Doctors – they mean well really they just sometimes don’t have a clue.
Over the last year and a half I have seen a fair few doctors or health care professionals of sorts and before I start this post I just want to say to all of these people that I understand that you are only human and people make mistakes and while the vast majority of you are amazing, caring individuals and I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for you all, a couple of you are letting the side down. Nobody’s perfect, I get that – I really do, but some of the things you’ve said are just plain stupid. What were you hoping to achieve by saying that? And so the countdown begins of the most ludicrously ignorant things doctors have said to me! Do enjoy!
1) “Really? I know loads of anorexics that would never eat that!”
*Mentally calms self* This remark in particular I just don’t understand. This isn’t going to help me in any shape manner or form is it? Some of the others were at least trying in some way to get me to comply to treatment but this one…nope. I sincerely hope that this doctor face palmed when we finished our appointment because I didn’t eat this particular food again until at least a year later.
2) “Gosh you were slim weren’t you.”
This was actually said by a HCA (health care assistant) rather than a doctor but it still had a similar response. It happened when I was putting some pictures up in my room of a new unit and they asked me when this particular picture was taken. When I told them this was their response. This one didn’t make me angry as such, it just made me quite upset and did set my eating back for a few days.
3) “You’re not a very good anorexic.”
This should really be a good thing. I mean it basically translates to “You’re not that ill,” which for someone with a physical illness would be great news! But for somebody with a competitive mental illness such as anorexia nervosa this can be translated to so many things. “You’re actually fat,” “You’re wasting everybody’s time,” and “You’re not really ill enough to deserve my time” to name but a few.
4) In response to “I’m been struggling a lot with exercising at the minute,” a dietitian once said, “Well it’s all about finding a healthy balance isn’t it? Too little’s not good for you and neither’s too much.” Now this is a perfectly reasonable comment if not for the circumstances. This was said by a dietitian at a specialist eating disorder inpatient unit when I was supposed to be on chair rest because I was so dangerously underweight. I wasn’t supposed to be doing any exercise at all and when she said this it just feel bad for thinking my exercising was a bad a thing (??) and made me do even more as Lucy knows…that’s a funny story for another time 😉
I did later forgive her because she was very new to the job and she was actually really lovely and ended up helping me with so much more than my eating difficulties. Yay Paula!
5) Now for my final one. This doctor I have not forgiven at all. This doctor I actually wrote an email to explaining all of things he did wrong and how he could improve for future patients.* This doctor who no matter how ill I was I would have eaten all the god damn apples in the world if it meant he’d go away (see what I did there 😉 )
I’m not really sure which particular thing to pin point as his worst because he said ALOT. One of the worst however was probably, “Look at what you’re doing to your family,” or maybe “Is this what you wanted? For your little brother to have to come and visit you in hospital on his birthday?”
These remarks didn’t help me in the slightest. I guess they were made with the intention of making me ‘wake up and smell the coffee’ but they achieved nothing but sending me into a downwards spiral of self hatred, making me feel so guilty that I didn’t think I deserved to eat – go figure.
*Me throwing some serious shade i.e. the email
Wow that was intense to write. To anyone that’s made it this far thank you so much for reading but also thanks to the lovely Aoifs for inspiring this post with your most recent one (go check her blog out if you haven’t already – http://www.dancingintherainaoifs.wordpress.com
) and I am here for you and the rest of you lovely lot if anybody ever dares to say anything that makes you feel less than you deserve to feel 24/7 (see gif below!)
Love and hugs to all,