Friday, 10 December 2010

Introducing Dr Dickface McBullyo, the NHS's finest

Good gracious, how time flies: you trip, you fall, you get laser eye surgery and a new job, and suddenly it's been two weeks since you've last shared your Very Important Thoughts with the world at large. So what else has been big news in the Feminist House of Alarmist Llamas?

Apparently The British lie to their doctors, for a start: specifically MORE WOMEN THAN MEN (a difference of a whole 6%!) downplay how much stress they are under. Yeah, colour me stunned.

A short story about talking to your GP about stress: to protect my doctor's anonymity, I will call him by the nom de wanque "Dr Dickface McBullyo".

PATIENT: Hi there, medical practitioner. I have been experiencing some abnormal and uncomfortable heart rhythms. Maybe we could check that out?

DR DICKFACE MCBULLYO: I see from your file that you have a history of depression. You're having panic attacks.

PATIENT: No, I have had panic attacks in the past, these are not panic attacks. Also, when the odd heart rhythms are occurring, I'm not panicked, and you'd think I'd notice if I was under so much stress that my body was initiating a fight/flight response, no?

DR DICKFACE MCBULLYO grabs PATIENT's arm and points vigorously at five-year-old self-harm scars.

DR DICKFACE MCBULLYO: What are these, then? You did these yourself, didn't you? You're having panic attacks. I can prescribe some anti-depressants.

Two weeks later, PATIENT ends up in Accident & Emergency having passed out on the tube. Because of an abnormal heart rhythm!

And so begins the medical chapter in a seemingly endless career of being patronised by people who are stupider than I am.

So what have we learned from this particular scene? We have learned that Doctor always Knows Best, especially if his diagnostic process is not hindered by any extraneous information like "symptoms" or "the patient's subjective experience" or even, god forbid, "doing some tests and detecting a fairly common heart abnormality". We have learned that if you have ever experienced mental illness, you are automatically stupid, untrustworthy, and unable to reliably describe your own health - and we have learned that any health complaints you may have in the future are indisputably a result of that mental illness. We have learned that the best 'bedside manner' for such irrational crazy types as yourself is to shout at you while grabbing your body parts without warning or permission. We have learned that your opinions mean nothing, your reasoning is impaired, and your personal space can be invaded at any time.

So yeah, if you're stressed, you should totally tell your GP. That always ends well.


  1. Did you complain about him? The physical contact that is. God I love formally complaining about things. I wish I could give you my (lady) doctors, they seem pretty much alright.

  2. No, and I've felt bad about it ever since. And he's the only GP who works the late shift at my local surgery, so I get to see him and talk about REALLY FUCKING PERSONAL STUFF at least once a month - whoop!

  3. You nay wanna go during the day for doctors? Work would have to let you. My surgery is only open in the day.

  4. They get grouchy if you ask for time off too often (and it can't be less than two hours as I live approximately four hundred miles away from work) - especially as I'm quite the frequent surgery attendee. It's cool, though, Dr Dickface and I have reached a sort-of détente; if there's anything out of the ordinary I just book with a less awful doctor.