It’s the month of love, when couples celebrate their affection for each other. It’s hard enough for any couple to maintain a successful union, let alone, physicians married to each other. We asked NKCH physician couples how they juggle saving lives with romance and family time.

Beardmans

Todd and Alejandra Beardman

Todd Beardman, MD, NKCH Chief Medical Information Officer and Alejandra Beardman, MD, pediatrician

How did you meet?

“We met the summer before our first year of medical school at a reception for incoming students. Interestingly, our younger sisters went to grade school together.”

How long have you been married?

“26 years.”

Do you have children?

“Walter, 19; and Lily, 17.”

What are the challenges of two physicians married to each other?

“It’s a challenge to coordinate our schedules; balance work and family time; manage fatigue with back-to-back on-call shifts; and pay student loan debt.”

What are the benefits?

“We can ‘decompress’ about a difficult situation, or a rewarding interaction, and the other one understands.”

How do you maintain the work/home balance?

“About 13 years ago, we decided to reduce our work schedules to be more involved and present in our kids’ activities. We also live close to family, who help us.”

What do you enjoy together?

“We like watching sci-fi movies, traveling and reading the same book.”

Lovitt Family

Brian and Collin Lovitt

Brian Lovitt, DO, OB/GYN and Collin Lovitt, DO, hospitalist

How did you meet?

“We met at San Diego State when both of us were working in on-campus labs.”

How long have you been married?

“12 years.”

Do you have children?

“Carter, 9; Keaton, 6; and twins, Daphne and Drake, 4.”

What are the challenges of two physicians married to each other?

“Time! We both have busy schedules, and with four kids it is very challenging. We get help from family. We did have a full-time nanny for eight years. This is the first time we have been without consistent child care. Our kids are in school now, so we are able to make this work.”

What are the benefits?

“We understand how schedules are always changing. In medicine, you never know what your day will be like, and it can change from minute to minute.”

How do you maintain the work/home balance?

“In our time off, we go to a lot of sporting activities to support our kids.”

What’s your favorite date night?

“We enjoy dinner together and a bottle of wine.”

Holly Family

Scotty and Ashley Holly

Scotty Holly, MD, pathologist and Ashley Holly, MD, surgeon

How did you meet?

“We met at the gym in Columbia. Scotty tore his Achilles tendon, and I saw him sitting in a wheelchair on the sidelines. He asked me to wheel him to the ER, and the rest is history.”

How long have you been married?

“6 years, but together 11 years.”

Do you have children?

“Yes, we have three boys, Avinn, 2 ½; Beauman, 17 months; and Pierson, 4 months.”

What are the challenges of two physicians married to each other?

“Our schedules can be busy at the same time, especially early morning, or evening, when we are both on call. But, working at the same hospital helps along with the on-campus daycare.”

How do you divide up the household responsibilities?

“Scotty does most of the cooking because he is a much better cook! We divide and conquer on weekday mornings to get the boys ready for daycare and us off to work.”

What’s your favorite date night?

“We like to make dinner at home, play with the boys and fall asleep on the couch while watching TV.”

Do you ever care for the same patient?

“Yes, Scotty may look at the pathology specimens I have removed during surgery. It’s nice that I can ask him questions about the report or he can get a few more details about the operation to help with a diagnosis.”

What do you enjoy together?

“Anything we can do as a family. We lived apart for 2 ½ years, so we appreciate any time together. We both like playing basketball, tennis and watching sports.”

Vossler Family

Charles and Dana Vossler

Charles Vossler III, MD, anesthesiologist/pain management physician and Dana Vossler, MD, hospitalist

How did you meet?

“We were in the same medical school class.”

How long have you been married?

22 years

Do you have children?

“We have an awesome daughter, Emma, 17 years old.”

What are the challenges of two physicians married to each other?

“You accept several years of not being off together, so one of you is home, while the other works a night/weekend/holiday.”

What are the benefits?

“It’s easy to understand when one of us says, ‘I can’t be at event X because of work.’ We have complete respect for each other’s ‘post-call’ state of fatigue. It’s nice to do a ‘curbside consult’ when you need another opinion.”

How do you maintain the work/home balance?

“We keep a sense of humor when one or both of us has been at work every day for the last 72 days. Our daughter’s grandparents live in town and help as her ‘third parent.’”

What do you enjoy together?

“We like eating out, running, traveling and participating in social clubs.”