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Lives of Doctor Wives: Attitude Adjustment!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Attitude Adjustment!

Camilla, whose husband is a PGY3 in General Surgery, had this great discussion question for us.

My husband and I have been talking a lot lately about whether or not training is what makes surgeons so mean/crazy/egocentric or if they already have personalities like that which are unmasked in the training process. . . .Just want to know what everyone else thinks and whether or not they've seen changes in their hubby's as they've been 'beaten down.' My husband is an atypical personlity in his field-he's positive and generally cheerful, but I've found him rolling his eyes a little more often at difficult patients and/or families.



Blogger Stephanie said...

we had a similar conversation the other night... and i think that this, um, unique experience they have and the stress that goes along with it, does indeed change the way they view things and respond to events and people around them. i think that part of the issue is that the stress they are under never really ends... and even in their "down time" they are thinking about residency stuff, perhaps subconsciously. They don't really decompress like most people should, and I think that fact bubbles over into how they deal with that stress. I think that by talking about it, sometimes it helps keep things in check. As long as you pick a decent time to talk about it :)

on the flip side... i don't think that every personality type could go down this path... so perhaps they have a bit of that surgeon personality whether they realize it or not...

May 24, 2010 at 12:25 AM  
Blogger Melisa said...

Brad hears ALL THE TIME that he doesn't have a surgeon personality. He is really kind, gentle, reserved, mellow, etc. But honestly, in the last year or two, I've noticed a difference. Mostly when we argue. He's not as patient as he used to be when explaining things to me. Maybe it is because he has put up with me for 10 years. LOL!

May 24, 2010 at 10:25 AM  
Blogger Mèimei's little Designs said...

I think that people are going to be who they're going to be. I personally think that it comes down to a person's ability to cope. Certain traits just need the opportunity to express themselves.

My husband has always been really mellow. But he does have his buttons. He is very patient but to a point. Even still, it takes a lot for him to get upset and then he gets over it very quickly. Doesn't believe in dwelling on things or holding grudges. I can honestly say residency hasn't changed his "triggers." But he has always been an active person and still gets a good amount of decompressing activities in. He wakes up early to work out or goes late to work out, sometimes every other day. HIs program plays in a basketball league for two seasons during the year [the department pays for the fees and uniforms] and they also play pick up games at the gym whenever they can. I think having an outlet is very important and makes a huge difference. My husband's program is by no means lax, but their chair and program director has always stressed that the residents HAVE to make a life outside of residency and to take care of themselves.

May 24, 2010 at 10:44 AM  
Blogger Rachel said...

My husband is convinced that surgical training did it to him. I met him a couple months into his intern year (after he was thoroughly beaten down physically, psychologically, and emotionally) so he said I never really got to know the "real" him. He claims that he was a totally different (nicer) person before residency. Sometimes I get a glimpse of that person at the end of vacations, after he has had 2 or 3 days worth of sleep :)
Now that we are at the end of training, I am sort of wondering if I will be meeting my "real" husband soon.

May 24, 2010 at 3:50 PM  
Blogger TheFamousStacie said...

Rachel "a couple months into his intern year (after he was thoroughly beaten down physically, psychologically, and emotionally)"

That is a perfect description of my husband during his intern year of surgery. He was a shell of a human. I have know him for almost 18 years and have never seen him anything like he was that year.

He and I discussed this post and he said its the training, without hesitation.

Now in Anesthesiology he is back to his normal, happy go lucky self!

May 26, 2010 at 9:02 AM  

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