Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Follow Up to 115

Wow, yesterday's post really struck a nerve with y'all! Thank you for the support and outrage - you've validated me and I love you all for doing that!

At the photography studio where I worked for four years, our unofficial slogan was "People are Stupid" - and that's all I could think when I read in yesterday's comments what so many of you have been told about your weight as well. What is it with educated professionals who don't have a clue, and who don't see us as individuals? We are more than a freakin' number on a chart.

I told my trainer, Brad, about what the doctor said and he just shook his head and said "it's the BMI chart - that's all he is going by" and then told me that according to that chart, he should weigh about 30 pounds less than he does...and let me tell you, that man does not have an ounce of extraneous fat on him. It's muscle - and it weighs less than fat (I know, a pound of muscle weighs the same as a pound of fat, feathers, whatever, but it takes up less space). Argh! I am still so frustrated.

I will say that I have had two people recommend another doctor to me - a woman who, according to a person who works out in the group after mine, is very supportive of her weight, workouts and overall fitness. Sounds like a winner to me, and I will use her as my PCP from now on. Now for the interesting part: Do I quietly go away from the first doctor, as the non-confrontational pleaser in me would like to do, or do I take several of your suggestions and write him a letter explaining why I will no longer see him, in hopes of getting him to change his way of looking at weight, charts and overall fitness?

24 comments:

  1. The letter, definitely the letter. Maybe you can open his eyes and save someone else some grief!

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  2. I vote for the letter. I'm so glad you found a good doc prospect. I'm going back to read the rest of the comments from yesterday - I think I got in early.

    Have a happy Tuesday - oh, and thanks for the links yesterday. I went out last night and got some knitting stuff - soy wool and bamboo needles - I'm so with it and hip right now I can't stand myself.

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  3. Write him a letter! Those are so rare these days that he might just read it and have a lightbulb moment. Plus, it'll feel good to tell him like it is!

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  4. I know I would go away quietly because I am a non-confrontational pleaser too but it may benefit so many others if he was called out on his behavior and changed his ways as a result. I say, whatever your comfortable with.

    Oh, and remember you are in very good company, Michael Jordan is overweight too if you just go by the BMI charts.

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  5. I know that if you do choose to write a letter it will be well thought out and well done.

    I think it seems reasonable for a Dr to get to know the patient just a tad? on that first visit? Y'know, a sit down, look at you kind of thing. ? I know they are busy, but this really seemed unattentive & so not tuned in to the patient. Just rote, y'know?

    I know you will keep us posted on this. It just feels like such a letdown too, like some validation for ALL YOUR HARD WORK would have been nice! But, that is apparent in so many other areas, abilities!, the way you feel, appearance, your wardrobe, bloodwork, article in a magazine wasn't shabby! and support from all your friends, trainers, hubby, boys, & bloggie buddies. (oh and paco. haha) And, what? Running a race!!
    [And I am well aware that mindlessly reading the BMI chart out loud was about more than just validation of your WL.]
    Hugs to Shelley "The Inspiration" 40 Something.

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  6. My doctor recently broke up with me because my insurance didn't cover the $600 physical she gave me (without checking first) She wouldn't even do a payment plan of any sort even though I lost my job. After going to that practice for over 15 years, I was so mad and HAD to write a letter. I'm sure that letter means nothing to them but I felt better about it.

    You've done an amazing job. Don't let the stupid people make you mad!

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  7. Write the letter for sure! I hope the new female doc is better than you expect. I have to say as I'm going through my mid years I'm glad my PCP is a female who is a couple years ahead of me. She understands. That makes all the difference.

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  8. oooooooooooooh, definitely the letter. muwhahahahahahahaaa

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  9. Definately a letter. He needs to know how you feel. Maybe it will make him think next time around.

    My first post here, you are very inspiring and I have been reading for a while. I was beginning to feel like a stalker and felt if I was going to read I should post and this would be a good one to start with.

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  10. I wouldn't waste another minute on that chart-head. Next!

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  11. Oh yes, you must write the letter. It probably won't change his life, but it is the right thing to do. Nicely, of course.

    You need to stick up for yourself. You owe to you.

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  12. Write a letter. And then write another letter. Make sure you get a response. I think when we are nonconfrontational, many times silence is taken as implied agreement.

    If no one challenges this (or any) doctor, they have no idea that anything needs to change.

    As patients, we are *paying* for their service, and it should be individualized service, not cookie cutter, for how much we pay.

    And did I mention to write another letter?

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  13. The letter. Most definitely write a letter. Educate the man. :)

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  14. Ridiculous! That would have made me so mad and I really want you to go see him one more time and tell him how ridiculous it would be to lose another 40 lbs!

    I agree on picking a weight you can actually maintain without struggling! My body seems to have settled in around 132 and I really keep thinking I would like to be at 120 and I think that would be almost impossible for me to maintain...I really need to be realistic and quit expected to look like a swimsuit model (my daily battle is trying to come to terms with this!).

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  15. A letter would be a good idea. I wanted to write a letter to the doctor who kicked my husband out of her office when he challenged her. She told him he had indigestion when he had colon cancer. So he insisted it was something worse and she didn't take him seriously and he died 19 months later. I'd like to knock her upside the head with a shovel and a letter.

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  16. Only if it would make YOU feel better. If the purpose is to educate the doctor, your chances aren't great that you'll change his mind; remember he has SCIENCE backing him up. If the purpose of writing the letter is to let you have peace, go for it. Just MHO!

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  17. I'm usually the same way as you Shelley, I don't like to ruffle any feathers, BUT in this case, I would totally write a little something just to let him know a). you're not coming back because of what he said to you and 2). Tell him how it made you feel!
    He should have done backflips at all you've done instead of making you feel like you're not even close to your goal!

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  18. Shelley, sorry I didn't get to comment yesterday. I hate doctors. But I have a question. If you are 5'2" 115 is at the bottom edge of the healthy BMI for you, isn't it? Why did he feel it necessary to quote the lower level of healthy? Why wouldn't he have said 131? It just adds to the outrage of the whole thing. In addition to the information that it may be unrealistic for a person who has spent many years overweight to maintain a very low weight.

    As far as writing a letter, if I did write a letter, I would include a copy to any superior of his, such as the HMO he works for, or the whole clinic group. Might have more of an effect that way. The only disadvantage that I can think of is that they might try to talk you into 'giving him another chance.'

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  19. I think you should write the letter. It will make you feel better and you will actually do him a favor by telling him. Most people would just walk away but it is better to give him feedback so he can at least try to change his thoughts/behavior.

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  20. I just want to say I love the new look of your blog, it is sweet-fancy!!! I have to admit, you are still my favorite weight loss blogger, you are one of the first I started reading and a true inspiration.

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  21. If it were me, I have to admit I wouldn't write the letter, because I'm a total coward when it comes to things like that (even if I do work in health care, it still doesn't come naturally to me!).

    However - I think writing a letter, in this scenario, makes sense. Imagine if he had told you that information a year ago...what would your reaction have been?? Totally different, I bet. And you're *very* well informed now..imagine how someone who isn't well informed, or healthy, would have taken that information?

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  22. Shelley, I just made reservations at Days Inn for the weekend. I can't wait!!! I have not signed up for the race yet. Need to do that. I also need something to wear!
    The hotel is not too far away from the race so I should be able to get there on time. LOL

    I also have some big news to announce tomorrow. At least it's big news to me. :)

    ((HUGS))

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  23. Write the letter, write it to inform him why he won't have your business, and to educate him on health realities.
    Don't write it to make yourself feel better, to vent, or to practice your confrontational skills.
    While it is true that he either had a bad day, or is completely unrealisitic, or is simply an a-hole with a God complex, you have no control over any of that, but it shouldn't stop you from stating the truth. The more the truth is declared, the easier it is to tell the difference.
    Your success is your success. He doesn't have to celebrate with you, and even if you were celebrating alone, it would be enough. But he should be informed that people are not stamped out in machines, that the BMI index is appropriate for only a very few body types, and, most importantly, that he should actually LOOK at and observe his patients. That is rule #1, and he blew it.
    There are a ton of people who say that a doctor's 'bedside manner' doesn't matter, but I disagree. Of course I want my doctor to be knowledgeable, and they don't have to tell me just what I want to hear, but if they are incapable of listening to me, they are missing a large part of the health picture, and they simply can not be good doctors.

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  24. Again rolling in late, but I doubt the letter would have much impact on his behavior. If it would make YOU feel better for writing it, then by all means do it, but know that it's really not going to change anything, it's just a way for you to let go and move on...to a much better doctor and experience.

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