Why is it that people think medical doctors are so perfect? I go to the doctor and tell him that something hurts and then he pokes me in that spot and says, “You mean here?” I think that is a little sadistic. It is like he has all this power and is trying to decide if he should use it for good or evil. And do I say anything to him, like maybe “Hey cut that out” or a “No I am not going to tell you how much I weigh.” No. No, I do not. Why? Because that little piece of paper on the wall that says PhD is like Kryptonite, it keeps me from disagreeing with him. I am powerless against his years of residency and his stethoscope. It is like he is not even human but a higher form of life that can only unlock the secrets to good health with a full-coverage medical plan and an 80-20 deductible.
Everyone says you should ask for a second opinion if you are unsure of the diagnosis, but what good does that do? It makes no sense to go and ask a second doctor, that I am also afraid of, if he thinks his peer is right or wrong. That is like asking a nurse to be gentle when she is inserting a catheter—there is no point.
Recently I was accosted by my doctor for not putting my sons in cub scouts. She gave me and my children a 20 minute lecture on why we should participate in the historic outdoorsy club. Why you ask? I have no idea. Does she know someone that works for the cub scouts? I couldn’t say. Does she get kick-backs from the BSA? Not sure. Is she crazy? More than likely.
Even though this particular doctor over-stepped some boundaries, I sat there like an idiot and didn’t say a word. It was like listening to your parents tell you how disappointed they are in you; you are still in the room but you are mentally dozing in and out of consciousness. Regardless, the conversation made me think of what it would take for me to stand up to my doctor. So, I came up with a list of things that if a physician said to me would really push me over the edge. I came up with 50 things that I would not want to hear from my doctor and would finally force me to put my foot down.
1. Wow, I have never seen one that looks like that before.
2. I’ve decided to do my part to save the environment, so I won’t be using tongue depressors any more. Instead, I am just gonna stick my finger in there.
3. Did anybody see where did I put that last sponge?
4. I got my PhD from Phoenix online.
5. Does this white coat make my butt look fat?
6. Now, is the heart on the right or the left, I always forget?
7. Can you hold on just a second, I have to update my Facebook status?
8. Wow, has anyone ever told you that you have crazy-weird eyes?
9. Have you made your peace with God? Do you have a will? Am I in it?
10. How did my watch get in there?
11. Pull my finger.
12. I have had three espressos today and I feel a little jittery. But don’t worry; I am totally ready to do your vasectomy.
13. How good is your insurance coverage? Like, new boat good, or like new RV good?
14. Do you mind if these students come in to watch your procedure? They have never seen electric shock therapy before.
15. My last patient was such a nice woman, God rest her soul.
16. I used to work at the prison giving lethal injections.
17. Oh boy that was close; your name was one letter off from the guy next door getting a sex change.
18. Just count back from 100, I can almost guarantee, you won’t feel a thing.
19. I just don’t know if I can be a doctor anymore, I have decided to become an artist.
20. Who farted?
21. Get undressed and put on this little paper gown. No, I don’t really need you to undress for this exam; I just wanted to see if you would.
22. That third bean burrito I had for lunch has my intestines feeling like a ticking time bomb!
23. We are required by law to tell you that your anesthesiologist is a registered sex offender.
24. Have you looked up your symptoms using WebMD? What did it say I should do?
25. Our practice is going green; please excuse the stains on the paper sheet.
26. I tried this medication on my dog and he woke up after only a few days. He was a little groggy, but mostly fine.
27. Would you mind holding this scalpel for just a sec? I have an itch.
28. My favorite movies are Saw I, Saw II, and Saw III.
29. Sorry I look a little disheveled; I have been living out of my car.
30. Dude, I feel like I am gonna puke.
31. May I interest you in an exam room cocktail?
32. I like to use alternative therapies when I can. How do you feel about leeches?
33. That Dr. Seuss totally cracks me up!
34. Do you think I look better as a blonde or a brunette?
35. Have I ever showed you a picture of my cat? He’s my baby.
36. I will be with you in just a minute, I need to smoke a cigarette and finish this beer and box of donuts.
37. Hey, you wanna shock each other with these paddles?
38. Does my breath smell like potato salad to you?
39. Oops! Well, don’t worry, I can reattach that. I think.
40. Our office is trying to be more efficient, so we put a coin-operated medication dispenser in the lobby.
41. Can I tell you about the troubles I am having with my boyfriend? I really need to talk.
42. You should check out my you tube video, in it I am playing “If you want my body” by Rod Stewart, on the clarinet, with my nose. I have gotten 50,000 hits so far.
43. I’ve got an idea, let’s get matching tattoos!
44. Buck up and come back when you’ve got a real problem.
45. Text me your symptoms and I’ll tweet you my diagnosis.
46. I don’t even know how to pronounce what it is that you have.
47. I am also a Mary Kay consultant, so with your exam, you get a free make-over.
48. Can I have a sample of your hair for my collection?
49. I don’t believe in diseases or illness. I believe in Karma. Your chakra is blue and your aura is red, so go home, light up some incense and think calming thoughts.
50. Your heart goes bu-du-bu-du-bu-du, but mine goes ba-bump-ba-bump-ba-bump. Freaky.
Well, I hope your physician hasn’t said any of these things to you. It is a new year and we should start with a clean slate, with hope for a better tomorrow. If your doctor does say strange things to you tell them to stop. After all, a doctor is just a person like you and me. They get up in the morning and put their pants on one leg at a time. They are way more expensive pants, and they get dressed in a huge master closet with a little seat thing and don’t have to balance holding on to a rickety bed frame, and the whole house probably smells like potpourri, and their pants are probably ironed and clean, and not grabbed from a pile on the floor, but they get dressed. Just like you. Just like me. And that is my point.