Sunday, 4 October 2009

Red Letter Day

I received this letter in the post at some point a week and a half ago. It has been a good barometer of how much more positive I have become. It is a copy of a letter sent from my consultants clinic to my GP, updating him on my decision not to start infliximab. It describes my mosr recent appointment and then goes onto say:


His weight is 80kg [1]. As you know he is coming back to make a decision about the infliximab, in fact he still wants to hold off [2]. He is going to try an alternative; something he thinks is CBT [3] and is by a gentleman called Guy Cohen [4] who has a website [5].
When I read this the first time ancient forces of anger were awoken from their slumber. They broke this passage down sentence by sentence...
1] I know I've put on weight - I dont need to see it in black and white. I can tell by the fact none of my work trousers fit me comfortably and my work shirts splay revealingly at the buttons...
2] Does he know? How does he know? I didn't tell him - don't tell me I'm supposed to believe in the existence of some great NHS communications system (aren't they all supposed to be on the same computer system now or something...) pfff it'll never work. And, yes, I do still want to hold off.
3] I actually said I thought it might be similar to NLP or CBT... not that I really knew the difference at the time... but this makes me sound like some crackpot who has just read something batty in the daily mail.
4] Why have they named Guy? I was puzzled when she wrote it down on my notes, but astounded to see it included in this letter. 'a gentleman called Guy Cohen' makes him sound like some kind of victorian bounder preying on weak minded society girls...
5] And this final bit! This was the red rag to my angry bull... 'who has a website'! What I read through the red mist was: 'he's found some guff on the internet and is buying into it like a gullible fool, snigger, no really, he'll be playing the nigerian lottery next, guffaw...'. There was something sooooo condescending about that turn of phrase: who has a website, I could feel their eyes rolling.

So, when the lovely wife got home I thrust it beneath her nose and demanded she share my wrath. Fortunately she is better than that. "You do weigh 80 kilo's which is good, because putting on weight means the UC isn't busy", uh, yeah. "They probably already sent a letter to your GP, or assumed you'd been and told him what was happening like a concientious patient", ahhhhhh. "Did you call it CBT?", errr kind of, "Well, there you go then...", yeah but I said NLP too..."does it matter?", erm, well, no, no I guess not. "Has Guy got a website?". Yeah, but... "but what? I just says he has a website, and he does, so...". Oh look, GIVE IT TO ME, you just don't understand...

But of course she does. It is just a letter informing my GP what is happening, for which I should be grateful really. And was it worth getting angry about anyway? Even if it had said I was defying all that was right-thinking in the world of western medicine and thus would now be considered an imbicile? No. I doesn't matter what anybody thinks. What matters is how I think.

4 comments:

Paula said...

The long and short if it is that you got mad that they documented something that basically said they didn't believe what you were doing was going to work and you got a tad annoyed - correct? The way I see it, is that in 10 years or less, CBT, NLP or other relaxation techniques will common practice for UC suffers. We're the pioneers...well someone always has to go first, so why not us?

Hey and next time you go to the doctors you could really have a go at winding them up and some really bizarre therapy you were thing of trying...just to see if they would document that..on second thoughts...maybe not..that could lead to all sorts of trouble. I'd stick with the truth.

Don't worry about what other people think (Note to self:- try and take note of your own advice!) Hey did you do the rewind technique on this? I'm still trying to get the 3 initial things sorted in my head..it look me such a long time to find the confidence one! I'm hoping to try it this week as I finally have time to myself and all the visitors are gone.

Paula said...

oh and I meant to ask...how are you going anyway? Anymore progress. I'm starting back again after 2 weeks break because of visitors...

Rich said...

Hey Paula

Yeah, I was a tad annoyed, but now it just seems quite funny. At my next appointment I'm going to ask why they don't consider NLP and these other alternative therapies a little more seriously.

I feel like I'm making some real progress - feeling better than I have for over a year. The rewind is hard, but i think it just takes practice. I don't feel like I'm anywhere near cracking it yet - its amazing just how hard it is to 'visualise' stuff... But I'm going to keep it up.

Good luck with your own efforts - make the most of some me-time now all your visitors have gone...

Skinny Girl said...

Whatever their intentions were, I found the letter a bit bizarre. Maybe the medical industry is just a bit different here, but I never get letters or copies of letters about anything. I'm always the type to assume the worse. Isn't it great we have spouses to keep our heads in check.