I am an engineering student who loves physics but didn't quite enjoy chemistry.
a. When I was in high school chemistry to me was something not as inspiring as physics but in which I couldn't solve problems well. Things looked no more than the arithmetics, but I got the answers wrong.
b. Reading university chemistry textbooks (e.g. Oxtoby, Principles of Modern Chemistry 7E) I thought it was more of the physics behind the chemical objects and their reactions. Like quantum mechanics, electrodynamics, thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, ... they are just called differently - quantum chemistry, thermochemistry, chemical kinetics.
c. So I question the significance of existence of chemistry. No offence, it's a pure curiosity. I now believe that all fields of study must be respected, and I want to take a step to do so by understanding the true meaning of chemistry.
Q1. Why isn't chemistry as science-looking as other natural sciences?
Q2. Why isn't chemistry a mere branch of physics? (Why is it distinguishable?)
Q3. So what do chemists research?
Q4. Please give me any important insight about chemistry as a discipline.
Nowadays, I am very interested in chemistry, and want to learn it again at a broader viewpoint, with the proper philosophy of appreciating it. Could any chemist help.
Edited 1. I guess many people dislike and downvoted this post simply because I proposed a view (kind of) against chemistry. I will not delete the post - it is definitely worth leaving it as it is, because there is a nice answer and I consider that can help many other students ovecome difficulties of studying chemistry.
Edited 2 (My answer to this question).
Now I fully understood the need for chemistry. Sadly I couldn't post my own answer as the question was closed, so I am simply adding it here. Studying some more quantum mechanics, I realised that it provides a good basis for the theoretical understanding of facts through idealised models, but perhaps the only way it can directly contribute to the real world is through experiments and useful numerical values. That's the experimental physics aspect of chemistry that makes it meaningful.
Another important fact is chemistry itself being a theoretical basis for many other fields, such as molecular biology or chemical engineering. As an example, I would say that it is both practically and theoretically impossible and meaningful to think about the wave functions every single time we consider chemical processes. Various numerical measures in chemistry, such as the equilibrium constant, allow us to focus more on the essence of what's happening in other natural phenomena.
The final thing I want to emphasise is that contemporarily the boundaries between all of the natural sciences and even engineering have become much less explicit and most research is being conducted under interdisciplinary circumstances. I realised this after learning some proper physics and general chemistry. And general chemistry is like a collection of 100-year-old theories. The interconnections between various fields of studies in the modern sciences are so complex that I cannot, or anybody else would also be unable to, express.