Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Worst Trip to the Doctor EVER

I've had some pretty lousy experiences with doctors over the past 3 years, but this one tops them all.

In case you're tempted to pity me at any point in this story, I want you to know that I'm sharing this highly personal account only in hopes that you'll get a really good laugh out of it! Every single word is true, I promise you. Enjoy! :)

DISCLAIMER: This is a very up-close-and-personal blog post; however, please know that it isn't meant to be offensive or inappropriate in any way. Just open and honest.


First, it took us over a month to get an appointment with a new OB doctor - any new OB doctor - in Pocatello.

Finally the day came...

We waited for over an hour in the waiting room. Several people who arrived after us were called in first. We were the last people in the waiting room when we were finally called in after 5:00 p.m., when their office closes.

After being herded into an office, we went over the usual questions, but the medical assistant was absolutely convinced for at least the first 10 minutes that I was pregnant, in spite of our telling her over and over that I wasn't pregnant anymore (Yes, I cried).

Turns out she thought I was someone else - another patient named Jennifer. Oops!

The staff finally found the right records. More waiting. At one point, a nurse thrust a pointed finger in my direction through the open doorway and said - well actually, yelled - to another nurse, "DOES SHE NEED A PHYSICAL?" The answer was something like, "No, that's the wrong patient."

Apparently this was just too much for her after 5 pm and she lost it, "Well, there are just TOO MANY JENNIFER'S around here!" (The funny thing is, Ben had gotten up to use the restroom and was walking by her at that very moment, so she practically yelled it in his face...We enjoy doing imitations of this scene when we need a good laugh.)

More waiting. The doctor was very busy, and it was almost 6pm by this time. Our appointment was scheduled at 4. A nurse took me to an exam room. "Would we get to talk to the doctor? Tell him our issues? Talk about what we've been through so far and what's ahead?" we asked her.

Yes, of course, but first take off your pants, please.

More waiting. The doctor finally came in and chatted about Clomid and in vitro for a while (I was half un-clothed, with only a small sheet to provide some slight modesty).

Last, how about a good ol' pelvic exam, just for good measure?...Sure, why not? I love having my ovaries squeezed. (Do they do that just for fun?)

Right in the middle of the exam, a nurse pokes her head in to notify the doctor that his next patient's family is waiting in the car (so hurry it up!). Then another nurse walks right in...Is she there to help? No, just to get some supplies out of the cabinet, which she has to lean over my lap to reach. During a pelvic exam. It's like I'm not even there. Naked. In stirrups.

Finally, it's over...It's close to 7 by now. The doctor scribbles on his pad and ducks out, "Here's some new medication, give it a try and I'll see you in a couple months."

Thanks, that's just what we came here for. More medication. More trying. More being ignored by our doctor.

I dress. We leave. I cry.


The moral of the story? We're going back to a great doctor in Idaho Falls, who we went to for a second opinion right before we found out we were moving back in January. We've had an incredible experience with him and his staff. Anyway, it's worth driving an hour for great one-on-one care, rather than waiting an hour to be herded like a naked sheep.

By the way, Ben is wonderful. Trying to start a family wouldn't be nearly as frustrating if the only person I had to deal with was him. I guess that how it works for most people, huh? :)

- Jenny


  1. oh my goodness jenny! Funny and terrible all at the same time. I would be crying too. I really do think most doctors are just licensed drug dealers. I really hope the doctor in Idaho falls is better help. Love you!

  2. Oh, Jenny, that's horrendous! How insensitive of them. I'm sad you have to come back up to IF, but I'm glad they treat you better. I hope your next visit is more positive! You're awesome and I love reading your blog! Thanks for being so personal!

  3. I just want to laugh and cry with you. I have been there - well, not exactly there. That is a really bad appointment. I cannot fathom why doctors always have these very serious, emotion discussions about fertility while you are completely naked wearing only a little paper crop top and have a tiny sheet draped across your lap.

    I have yet to find an OB I love...or even like/tolerate. Hate them all. I wonder if it's because I never feel like I can have a frank, open discussion with them because I always feel too rushed... "Sure, yeah, whatever you say, Doc. Just leave so I can get dressed."

    I like what Paul and Tana said. I agree that most doctors are licensed drug dealers. Once I got sick of all the drugs, I started seeing an acupuncturist. I know it's a little out there, but I love how it makes me feel. It has also gotten rid of one of my fibroid tumors and reduced the size of the second one so I think it really works. So if you ever get sick of doctors, give it a try!

    Good luck! ((((Hugs))))

  4. Oh, just a quick war story to swap with you. We had our first IUI later in the day. After it was done, the doctor told me to just lay still for about 20 minutes. And I did. We kept waiting for a nurse come say I could leave and get up or whatever. After what seemed like forever, I just finally got dressed and my husband and I left our exam room to find that practically everyone in the office had left. All the lights were off. I think a receptionist was still there just closing up, but they had forgotten all about us. So infuriating. Grrrr.

  5. Jenny! So coming from a nursing standpoint I was interested to read your story (especially since I want to go into labor and delivery or other areas of women's health like OB). I definitely had some dr visits similar to yours and it made me so mad because I KNOW what nurses are taught and I assume providers are taught very similar things and half the things they did in your situation were not what they were taught, as I'm sure you could tell :) Hang in there, I'm sure this whole situation is so draining! and I'm SO glad you do have a better dr you can go to. Good drs make SUCH a huge difference and I'd add good nurses do too ;) haha. Hope all is well!

  6. If you find a doctor you love stick with him. Plus, they know your history, they "believe" you when you tell them what you have been through, because they have been through it with you. I am glad that you are seeing a Dr. for everything. Make sure when you make your apt with the other Dr you info them that you are coming in for a infertility consult. Sometime when you also need an exam you don't get to focus on what you are there for. I also recommend you do a lot of your own research, and talk to friends who have gone through similiar things. Make sure you and your Dr discuss a long term plan, for the next 12 months. Don't just focus on what's next this month. Make sure you know what all of the options are, and keep them on track. I know we want our Dr to remember everything about us, but they have too many patients. Every time I saw my Dr (like once per month or more for 4 years) I gave him a rundown of where we have been treatment-wise and what our future plans were. Please let me know if I can help you.
    Kristen Gotch

  7. Oh man! What an ordeal. Yuk. I'm so glad Ben was there with you!

  8. I know you don't know me, but I blog stalked you through my cousins Cindy Phippens blog. I just wanted to tell you I know what it is like (I have PCOS and have been trying for 5 years to get pregnant.) Good OB's are hard to find, and a good one is worth the drive. Stick with it. You are not alone. Good luck!