I have heard from a couple midwives that they delivered babies for a number of years and then decided to focus less on deliveries and do more gyne as their careers progressed due to the time commitment/insurance costs/etc. The reason why I ask is because I recognize that a midwife's role encompasses more than deliveries and wanted to know how common that was for those that are practicing or those who plan to do the same once they begin practicing. Part of me wonders if I should pursue a WHNP but I have heard that getting an WHNP degree makes it harder to get a job. I appreciate your answers in advance!
I don't think there are a lot of really seasoned CNMs on this board, so I don't know that you'll get a whole lot of replies.
I think many midwives do do that, it's hard to be up all night for so many years, especially if it's on-call time vs. shift work. How many? I couldn't really say. It would be hard to know when you personally would want to stop doing deliveries until you're actually in that situation.
I also know a few new grad midwives who kind of scrambled for their first jobs, and ended up in positions where they weren't doing any deliveries, like at Planned Parenthood for example, and are quite happy there.
So you're right, being a CNM encompasses care of women throughout their lifespan, not just in the peripartum period. I would suggest just going for CNM if you're even a little interested in doing births, so that you don't kick yourself later. But I haven't ever heard that getting "just" a WHNP degree is less marketable (that is, if you're not doing deliveries). I don't know why that would be the case.