To recap: we left off with me getting my first dose of Lupron from Dr. I’mnotlooking’s office and recovering from surgery and a chest infection.
Now, some interesting developments:
A couple days after my shot I emailed Dr. I’mnotlooking to ask for more pain pills. I take 4-6 pills a day, which is far inside the recommended dosage. I could take more if I were so inclined. But I’m not. While I’m sure the Lupron will in time work wonders for me, time has not yet elapsed, so I’m left with all this pain to deal with and so naturally, I go to my doctor for help.
He returns my email by replying that he does not feel comfortable prescribing me any more pain pills, he wants me to go to a pain management specialist in San Francisco, and a psychiatrist. This is LITERALLY (as in, I counted) the sixth time he has told me to see a psychiatrist for my pain.
So I take a deep breath, say a prayer that I will be able to compose a reply without chucking my computer out the window, and write back to him that “My pain is real. What do you expect me to do while I wait for the appointment with the pain specialist? You are my doctor and I trust you to treat my pain.”
With my guilt trip successful, he says he will prescribe, but this will be the last time until I see the psychiatrist. I found out later when we picked up the pills that he got in one final ‘screw you’ by only prescibing 50 pills. So if I take 4-6 a day, that gets me through…10 days. That’s really helpful.
By this time I’m sobbing and hyperventilating and ripping out my hair. How dare he? How dare he treat me this way! I trusted him enough to let him look at my Va-nay-nay and this is what I get?
Right then and there I pick up the phone and call the dang psychiatrist. If nothing else, I’ll have someone to talk to about how awful my doctor is. And maybe if I keep this appointment, that will keep my doctor happy enough to continue to treat me. It’s all so humiliating how I have to continually debase myself just so I can get the minimum standard of care.
The receptionist joked that the soonest available appointment was in an hour, and I snapped it up. My sister chose that unfortunate moment to call and so she got to hear all the emotional saga live and her response was, “So is the psychiatrist the doctor’s brother or something?”
The psychiatrist, who I will call Dr. Hero, was tall and in his late 50′s. He had a very good-natured almost big-brotherly vibe to him and at our second appointment he called me “kid” about seven times. I took to him instantly. I told him the whole messed up saga, even explaining in microscopic detail the inner workings of endometriosis and why I was right and I’mnotlooking was so SO WRONG! And in the interests of full-disclosure, I even told him all the red-flags that sent I’mnotlooking down the crazy path. His response:”Sure sexual trauma can cause a painful pelvic exam, but it doesn’t explain any other symptom of endo.” I was in love.
Before I even got halfway through my story he told me to get a new doctor. He said that some people are only in it for the babies and can’t handle any other aspect of OB/GYN, and that many doctors (most of whom happen to be older males) don’t take women’s pain seriously. He told me to get a new doctor and make her a woman.
But won’t switching doctor’s be suspicious? Won’t that stall my treatment? It’s worth the risk.
Does that mean I’m not crazy? You’re not only not crazy, but you are totally sane, managing tremendous pain the best you can, and none of this is your fault.
He scheduled me for five sessions, but after our second session on Tuesday, I don’t think I’ll be using them all. Once he got me fixed up with a new doctor and thoroughly explained to me why I wasn’t crazy (scar tissue is evil), there really wasn’t that much to say. I kept bringing stuff up (Baby showers suck! well of course they suck. Just don’t spend too much time thinking about them so they only suck for two hours instead of 30. My family’s a mess, wanna talk about my family? You’re doing great. You don’t need me.) but we ended up mostly just shooting the breeze for an hour.
I’ll see my new OB/GYN later this month when I go in for my second shot o’ hormones, and hopefully she’ll be kind and not white-knuckle stingy with the scrips. The Pain Management Clinic doesn’t have an appointment until July, and considering that I’ll have been on Lupron for five months by then, if I’m still in this much pain than we might have to revisit the whole crazy issue.