capn_flapjack (capn_flapjack) wrote in bad_service,

Doctor Suck...

Seeing all the recent bad service at the doctor's post reminded me of my own. TW for body image issues...

Last summer was a real shit time for me. My boyfriend had broken up with me late July, which lead to my having to temporarily move back in with my alcoholic mother, and find a new place to live and move as fast as I possibly could. Because of all this I was under A LOT of stress, and unfortunately when I get stressed, I lose weight rapidly, and I dropped almost 15 pounds in a month. I've always been a small, skinny person, so the weight loss was not only alarming, but I now hated how I looked; I felt like I looked awful, like a skeleton, and everyone commented on it, telling me I needed to fatten up, eat more, etc. so that just added more stress to everything...which obviously didn't help with gaining weight.

Anyway, once I was settled into my new apartment, I talked to my PCP who told me that yes, while I was underweight, I was not unhealthy, and we talked about ways to gain weight. I started drinking Boost shakes in the morning, smoothies at night, try to snack more during the day, and substitute water at lunch with iced tea, anything to get more calories in basically. We agreed on a realistic goal of ten pounds within three months, and then just slowly trying to add more on as time went on. Everything was great.

Come late September, I get incredibly sick. I had the worst sore throat I've ever had to the point where I couldn't talk or eat (thank god for those Boost shakes...). After three days of the sore throat and fever I called the doctor to make an appointment. Unfortunately my PCP was out sick herself, so only the nurse practitioner was in. I'm not fan of my doctor's NP, she has terrible bed side manners, but I was desperate so I made the appointment.

I get there, get called in to the exam room and the Nurse's Aid does the usual weighing and stuff. My heart immediately drops because I had lost another pound since I last weighed in, but I try to put it out of my mind. The Aid asked me if I had been exposed to strep and I just shook my head and shrugged because it hurt too much to talk. She took a peek down my throat and said it didn't look like strep but she'd have the NP do a test anyway. I nodded my thanks and she left. I heard her talking to someone in the hallway, and heard her say "I checked but it doesn't look like strep - " and the NP yell back "Well OF COURSE it's not strep!" Because she would know without checking?

I'm gonna do this part script form to the best of how I remember it. This was also tons of fun because every time I spoke it felt like shards of glass were ripping my throat to shreds.

NP (throwing door to exam room open and demanding): "Why are you losing weight???"
Me (startled): "I'm not trying to lose weight, I've been under a lot of stress lately, and that's how I respond to it."
NP: "Are you sure?? You've lost almost 20 pounds in the last year! You really DO NOT need to be losing weight!"
Me: "I know, I've been stressed lately, I'm trying to gain it back, you can see from my chart I've already talked to Dr. Primary Care Physician about this."
NP (scoffs): "Well, what are you doing?? 20 pounds is too much! You don't need to lose weight!"
Me: Reiterates again, yes I know I don't need to lose weight, I don't want to lose weight, tells her about the regimen PCP put me on. I mention the goal of gaining ten pounds, the Boost shakes, smoothies etc.
NP: "You need to gain more than that! Ten pounds is not enough! What have got to be stressed about anyway?"
Me: "Um, well my boyfriend left me, I had to live with my parents for a bit which was a bad situation, and I had to find a place of my own in less than a month."
NP: "Well, how long ago did he leave you?"
Me: "Two months..." (I start tearing up)
NP (rolls her eyes and mumbles): "You don't need to get upset."
I respond by angrily rubbing tears away.
NP: "How long were you even with him? He's not worth being upset about still!"
Me: (Thinking: Um, fuck you, you don't know how I feel?) "Two years..."
NP: "Two years?? Wow. That's like losing a dog!"
ME: (Thinking what the fuck??) but saying: "Not really."
NP: "Where are you living now?"
ME: "Salem."
NP: "You lived in (other town with a bad reputation) before? Well at least you live somewhere nice now."
ME: Once again thinking, what the fuck??

She finally does the strep test scoffing at me when I gagged on the q-tip and yelling "It's not that bad!"

NP: "Well, it doesn't look like strep. I think you're just sick because you're so skinny."
ME (beyond pissed at this point): "That's not true, but okay."
NP: "You need to gain weight, you'll keep getting sick if you don't"

At this point I just started gathering up my stuff while she continues to lecture me. I go out in the waiting room while they do the strep test anyway, and when it's done she comes out, tells me it's not strep and gives me a script for something for my throat. While I'm walking away she yells after me for all the waiting room to hear "AND GAIN THAT WEIGHT BACK!" I got to my car and just lost it. I complained about her later, but I doubt she even cares.

A few weeks later I had to see my OBGYN for my yearly, and when she weighed me I burst into tears because I had only gained a few pounds. She was obviously alarmed at my response and I just poured out all my frustrations to her about how I couldn't gain weight, and I was miserable since my boyfriend left me, and everything. I apologized for crying and said I know I should be over it by now, and I love my OBGYN because she just handed me a box of tissues and told me I absolutely do not need to apologize for hurting, and that in time things will feel better. She reassured me that yes while I should gain weight, I'm healthy, and I shouldn't stress about it. So at least there was some good service there.

Anyway, that got long, thanks for reading it if you got through it. I don't know if I'm overreacting, but she really pissed me off. It's like she was kicking me when I was already down, and I hated her for it. Also, for the record, my boyfriend and I reconciled a couple months back and are working things out. I can only imagine what NP would have to say about that...
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