Zelda (zelda_dragon) wrote in bad_service,

I’ve been going to the same lovely clinic to have my birth control filled for the last six years. On top of that, I’ve been on the same pill for ten years, and was put on it way back when to control pretty severe PMDD that does not respond to any other treatment. This is in my chart at the clinic, along with the fact that I get migraines (not caused by hormones/PMDD/etc.).

I stopped taking the pill and didn’t go in to get it refilled for several reasons back in January, so I have been off of it for about four months now. Turns out, this is very, very bad. Very bad. One of the worst symptoms of my specific PMDD beast is an intense wave of suicidal behavior in that bad downward swing leading to my period. I am aware of this, and truly never should have stopped taking the medicine. Hindsight.

The wave happened, it was rough, I made it through - and immediately called the clinic to come in for an appointment to get my pill prescription refilled.

The nurse I saw refused to fill it. Her reason? I have migraines.

That, in and of itself, would have been okay. Difficult at first, but okay because I understand. CDC guidelines and all. The encounter, however, was so far from okay. She asked a very leading question - do I have vision changes with my headaches, yes, I do - and used that to equate me to having migraines with aura (a no-no for the CDC and birth control, which I know). BUT - I have never had migraines with aura in the nearly thirty years I have had these headaches.

She refused to listen to a word I said and, when I started bawling at seeing a potentially life-saving medication fully withheld, she said she might consider it if I got written consent from my neurologist. And then, best part, she told me that I needed mental help, and that I should compose myself because I needed to leave. Compose myself. So easy, right, when I had spent the previous two days convincing myself not to do something terrible because I was about to get help. After saying this, she left the exam room. So I was alone in there sobbing and definitely not okay, and she obviously did not care.

That was Thursday. I emailed my neurologist that day, and he was surprised to hear she would not prescribe the pill for me. I gave him her contact information and he reached out Friday morning. No response Friday. Nothing Monday.

Now today, Tuesday.

I called the clinic and spoke with her. She flat out refused to prescribe it at all, even with my doctor’s “permission”. She kept citing migraines with aura until I interrupted her to say I did not get that kind of migraine, and then she switched her tune to say her supervisor would not let her. I asked her about five times, pointedly, “So you will not prescribe this pill to me, a medication I need, even though I do not get migraines with aura and never have?”

She told me again I needed mental help, that she would not give me any form of birth control, and that it was not her problem if I was in need of help, that I needed to go somewhere else. I called back later to get the name of her supervisor and, surprise, she answered. All she would give me was a first name.

I made an appointment at another clinic, but the next availability they had was in three weeks.

At least I tried, right? I don't even know.
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Is this lady the only nurse there?! I can't believe she has so much control over this kind of thing...can't your neurologist or another doctor you're associated with prescribe you birth control?!

My doctor wanted to treat all my hormone problems before he put me on anything for my depression that was deepening awhile back. Guess what, those pills, including birth control have done wonders. I had PMDD as well, it's a known issue, this nurse is a power tripping asshole
I have no idea if she's the only nurse there. It was the first time I'd ever met her. In the past I'd seen this wonderful other nurse practitioner who knew my chart back and forward, and she was so charming. I'm kicking myself for not remembering her name now so I could have asked.

And honestly, it never occurred to me to ask my neurologist (or my dermatologist, I have a good working relationship with her as well) if they could write the prescription themselves. I guess I just associated birth control with the women's clinic, haha. Though this nurse did get in a snippy, "If your neurologist thinks you should be on it, have him write the prescription" before she hung up this afternoon. That was cheery of her.

Isn't it amazing how much birth control can help? I mean, for real. I can go from a raging, suicidal monstrosity to...well, my normal self after about two months on Yaz, and the PMDD will not rear its head while I'm taking it. That pill is all I need to control this very real - very serious - issue.

(It's nice to hear from someone else who has/had it, though. Everyone I mention it to has no idea what PMDD is, so thank you for that!)

I just had this situation with the @$$ of a gyno I went to. I asked him to up my prescriptions that my GP had given me that expired, they were all linked to my PCOS, which is gynecological of course. "He'll have to do that, I would never have put you on those."

Um one was actually prescribed for my abnormal hair growth by my previous gyno, the guy I saw before this dbag who decided to get all high and mighty, sigh. So that's why it triggered in me to suggest another doc giving you the script! As long as they know you've had an annual exam within their recommended time (every year or every 3, whichever schedule you're on), they won't dick around with you.

If there's a Planned Parenthood in your area, they'd help too. They don't even do a background, which is kind of haphazard in my opinion. I had my gyno retire, my script retired with him, the clinic he was with started jerking me around to get in, trying to tell me I'd need another annual even though they had my last one from like six months previous in my chart (WTF right). So I went to Planned Parenthood just to get my pill upped because I'm on it for the medical reasons and also, I don't want any surprise babies, not going off that any time soon that's for sure!
Seriously, what is it with doctors and nurses refusing to fill necessary prescriptions. I just do not understand the power trip that comes from that, when all it does is potentially harm the patient. Ugh, I'm sorry you had to deal with one of those jerks, too.

Actually, Planned Parenthood is exactly where I'm going for my new appointment! I'm a little nervous about going somewhere new after so many years, to be honest, but I need this silly pill so I will suck it up and power through. Gimme my medication please thanks. I do not want to feel crazy every month anymore.
My experience with Planned Parenthood was really quick, the appointments for birth control are so fast that you won't even be there for more than 10 minutes probably!

These are people with the God complex that people start to think all docs have, it's so sad and stressful when you run into them. There are amazing medical professionals out there, I try to refuse to let myself become too mad over these specific situations. There are bad people in every profession, argh.
I think clinics/ladydocs are very helpful for specific things, but yes, you should be able to get your pill prescription from another doc - anyone should be able to prescribe it, and I'm pretty sure dermatologists prescribe the pill to help with acne, for starters.

That said, I'm sorry you had to deal with that a-hole and I hope things improve.
I am definitely going to call my dermatologist and leave a message for her. The more I think about it, the more I like this idea.

Thank you very much!
*hugs* if you want them.

It might help if you had something from your neurologist to take to the second clinic, not even to forestall any questions about migraines, but just so they know someone's looking out for you already and everything else is under control.

If you're comfortable, you could try posting over at vaginapagina and see if anyone has any ideas, since three weeks seems an awfully long time.
Thank you. <3

You know, my aunt (a nurse as well, though not in a position to prescribe me something) suggested the very same thing you have, about having a letter from my neurologist ready and in my purse, to hand out as necessary if this ever came up again. It is a very good idea, though not one I ever thought I would need to utilize.
Hugs. Wish the new clinic could see you faster. Is it possible that if they have a cancelation, they could slot you in? That is possible in some clinics.

The suggestion about the information from the neurologist to take with you to the new clinic is good too.

And I've heard great things about Planned parenthood.
Thank you! Unfortunately, while I am sure I could ask for a cancellation call if one came up, I would not be able to fit it around my own work schedule on such short notice (a co_worker_suck right there). But, TMI silver lining, waiting this long will at least get me the pill in time to start in tandem with my cycle, so that will work out in its own way.

I'm crossing my fingers my experience with the Planned Parenthood in my neighborhood goes as wonderfully as everyone else's! I'm sure it will, I've heard such great things as well. Just the nerves of going somewhere new after such a long time.
oh, how awful. Sorry you had to deal with such a bitch.
Thank you! <3