How to beat the age debate

Published by Kirsten Ronngren on

Are you old enough to be a doctor? SERIOUSLY PEOPLE COME ON. If I had a dollar for every time I heard that when I graduated I’d have a million bajillion dollars. At first I laughed when I heard that, but it got old really quickly. I wanted to be understanding when clients would comment on my age, but it just felt SO DAMN DEMEANING. I didn’t want to seem so sensitive and meek, but it really bothered me and seemed like clients didn’t trust me or respect all of the time, hard work, and money I had just put into becoming a doctor. So how did I overcome this huge hurdle?

Three words: TIME, CONFIDENCE, and EMPATHY. 

It took some time, but after a few months I realized that most of the time people’s comments about my age came from a few of the same places:

  1. Their fears: A lot of people are just afraid that a new doctor doesn’t have the experience or knowledge of a doctor who’s been doing this for 5, 10, or 50 years….and they’re not wrong. 
    1. The fix: What we lack in experience, we make up for in enthusiasm plus all the newest tips and tricks in medicine. Remind your client’s you’ve got a great support system behind you if you need help BUT that you’ve got access to all the most recent recommendations in medicine. 
  2. Their lack of education: 99% of the population has NO idea what we grow through in vet school to get where we are. They don’t understand the rigor and complexity of our classes and clinical rotations
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