We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Tuesday, August 18. 2009
Our contributor Roger de Hauteville, former King of Sicily and a Ted Kennedy fan, emailed me this artistic effort:
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This picture creeps me out. When I was 17 and taking the Senior Life Saving Course at the Y, we were told to report to the Y's doctor for a check up before we could start the course.
I was alone with the doctor when he told me to take off my blouse so he could listen to my heart and lungs, then he reached around me and unhooked my bra while telling me not to be afraid, he was going to do a breast exam. I was terrified, but he was a doctor so I ended up gritting my teeth and just waiting for it all to be over. When I left that exam I was shaking and threw up. I never told anyone.
It wasn't until I was a few years older that I realized I should have reported the doctor. No legitimate doctor would unhook a 17 year old's bra and cop a feel. And I think it was that extra intimacy of him actually unhooking my bra that even then made me so uncomfortable I got sick afterwards. But back when I was 17, we'd never heard of sexual predators and I'd never been around any men or boys who didn't treat girls with the upmost respect. And he was a doctor. It wouldn't have occurred to me to question a doctor.
I hadn't thought of this for the last 30 years or more, but seeing that picture brought a wave of nausea over me. Guess I have buttons I didn't know I had.
deference to authority --always the swing from 'too much' to 'not enough' --culture is a living thing!
Ditto. Also dentists, who have your neck chained to the back of the chair to hold bibs that they wipe their hands on frequently. Let's hear it for authority figures.
wow. I got the same reaction when I saw that picture. Am feeling a little adrenaline surge right now thinking of the times I've been through similar - going back to when I was six. That thing for 'authority figures' plays havoc on your sensibilities even when you're an adult who expects molestation to be the last thing in the world you'd get in a hospital/emergency situation.
A few years ago, I had a pulmonary shutdown and ended up in ICU after 12 hours in the ER. The team of respiratory specialists became my 'friends' as I was hooked up to oxygen and had to have nebulizer treatments every four hours and prednisone injections into a shunt in my arm every four hours. The therapists came in and began to hang out after the treatments. I was friendly and a little loopy from the huge doses of prednisone, but after a few days of relentless attention, I got really tired, especially as the treatments went on all night. I asked the doctor for a sleeping pill, and one of the therapists said he'd do the nebulizer treatment for me without waking me up. This guy was particularly attentive and he gave me the creeps, so when he came in that night and woke me up despite the sleeping pill, I feigned sleep so I wouldn't have to talk. He was sitting close to my face and I heard him call my name very softly several times. I 'slept' on, and at the end of the treatment, he called my name again. No response, though I was wide awake with my eyes slammed shut. He reached over and fondled my breasts and then left. The next morning a very fat and disgusting female nurse came into my room and told me to take a bath. That meant standing at the sink as I could not take off the oxygen. Instead of leaving and closing the door, she sat down in the only chair and watched me. She never said a word, and when I was done and back in bed, left without a word. I can't tell you what was more horrible - the guy in the night or that nurse. I was in ICU for six days and had to deal with these two as if nothing bothered me.
This past spring I ended up in the ER after about 15 hours of severe pain in my lower back. I kept thinking it would go away, that it was nothing, but the time came where I needed help fast. I should have called for an ambulance but got my daughter to drive me. Bad move. I did the intake and they noted I was nicely dressed, clean, had insurance, and did not have a knife sticking out of my neck, so I had to wait three hours. An extremely good-looking male nurse came out to call people in, and my daughter said, "Hey, Mom, maybe you'll get him." heh. I did get him and the creep show began. I was put into a narrow 'room' with a wall and curtained opposite wall. A female nurse handed me a gown and told me to take off my clothes but to leave on my panties and bra. I tossed my stuff onto a chair and put the gown on when my nurse of the night came in in his green scrubs. He was extremely nice and helped me get settled and wrote down my symptoms. A doctor came in and talked and ordered pain stuff right away and indicated some tests I'd need, and I sent my daughter home. My nurse - 'he' from now on - came in to set up an I.V. He sat down on the bed and took my left hand an placed it on his thigh up close to his crotch. He murmured comforting words and smiled at me with a little too much staring... if that's the right word. Attention, maybe. I was too sick for any alarms to go off, and then he gave me a bolus of dilaudid and anti-nausea medicine. He sat down on the skinny bed to do that and he pushed the drugs too fast and my eyes became fixed so that he bent down close and called my first name several times and murmured comforting words. Theme of the night - comforting words. Again, I was friendly and responsive to the extent I could be considering the drugs and my general state of illness, weakness. I had to wait a lot and drifted in and out of sleep, and he kept coming in to check on me, waking me up each time. I woke up once to see him standing close beside me smiling down on me. He said, "__, even in sleep you are a beauty." No alarm. On and on until time for the CAT scan he 'comforted' me with admiring words mixed with technical medical stuff and doings. When I got back from the CAT scan, he was waiting for me and said, "I have done something for you I have never done for anyone." oh... forgot.. he had to take my bra off because of the CAT scan. He did that very professionally, but I had to stand and almost fainted, so he held on to me in a comforting way. "I folded your clothes." I looked and my clothes, socks, and bra were folded so neatly and perfectly placed, and I smiled and said thanks. I spent about 7 hours with him attending to me, and it came time for more pain drugs. He came in and I woke up and noticed he got an erection... seemed to surprise him as he went to the back behind my bed to wiggle around to hide it or something and then came beside the bed to take my pulse. As he took my wrist over the railing he brushed the tips of my fingers against it. Then he went to the other side of the bed and sat down to inject the pain meds... placing my hand on his thigh and up close to it. I looked away every time as if I didn't notice and slipped off to sleep again. Still no alarms. What my mind could handle was that this was happening and that it would be over soon. Finally, time to leave and he came in with papers to sign and sat down on the bed... I was dressed and sitting on the bed so that I was forced to lean into him - difference in weight, etc. I signed everything and he .... I don't even know how to describe it, but he talked about what a wonderful patient I was and some mushy stuff that was romantic, and he wrote his cell phone number down on one of the sign-out sheets, and then he kissed me. It was something out of a fairytale...the kiss. So romantic and smooth that when I yanked back, he put both hands very softly on my face and did it again. He walked me outside - 3 A.M. and held on to me, and when he turned to leave, he looked really sad. My daughter arrived and I went home and went to bed.
I never turned either guy in. I told only one person - a friend who is a psychiatrist. He was outraged. I told him that it would have been my word against theirs, and though I did not know the protocol, if I had to defend myself to a 'fucking' lawyer or go through the abuses again, I'd go through the abuses before I let a lawyer try to blame it on me. I was at the mercy of powerful drugs each time, and I was under the debilitating stress of severe illness. I also have all the other times stuff like that has happened to me, and I just added these to that pile. Having to deal with a lawyer attempting to put that weight on me would have sent me to a mental institution.
Sometimes you just have to go it alone.
Women endure a lot that 'real' men never hear about. Perhaps we should.
Nah, Luther, most women don't talk about it, and I'm sorry I did because I've got a loop going in my brain that is making me nuts. Sara's story pushed some buttons, and now I can't turn them off.
Anyway, I forgot the best part: I got the bill about a month later. It was pages long with every cotton ball and Kleenex listed, and for some reason, I read each item all the way down. Turns out I paid the bill for half the people in the ER that night. There were tests listed that I never had, and all kinds of smaller stuff that I know I did not get. All I had were the two shots of dilaudid, three bottles of barium, and the CAT scan. There was no charge for the special treatment.
I know most women don't, Meta. And for the very reasons you state. And it is a shame even if understandable. Those kinds of men should be at the least shunned and ostracized for their deeds. No good bastards they are.
Certainly was nice of the hospital to offer you the opportunity to pay for those other folks. Why perhaps that was just practice for what's going to happen if this health-care bill passes.