Married to Medicine

Happy Valentine’s Day, guys!?? What’s it like being married AND being in medical school? We all know that med school is a jealous mistress, but how jealous is she, really? Can I have a healthy relationship while I battle the Kreb’s Cycle, pharmacology, and clinical skills and the myriad of other things that a medical and health science degree may throw at me? Well, Sari and Blake know- and they agreed to speak with us!

Hey guys, introduce yourselves!
S: My name is Sari, I’m a Family Nurse Practitioner currently working in Orthopedics. I enjoy cooking, traveling, running and hiking with our 2 huskies.
B: I’m Blake, a 4th year med student hoping to match into anesthesiology residency in a few weeks. I’m a great sous chef to my lovely wife, and in addition to the hobbies she listed, I do woodworking as a side hobby.

Blake and Sari

How did you both meet?
S & B: We met during our freshman year of college. Both of us majored in Biology and played ice hockey. We hit it off at a party, and have been best friends ever since.

When did you get married?
S & B: Fun fact: We actually had 2 weddings. We got legally married in 2013 at a court house in St. Augustine, Florida. Then a year later June 14, 2014 we had a formal wedding with all our friends and family in Connecticut. It was quite a rowdy wedding since both the men’s and women’s hockey teams from our college were there. It was a formal, but beautiful, college party hah.

Did the comments of family members and friends affect your decision to get married when you did?
S & B: No. We got engaged young at 23, immediately after graduating college. Our friends and family members were very surprised, but we just knew. And our families have been very supportive ever since.

What’s your day to day schedule like?
B: It varies greatly, depending on which clinical rotation I’m in. The first 2 years of med school were much harder because we were long distance. I attended school on Long Island while Sari worked as a primary care provider in Connecticut, and we would travel to see each other on the weekends. Sari now works three 13 hour shifts per week, and I work my clinical hours. During our free time we have been working on our guided journal for medical students. We co-authored and created “My Short White Coat” to help medical students thrive in medical school.

How do you both deal with stress and hectic schedules?
B: It sounds odd to say, but I alleviate my stress by staying busy. I noticed in medical school that if I didn’t occupy my time with productive tasks, then I would get anxious and stressed thinking about all the things I could be doing or studying. It would put me in a negative state of mind. So I stay busy either being productive around the house or enjoying hobbies like running and woodworking.
S: I run. I have always found physical activity to be a great stress relief for me. Although sometimes my schedule felt too busy, I quickly learned how important it was for my mental health to make time no matter what.
Be sure to check out our website where you’ll find our med student Blog covering all topics of med student life, including mental and overall wellness.

Sari and the doggos!

Do you think that med school and a clinical career is significantly harder when you’re married?
B: The hardest part for me was “study guilt.” I have tried very hard to allocate enough time towards our relationship so that we are both happy. It’s really hard around board studying, but we came to appreciate any time we could spend together.

How do you ensure that the romance and connection you have is maintained?
S & B: We aren’t a “romantic” couple in the typical sense of going on dates and gifting jewelry or flowers. That being said, we are still best friends after 11 years together and find humor, love and connection throughout the day from going on runs, to completing errands, to cooking dinner. We just enjoy spending as much time as we can together.

Does marriage affect the plans you are making for residency positions or where to settle down?
B: Yes, because rather than making the decision independently, we have to find a residency program that fits for both of us. Location, proximity to friends and family, and job opportunities for Sari were are our biggest factors for deciding residencies to apply to.

What advice would you give to those considering marriage during med or health science school, and what encouragement do you have for singletons finding it hard to date because of the #medschoolhustle?
S & B: If it’s the right person who is going to be supportive of you during school and your career, then go for it. It goes both ways too! You also have to support their endeavors while in school and work.

As far as being single in med school, remember to take care of yourself first. Your study routine can consume you if you aren’t careful. Have hobbies outside of med school and make sure to carve out some time for yourself each day. If dating is a priority to you then make time for it. Your “free time” is limited because of med school, so hopefully you can find someone who can be supporting of that.

In our guided journal, there is a section for Health and Wellness with questions about your “support crew” that will help med students reflect on relationships, both positive and negative ones, and how they can be altered. The key is to surround yourself with people who make you a better person (happier, healthier, and ready to crush med school).


Make sure to get My Short White Coat now and as a Valentine’s Day treat, you can get 20% off your purchase PLUS free shipping by using our coupon code “Medcute20”! Follow Sari and Blake on Instagram too @my_short_white_coat.

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