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This "Doctor" thing is really complicating my life

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by han14tra, Dec 17, 2008.

  1. han14tra

    7+ Year Member

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    So, I just had a huge fight with my family. My brother has CP and has recently started having severe back pain and tingling in arms and legs. No one knows why. I just got home for break last week, and my parents have essentially 100% ignored me (besides the medical advice that they keep asking me for). They asking my opinion. When I refuse to give them advice, they flip out and tell me that I could try to help. If I give advice, they tell me I'm wrong and that all doctors are quacks. My brother has no health insurance and they are very frustrated with the lack of care he has been receiving. They are blaming me somewhat because I'm going to be a doctor!

    I've tried to express that their ignoring me and criticizing doctors is really making me unhappy, and my dad said that my bro needs them more and if I don't like it I can get out. He told me he's already arranged for me to leave (though I don't think he's serious because when I told them I'm leaving, both of my parents cried-- the first time I've ever seen my dad cry).

    This sucks. I don't really want to leave, but I can't stand being treated like this. What's going to happen when I actually am a doctor? BTW, I have an interview tomorrow and I'm still sooo upset.
     
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  3. Proctodoc

    Proctodoc Via backside attack
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    I don't know that this has as much to do with you being a future doctor as it has to do with your parents just feeling utterly frustrated and helpless about the situation at hand. They want answers but they're not getting them. They need medicine attention but having no health insurance is a huge stressor in obtaining it. In this situation, there is no one to blame: not your brother, not your parents, not doctors, and certainly not you. If anyone's to blame, blame our healthcare policy but that's quite another argument. Be the bigger person and realize your parents love you and they're just going through very hard times. They are not perfect and they're allowed to make a few mistakes, such as hurting you so badly with their remarks and neglect towards your feelings. You are the future of medicine so please don't give up before you even start. I hope everything works out for you and your family. Just hang in there...
     
  4. MsKrispyKreme

    MsKrispyKreme The "Hot" sign is on...
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    Family arguments seem to intensify during the holiday season...
     
  5. jr doctor in sd

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    Im sorry to hear about your brother. I know how you feel. My parents are an example of the type to never be satisfied...EVER. Just do what you love and forget the haters (even if it sucks that the haters are mainly comprised of your immediate family, which you are usually supposed to support you). :thumbup:

     
  6. umean2tellme

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    This sucks and I'm sorry. I hate when people hear you're premed and just start start asking you for medical advice. Explain to them that you aren't even in medical school yet, so you cannot give a valuable opinion on this person's health, and that they need to speak to someone who is a licensed physician. It'll be better once you're a physician b/c then you can actually give an educated opinion.

    Your parents are just frustrated and many people who are ill/related to an ill person turn on their doctors, don't take offense to it.
     
  7. TexanGirl

    TexanGirl runs away from trees
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    I can sort of relate. My mom has a life-long, debilitating disorder that requires frequent medical care, and we can't really afford it, so my mom often gets angry at medical personnel for not delivering the care she needs. Not to get into specifics, but I wouldn't take it personally, because it's not really directed at you. They're more than likely disenchanted with the current health care system, which makes it VERY HARD to receive any care without insurance. I don't think they'll bear a grudge on you for choosing this profession, but they will continue to harbor dislike for the system, if that makes sense. Just try to be the better man (woman?) by being understanding of the family situation. Bear the brunt of the doc criticism and it'll be fine.
     
  8. han14tra

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    Thanks for the advice. They have told me about 100 times in the last week that I (and all doctors) am not compassionate because I don't want to give them advice. They say that everyone is just in it for the money. They are sort of making me question who I really am because I've always been an advocate for caring for the uninsured and being compassionate. Now, they are trying to convince me that I can't be that kind of doctor because I'm hurt that my feelings are getting put on the back burner because of my brother's condition.

    This experience is certainly teaching me a lot about medicine though. In all of my shadowing experiences, I've never seen anything like this. It will certainly change the way I practice medicine. It is sooo important to consider how the family is responding to someone's condition but it can really rip things apart.
     
  9. nevercold

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    If my parents were behaving like this I would call them out on it. They are demonstrating an immature behavioral response to a stressor. Just because it is a common response doesn't make it good. You are not qualified to give them medical advice and you should tell them that plain and simple. People don't work their butts off through med school and residency because they already know medicine. Your parents probably already know this and are simply belaboring the point as an outlet for their frustrations. If you want medical advice, you go to a medical professional. You can either get medical advice from that professional or you can spend years learning medicine for yourself. They need to find a physician they can trust. How does your brother have CP and no health insurance? What state doesn't have medical funding for children with documented disabilities?
     
  10. kernel

    kernel OSU c/o 2017
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    If you were going any other direction with your life, would that eliminate their frustration? Sure, maybe the life path you've chosen has an impact, but you can't let that bring you down.

    My brother has a mental illness that really tests my family's bonds. Like MsKrispyKreme said, at this time in particular I feel like I'm getting extra **** from my parents. People can be difficult under stress, even your own parents.

    I don't think I can say anything that hasn't already been said. Call them out. Let them know how this is making you feel.

    You're becoming a doctor for yourself and your own reasons. Remember those reasons. :thumbup:
     
  11. Gut Shot

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    You will begin earning large sums of money and disown them.
     
  12. fahimaz7

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    Dude,

    Tell your parents that you start medical school in 2009 and that if they want advise, they should talk to you in 2014 (depending on your residency match)!

    Why can't your little bro get medicaid?
     
  13. njbmd

    njbmd Guest
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    The person above had given you some good advice. I will add that you are an adult and as such, dont' need your parent's attention or permission to love the profession that YOU have chosen.

    It's holiday time and your brother's condition has been an ongoing source of stress for your parents. They are parents to both you and your brother. Since your parents seem to be focused on your brother and his needs, why not take this opportunity (not to sulk because they don't celebrate you) but to prepare some holiday cheer for the family? Why don't you make it your mission to listen to them but to react to things that you can't fix or do not have anything to do with you personally? The world is not going to come to an end if they are singing your praises. In other words, find something to do that will add to the holidays, cheer yourself up and give to others.

    Only YOU have control over YOUR thoughts and feelings. Why not start changing them to overlook things that are not going to change and that you can't fix for you parents. If all else fails, make some good chicken soup and head out to the homeless shelter (or anywhere else) where people can use your help.
     
  14. Haemulon

    Haemulon Slippery When Wet
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    I am sorry to hear about your family turmoil. An early poster was probably right that none of this really has anything to do with you applying to med school. There is just an environment of high stress for both your family and yourself. Add to this the fact that the focus of interest for each of you is very different right now, leading to greater differences in perceptions and an increase in frustration all around. Right now, you are undertaking a huge step in your life that is likely on the verge of encompasing the totality of what you are right now (I know it was for me back then). Likewise, your parents are likely entirely focused on the situation with your sibling's health. They want to vent frustration and need your help and support during this, and vice versa, but for different reasons.

    While it is surely frustrating to have loved ones berate your future profession (I have had some experience with this too), just try to focus on your task at hand and avoid wasting energy fanning the flames of their frustration. After all, you havn't even had day 1 of training yet, so don't feel like you have to take up the gauntlet in defense of your future profession in a personal way. They are probably just maxed-out emotionally and venting to you as a way of coping. Hope things get better for all of you.
     
  15. han14tra

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    For those of you asking about his insurance status:

    My brother is actually 25 (4 years older than me) and still living at home. He is able to work, but can't get a job because it is a very rural area and all the men do very physically demanding work (e.g. factory workers, construction, police, etc). There isn't really anything else. Since he is able to work and he's not a pregnant woman, he won't get medicaid.
     
  16. biogirl215

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    Could he go to school?
     
  17. jdandturk

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    when people ask me for medical advice i say "hmm... it sounds like cancer". they usually dont ask me again:D.
     
  18. fusionx22

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    No offense, but your parents are ignorant. In it for the money? They talk as if they know something...which they don't. All you can do is explain it to them that you cannot give advice because you're not a doctor yet. Then explain it to them that CP is a tragic condition to begin with with an even poorer prognosis. It's not fair that they don't have medical insurance to pay for it, but they cannot be mad at a doctor. It's the system, not the doctor.
     
  19. Nanon

    Nanon An urban myth.
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    The above is excellent advice, and I'll go further. When your folks ask for medical advice, what they're actually asking for is help, and I'm betting any kind of help will do. Even though you don't have a single day of training, you can still do things like writing down questions for the doctors and making sure they get answered during doctor's appointments. How about spending some time on the phone w/ social services to ferret out additional assistance for your brother? Even driving him to appointments or doing the grocery shopping for the family would be a huge service to them. And keep in mind that as a college student, you have far more access to information than they do via professors and even the library. Just be proactive.

    A seasoned caretaker,

    S.
     

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