nurse. He was given the grant with the understanding that if they had a job available once he left residency, and he took it, he wouldn't have to pay them back. The same was true if they had no jobs available for him. If there was a job, and he turned it down, he would have to pay the grant back. Well, it turned out that none of the OBs in the hospital's area were hiring at the time he left residency, so we didn't have to worry about that money. We're now just paying off his medical school loans, which aren't much at all because he never took out loans in undergrad. I think that's really helped us in the long run. Good luck with whatever decision you make!

June 27, 2009 at 12:18 AM  
Blogger Tasha said...

Definitely do-able. All schools will offer more loan money for living expenses because they don't plan on the med student working. We've both been in school and we live comfortably (though not luxuriously) off of his living expense loans. We got married right before med school and it was nice to have that last summer together to plan and be married because it takes a lot of trust and love to get through med school, especially the first year when you're both adjusting to the schedule. I sgree with above: why not before? It does seem cheaper and it's definitely do-able. Nobody likes loans but I suppose I don't see how living separately is cheaper. But dynamics of relationships are so different, it really depends on what you feel is right for you.

June 29, 2009 at 9:20 AM  
Blogger A Journey Through the Waiting Game said...

Thank you ladies so much for the advice! Chris and I both read your comments and they were all very helpful!

June 29, 2009 at 10:04 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

My husband and I married a week before he started medical school. We waited until the end of the summer because we didn't want to pay rent at three apartments (in the two towns we were leaving, and in the town we were moving to for school). Looking back, it would have been nice to have that whole summer (instead of week) to enjoying being newlyweds...before adjusting to the schedule of a med student. I was started grad school a month later, so we lived (and still live) on a very small budget.

So yes, it's certainly do-able. Good luck with the MCAT!

June 30, 2009 at 2:35 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

My husband just graduated from med school. We got married the summer after his first year, and we wouldn't change a thing. Like others here, we knew we were planning to marry, and we really wanted a stellar honeymoon, so we took advantage of his time off after first year to take a backpacking trip through Europe. I realize that's not exactly sound financial advice, but it was such a wonderful opportunity for us to relax and enjoy some private time as husband and wife. As far as weddings go, simpler is always better! There are so many great DIY ideas out there. Personally, I find that I enjoy smaller weddings much more (though with some families that's not possible).
As for saving money, we had roommates! Sometimes it was tough, but when you get the right roommate they can end up being a great resource and sounding board when your spouse is studying for Boards, etc.

July 9, 2009 at 2:13 PM  

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