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Why are so many docs jerks?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by StritchMD2011, Nov 21, 2002.

  1. StritchMD2011

    StritchMD2011 Member
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    Just a little rant here... I was done volunteering at Loyola today and was heading home. While I was waiting for the elevators a doc (cardio thorasic surgeon) walked up and was waiting for the same elevator. To make conversation, I jokingly said, "the elevators are slow today." This guy just gives me a dirty look and says "They always are....." He completely gave off the "I'm too good to talk to you" vibe. I realize there's always the chance he had a bad day or lost a patient, but why is it such a trend that many doctors seem to be such a-holes? There are tons of very personable doctors, yet there seem to be a large majority at the other end. Can anyone shed some light on this phenomenon?
     
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  3. lola

    lola Bovine Member
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    it's only the male doctors :laugh:
     
  4. DarkChild

    DarkChild Senior Member
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    yup... I dont really trust doctors... which is why I'm going to be one. That way me, my family and the folks close to me, will be safe.
    No, I'm not kidding.
    Yes, I might have a problem.
     
  5. tBw

    tBw totally deluded
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    look at the premeds you know. are all of them nice people?

    Now take them and put them through one of the most ego-challenging, humbling, rigorous trainings known, and even after that deprive them of sleep, make them work 70 hours a week, face often ungrateful patients, face death every day, force them to look into their own failings and mortality, give them a divorce, then sue their ass because they couldn't be God.

    Now how nice are the ones who even started out okay?
     
  6. gogiants

    gogiants Senior Member
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    though i don't doubt there are plenty of just plain cocky and not so friendly physician there also are probably even more overworked, stressed out ones. its hard to tell the difference between a mean doc and one who's just had a bad and very long day. i think the nature of the job can just bring out the worst sometimes. i can only imagine how i might act after my first 12-24 hour shift.
     
  7. souljah1

    souljah1 Attending
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    the same reason why most people are.
     
  8. TechMan

    TechMan Dreams Stuff are Made of.
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    I don't know, but what you said that he said doesn't exactly strike me as sounding like an a-hole.
     
  9. BEETLEVH

    BEETLEVH Member
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    You know something, you're very right. A lot of docs really are jerks. I don't think it would be fair to discount the amount of stress that is placed upon their shoulders, yet at the same time it would be very ignorant on their part to forget that they weren't always "gods". Also, there is probably a large contingent of those docs whose jerk-like disposition predates med school. I know a few intelligent premeds who will almost definately become docs someday, somewhere, and I can tell you one thing... they're well on their way to joining the ranks of the good docs no one likes. I know one thing, it is outside the bounds of my personality to EVER become like that (if I make it there, that is...).
     
  10. Saluki

    Saluki 1K Member
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    I agree with a previous poster who said that going through such a competitive process can weed out the more humble folks, but really I think it is mainly a personality thing. Most surgeons although I would not necessarily call them cocky, my orthopedic surgeon was very kind to me:) tend to be less people oriented. I talked to a professor at Stanford who taught pediatrics this summer, and although I was merely a humble freshman in college working at summer camp he was incredibly nice to me. I think that as a whole, you're going to find pediatricians and family practicioners are friendly and people oriented, because that's what you need in those specialties!
    (I'd also just like to say that primary care is the way to go!:)
     
  11. Diogenes

    Diogenes Succat
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    Maybe he just didn't want to make inane small-talk with someone he doesn't know and may never see again. Add to that that he is at WORK, let alone a stressful job, and maybe you can see why he acted the way he did. I'd probably react as he did -- and I don't think it qualifies as being a jerk.
     
  12. Iron Horse

    Iron Horse The luckiest man
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    Hey Carbon, is that Grace Kelly?
     
  13. UCLA2000

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    ..because they can be?
     
  14. gramcracker

    gramcracker Emergency Medicine Attending
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    Two parts:

    1) There are nice surgeons, but (stereo)typically, there are lots of dingus holier-and-better-than-thou surgeons, too.

    2) As my boss (a 79-year-old still-practicing physician) tells me, medical school is the best behavior modification program in the world. You're taught to think a certain way, expect certain things, live with a certain mindset. Like other posters have said, you put doctors through the hell we're about to be put through, and they come to feel like they 'deserve' respect. Just remind yourself, you don't want to turn out like the assholes. Keep that in mind, treat people with respect, kindess, and appreciation, and you should make it.
     
  15. BobbyDylanFan

    BobbyDylanFan Senior Member
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    I don't think the OP was looking for like a huge small talk conversation but more so just to be recognized. I agree, some docs I have worked for (I was a medical assistant through the AmeriCorps program and had the opportunity to work with many docs and residents within one health center) could be very condescending. These people would treat me just as a medical assistant who was not in the "med club" and didn't deserve to learn medicine. And yes, some that I didn't know too well (maybe worked with them a couple times) usually wouldn't even recognize me. On the other hand, I have worked for a few awesome, down to earth docs that have been very helpful in advancing my education by giving me great opportunities to view surgeries that some med students might not even see, talk with patients about the medications they are taking (i am a pharmacology /toxicology major), etc. So as someone else said, I guess there are some out there that look at a pre-med and see the opportunity it presents and some look and see a deer in headlights.
     
  16. galen

    galen Senior Member
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    I played doubles tennis (league) for a while with an MD for my partner. As for as I know he was the only MD in the club. He was so competitive that he often cheated and called opponents balls out when I was sure they were in. It was embarrassing to be his partner...Other than that he was okay. I really think that having to get into & thru med school filters out a lot of easy going, non-competitive people.

    Ive also met a lot of MDs and orthop surgeons from point of view of a pt and hosp worker. Id say roughly a third were arrogant jerks with a kiss my a** attitude, another third were so-so, and the other third were really nice people--who were well-liked by their pts and their staff...:cool:
     
  17. SunnyS81

    SunnyS81 Senior Member
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    Are you really surprised about the attitudes of doctors?

    Now, this will offend a ton of you, but a decent chunk of people I meet at interviews from other schools I can't STAND at ALL! I usually try to make conversation with the people at the school that day, but with some people I seem to have to PROVE myself worthy of their conversation. I could give you a long list of crappy things people have said, but I don't feel like reliving my hate.

    On top of that, add the lifestyle of a doctor. Some of these guys are getting called at 3am or having to stay up all night when they are on call. I imagine after a while, doctors, like everyone, get tired of getting called at all hours of the night, especially when they start getting old.

    Additionally, doctors are pretty academic people, who from my experience tend not to be the most extroverted people.

    Just my $.02
     
  18. DW

    DW Fix me some sandwiches
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    ha ha...i've had pretty cool fellow interviewees most of the time, but at wash u this was DEFINITELY the case. maybe that was just an anomaly my interview day, but that place seemed like it had "gunner university" written all over it :laugh:
     
  19. DW

    DW Fix me some sandwiches
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    btw, i think this thread is kind of silly.

    some docs are jerks, some are not.

    some lawyers are jerks, some are not.

    some professors are jerks, some are not.

    some garbage collectors are jerks, some are not.

    yes, there are some things about the medical profession that might tend to make people a little ornery. but for every time someone posts a "this doctor was an ass to me in the elevator", i can post a "this doc i know buys us a round of beers after lab meetings". we kind of have this over idealized notion of the medical profession where doctors are supposed to be hyper intelligent mother theresas. but, since the doctor pool is usually drawn from human beings as far as i can tell, you're going to see varying personalities regardless. and how one gets qualified as "nice" or a "jerk" is very much in the eye of the beholder.

    my 1/50 of a dollar
    :cool:
     
  20. pillowhead

    pillowhead Senior Member
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    sunny, you are so right.

    Check out the Does undergrad institution matter thread and I think you'll see why some doctors are total jerks. judging from some of the comments there (state U kids are all ******s), it's no wonder so many doctors are arrogant
     
  21. Pickle Salt

    Pickle Salt *curtsies*
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    S-E-X-U-A-L F-R-U-S-T-R-A-T-I-O-N.
     
  22. LoveDoc

    LoveDoc Respect the Rhesus Monkey
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    I was told by the volunteer coordinator at the hospital I volunteer at that surgeons and orthopedic doctors are a**holes.

    What is nice?

    Is nice:

    ...smiling in response to your smile?
    ...responding to small talk on the elevator?
    ...returning a page within 30 minutes?
    ...ignoring when people do something that offends you?

    If yes, then admit I am not the nicest person in the world. I do however try to come off as nice to benefit others. People just don't know how to define boundaries and set limits. Just because I work with you or for you does not mean I have to be your best friend. I STILL NEED MY COMFORT ZONE-- and 9 times out of 10 you ain't in it.

    Each day I grow older I think I understand how doctors feel. When it boils down, their job is a 'physician.' They still have a life that defines their whole person and people do not respect that.
     
  23. republicandr

    republicandr Senior Member
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    surgeons do tend to be jerks. but how important is bedside manner when your patient is anesthesized? on the other hand, pediatricians and family docs are usually quite nice.
     
  24. lola

    lola Bovine Member
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    whoa....god must really love you!
    you too diogenes!
     
  25. StritchMD2011

    StritchMD2011 Member
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    I didnt mean for this thread to get so out of hand.. I was merely asking why such a disproportionately large number of doctors seem to be jerks. I definitely realize there is always going to be the "bad day factor," but it just seems like there are certain doctors I've encountered who always seem to be pissed. On the other hand, there are some incredibly cool ones too. I suppose the competition involved in becoming a doctor does tend to naturally favor those who are more agressive, and that often means unfriendly. And for those who questioned: my version of "nice" just includes common respect. I personally always try to greet another person when walking down a hallway, or at least smile to someone. I guess many just don't share my ideas. Sorry for starting this post....
     
  26. Random Access

    Random Access 1K Member
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    Did you miss the thread about male vs. female OB/GYN Kenobis? The female ones were apparently the jerks in that case...
     
  27. Diogenes

    Diogenes Succat
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    Huh? why?:confused:
     
  28. relatively prime

    relatively prime post happy member
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    Really?! All the people I meant at my interviews were exceptionally nice and pleasent people. Huh....
     
  29. latinfridley

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    Why are docs such jerks?

    Because they can be
     

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