Friday, January 25, 2013

a [vagina] monologue.

I went to the doctor the other day.

It was just a follow-up physical in order to continue my Adderall, prescribed over a year ago by a different doctor who has since moved on to bigger things. I walked in and after glancing at the assembled tools on the counter, realized there was a little more than my attention span on the table. I didn't realize taking a peek at one's vagina provided an indication of how well the brain is focusing.


I sat vulnerable in my mauve paper gown and focused hard on the ear anatomy poster on the back of the door to distract myself. Before I even got to the Eustachian tube, the door opened and in walked my doctor, 38 and attractive.

"Have we met? Because you look familiar."

I felt like I was at the bar.

"Maybe that's because I was just here a month ago when you did the neurological exam for this same refill," I replied.

"Ha, that must be it!"

He asked the usual questions followed by, "Ok, we got the sex and the drugs part out of the way, now on to the rock-and-roll! Let's see. You're 36. I bet you're listening to - don't tell me - Nickelback!"

Actually, I don't remember what band he said, but it was just as dumb and insulting.

"Nah," I said, "I like stuff a little more alternative."

"Oh, I see.  Edgy are ya?"

He must have been home-schooled.


He listened to my heart, lungs, checked my thyroid, and finally, my reflexes.

"Hmmm...looks like you've got a little discoloration in your toes. You know, there's something called Peripheral Vascular Disease where the discoloration eventually turns black, resulting in a potential loss of extremeties."

"Maybe it's because I'm naked and it's freezing in here."

"What about this spot on your forehead?" he asked, wrinkling his own. "How long has this been there?"

"It's a zit. I've had it for three days."

"Gotta love those breakouts. Palms out in front for me."

My heart beat fast as I flexed my hands, revealing whatever it was he was looking for and prayed the exam would not involve an investigation of the opposite side. I had smashed the end of my finger a while ago on the corner of my dresser while trying to shake the last of my foundation from the bottle, resulting in incredible pain followed by an unsightly black mark on the majority of my nail. I didn't want to be vain and care about such things, but I did. On a recent date, I had forgotten about it and ran to the bathroom to paint my nails. But the polish was too light so I had to kind of tuck it every time I reached for my beer which probably drew even more attention than had I not. But here I was, on naked display, with nowhere to hide my black fingernail.

As if in slow motion, he said, "Ok, let's see the other side."

I flipped my hands and said the first thing that came to mind, in hopes of distracting him from my unattractive finger.

"So, my reflexes - are they pretty fast?"
"Whoa, what happened HERE?"
I felt my face turn red.
"Yeah, I know," I said. "I smashed it."

Next, he asked if I was seeing anyone and if I was, was he "the one".
"The one?" I asked, wondering how this was relative to my prescription.
"Yeah, the ONE the one," he said, smiling. "As in, do you want to pick up his dirty socks forever?"
"I have no idea," I said.
"Are you looking for the one?" He said, still smiling.
"No, not particularly."

Apparently, if you're a single woman and not desperately pounding the pavement to pick up a man's socks, you're a likely candidate for the whore kit.

"Judy, I'm going to need the blue swab," he told the chaperone.
"BLUE swab?" she replied, as though she had never before been asked to fetch a blue swab.

Cold, naked, zit, black fingernail, and now the blue swab.

"Yeah, the blue swab checks for everything."

In case Judy was unclear what "everything" meant, he elaborated, listing a multitude of words from the corner.

"Oh, the blue swab," she said, rummaging through cupboards. "I'm going to have to go over to the lab to get that."

"Everything ok down there?" I asked, spread eagle. "Blue swab? This doesn't sound routine."

He laughed and said it was indeed standard while Judy walked across the hall for the blue swab.

I wasn't laughing.

He finally finished the exam, encouraging me to switch from my OB/GYN and see him exclusively. He also wanted to see me again in a month to follow up, even though that would be the third in-office follow up in two months. I tried to deny my baggage and ignore any conservative Christian suspicions.

I've since googled him. He belongs to the Catholic Medical Association and is a strong advocate for natural family planning. His goals? To be a man of medicine, faith, and family.

While these are indeed noble goals, they'd be best kept away from my vagina.

I think it's time to take my Adderall.
I really need to focus on finding a new doctor.
And, dark nail polish.
Some Clearasil, maybe.
And, prosthetic feet.

How else am I supposed to find the one?


Kristianna said...

I think this is my first time commenting. I love your writing and had to comment because WTH???

My husband's been on Adderall for AGES and never told me about any pelvic exam or blue swabs. ;)

Olivia {i am still learning} said...

How did you remain so calm?

I want to throat punch him for you. Holy Hell.

elzimmy said...

My eyebrow is still raised from reading that encounter. What a tremendous douche. I can't think of a better word. Seriously, eyebrow, still raised.

Summer said...


mrc-w said...

Oh my word is right!
Ugh, what a bad doctor!!
I hope you go somewhere else!!!

tomsgirl1129 said...


Kathy said...

OMG, are you kidding?? I really thought at some point in this story you were going to say it was a nightmare you had and woke up from. Eeesh!

Anonymous said...

What the hell state do you live in because in most he crossed several ethical lines and should be reported to the medical board. NO doctor should be talking like that to a patient if this is true and why is this doctor giving a pelvic exam for this appt.???

Susan said...

Super creepy and unprofessional beyond comprehension.

lynxymama said...

i am so sorry you had to deal with this....i don't even know the appropriate word to use here, i know a lot of inappropes ones however.....confused medical "professional." but it made for a great story.

Tisha said...

ok creepy and unprofessional.

Jenny said...

No odd. You seemed to take it much better than I would have. Yikes!

Carey King said...

hahahaha, ok so I know everyone else is seriously shocked and I see pitch forks and torches but it is sort of funny. How many people get hit on while their at the gynae.. My gynae is like 100 years old and wears a bow tie and tried to get me to take birth control- but if I had to choose I would rather have that than some guy trying to get in my pants, especially when said pants are hanging over the chair.. haha hope you find a nice new doctor, thanks for a bit of comedy for my tuesday coffee;)

Ashleigh said...

Apparently looking at a lot of vaginas turned him into a complete douche! Kudos for not spitting in his face.


Lena said...

He was so inappropriate and unprofessional. Follow your gut instincts and change doctors. He was so wrong on every level!

There were times I should have spoken up in a doctor's office when they crossed the line of professionalism and I didn't. I let myself be silenced because of the authority figure thing and because I had been taught to not speak up for myself.

Abuse of power! It makes me sick to think there are doctors out there like this.

Anonymous said...

my soul adhd sister
r u the one living in bangladesh?
what shrink who starts the meds
sends u to a neurologist?
is this an old insurance plan
from ur growing up years?

the doc must read ur blog
and think u like paps

onlu U would be put on adhd meds
and end up with a cold speculum
and swabs in ur room
think maybe u got confused
and went to one of syd's docs?
makes me laugh
that u would even get
in a pt gown
for an adderall refill
i can picture the whole scenerio
would be a great seinfield episode

don't let the past
creep in
and make u even think
that since u r single
it puts u in the whore category
unless u CHOOSE to
that is

his goal is to be a man of faith
in medicince
that does not include
his views or opinions
about ur crotchs life
not in the hippocratic oath
trust ur christian suspicions
and find someone
who doesn't judge
and swab u
just for adderall

find someone like bob
who just leaves his tie
on hrc's plane
pushes african presidents out
of the way
not to be left behind
and sit on his porcelain throne
with NO crown

at least the guy talked
some bedside manners
many don't even try

ask for an increase
in ur adderall
after all u've been thru!

will be in dc va pa area
month of july
before we're off to
the wonderful gang filled el salvador
maybe a dc meet up reunion?

eat dc cupcakes
and search for a shield for me
for the gun happy gang wars
in el salvador

miss u c
xoxo rosa

Kulio said...

I kept wanting to say, "get out of there! He's a creeper!" but the other part of me was thinking - yep, I would have done exactly the same thing, feeling warning bells all through my body and yet still hearing this voice that says, "You're overreacting. Are you seriously going to make a scene and walk out of here?" And I would have stayed, and chalked it up. It's okay, now you know, and there won't be a next time, and you're stronger, and your girls will be stronger because of your stories. I love your style.

Anonymous said...

Sometimes we are so trained to be good girls we ignore our instincts to get the hell out. Carin, I think you should report him. In fact I know you should report him. If nothing is done so be it but at least there is a record in case he does this with his other women, I mean patients. What a jerk!

t...aka Tonette