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taubele 02-10-2012 04:29 PM

I don't know too much about fat prejudice in health care. Perhaps I have been lucky, but even at my heaviest, I never felt judged by any of my doctors. Once I decided to lose weight, I simply did, and my doctors didn't mention that much to me. The most that was mentioned was when I moved to my current state a couple of years ago, my OBGYN said "Your weight puts you in the obese category. Would you like to talk about that?"

I wasn't really ready to talk about it at the time, so I just told her no, thank you, and that was aware of my weight. That was about it. Apparently, she had put in my notes that if I had not lost weight by my next visit (6 mos. later) that she would speak to me about referring me to a nutritionist. Within those 6 mos. I started losing weight (I flipped my own switch) and by the time I got back, the doc saw my progress and never did give me the referral, though I was told by her partner that she'd written the note to herself.

I'm sure that doctors talk amongst themselves in a derogatory or non-PC fashion once in awhile. I'm sure this sort of things happens in many professions. It's not right, and it's not fair, but I tend to give doctors (and others) some slack due to the stress of their profession. I'm sure it's easy to become frustrated with a patient who might be in constant/chronic pain because of a bad back, and whose condition is worsening, when that patient is also morbidly obese. The doctor is likely aware that the patient's weight is contributing to the problem, but it's likely that the patient isn't ready to address his or her weight or becomes defensive (I know I certainly did when I wasn't ready). The doctor, probably trying to think of the patient's health, may resort to tough love, shaming, etc. I'm not saying that's right -- it's not -- but it's understandable, especially for a doctor who day in and day out is saving people from the many mistakes that we make every day -- from weight problems, to mishandling equipment, to having unsafe sex, etc. etc. etc. I'm sure there is likely no profession on earth as frustrating as being a doctor sometimes.

Heck, I'm a neuroscientist, and I get frustrated sometimes. I don't work with people, but you can bet your butt on a bad day I'm cussing out the rats for being stupid dumb creatures. Do I mean it? No. It's not their fault. I'm just having a bad day. Is my behavior right? Probably not, but I'm only human.

I guess what I mean to say is that speaking in a not-perfect way to obese persons is probably happening due to frustration as much as it is due to any other reason. That doesn't make it right, but I think I can understand it, from my own point of view. I certainly think that obese persons (and ANY person, ever) has the same right to medical care for their problems as any other person. I think there is often prejudice because many people (including doctors) view obesity as a preventable problem, or a problem that the patient can more easily correct (versus, say, a genetic disorder or a cancer that is not due to environmental reasons). Maybe it's put into the same category as those who get other "preventable" diseases, I don't know. But I know the general public certainly has a view that obese persons are simply lazy, and it might carry into the medical profession as well. I don't know. I hope it changes, but I'm willing to understand the doctors' points of view as long as they're providing the same care to every patient, no matter the source of the medical problem. I'm all for, and would rabidly support, anything to help doctors and patients treat each other in the most careful and compassionate way possible.

Oh! I also wanted to say (after my long-winded reply here) that I understand the want to reference the source of your viewpoints (being in basic science, I reference everything too! :)) but posting a link directly to the page where amazon sells the book is considered advertising for the book, that's all, because it's got a price right there. :) Maybe try a wikipedia page or an author's page if you want, or just post the name of the book for others to look up.

VitoVino 02-10-2012 04:30 PM

Originally Posted by neurogrrl (Post 72411)
the distinction you made in your example about working with youth is one of behavior versus being. My protest was about your saying my *behavior* was trollish;

Well, it was IMO. I've been in forums where members jump all over someone at the drop of a hat. I believe that's what you did here, and that is "trollish", without being a troll (specifically though, putting words in someone's mouth always goes against fair play).

I think everyone is guilty of "trollish" behavior from time to time; I've even done it. It's easy to misunderstand what someone has written, as typing on the internet is an inefficient way of communicating. Also, sometimes we just have a button pressed that makes us give a knee jerk response. So it's nothing personal on you.

Originally Posted by neurogrrl (Post 72411)
I did not say you said I was *a troll.*

That's fine, as I did not, so we are in agreement.

Originally Posted by neurogrrl (Post 72411)
Anyway, I suspect you will agree with me that that part of this discussion is pretty inane. There were some misunderstandings earlier that led to some of us getting a little offended and it's being worked out.

Again, I agree. So no problem. I agree it's being worked out. So stick around and participate. :)

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