IMPORTANT Disclaimers: I’m not a clinically trained medical or mental health professional, I will ALWAYS urge those in crisis to seek immediate help from qualified trained professionals in an acute setting and/or hospital.
The nature of this blog, the caveat I face in writing this, is also the catalyst.
I knew over a year ago, that I wanted to address physician addiction and also physician suicide.
Truthfully though, I thought I was the last non clinically trained human that anyone though, especially a physician, wanted to hear that from.
I’m not a fun patient to treat and I’m a patient who’s had a life history with less than ideal encounters with a majority of physicians, being an obese patient who is prescribed opiates and is a cigarette smoker with diagnosed mental health issues.
So yeah, I had to get over my own bias issues not loving having to deal with physicians who look at me like an ugly unicorn on crack, and on the offensive, react to me like I’m soley responsible for the opiate and obesity epidemic.
HOWEVER, I took the same oath that physicians do, when they become doctors, way before I started this blog, in my past life when I became a CPT (I was thin and fit for 6 years post rny gastric bypass) and wanted to be a bariatric specializing life coach before that field was identified and magnified.
I took that same oath when I started this blog.
I think one of the many good things to come out of the digital era, is that physicians now have resources to online network with other physicians not just for good of patients but themselves when they need support.
I found that out when doing clinical research for all the things I’ve done in the past with my medical activism, led me to physician driven sites like Kevin M.D..
However, with physicians working in the occupation with the highest suicide rates, I’ve realized for awhile now, maybe that isn’t enough, not only due to stigma still, but that physicians need to know that support of them is extended outside of their peers, family and friends.
Even when it’s someone like me, who does call out physician bias as an activist, that I make it clear that I’ve always known the sacrifices that physicians make, the sacrileges they have bear witness to and have tried to prevent and heal, their heroic efforts to help and heal regardless of specialty and that their pursuit to a happy, balanced and healthy life is sacred to me and it should be to all of us.
The type of activism that I choose to do when it comes to being a medical and mental health activist, with a specialty in gastric bypass complications that lead to gastric bypass reversals, does lead me to cautiously borderline practice both medicine and psychology at times, when patients who find me when they are in crisis.
And I treat them, remotely.
In the comfort of my own home though, sometimes when they are in theirs and sometimes when their in a hospital beds near death, where the patients are surrounded by medical and sometimes psychiatric specialists who cannot grasp the complexity of emotions in a patient, because they can’t relate to rarely seeing of patients of being in such unpredictable medical crisis and sometimes of psyche, when patients undergo what’s supposed to be a transformative surgery that’s supposed to be life saving and life enhancing but they end up with a dire outcome.
(Important Note: I am a pro bariatric surgery including gastric bypass, with the same concerns that I am also pro opiates for pain management. When all other less invasive and/or risky treatments/interventions have been exhausted)
And while I only “treat” digitally, it requires a very unique skill set that’s sometimes cannot be taught in the many years of medical school, internships, or even when they start in action (I hate the word “practicing” as it applies to physicians) being the physicians, surgeons and psychiatrists that they become.
However, I don’t have the ego that ate the United States, as I’m VERY clear that nothing that I say should be taken in lieu of evaluation and treatment from physicians and other clinically trained professionals, but the one outstanding trait that helps my patients a lot and can be sanity and life saving for those patients, is very simple.
I CARE ENORMOUSLY.
And I think that to help a population of people such as physicians,who are suffering and either feel they have to do so in silence or amongst their peers or their own professionals that they NEED to know that others try to see their challenges, their fears and what they feel is their failures, as not everyone they try to help can be saved, but that we honor their efforts in caring and having multiple avenues for support, intervention, evaluation and treatment when they themselves are in crisis.
This is one calling, one profession where it unfortunately can’t ever to some, matter if the intention was honorable but the outcome was horrible and a patient dies and that we ALL in some way now have to support the psychological trauma that can cause physicians, if we have going to have a prayer in reducing the risks of suicide and addiction in our physicians.
It’s never been more needed like it is NOW.
And to start, all we have to do is, CARE…
Note: I’m amenable to feedback or constructive dialogue. Any comments that can be triggering to myself, any population of people I do activism for, such as in this case especially, physicians, will NOT published.
Please also note that I’m a cognitively disabled activist, it matters in the most important way, of what I say versus how I say it, as sometimes my syntax is bad or I misuse a homophone.
I still stand by my intent to help with this blog, in hopes it does greater good. Thanks!!!