View Full Version : marital status?
Did anyone have an experience dealing with "separated/divorced" issue during the interview?
01-14-2004, 12:29 PM
I had a related experience, a la, "Have you thought about marriage and family?"-type issue. These sorts of questions are supposed to be off-limits during an interview, but it's apparently best to be prepared just in case they arise. :)
01-14-2004, 01:04 PM
Yeah, I've heard a number of stories of inappropriate questions being asked. . . med school admissions interviewers are not always experts at what is appropriate and what is not.
On the filp side, I don't think any doctor would hold it against you if you've been separated/divorced. Actually, there's been a rumour at UWO (I don't know if it's true or not) that the entire Orthopedic Surgery department has a) gone through at least one divorce and b) has a number of consultants who wear point a) proudly as a badge of honour, as it supposedly shows how dedicated they are to their work. Once again, I don't know if this rumour is true but I highly doubt if you have had a marital separation it would be held against you in an interview.
01-14-2004, 01:44 PM
Divorce as a badge of honour, eh? Woo, those Orthopods are tougher than I imagined. :)
As to inappropriate lines of questioning, interestingly, the person who asked the question was a physician who, at that time, was working for the Royal College. He's apparently quite the seasoned interviewer, so he was being a bit of a naughty boy.
I'll rephrase the question. In OMSAS application "married/separated" is one check-box. What do you think (or know from experience) is more favorable course of action would be if asked specifics at the interview?
01-14-2004, 06:07 PM
You mean if someone asked you about your marital status in an interview??? I'd tell the truth if you are comfortable enough with it- they can't exclude you from medicine for being divorced, married, single or separated, so it's really a non-issue. And if you are divorced or separated, then maybe it is for the best- trust me, the last thing you need in medicine is a partner who doesn't understand the time commitment required for your studies (not that I know or anything...) or your career for that matter!
Best of luck!
01-14-2004, 10:11 PM
Yeah, we had a few people who were married before first year. If I remember correctly, at least one guy who was 30 and another who was 22 or 23. We also had a whole heck of a lot of people who weren't married (which I would attribute to the fact the average age of the class was 23.6, not any bias against married folks.)
There definitely will not be any interviewers thinking:
"This person is married. . . they must think can have a life outside medicine. . . what are they thinking applying to medicine? Do they not know that being accepted to medicine means automatically moving into the Hospital?"
OR, the alternative. . .
"This person is 22 and not yet married? What, are they a loser? Is there some thing members of the opposite sex know about this guy that we should know about?"
Yeah, like I said: don't worry about it. This is not something that will affect your app.
01-14-2004, 10:16 PM
Good one, UWOMED2005! :rollin
I have to throw my two-cents worth in here, too.
As a woman who was married coming into med school, I found it a really tricky issue to deal with. Mostly because I thought it was an off-limits question then got sidelined at my Ottawa U interview. For men (sorry guys) it seems not to be an issue. At all.
For women. . .it's another story. As it is, women are more often asked the "how would you balance a family and medicine?" question, whether it is appropriate or not. Be prepared. I might add that a defensive answer is not always the best, unless you are a genius at subtle wording. Something along the lines of "I've handled challenges before. . ." with maybe an example or two will help deflect the issue and bring the focus back on your relevant aptitudes.
This is my approach based on my experiences. Everyone will handle the situation differently. My advice is simply be prepared and communicate that you have thought through all these important issues--even the marriage, family, kids situation.
01-21-2004, 03:09 AM
Yeah, it's too bad men aren't asked this question more often. 'Cause as my previous example shows, we often bungle that balance up! :D
And it really should be a fair question but I see your concern. As it is, medicine has a bad habit of letting in people who are so driven they drive themselves nuts, or at least their patients. . .
Thank you all!
I am a man and presently separated. But I am still concerned with issues (possible questions at the interview) of "balancing", "commitment", etc.
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