Friday, August 25, 2006

Pop Psychology Victim

Towards the end of my pregnancy with my daughter I started seeing the other OB’s in the practice so that whoever was on call when I was in labor would have met me at least once, and I them. I loved my doctor and really felt comfortable talking about my first birth experience and my son with him. It was nice being able to talk to someone about the birth of my son as if it was an ordinary thing. I learned that he spent his residency and early part of his career at the hospital where my son was born and we even talked about the differences in birthing practices since the time of my son’s birth until the time he was practicing there. So we had a really good rapport and I was relaxed and comfortable with him.

The second new-to-me doctor on the rounds, upon learning of my son’s birth and subsequent adoption, launched into a little pep talk about the whole thing. It was horrible. Why did he feel he needed to do that? It was like some kind of pop psychology talk really. The “oh, you did such a great thing for him,” yada yada yada. Puleez. This is not what I wanted to hear. And not once did he even ask me a question – I was just a captive audience to his soap box speech. If he really cared, he could have asked how I felt about it, how it felt to be pregnant again, how it felt to be planning to parent. But no. He was like a steamroller and I just sat there dumbfounded thinking, “Please let this be over soon, please let him shut up!” After that experience, I made my next appointment with my doctor, during which I told him that I didn’t care who was on call when I went into labor, but that I just wanted to see him for my remaining visits, thank-you-very-much.

I have found myself dwelling on that pop psychology visit more often than I’d like – it just keeps cropping up in my thoughts, especially lately. I don’t know why. I am wondering if I should write the doctor a note and let him know in a friendly way that he offended me in the hopes that he may avoid doing it to another woman. Part of me feels that people are the way they are and you can’t change them. But part of me thinks maybe it will at least give him pause to reflect on his approach. After all, doctors are supposed to be smart and I think this was his effort at bedside manner. If nothing else, maybe I will at least be able to feel like I have spoken up for myself, even if it’s almost a year after the fact. Does anyone have an opinion or thought on whether I should write the doctor?


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