Sunday, June 27, 2010

Science vs. Art vs. Magic

I've been thinking about this all afternoon, so instead of writing a nasty letter, I'm going to vent here.

When we first met with our RE, he and C bonded over the science. They were able to talk as two professionals, discussing research in scholarly terms.

During the cycle in which I became pregnant with the boys, I made a joke about a certain family with eight children, and he (my RE) was visibly angry at the irresponsible behavior of the woman's doctor. It takes careful monitoring, understanding of the reproductive system and of the woman's own chemistry, he said.

On my RE's website, from the very beginning, he has included the line, "A child is a gift from god." We didn't talk about god. We didn't discuss the quote, nor its implications. It didn't seem to have much impact on our treatment.

When I came back, finally, and began treatments, my RE had clearly gone through life-changing things. A divorce. An illness. He became certified in medical acupuncture. In the middle of restarting our professional relationship with him, my RE got remarried. To a woman who runs the shop where he does the acupuncture. To a woman who calls herself a psychic.

It was during our second cycle after we came back that we had a conversation where I told him that C was atheist, and I was agnostic, though leaning towards atheism. It was the idea that everything we had been through, everything my family and friends and loved ones had been through, was for a reason. I told him about the faculty member who told me "Everything happens for a reason." He, my RE, winced and said that's horrible. I told him that I was trying to understand the universe not just as chaos, but not with a plan from some god on high.

I think it was last January that I saw posted in the lobby a photocopy of some inspirational thing, entitled "why did god give me infertility?" The gist of it was that it was a way to give a woman (and her partner, I assume) a special relationship with the child she would eventually mother.

"Sounds like everything has a reason" to me.

Somehow, I ended up on his email newsletter mailing list and in part of his most recent featured article, was this:

It's not anything magic that we do in the laboratory. The real magic lies in children who are so wanted and desired by loving parents who pray over days/weeks/months/years. Through such careful attention and caring, the world now has the opportunity to share in the many blessings these mini-miracles are bringing forth.

Huh? Is it that I'm not praying? "Mini-miracles"? Blessings? Do I not desire it enough? Or in the right way? Is that why I lost my boys? Is that why I can't get pg again?

Do I not get these?

It sounds to me like this doctor believes there is a plan. That there is is some greater force deciding who gets to be pregnant, who gets to be a parent and who doesn't.

Maybe he thinks he is just the instrument of god's will?

Aside from all this crap is the question of interests, as in "of course he is going to recommend acupuncture because it is in his (and his wife's) financial interest." Or, "of course he is going to say that I don't really need IVF because he can get me pregnant because if I go to IVF, he loses a patient and the revenue. And yes, he did get kinda twitchy when I brought up the possibility of IVF. It was only in recent months, as I approach 40 that he seemed okay with it.

Oh and on his fb page, which, btw is open to all, he is a fan of "O.B.A.M.A -- One Big Ass Mistake, America." I don't care what your political beliefs are, if you are a professional (i.e. doctor/lawyer) or a smart businessperson, you don't put partisan stuff out there for everyone to see.

I feel like I've wasted 5 years. I feel like I've given tons of money to a man whose politics makes me ill.

Did I feel respected and cared for at the time? Yes.

But hindsight sucks.


k@lakly said...

Hey, I like the new page design:)

You know by now exactly where I am on the whole GOD issue when it comes to deciding which parents get children and which don't. ****coughs****BULLSHIT****coughs***

I guess the real question is can you continue to feel as though you believe in your doctor's ability to treat you and believe in you with the same passion you once felt he had?
We all have spoken the obvious retorts to ignorant statements such as "this all part of God's plan" and the like, and you could easily humble him with any one of the 1000 responses that many mom's here have dreamed of saying outloud to the idiots that mutter them, but I know that isn't where you want to go with him.
He obviously has mixed the professional life with the personal one. Hard to deal with that when you are at polar opposites. And I am kinda surprised given his speciality and the obvious moral disagreements he would have with the big O(and I don't mean Oprah)....not to mention that so many docs are in horror over the possibility of a type of socialized medicine being forced upon them.
Bottom line, what a shitty place to be in.
Don't look back. It's done. Do what you need to do to get you where you want to be. That's all you can do.
I know when I finally wrote my piss off letter to my OBitch, I felt so much relief. I hated going into her office. I hated being made to feel like I was 'overreacting' to Caleb's death. And even though I didn't make a love connection with my next OB, I didn't feel the hate which was a huge thing.

Tash said...

omigod, I HATE that BULLSHIT that babies cosmically go where they're wanted and loved, as if we're not praying and loving enough (makes you wonder about the abandoned and abused, eh?).

At some point you need to ask whether you'll be more comfortable with someone else. Because I do think sometimes these views get in the way of treatment. I had a wonderful OB in VA (where I had Bella) who was smart as a whip and up to speed on all the latest research, who spoke to me as a patient and not an insurance number. And I found out into my care that she was pro-life. I decided that there were enough other good doctors out there that I wouldn't have a problem leaving her, but I often wonder what would've happened had the whole Maddy business happened in her office. Bottom line, I'm relieved beyond measure to be where I am now.

I think health professionals can believe in God, I don't think that's the point. I think where it bleeds unnecessarily into their profession (and vice versa, in your case -- sounds as if this guy almost sees his profession and validation of his views) you've got a problem. He is saying those things to you, to all of his patients. And if you're made uncomfortable

Tash said...

Sorry, got cut off -- if you're made uncomfortable I think you should leave.

I love the new page design too. And I keep meaning to tell you that "Suddenly I see" always makes me cry. Always. xo