Some people call me mom, some call me Auntie, some call me Hey and some call me Doctor. This is the story about who I am and how I got to where I am...
My name is Linda M Tincher, DDS. I am a dentist in Westlake Village/Thousand Oaks area. I am mother to five children and one grandbaby with another on the way. I am very fortunate to have my niece and nephew living with me as well.
I got married at the age of 17- Yes that is young, but I was a woman on a mission and nothing was going to stop me. I fell in love with a blond headed, blue eyed man and I remember wanting blond haired, blue eyed kids. I figured this would be my best shot. I became an emancipated minor to get married. Which means I had to go in front of a judge and ask permission to divorce my parents. I remember the judge asking me why I wanted to get married. My answer was that I love him. She said you are 17 years old, I bet you don’t even know what love was. I said “you really want to know?” she said yes that is why you are here. “I said I want to go through a lot of school and I want all my degrees to be in the same name…..There in starts my life.
I married Tracy Allen Tincher on July 18, 1981 In Wofford Heights California. I was 17 and he was 19. I wanted to go on to school right away. I found out the hard way that it doesn’t always happen the way you want it. I was working at the Hospital in Mt Mesa and in order to go to school I had to live by the school and you have to have money to exist. I then moved to Bakersfield and worked at Memorial Hospital as a ward clerk.
I remember coming into work one day and running in to an impatient man who said “where is my mother” being I was just coming into work I said very politely to the man “ I am just getting to work as soon as I find out I will let you know, what is your name. He said Buck Owens. Now to people growing up in Bakersfield or surrounding areas that should have rung a bell but it didn’t so I went about my merry way and proceeded to ask the charge nurse if she knew where Mr Owen’s mom was.
Soon, I got called into the administrative office. Was not sure why, but when I got there I found out. I got a tongue lashing for not being respectful to Mr Buck Owens. He happened to donate a lot of money to that hospital and apparently I should have known. I remember going home that night and crying to my husband. I just wanted to go back to school. I thought I was smarter than all around me. Tracy made me a deal. He said you can go to school and I will pay for it and support you but you have to get good grades and you can’t give up. I thought easy peasy...I got this. I applied to California State College, Bakersfield and got in. My first degree was a BS in Chemistry, I thought I was all that, because I was ACS certified.
I almost graduated on time but when I went to applied for graduation, I was short a history class so I stayed one extra semester so my graduation date is December 1986.
I had my first child February 1987, Beautiful baby girl Monika Bernice Tincher. 24 months later came my second kid Robert Michael Tincher, born December 1988. Now two children and I have a BS degree and I was working as a Chemist in a lab in Paso Robles California. I was making $5 per hour and I remember my husband being mad that I was only making that much when he just had a high school education and was making three times more than me.
My journey begins I went back to school at night and studied. My choice was that I was going to be a nurse or a dentist. I wasn’t sure I could be a dentist because I did not think I was smart enough. My husband always told me I was. When you are home with two kids and you are out of school for a bit you lose some part of yourself or your identity. I forgot my self worth I did not feel I was smart enough so my husband, who always knew more then me, made me a bet. He said I bet you are smart enough and I said “I don’t think so.
Lets just say it was the best bet I ever lost, because I got accepted into University of Southern California School of Dentistry (USC). I was walking on air the first few weeks when I got onto campus. Mind you I had two kids one was 3 and the other was 18 months when I started dental school.
Dental school journey is a lifetime all to itself. I did mention that I had two kids going through dental school. Well my husband was unable to get transferred to an area close to USC, the economy was in a downturn, we could not just abandon our house. I could not really afford to live separately. I could not afford to have an apartment on my own. I joined a dental fraternity--Yes you read that right. See there was no dental sorority, only a dental hygiene sorority. I was not going to be a hygienist, but rather a dentist. So I rushed and became a PSI Omega. I was able to live in the fraternity for $150 per month. I believe I was the first woman to do this. It was different to say the least, but coming from a big family, 5 boys and 5 girls I think this prepared me. I went to school during the week and then I would travel 4 hours back home to see my kids and my husband.
I did make it through dental school I graduated May 1996. I had my third child June 1996.
Passed my board November 4 1998. Therein started my dental career.