The Atlantic

The Pediatrician’s Most Awkward Task

Can doctors teach people how to parent?
Source: bookzv / Shutterstock

When Carrie Quinn was training to be a pediatrician, she dutifully memorized the list of symptoms for meningitis. She learned the right antibiotics for pneumonia. But when she got into the clinic, she found herself unprepared for what really concerned parents.

“What I was actually facedMore often, it was parents anxious over what to do about their kids’ behavior issues or language delays.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic8 min readPolitics
The Nationalists Take Washington
Prominent figures from Tucker Carlson to John Bolton gathered at the Ritz-Carlton to declare war on the conservative establishment and lay the groundwork for a new intellectual movement on the right.
The Atlantic7 min read
The Future of the City Is Childless
A few years ago, I lived in a walkup apartment in the East Village of New York. Every so often descending the stairway, I would catch a glimpse of a particular family with young children in its Sisyphean attempts to reach the fourth floor. The mom wo
The Atlantic2 min readPolitics
The Atlantic Politics & Policy Daily: Tired of Being Alone
The House voted to table Representative Al Green’s impeachment resolution. Plus: The economist Raj Chetty wants to “revive the American dream”—with an idea to change America itself.