Do you do it?
Yeah, yeah... go ahead and tell me about how God doesn't want me to lie, how it's sinful and all that.
Ok, now answer the question. Do you ever find yourself lying to medical people? I do. And I'm not the only one with a lack of trust here.
I used to tell the truth. To everyone. When Nosy Ms. Medico asked about toilet training our children, I'd get detailed. Shots? Oh, sure, I'll tell you when and where they were given. Yup. Oh, my parenting practices? Let me tell you everything so that you can appropriately care for my family. Of course, you get all this information because I think you're on my side.
In the long run, this sort of honesty is unhelpful, and it's been used against me a time or two.
Why physicians have to be so petty as to ask how many OUNCES OF FLUID an 18-month-old child gets by bottle, and how many bottles a day... and then lectures me about how the child should magically be DONE with bottles by 12 months... well. I think we have other issues to worry about. Have you noticed three of my children are autistic? Hm. Have you referred me to any practical help whatsoever? No? But dang, if you're not good at lecturing me about crap I don't do so well at. Um, according to YOU. Think I'm going to tell you I have Spongebob on all day? Nope. I'll say we "limit" the TV, but leave out the "to no more than eight hours a day" part of the sentence. (Ok, not really. But tell me I "shouldn't" do something... and watch what I go do. IF I feeeeel like it.)
Thankfully, we got kicked out of that last practice. Either for being a smart-a$$ one too many times, or for refusing certain immunizations. I think the latter, as the physician gets bonuses from MY insurance company for good rates. Well, anyway. I was very upset at the time, but now we have a decent guy I feel I can be pretty upfront with. He doesn't ask me about seat belts and bottles, I assume because he figures I have a little bit of common sense in my head and lets me be the parent. You know what? That helps ME let HIM be the doctor. I don't find myself questioning his good judgment so much when I feel my opinions are respected.
Perhaps it's just me, but generally, the questions physicians and nurses ask are becoming more intrusive. Bad enough you have to tell the ER triage nurse when your last BM and "cycle" was when you've just busted your toe and think this has nothing to do with anything. But when, "And do you feel safe at home?" is a standard question, I have to wonder if it isn't time to just lie or make up some stupid answer.
I usually tell them NO, I don't. I have a lot of stairs and I'm always falling on them. That's why I'm here!!
"Oh, no, that's not what we mean... we mean whether you're getting abused by your 'domestic partner'," the nurse tells me. ("Domestic partner???" Oh, good grief. I'm laughing through the paaaain...)
"And that's relevant to my busted finger... how?"
"We just want to be sure you're safe at home -"
"Well, just write me down as a belligerent 'refused to answer' patient because this is total crap that has nothing to do with anything, and you're wasting my time."
"Ma'am, we're trying to help you here, so don't speak to us like that..."
*sigh* "Ok, whatever... (notice no "sorry"? I'm rude that way) I'm totally and absolutely safe and everything is all hearts and flowers at home, but if I WERE getting throttled, I sure wouldn't tell you right here, now, would I? How often do you get confessions like that here where everyone in the waiting room hears everything?? Like, as if."
"I can't tell you that because of HIPAA..."
"It's 'none,' isn't it? I thought so," I snort. (Would you like me as a patient? LOL) "You going to ask me about secondhand smoke in my house now?"
"Not for awhile. That's further down on the form..." First she has to ask me about my drug history, and my parents', and my cousins' medical conditions...
Eventually, after enough dumb visits like this, I get to the point where I lie or give a pat answer. NOBODY has any medical conditions in my family. That form I filled out 10 years ago about Aunt Sadie having corns on her feet and a heart murmur? Oh, I was mistaken about Aunt Sadie. Yes, I feel safe at home.
Yes, the children are all up to date on their immunizations. (Hey, if I'm not getting any, that's up-to-date, right??) Yes, we wear our seat belts always. Yes, we wear helmets always. Yes, I'm sure our helmets conform to REVPER standards or whatever insane stupid question is asked. Yes, my children eat a well-balanced diet of acorns and carrot sticks. No, they never watch TV.
And thanks so much for asking! I hope that information was helpful to you...