Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Truth is Stranger Than Fiction: Psychiatrist Edition

The depression roller coaster hasn't let me off yet, and lately I've been musing about some of the doctors I've had in the past that I've turned to for this particular malady. Other than my primary physician, I've seen a few psychiatrists in order to try and create a cocktail that would help me crawl out of these deep, dark holes and remain more even-keeled. Trouble is, I seem to have quite a hard time finding one that isn't completely insane themselves. [This isn't meant as a generalization of psychiatry per se, I'm only documenting my personal experience.]

I have had a run of very strange encounters with these doctors, who range from being benignly indifferent to one-flew-over-the-cuckoo's-nest crazy. Since moving to SoCal five years ago, I've been through four doctors.

First: Dr. "Meh"

She was actually okay, but the meds she prescribed did very little.
She then moved far away so I couldn't continue seeing her. (I don't think she moved because of me....)

Second: Dr. Bat-S*** Crazy

* Dominated the conversation during our first meeting by describing his conspiracy theory about 9/11.

* At the second meeting tried to sell me on a pyramid scheme for mangosteen juice.

[I can't make this stuff up, folks.]

Didn't go back after that.

Third: Dr. I Don't Give a Damn

* Regaled me with tales of the kids he worked with in juvenile hall and how he would tell them that he didn't care if they cooperated, that he'd get paid either way.

* Referred to a lot of his patients as "ghetto kids."

* When I told him the Seroquel made me sleep for 14 hours, he didn't seem concerned and told me that I would just have to learn to adjust.

Didn't go back after that.

Fourth: Dr. Hypocratic Oathless

* Upon first meeting me told me I was eligible for this amazing, earth-shattering new brain study that could pinpoint exactly what medication I would need.

It was his own study. (Color me surprised.)

I took the preliminary test and somehow didn't qualify. He didn't really take much interest in me after that.

* Not once did he remember my name and never bothered to bring my chart in with him. He would have to ask my name every time he wrote a prescription for me.

* Once I Googled his name because I left my appointment book at home and couldn't remember the address or name of the building and needed the info for insurance. Found out he had a sexual misconduct charge brought against him.

Definitely didn't go back after that.

It's a wonder I haven't come through this worse than when I started.

Has anyone else had this crazy of an experience with doctors? Or is it just me?
(Please tell me it's not just me.)

Actually, I know I'm not the only one, because Agusten Burrows wrote the book, Running With Scissors, a memoir chronicling his life when he went to live with his mother's psychiatrist. Now that's a scary read.



WinnyNinny PooPoo said...

Haven't been seen for depression, but I saw some one who was a neurologist AND a psychiatrist who was filling in for the guy (just a neurologist) I had an appointment with (for which I had waited three months) I walked in the door of the exam room, he said you have a headache read this and go and THREW a bunch of stapled pages about medication overuse headache at me. I read him the riot act and he halfheartedly did an exam then told me I would have to be hospitalized for WEEKS to detox of the medications I was overusing (I wasn't using or overusing anything that you needed to detox from) so I told him to bring it on. Do it. He had to have another doctor admit me because he didn't even have admitting priveleges, but she actually was a decent doc. I was in the hospital three days it took to diagnose me with a severe UNDERMEDICATED headache condtion. What a crackpot! I pity his regular patients...

Heather said...

Don't you love it when doctors diagnose you without even looking at you? Must be part of their God complex that makes them think they know all your ailments and exactly what you need within moments of meeting you.

Creepy... glad you didn't have to deal with him on a regular basis!