You guessed it. We are going to talk real here. So pour yourself a cup or glass of your favorite drink, sit back, and enjoy. But you may want to have a bib on just in case you spit your drink out mid sentence.
Just over a year ago, okay….let’s start even sooner than that.
About 5 years ago I had the first of many issues with my medical doctor. It began when my partner suggested that I should, at my age (almost slapped him there), perhaps consider getting a physical exam more than once, say, every 10 years or so. I agree. After all, I am no spring chicken anymore. So then it was a matter of making an appointment and actually getting into the clinic to get this done.
Understand that I spent my first 4 years pretty much in the hospital all the time because I was a very ill child. So I grew up hating hospital and some of the nasty nurses that worked in pediatrics back then. This translated into, “If I am not bleeding to death, or something is not falling off of my body, then I’ll be damned if I am going to have to see a medical practitioner.” Any and all of my family members could put those folks to work and it would not bother me. But this dude was not going to go in and humor them for any reason because it was a waste of my time. Thus, my medical chart was paper thin.
So when I went in to see this doctor, the first thing he said was, “Where is the rest of your file?” I replied, “I would assume that either that is the entirety of it or that someone on your staff would be able to answer that better than would I.” He left the room to ask the staff where the rest of my file was. He came back in about 20 minutes later with the same file and the same size. So then it was a matter of updating information on that file. He was doing his due diligence and making sure that he understood everything about me as much as he possibly could. Apparently I was an anomaly because I am not in to see a doctor every month or more.
With the family history of various cancers causing deaths etc, he ordered blood work. Cool We will circle back to this part in a moment. So then he made a number of statements that got me wondering where he was coming from? I also wondered if part of it was a cultural thing, seeing as how he was Asian and very matter-of-fact. I decided that a lot of doctors, Asian or not, were also like that, so likely it was not a cultural thing. He did not understand in any way how I categorized my sexual orientation. He was aware that my wife had passed and that no, I did not take antidepressants for the depression involved in the grieving process because I instead addressed the grief and the depression lifted (something that apparently shocked him), but the fact that I was, by that time, now with a male partner completely confused him. Granted, it may have been my use of the word “hetero-flexible,” but seriously, it does not take a lot to connect the dots.
Then we moved on to the physical. All of that was alright, except for one thing. I was pretty sure that, with very little lube involved, he has shoved his entire hand inside of me. That is when I started to really observe his hands. They seemed normal, but I was sure that the last time I had a rectal exam it did not feel like that. So I asked how many fingers he was using. He pulled out and said, “One.” I am left thinking, “WTF?” A year later, the same thing happened. The following year, the same thing. I was beginning to really want to NOT have a physical exam. I even asked for extra lube, just in case that was the issue. Nope. It just hurt like hell. He was obviously doing something wrong.
Now, circling back to the blood work, we found out that I was pre-diabetic. So he was all about getting me on medications immediately. I told him that if it is pre-diabetic I would like to try diet and exercise to manage it for now and if the numbers continue to go up, then meds would be an option. He tried to bully me into a different decision and I had to remind him that he worked for me, not the other way around. That was something that he did not like, but had to accept. So that is what we did. The numbers came down dramatically. Three months later the numbers were significantly lower. He was shocked that there would be such a change without meds. Okay. Cool. But diet and exercise can only do so much, so a couple of years later, I was now diabetic and having to address that.
But in the meantime in the more recent physical he said that my prostate gland was enlarged, which could be an indication of prostate cancer. Now, at that time I was also on testosterone to help with hormonal imbalances. It was helping with that, but would also likely be a contributor to the enlarged prostate. The doctor, in his infinite wisdom, actually suggested that I have surgery to remove my testicles. The brakes went on really fast. SCREEEEEETCH! I said, “Well, would it not make sense to come off of the testosterone first and see what happens?” He said, “It is far too soon to consider that step.” I replied, “Then I would think that it is also far too soon to even contemplate cutting my nuts off.” (Idiot!!! Mental note, shop for a new doctor that is not an asshole). We decided to send me to a specialist and have them examine me.
Between appointments I had a new doctor, STAT. The new doctor asked me why I was shopping for a doctor, and I told him that it was because my old doctor was a total asshole. He laughed and apologetically informed me that this is something that seems to come with the territory for many of his colleagues. So then I went to see the specialist. She was a lovely young woman who was very kind and also VERY GENTLE. She assured me she had small fingers, which she did. She did the exam and I hardly even knew she was in there. It was a much different experience. There was a second doctor in attendance, someone who was training with her, and he was very quiet through the initial interview. When she was done she asked if it would be alright with me if he also performed the exam, for learning purposes. I had him show me his hands. They seemed fine, so I said, “Well, I guess he has to learn somehow, huh?” He also was very gentle with it and I hardly felt him in there. They came to the conclusion that there was nothing to worry about. Please note…THERE WAS NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT. And my former doctor was talking about castration!
In the meantime, because of my diabetic aspects and being on a hormonal replacement, my new doctor had also referred me to another specialist in endocrinology, who was very concerned about the testosterone therapy. He had me go off of it immediately because with it in my system it could throw off other readings that come in from blood work.
The initial symptoms that I had that led to the testosterone therapy in the first place came back, but just for one week. The hormone levels balanced out and I have not looked back. Although my immune system is compromised because of Type 2 Diabetes, I am on proper medications for that and pretty much doing quite well.
So the moral of the story is…if you want to improve your health…pick a doctor that does not have thick fingers.