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04 January 2018 @ 12:00 pm
Tuesday I sat through another hard sell for weight loss surgery. I'm so done.

I'm weary of doctors who won't hear my "no" and plow ahead extolling the virtues of procedures I have already investigated and decided are not for me. I would be at high risk of suicide if I allowed myself to be bullied into this. (That is not true for most people but would be for me.*)

Today I felt calm enough to respond via email. To be sure, I responded plenty in the moment but everything I said was ignored or argued with and the doctor just kept going. My husband was present and he was shocked--as a fat man himself his doctors bring things up and then drop it if he says no. I talked with him about how hard it is to turn around and look for another doctor because I don't even know how THAT doctor will handle the sensitive issue of weight. If there's one thing I'd wish of doctors is that they come to appreciate how we've already survived a lifetime's worth of assaults on our self esteem based on our weight. Unless they've been there I don't know how easy that is to understand--but I wish they'd try.

I sent the following to Doctor M:

Subject heading was "Boundaries."

I understand that all doctors will discuss weight with their fat patients. I expect that it will be brought up. What I did not expect was the hard sell on weight loss surgery after I repeatedly indicated that I was not remotely interested in it and had firmly decided it was not for me for many reasons. You continued for something like 20 minutes AFTER I indicated that. But what is dangerous to my well being and survival was that you did so after learning I had spent months being verbally abused and was dealing with the resulting depression. Fortunately I've had years of therapy and could deal with the hurt, shock and distress I felt after having my boundaries violated.

It also concerns me that you'd dismiss the value of walking simply in relation to weight loss.

WEIGHT LOSS IS NOT A GOAL OF MINE. A Health at Every Size strategy of movement and eating healthy food IS. Obesity research has demonstrated that 95% of us regain. This is a feature not a bug.

Can you respect boundaries?

The following is an article about suicide risks associated with weight loss surgery:

litlebananalitlebanana on January 5th, 2018 11:52 pm (UTC)
Hey, I love this post! Would you mind if I reposted it to my public blog? (I would make you anonymous.)
Tapatitapati on January 6th, 2018 12:14 am (UTC)

That would be fine!

It would be nice if more doctors understood that we live all of our lives with hostility about our weight so it's already a sensitive subject. This guy just kept going after I explained in several different ways why it isn't right for me. I was just flattened. I even cried again today over it. He apparently has responded to my letter but I can't look in case he's gaslighting. I'm looking for another doctor.

I've had PCPs I could really work with who understood my position and listened--and I in turn listened to their concerns. But they weren't pushy and didn't belabor the issue.
litlebanana: bananalitlebanana on January 6th, 2018 12:18 am (UTC)
I agree! A lot of doctors read the blog and I want them to see it. I’ll post it Monday.
Tapatitapati on January 6th, 2018 08:32 am (UTC)
I've been thinking that another piece of this for me is that after a childhood being used by my Munchausen-by-proxy mother and not having any control over what she inspired doctors to have done to me in terms of tests and surgeries, being able to assert myself with doctors and be heard is particularly important to me. I already hate being in a position to once again have tests and procedures and sometimes surgeries. Often I avoid making appointments in the hopes of minimizing all of that. And I told this doctor when my previous doctor moved away about my MBP childhood and how it affects me. I'm guessing he didn't remember that and he was just reacting to "OMG very fat heart patient must save."

I'm a whole person with a mind and heart and soul and a life history. Not just a collection of fat cells to conquer.
Tapatitapati on January 12th, 2018 11:22 pm (UTC)
I hope it went well; I was feeling too vulnerable to check it out. Anything I can do to raise awareness so that doctors and fat patients can understand each other better I am happy to do.