Dr. Lois H. Love

Psy­chi­a­trist pur­sued med­i­cal school later in life and proved doubters wrong about her abil­i­ties and de­ter­mi­na­tion

Baltimore Sun - - OBITUARIES - By Fred­er­ick N. Ras­mussen fras­mussen@balt­sun.com

Dr. Lois H. Love, a Baltimore psy­chi­a­trist who as a woman with a fam­ily had to fight to gain en­trance to med­i­cal school, died July 22 of lung dis­ease at her Roland Park Place home. She was 94.

“Lois was a ter­rific per­son,” said Dr. Paul E. Roberts, a semire­tired Johns Hop­kins psy­cho­an­a­lyst who lives in Guil­ford. he said he had come to know Dr. Love in the mid-1960s when they were both work­ing at Shep­pard and Enoch Pratt Hospi­tal, and then “we shared a wait­ing room in the La­trobe Build­ing in Mid­town when we went into pri­vate prac­tice.”

“She brought a great hu­man­ity to her work, and she had a good sense of hu­mor as well,” he said. “She was quiet when the sit­u­a­tion called for it but could be out­go­ing as well.”

The daugh­ter of Al­bert Hos­bach, a busi­ness­man and store owner, and Jane Sanville, who was her hus­band’s book­keeper, Lois Hos­bach was born and raised in Ocean City, N.J., and grad­u­ated from Ocean City High School.

“She was the only girl in her class to go to col­lege,” said her daugh­ter, Dr. Rebecca Love of Moab, Utah. “She owned and op­er­ated a board­walk ham­burger stand in or­der to earn tu­ition to at­tend col­lege.”

Af­ter grad­u­at­ing in 1943 with a bach­e­lor’s de­gree in bi­ol­ogy from Swarth­more Col­lege, Dr. Love earned a Ph.D. in phys­i­ol­ogy from the Uni­ver­sity of Penn­syl­va­nia.

She ob­tained her doc­tor­ate un­der the aus­pices of the War Depart­ment and Navy dur­ing World War II. She worked on mi­cro­cir­cu­la­tion of the fin­gers as a means to im­prove pi­lot’s gloves. She also worked on en­cephali­tis vac­cines.

She later taught for sev­eral years at the Women’s Med­i­cal Col­lege of Penn­syl­va­nia, now the Med­i­cal Col­lege of Penn­syl­va­nia, in Philadel­phia.

She was mar­ried in 1946 to Dr. Warner Ed­ward Love, a pro­fes­sor of bio­physics, and in 1957 the cou­ple moved to Baltimore when he was named as­sis­tant pro­fes­sor of bio­physics at the Johns Hop­kins Uni­ver­sity. He later was depart­ment chair­man, serv­ing in that role from 1971 to 1974.

Dr. Love told The Baltimore Sun in a 1992 in­ter­view that she “re­tired” in 1951 to be­come a full-time home­maker and wife.

By 1958, she had two school-age chil­dren and de­cided to re­turn to med­i­cal school to pur­sue a de­gree in psy­chi­a­try. At the same time, an­other woman, Phyl­lis Kouen­hoven Pullen, who was also a home­maker with chil­dren, sought to pur­sue a med­i­cal de­gree.

De­spite both women hav­ing strong con­nec­tions to Johns Hop­kins, the med­i­cal school re­jected them.

They were told to go home and re­turn to tak­ing care of their chil­dren and homes. They were also told that car­ing for chil­dren would prove to be a for­mi­da­ble dis­trac­tion from the rig­ors and de­mands of med­i­cal school.

“They didn’t like tak­ing women in those days; there were hardly any women in med­i­cal schools,” said Dr. Love in the 1992 in­ter­view. She noted this was es­pe­cially true for women who had been years out of col­lege.

“They wanted to be very sure we wanted to go to med­i­cal school and not just take the place of a man who would prac­tice longer,” she said.

At the Uni­ver­sity of Mary­land, the two women were sub­jected to rig­or­ous interviews not by the cus­tom­ary two doc­tors on the ad­mis­sion com­mit­tee but by five.

Mary­land ad­mit­ted both women. At their grad­u­a­tion in 1962, both were magna cum laude grad­u­ates. Dr. Love was 36, and Dr. Pullen was 35.

They were the only two women in their class of 97, and were also among five mem­bers of their class elected to Al­pha Omega Al­pha, the med­i­cal honor fra­ter­nity.

At the time of her grad­u­a­tion, Dr. Love told The Sun that her most im­por­tant as­sets in get­ting through med­i­cal school were “a strong back and strong feet.”

She said she was able to com­plete med­i­cal school be­cause of the strong sup­port of both her hus­band and chil­dren.

“Women need to be do­ing mean­ing­ful things. Medicine is a nat­u­ral kind of ca­reer for women; it’s peo­ple-ori­ented, and women are nat­u­ral care­givers,” Dr. Love said in The Sun in­ter­view.

“It doesn’t suf­fice for women to stay home any more,” she said. “God bless ’em.”

Dr. Love in­terned at the old South Baltimore Gen­eral Hospi­tal, now Har­bor Hospi­tal, and com­pleted a psy­chi­atric res­i­dency at Shep­pard Pratt.

“Psy­chi­a­try just ap­pealed to me, for a lot of rea­sons. It’s a very re­ward­ing spe­cialty, in­tel­lec­tu­ally very sat­is­fy­ing,” she told The Sun.

Dr. Pullen be­came a “coun­try doc­tor” in Jerusalem on the Baltimore-Har­ford county line.

Dr. Love later main­tained a prac­tice from her home. She was a long­time mem­ber of the Baltimore-Wash­ing­ton Cen­ter for Psy­chother­apy and Psy­cho­anal­y­sis in Lau­rel.

She was in her 70s when she re­tired in 2003.

The for­mer Guil­ford, Roland Park and Bolton Hill res­i­dent had lived at Roland Park Place since 2003. She was an avid trav­eler and en­joyed fish­ing. In re­cent years, she was an ac­tive mem­ber of the Swarth­more Col­lege Book Club.

“She was very in­tel­li­gent, cultured, liked good food and was a great con­ver­sa­tion­al­ist,” said Dr. Roberts, who noted that he had trav­eled on oc­ca­sion with Dr. Love and her hus­band. “It’s very hard to imag­ine the world with­out Lois be­ing around.” A me­mo­rial ser­vice will be pri­vate. In ad­di­tion to her hus­band of 70 years and her daugh­ter, Dr. Love is sur­vived by a son, Michael Love of Philadel­phia; and five grand­chil­dren. In ad­di­tion to her med­i­cal de­gree, Dr. Lois Love held a Ph.D. in phys­i­ol­ogy.

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