I’m Afraid I’ve Been Thinking …

… about careers.

Not just my career, either, though lord knows I’ve been thinking about that. I’ve been thinking about Sim careers, specifically, a midwife career. Now, I know a lot of us (myself included) just put different Sims into the medical career and use our imaginations, but … eh, I just kinda want to make a custom career. Especially since I have Pescado’s HarderJobs in; if I have a custom midwife career, I can throw peasant women (’cause it’s mostly going to be women) into it and they won’t take up places in the proper Medical career — I can save that for the college-educated.

 So I’ve written up a midwife career — haven’t done any SimPE work yet, because I’m still writing up all the text. However, I’d really like to have someone else (read: all of you guys) have a look at it. So, here goes nothing:

Adult Career

  1. Wet Nurse/Nursery attendant
    1. Skills: 0-all
    2. Pay: $138
    3. Hours: 8 AM – 6 PM
    4. Days: SMTWH
    5. Description: Welcome to the world of early childhood care! A local woman needs help with caring for her newborn, and you have graciously offered your assistance – for a small fee, of course. A very small fee, really. It’s your job to make sure that this child makes it through its first year of life. Work on your problem-solving skills and motor abilities, and who knows, maybe you’ll find better opportunities down the road.
  2. Village Nurse
    1. Skills: Logic 1; Mechanical 2; Friends 0
    2. Pay: $221
    3. Hours: 5 PM – 1 AM
    4. Days: MWHFS
    5. Description: Your fame as an attendant to the young and helpless has spread all over the village. The good news is that somebody else can now take care of those messy portions of childrearing. The bad news is that it’s now your job to watch the very ill through the night and take care of their messy feedings, spit-ups, linen changes, etc. Keep those problem-solving skills sharp, and keep your eyes peeled for opportunity – who knows, maybe you’ll find a job that allows you to see daylight.
  3. Midwife’s Apprentice
    1. Skills: Logic 3; Mechanical 3; Friends 1
    2. Pay: $296
    3. Hours: 8 AM – 3 PM
    4. Days: SMTWS
    5. Description: The local midwife is getting on in years and is looking for someone to take her place once she departs this mortal sphere. She’s chosen you! On the one hand, the pay is much better and you now are on your way to being part of a profession, not just piecemeal labor. On the other hand … you had no idea that all of this went into childbirth. Study hard and watch what your mistress does – maybe even try to master one of her herbal concoctions – and who knows, you might make it through this apprenticeship with your sanity intact.
  4. Midwife’s Assistant
    1. Skills: Logic 4; Mechanical 4; Cooking 1; Friends 2
    2. Pay: $359
    3. Hours: 8 AM – 3 PM
    4. Days: SMTWS
    5. Description: Your apprentice days are over, but you still aren’t skilled enough to set out your own shingle. You’ve decided to stay with your old mistress to practice a bit more before you take over the reins yourself. Learn a few more of the old lady’s recipes, keep your hands soft and supple and keep thinking on your feet, and you’ll be on your own in no time.
  5. Midwife
    1. Skills: Logic 5; Mechanical 5; Cooking 3; Friends 2
    2. Pay: $403
    3. Hours: 8 AM – 6 PM
    4. Days: SMTWS
    5. Description: You made it! You’re now out on your own, a full-fledged midwife. Plenty of people don’t even make it this far, so give yourself a pat on the back. However, you’re not done moving up yet. There have to better ways to do your job – just have to be. Study up on herbal recipes and concoctions to comfort and protect both mother and child, and who knows how far you’ll rise.
  6. Wise Woman/Cunning Man
    1. Skills: Logic 6; Mechanical 5; Cooking 5; Friends 2
    2. Pay: $486
    3. Hours: 9 AM – 5 PM
    4. Days: TWHFS
    5. Description: There are better ways to do your job, and you’ve found them. A pinch of this, a dash of that, a little bit of Mystery Herb – you haven’t perfected your recipes, not by a long shot, but you’ve certainly improved them and discovered some new ones, as well. Your women customers are happy, their babies are healthy, and now even some of the menfolk are seeking out your painkillers and remedies for infection. Keep up the good work and make a few friends in the right places, and who knows how far you’ll climb?
  7. Family Retainer
    1. Skills: Logic 7; Mechanical 7; Cooking 6; Friends 4
    2. Pay: $549
    3. Hours: 9 AM – 4 PM
    4. Days: MTHFS
    5. Desc: Your success rate is skyrocketing, your herbal concoctions have never been better, and the local noble family now wants to put you on permanent retainer. In exchange for guiding their women through pregnancy, birthing their babies, and taking care of other women’s health needs, they’re willing to pay all of your living expenses (and a little extra). Not a bad deal, but don’t rest on your laurels now. With a little more work on your technique and potions, you might just open up a few more doors for yourself.
  8. Midwife-Surgeon
    1. Skills: Logic 8; Mechanical 9; Cooking 7; Friends 5
    2. Pay: $625
    3. Hours: 10 AM – 5 PM
    4. Days: MTWHF
    5. Description: The trouble with working for one family is that each family only contains so many childbearing women – and your lady has just finished her childbearing years. No problem, though – you’ve gained enough expertise to rebrand yourself as a midwife-surgeon. Now it’s your job to get your patients – both mother and child – through the riskiest births. Pull enough miracles out of hats, and you might just finagle your way into the choicest midwife spot in the country.
  9. Royal Midwife
    1. Skills: Logic 8; Mechanical 10; Cooking 8; Friends 7
    2. Pay: $748
    3. Hours: 10 AM – 4 PM
    4. Days: TWHFS
    5. Description: You’re back to being a family retainer – only it’s for the ROYAL family! You’ve busted your chops and proven yourself, and the reward is this plum position. So keep your hands clean and your potions potent, for you’re playing catcher for the heir to the throne! Gee, with this kind of client and this kind of salary, how much farther could you possibly rise?
  10. Obstetrical Authority
    1. Skills: Logic 10; Mechanical 10; Cooking 9; Friends 8
    2. Pay: $990
    3. Hours: 11 AM – 4 PM
    4. Days: MTWH
    5. Description: Word of your successes have spread far and wide – so far and wide, that everyone wants to know how you did it. So much so, that they’re willing to pay you to be the resident birthing guru. It’s a nice change, going from birthing babies to birthing texts and giving speeches – there’s less work, less pressure, less responsibility, and somehow, more money. So wear your laurels with pride and enjoy your new lifestyle. You’ve earned it.

Teen/Elder Career

  1. Nanny
    1. Skills: 0
    2. Pay: $56
    3. Hours: 3 PM – 7 PM
    4. Days: SMTWH
    5. Desc: Welcome to the world of early childhood care! A local woman needs help with caring for her newborn, and you have graciously offered your assistance – for a small fee, of course. A very small fee, really. It’s your job to make sure that this child makes it through its first year of life. Work on your problem-solving skills and motor abilities, and who knows, maybe you’ll find better opportunities down the road.
  2. Midwife’s Apprentice
    1. Skills: Logic 2; Mechanical 1; Friends 1
    2. Pay: $127
    3. Hours: 3PM – 6 PM
    4. Days: SMTWS
    5. Desc: The local midwife is getting on in years and is looking for some help, and maybe even someone to take her place in the years to come. She’s chosen you! On the one hand, the pay is much better and you now are on your way to being part of a profession, not just piecemeal labor. On the other hand … you had no idea that all of this went into childbirth. Study hard and watch what your mistress does – maybe even try to master one of her herbal concoctions – and who knows, you might make it through this apprenticeship with your sanity intact.
  3. Midwife’s Assistant
    1. Skills: Logic 3; Mechanical 2; Cooking 1; Friends 3
    2. Pay: $154
    3. Hours: 3 PM – 6 PM
    4. Days: SMTWS
    5. Desc: Your apprentice days are over, but you still aren’t skilled enough to set out your own shingle, so you’ve decided to stay with your old mistress to practice a bit more. Concentrate on learning a few more of the old lady’s recipes, keeping your hands soft and supple, thinking on your feet, and enjoying yourself in your chosen career. Not everyone gets to help bring new life into the world, after all.

Chance Cards

You’ll probably notice that there are no chance cards displayed here — that’s because I haven’t written them yet. I’m having trouble deciding whether I should go for “serious” chance cards, or “Sim silly” chance cards, or maybe a mix of both. Let me give you an example of what I mean for both:

Serious Chance Card — Level 7 (Family Retainer)

Sim-Name is in his/her stillroom, working on a new potion, when the lady of the house enters. She shuts the door, looks at Sim-Name, and confesses that her monthly is a few days late — does Sim-Name have any potions to hurry things along? Sim-Name has just such a potion, but there’s a problem: if the late course is because of a pregnancy, the potion will terminate it. Now, on the one hand, Sim-Name understands where the lady of the house is coming from — she’s just had four children in five years and was hoping for a break after finally delivering a son. On the other hand, the lord of the house wants another boy, and he’s the one paying the bills. What’s a poor family retainer to do?

Option A: Give the lady the potion

Option B: Advise the lady to wait a few days

The good result from option A would probably be monetary, a little “present” from the lady as a thank-you. The bad result would be the husband finding out and getting fired/demoted (probably demoted down to midwife). The good result from Option B would be for the lady to get her monthly anyway, and the Sim to get a couple of charisma points for talking her out of taking the potion. The bad result from Option B would be for the lady to take a dislike to the midwife, and again, a firing/demotion.

Silly Chance Card — Level  8 (Midwife-Surgeon)

Forceps are a wonderful invention, but only if you use them correctly. Sim-Name hasn’t. Oh, both the baby and the mother are alive and seem likely to stay that way, but there’s a slight issue with the baby’s nose … it’s kind of crushed. And the father has some crazy ideas about noses, and intelligence, and … it’s a mess. So Sim-Name has two choices: s/he can get some cotton padding and hopefully rebuild the nose, or come clean to the father and hope for the best.

Option A:  Get me some cotton!

Option B: Honesty is always the best policy

I know the forceps are an anachronism, but this whole episode is in reference to Tristram Shandy, which is a very silly novel, and thus why it’s a silly chance card. Anyway, the good result from Option A would be the nasal reconstruction going off without a hitch and gaining some mechanical skill points; the bad result would be for the father to catch the midwife in the act and charge them a couple day’s pay or something. The good result from Option B would be to successfully explain things to the father and gain some logic/charisma points; the bad result would be to botch the explanation and lose logic/charisma points.

So, which do you guys prefer? I hope to share this when it’s finished (though I can’t guarantee it will be finished soon), so it’d be nice to know what people would like. I’m leaning toward a mix of serious and silly cards, myself. 🙂

Other Questions

So, yeah, obviously I wouldn’t be posting this if I didn’t have some questions.

  • First would be, what do you think of the career overall? Does it sound like something you guys might want/need? For what it’s worth, I plan to clone it from the science career and use the science career reward, which would be available (I’m guessing?) at Level 6.
  • Any glaring mistakes/errors in what I’ve typed up so far?
  • Do the skill levels, pay scale, etc. sound reasonable? (I should note that the pay is deliberately kept low, because this would be a career I’d mostly put peasant women into — plus, I used Leiela’s career caps as a guideline for what women ought to be making.)
  • I was thinking of perhaps adding an apothecary track for male Sims — from what I see here it’s possible to have different job titles/descriptions for different genders, so I could make males apothecaries and females midwives. I know that there is an apothecary career, um, somewhere, but I haven’t been able to find it. So, would there be any interest in this?

That’s all. Hope you guys like the idea so far! 😀

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14 thoughts on “I’m Afraid I’ve Been Thinking …

  1. I think it´s a very good ideia I like it a lot! I think the career should have the cleaning skill, because clean instruments are better (I´ve just read Ken Follet’s World Without End and one of the main characters wants to be a doctor, and has the hospital spotless). I think the chance cards should have a bit of serious and a bit of Sim Silly or you could think: What would Kata Tatcher do?

  2. Yay, somebody likes the idea!

    The only reason I hesitate about adding cleaning skill is because I’m not sure if a base-game compatible career can handle it — otherwise I’d definitely throw in a few cleaning skill points at one stage or another. (Not so many, because while we know hygiene is important, medieval folks didn’t.) Also, if I do Logic/Mechanical/Cleaning, that’s the exact same skill set as the Medical career — and if I do Logic/Cleaning/Cooking, that’s the exact same skill set as the Science career!

    So I’ll have to poke around the MTS creator boards and see if the game can handle that without freaking out. Thanks for the suggestion! 🙂

    • Oh Alright then!
      I think that a royal midwife should be higher than the obstetrical authority afterall it’s for the royal family! what would a peasant desire more than help with birth of the next king!
      And yeah I know that medieval hygiene was well … almost non existant, but the Sim could be a visonary…
      I agree with Hat, perhaps the male track could be that of a barber-surgeon or apothecary.
      Well good luck with that. if you need feedback I’m glad to help!!

      • Good question. I was thinking that the “Obstetrical Authority” job would be kind of like the Maxis “Hall of Famer” or “Hand of Poseidon” or “Ecological Guru” — a job with poorly defined duties, not a whole lot of hours, and lots and lots of money. 😉 But Royal Midwife could fit that bill just as well. The Queen can only push out so many babies. I’ll have to think about it!

        Thanks so much for the help, Bleudragon!

  3. Hrm hokay lemme think. I do think both a midwife and an apothecary career would be good ideas, even if I’m not really one for custom careers… Feedback is probably more important than what I would or wouldn’t download myself, though.

    For one thing, I don’t know if you want to include Wet Nurse. It’s actually– or was in metropolitan Italy– a fairly high-paying job, and not really a stepping-stone on the way to midwife. Again I link to good old Margherita Datini, who was organizing looking for a nurse for someone. (Also, a wet nuse could evolve into just a nurse; if you’ve read Romeo and Juliet, the Nurse talks briefly about her own son’s death. That was why she was hired by the Capulets and why she stayed on with Juliet into… well, by their standards, young adulthood, but into her very early teens, at least.)

    It was also entirely possible for women to work as apothecaries and surgeons– women were especially likely to be eye surgeons, because they were trained to delicate work from childhood. Maybe the alternate male career track could be folk medicine or something? Non-university-educated doctors of either gender were called empirics, so there’s that… (Or I might go the empiric route myself for the default career and try to figure out how to make a custom University-required career for properly educated physicians. I’d love to replace Show Business with it, but what a weird reward for a medic.)

    As far as the tone goes, while I think there’s a suspicious lack of tragedy in Sims’ lives as babies, toddlers, and children, I think you should go with whatever you’d most like in your game.

    I have no idea how Cleaning score might affect a base-game compatible career, but Medieval people bathed. It was only around 1600 that Europeans got the idea that perfume and steam rooms were a reasonable alternative to keeping clean… Although the Medieval definition of ‘keeping clean’ was washing your face and hands before and after meals and having at least a sponge bath at least once a week, depending on what you could afford. Still, that’s better than ‘splash some rosewater on, no one will know,’ if not as nearly good as the Medieval Vikings’ and Muslims’ hygiene.

    • I specifically waited until I posted “Those Who’d Ground Me” before I replied to this comment, because I knew I needed to get my thinking on the subject of medicine straightened out before I could properly reply. And then, of course, it was 2 in the morning, and I realized I wasn’t going to get in a proper reply anyway until I’d gotten so sleep. So. Here we go.

      First things first: wet nurses. You bring up an excellent point, Hat; I was just trying to think of something that would lead an adult woman into midwifery, instead of being apprenticed as a teen (which is what I imagine would happen most of the time in Albion). But instead of wet nurse, I think I’ll have the job be “Hand-Holder.” The description would go as follows:

      Women have babies. It’s a fact of life. And sometimes, they need someone to help them through the process. That’s where you come in. You already have all the necessary qualifications — a strong stomach and a compassionate nature. So hold these women’s hands, rub their backs, help them breathe. If all goes well, you get a little present at the end of the day — and who knows, if you learn to think on your feet and get better at those backrubs, maybe you’ll get a better job down the line!

      Sound better? I’d keep the pay and hours the same (hey, labor takes time! ;)).

      Ok, so, in Albion, people who get a college education in medicine are called doctors (and surgeons, if they choose to specialize in surgery). Both men and women can get that education, though men are more likely to try out for/be accepted into those programs (as we saw in “Those Who’d Ground Me”). I said somewhere in the Checkylist (part 4, I believe) that men who work in the medical field and aren’t doctors are called apothecaries. Women are called nurses, unless they’re midwives. Of course, this is all just me making things simpler and easier for yours truly. 😉

      However, I can make room for women to be apothecaries (functionally, if not necessarily having a career in game terms) by having them run shops with lots of pretty jars and plants for sale, and calling the plants medicinal herbs and saying that the jars are full of medicine. 😉 If their husband is a doctor, so much the better — the wife is mixing up his medicines, that’s all!

      By the way, non-colleged-educated women working in medicine who aren’t midwives are called nurses in Albion. They might be doing the same work as an apothecary (who I imagine would function a lot like nurse practicioner in today’s terms, in Albion if not necessarily in the real Middle Ages, as well as mixing medicines and potions). Or they might not, I guess it would change from case-to-case and village-to-village.

      I think, then, that I’ll go for a mix of silly and serious. I like a good mixture. 😉

      Yeah, medieval hygiene wasn’t the worst, but … it certainly wasn’t the best. I guess what I’m thinking is that it might be worth four or five cleaning skill points added late in the career; it’s not worth 9 skill points begun from the very, um, beginning.

      Besides, if I go the apothecary route, then I’ll definitely need those cooking points. 😉

      Thanks for the help, Hat!

      • I would’ve left a comment anyway, and come back in the morning and gone ‘wtf did I just say? And why is it so LONG and rambly?’ So sleeping on it was probably a good idea. *grins*

        I think Hand-Holder is a pretty decent starting point, actually. (Although it occurred to me that Midwifery was one career where it would be reasonable to need a lot of friends to advance– word of mouth is how people find out how good you are, so…)

        It’s totally fair to reorganize things so it’s easier for you. *grins* I’ll admit I was partly thinking in terms of default replacement careers, but it’s not too hard (time-consuming, but not hard) to write up different defaults for each career.

        Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve always liked ‘functionally’ better than… just about anything else. I wonder if you can sell the medicine from the science career track in an OFB shop?

        • Sleeping is always a good idea. 😉

          Maybe I should up the family friend count in some points … I don’t want this career to be as friend-dependent as, say, the Slacker or Politics career, since I imagine a midwife’s actual skill level would be at least as important as the number of people willing to speak well of her just because they like her. 😉 I’ll have to consider that more.

          Tee hee, that’s the nice thing about having your own world! If you’re writing actual historical fiction, you have to work with these messy things call facts that rarely ever are simple … in your own world, you can draw the line someplace, especially if it’s someplace that isn’t going to really affect your story. … Er, at least not anytime soon.

          You know what, the monastery has a science career reward and a shop (er … a cathedral) already. Next time I go in-game, I’m going to have to just try that! 😉

  4. I only saw one typo or something at level 5: “There have to better ways to do your job”.

    I like the idea though. And since it’s close to the medical career, I would just keep their skills for it. I think the pricerange is quite reasonable. I mean, if it’s for peasants they really can’t get rich by this job. And it makes sense to earn a little more money in the end since the sim is so well-known and requested and royal and noble families may actually give “good” tips etc.

    • Typo is officially fixed and zapped! Thank you, Saquina!

      Hmm, good point about maybe keeping the medical career’s skills. I’ll think about that. 🙂 And exactly. I want someone who is a midwife to be able to provide an income that will keep her family fed, housed, and clothed, but not too much beyond that. (This would be a good option for widows, or for women whose husbands are working in someone’s store or on someone’s lands and making squat.) I don’t want them making a ton of money from this.

      Besides, yesterday afternoon I paid out the “poor dole” from the monastery and nunnery, which is now officially bigger than some of the top careers … *sigh* Good thing the taxes are so heavy on the peasants, otherwise, everyone would be getting obscenely rich. 😉

  5. Okay, seeing as how you wrote this in 2010, I have a few thoughts on this:

    1) This career sounds awesome!
    2) I would totally have a use for it in my game!
    3) Why have I not yet come across it at PBK???? Yes, I’m aware that there is already a midwifery career, but I want THIS one too, because I am a bit spoiled and one can never have too many careers in-game. Except in the case of default careers, obviously 😉
    4) If the reason for not having this career is that it hasn’t been uploaded yet, refer to #s 1 and 2 as motivation to finish it 😉
    5) If it IS up somewhere, please kindly point me in the direction of where to download (or upload to PBK, since I stalk the Download Updates forum 😀 )

    Thanks! Also, it can’t be said enough how much I love your blog!

    • Sorry to disappoint you, PrincessEternity, but I haven’t touched this in literally years. 😦 I doubt I’m going to return to it any time soon. I’ve gotten too caught up in the default careers, plus everything else going on in my life.

      Maybe someday, if all the default careers are … well, defaulted, I might return to this. If that doesn’t happen … well, it’s probably going to stay on the back burner permanently.

      Sorry. 😦

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