Finding doctor for 100% NON-trauma stuff, but DO have serious nopes about medical providers

kkd

Learning
How do you vet a prospective doctor for, shall we say, PTSD or "issue" awareness or even friendliness? Especially when contact with the medical profession for a non-psych complaint has been repeatedly turned into a psych issue and you thus have troubles with dealing with ppl who appear not to be hearing you AND/OR you tend to just STFU and agree when it seems like the provider's getting annoyed? (Lest you be labeled dramatic, attention-seeking, or drug-seeking?) I've had insufficient glasses rxs for years because of this.

I searched and found threads recommending finding PTSD sensitive providers, but I didn't find the screening questions you all would use for this. Can anyone share what worked for them? "Not listening" and having my words twisted are basically my 2 remaining "buttons".

The question is: How the hell do you FIND providers who work around/with issues? What do you say and ask to weed out the problem ones?
Vision specialist - how do I assert myself or find someone who can slow the f down and let me actually perceive the damn differences?
Neurologist - How do I non-defensively make it crystal clear I'm here to talk about a non-psych issue and no, we don't need to "just try antidepressant or anxiety drugs" to see if it helps. I just need to know what to avoid, if it's causing damage, and what non-drug options I have. If the answer is "take this pill daily" that's also out, I just need to know how to minimize risk or damage.

I have some very visible ancient scars from how I used to deal with things that are obviously self-inflicted. By used to I mean 15+ yrs ago. It's very old news. I do NOT want or need "the mental health angle" factored into a discussion of the 2 issues Spouse thinks I should see about. My worry is that, yet again, they'll see that and then not hear what's actually going on. I have had drs, dentists, professors, managers, coworkers and customers all see those and start treating me weird as recently as last year.
 
The question is: How the hell do you FIND providers who work around/with issues?
The only effective way I've personally found is to go see them, unfortunately. Quite honestly, I prefer younger doctors and specialists because they haven't been too hardened by experience yet.

My last PCP was a resident and was actually interested when I told him about my PTSD. The problem with residents is that they disappear from my teaching clinic after a couple of years. I don't even know who my current PCP is.

My psychiatrist is actually a psychiatric nurse, but she can't be older than 35. She has been amazing to work with, willing to listen and adjust based on my communication. Same with my urologist.

And that's the other issue, I think - you have to do your part and communicate very clearly. If you do that, you'll figure out who the jerks are pretty quickly. They're the ones who aren't listening to you, or don't care what you're saying.
 

kkd

Learning
@somerandomguy, How'd you phrase it when it wasn't working out? Do you have to explain about tthe ptsd and cause or domyku find you can just tell them "I need XYZ from you guys" and they honor it without too much poking?

My fear is that I will get frustrated or flustered right from the start and sound like a dramatic high maintenance troublemaker and that will be noted, and then it'll be that much harder to start with a clean slate next time I get the nerve. I tend to over-explain and make myself more anxious as I go and that is the opposite of what I think's needed here. It happened with the phys therapist but she handled it great and i'm having a hard time expecting i'll hit another jackpot like her.

I forgot to say in first post that my family history is incomplete because no way am I opening that can of worms with my parents. Yes, they're both livi g but NO I am not having any personal discussions like this with them. I'd rather pay out of pocket for diagnostics than deal with the fallout from that.

And I've never had a provider write me off or be a jerk but they definitely seem to find that stance weird. There simply isn't a way to explain why that doesn't sound super dramatic or suspicious, even to my own ears.
 
How'd you phrase it when it wasn't working out? Do you have to explain about tthe ptsd and cause or domyku find you can just tell them "I need XYZ from you guys" and they honor it without too much poking?
It depends. When I went to my PCP, I went to get a very specific medication, and I told him exactly why I needed it (my PTSD). I discovered that not only was he okay with giving me the Rx due to my PTSD, but it made him feel like a good doctor to do so. Was it a difficult conversation? Yes. And I'm very aware that it could have gone wrong. But if it had, I would have fired him.

Remember, just because they ask for information doesn't mean you're required to give it to them. My doctor did ask me specifically why I had PTSD. I declined to answer specifically, but I told him it was due to an abusive relationship. I did not feel comfortable with telling him the specific acts that gave me PTSD, but I also thought he would benefit from my general information. And you don't even have to go that far - you can always say "I don't feel comfortable disclosing that information." Physicians should stop asking after that, and if they don't they should be fired.
 

joeylittle

Administrator
I tend to over-explain and make myself more anxious as I go and that is the opposite of what I think's needed here.
Write it all out and let yourself refer to your notes.
I forgot to say in first post that my family history is incomplete because no way am I opening that can of worms with my parents. Yes, they're both livi g but NO I am not having any personal discussions like this with them. I'd rather pay out of pocket for diagnostics than deal with the fallout from that.
I don't know aspects of my family history either. When they ask about this or that, I say "not that I know of". The end. You don't need to start on the defense - lots of people don't have a complete family medical history, for many different reasons.

Especially when contact with the medical profession for a non-psych complaint has been repeatedly turned into a psych issue and you thus have troubles with dealing with ppl who appear not to be hearing you AND/OR you tend to just STFU and agree when it seems like the provider's getting annoyed? (Lest you be labeled dramatic, attention-seeking, or drug-seeking?)
Have you ever been excessively dramatic - say, exaggerating to make a point? Using extreme language loudly?
Vision specialist - how do I assert myself or find someone who can slow the f down and let me actually perceive the damn differences?
Well, there's a medical reason they go back and forth rather quickly. Believe me - I hate eye tests, I go into them tense and come out worse - I remind myself that the worst thing that can happen? Is that somewhere along the way, the lenses start getting blurrier, not better, and I can tell the doctor and we'll start over.
 

whiteraven

MyPTSD Pro
Thanks for posting. I have had very similar issues; I don't really have answers, but I did want to respond to a couple of things.

The question is: How the hell do you FIND providers who work around/with issues?
Sometimes, word of mouth helps. If you belong to some sort of a community group or know people in your area, you might ask around or just pay attention and see if anyone has recommendations. Otherwise, I think you just have to see them and check them out.
Neurologist - How do I non-defensively make it crystal clear I'm here to talk about a non-psych issue and no, we don't need to "just try antidepressant or anxiety drugs" to see if it helps.
Honestly? In my experience (and esp. with my former neurologists), I have been direct about psych stuff being out of bounds. Just asking doesn't do it, and most times neither does being nice. Many doctors tend to get offended if you take control of the conversation.
Remember, just because they ask for information doesn't mean you're required to give it to them. My doctor did ask me specifically why I had PTSD.
This. Mine did, too, and I straight up told him that was not something I would be discussing with him.
 
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