What Do You Want To Know?

Have you ever wondered what it's like to be married to a doctor? Or, have you ever had questions about the medical profession that you were just burning to ask? Then, you've come to the right place. Welcome! My name is Amanda, and I am currently married to a doctor. He's an OB/GYN, and he recently started practicing medicine. I've been with him from the beginning of undergrad all the way through medical school and residency (twelve years of training, to be exact), so I've become very used to the idea of living with a doctor 24/7. I've had several friends ask me what it's like to be married to an OB/GYN, so I decided to start blogging about my experiences. I'd like this to be a Q&A type of blog, so if there is anything you'd like to know, and you've read The Disclaimers* at the bottom of this page, then, ask away! Your questions can be funny or serious or whatever. If you have any amusing anecdotes about your experiences with your own OB/GYN or family physician, let me know. Also, if you're currently married to a doctor, whatever his/her chosen field, please feel free to share your thoughts and life experiences. You might be able to answer someone else's question better than I could! You can leave all your questions or comments in the comment section of each post, follow me at twitter.com (@asktheobswife), or email me at asktheobswife@gmail.com.

I look forward to hearing from each and every one of you!
Amanda, The OB's Wife

Monday, August 17, 2009

Advice To A Premed Student

Wow. It's been a while since I posted last. My husband has officially been practicing for over a year now, and although there have been a few downs, it has all been mostly ups. He seems to really enjoy his co-workers, and for the most part, his days as an OB/Gyn have been great. This month, my son and I have had so much time with him, too. He's been taking a lot of vacation time before it runs out, so we went on a family trip at the beginning of August, and just yesterday, he and I came back from a few days at Gen Con Indy, something to which I look forward every year. In a couple of weeks, we're all taking a quick trip to Washington state to see friends, too! We've been busy, but it's been so much fun doing it together. In a way, this post Jennifer wrote on the "Lives of Doctor Wives" blog speaks to exactly the experiences and feelings I've had over the years about my own medical marriage and how my husband and I are surviving and finding ways to keep it going. I hope you enjoy it and find some words of wisdom for your own relationships, whether you're with a physician or not.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

My Spouse, The New OB In Town

My husband's been out of residency and practicing obstetrics and gynecology for almost a year. When he was in residency, we lived in a medium-sized city, we didn't know very many people, and he really didn't have an established patient population. Then, he finished residency, found a job, and we moved to a new town. Where we currently live is definitely smaller than our last home city. It's also a big college town, so the population is pretty transient. Students move in and move out with the school year. Many people move into the community because they got jobs at the university, and they move out when they lose those jobs or find something else to do. There are also a lot of families who have lived in the area for a long time because the parents grew up here or went to school here. It's taken me some time to get used to the constant change of the area, but I think it's a wonderful community and a great place to raise a family. I've also discovered how "small" this community of around 70,000 people can be, just because my husband is now the "New OB In Town". Before we moved, I joined a large moms' group located here that is organized completely on-line. Even though there are about eighty members in the group, only twenty or thirty of the moms regularly attend organized events, and I've been able to make friendships with many of them. Through these meetups with the other women, I've been able to "advertise" my husband's new job in the community, usually in a roundabout way by explaining why we moved in the first place. In this way, I found out that the office he joined is fairly popular and the biggest practice in town. Of course, not all of the moms in my group go to his office for their care, but some of them have told me that they've seen him at the hospital for various reasons, like when he's covering call for their personal OBs. It's been both strange and exhilarating to hear about my husband from "the other side", especially when I hear he is well-liked and a "great doctor". I've already heard, from personal accounts, how his co-workers respect him as a surgeon and OB, but it's totally different when the patients are singing his praises. It makes me very proud of him and the work he's doing. I'm not sure how long it will take me to get used to the various iterations of "Oh, hey! I saw your husband at the doctors' office the other day!" that I'll inevitably run into while we live here, but that's okay. As long as the patients are happy with their doctor, it'll be just fine if I'm occasionally surprised when a pregnant mother apologizes to me for calling my husband at home in the middle of the night! It's just all part of the job.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Tips On How To Be Safe Thru Lawsuits, Etc...

Kathi, the ultimate wingspouse, wrote a great "Survivor Saturday" post over at the "Lives of Doctor Wives" blog about what to do BEFORE your physician spouse gets hit with a lawsuit or an emergency occurs that involves your estate/assets/children/whatever. It's worth taking a look, and I think it's something that everyone should think about, no matter what their profession. It applies to my husband and I because we have a son and are thinking about having another baby, soon. We've been talking about the need for a will, and Kathi's post is just another reminder that anything can happen. I think I'll start looking into attorneys in our area this week, so that my husband and I can start covering ourselves in case some of life's little setbacks actually do occur someday. If you have anything to add to the discussion, feel free to leave your comments here, on Twitter, or in my inbox!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

What Are Some Outlets For You?

I recently received an e-mail from the wife of an OB/GYN who is in a similar situation as I. She's a stay-at-home-mom (SAHM), and she wondered, besides blogging, what other outlets I have for dealing with the life of a doctor's wife. I sent her a long reply back with all the things I've done over time to keep myself sane and busy when my husband's working. Here's a list of my various outlets and support networks:

1. With every move to a new city, I've formed a large support group of friends (and if they're in the area) family.
2. Along #1's line, I've joined a mom's group since I had my son almost three years ago.
3. Recently, I became an organizer for my current mom's group, which has really kept me busy and allowed me to become better friends with some of the other moms.
4. I've started all kinds of hobbies since my husband began medical school: knitting, jewelry making, belly dancing, yoga, blogging, and, currently, sewing.
5. I'm part of a regular book club, which helps me fill up my free time (when I have some) with reading good books.
6. We joined NetFlix when my husband was in medical school. We both love movies, and not only have we saved money and kept my growing DVD collection from getting insanely large, I also filled (and still fill) my lonely nights when he's on-call with a good movie.
7. I joined a gym when he was in residency and really got into shape. Not only did I feel good physically, I was also mentally and emotionally healthier. I had to slow down when I was pregnant and soon after our son was born. Recently, I've started walking, which is making a big difference in my attitude!
8. Not only do I blog, but I've also joined Twitter and Facebook. I admit that I'm becoming addicted to both, but they've really helped me stay in touch with friends from all over the country.
9. I'm still learning, but I try to ask for and accept help from others when I need it. I've always felt like I'm imposing on others when I ask them to babysit for me. However, those date nights and vacations alone with my husband have always helped keep our relationship strong.
10. I discovered a love for playing board and role-playing games, especially with my husband. We've been a part of small gaming groups over the last several years. When we moved to out current hometown, we reconnected with some of our college friends, who also play games. I've learned that gaming is a great problem-solving activity and such a wonderful creative outlet.

I'm sure there are other ways I've learned to stay happy as a doctor's wife, but these are my main outlets. If you're the spouse of a physician, what types of outlets have you found work for you?

Friday, May 1, 2009

Vacay Time!

I'll be away until about May 11, though I may check up on the blog and my e-mail occasionally during that time. Have an awesome week, everyone!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

What Is Your Relationship Like With Your Spouse?

When I started this blog, I wrote a disclaimer (at the bottom of the page) that stated I most likely wouldn't answer questions asking for intimate details about my relationship with my husband. However, recently I received a few e-mails from people dating OB/Gyns, who asked me about my experiences. Without divulging any of the information in those e-mails, I want to make a few things clear to those of you reading this blog. First, my husband and I have a very caring, loving, and healthy physical and emotional relationship built on trust, understanding, and communication. As I said in a previous blog post on my "Married to the M. D." blog, I believe that communication is the key to any good marriage. Though I'm still working on it myself, I think talking to my husband about our feelings and thoughts on anything related to our relationship helps us to grow and become a better couple, as well as better parents to our son. When I receive e-mails asking me what I would do in a specific situation with my significant other, I want to immediately say, "I'd talk to him about what's going on." I try to remind the person who wrote the e-mail that I really don't feel qualified to give any advice related to her situation. Every person is different with unique life experiences. How my husband and I live is probably very different from the way even our own parents live. Also, though every OB/Gyn (and, really, every doctor in every field) has gone through similar training, each one brings something different to his/her occupation because of his/her previous life experiences. I've known my husband since way before he became an OB/Gyn. I know his personality and how he handles himself in different situations. I also know that being an OB/Gyn is his career and completely unrelated to his being my husband or being a father to our son. If he can, he usually tries to leave his work at work, so that he can focus on us when he's at home. I've been asked how I can trust him, especially in his specific profession. My answer is that I just do. He may do twenty different exams on twenty different women each day, but at the end of that day, he comes home to me. As I've stated before, he learned to look at the female body in an objective, diagnostic way when he studied in medical school and worked in residency. He knows and understands how to differentiate between his work life and his home life. I don't know how other men in his profession live their lives outside of the hospital (though I suspect that many of them are like my husband), so I cannot give any advice on how to handle someone else's dating/marriage situation. I can, however, reiterate that if someone is seeking help with his/her relationship, I would suggest that he/she find a local marriage counselor, psychiatrist, psychologist, or even a clergyman or clergywoman to guide him/her. All of these people are trained to deal with relationships and their complications. I admit to seeing a counselor myself before my husband and I were married, and it really helped me look at our relationship from a different perspective. If a time came when I needed that help again, I would definitely seek it out, so I highly encourage anyone else to do the same.
Now, for anyone coming to my blog wanting to know if sex is different or better with an OB/Gyn: I'm sorry. That's one answer I'm keeping to myself.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Good Reasons To Be A Doctor's Wife

Because I felt like I was complaining a little too much about my current situation in my last post (this is MY life and I chose to marry my husband, knowing what I was getting myself into), I wanted to direct you to a fellow Twitter friend and physician's wife, Kathi, and her "wingspouse blog". Based on this article on why a person should be happy to be a doctor, she wrote her own response on why we should be happy to be doctors' wives! It's a good reminder to me of my importance in our relationship and what I can do to contribute to my husband's career and life, in general. I particularly like #1: "Some day (if not already) you’ll get to do cool things other people will never get the chance to do." Already in B's first year of practice, we're going to be traveling around the country more than we have in the past several years (and we've definitely seen more new places since he started residency than I ever had before in my life!). Thanks, Kathi, for your perspective!

*The Disclaimers:

1. This will not be a "medical advice" blog, so if you have any questions pertaining to your personal medical situation, please do not ask me. My husband is the physician, not me. I know how to put band-aids and kisses on boo-boos, and that's about the extent of my medical expertise. Also, please do not ask me to take your medical questions to my husband to be answered by him. I just don't believe that's ethically right, especially within this type of forum. Please seek the guidance and care of your own personal physician for any specific medical questions you may have.

2. If your question is in any way personal, I may not answer it. If you ask me anything about parenting or motherhood, especially if it pertains to this blog, I will most likely answer you. However, if you want to know my full name, date of birth, address, phone number, the health of my sex life, etc., I'm not going to give you a reply. For those who are curious, I'm a Cancer, my current favorite color is purple, my favorite number is 7, and my interests include cooking, sewing, reading, assisting in the organization of my local moms' group, spending time with my family and friends, playing board and role-playing games, Twittering, and blogging, of course.

3. If you think words like "vagina" and "breast" are best left for the bathroom and/or bedroom, then this blog is probably NOT for you. I live with a doctor full-time, so the correct medical jargon for body parts is a part of my everyday vocabulary. I am certain, considering my husband's chosen field, that I will be using such words quite often when I answer your questions. Yes, I say "penis" and "breast" around my 2-year-old son. He's bound to hear them someday, and it might as well be from his parents. Also, I personally believe in teaching my children the correct names for their body parts.

That's it! Everything else is fair game! Thanks for sharing and reading!