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What to do after losing faith in medical professionals?

Trans22
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

I find myself in a situation where I never want to see another medical professional associated with mental or physical health.  Multiple GPs, an endocrinologist, a psychologist, 3 psychiatrists, & other mental health care professionals have let me down (a miracle that I'm still alive?).  Given that this is a mental health forum, I will focus on mental health side.  The psychologist that I had been seeing for about 16 months ditched me when the going got tough - I remember hearing words like "I was too fragile".  A psychiatrist prescribed me medication that led to my losing consciousness.  I ended up in a private mental health facility where my first psychiatrist merely listened - no treatment offered.  Staff at the facility didn't seem to care about my being triggered many times per day, until a nurse came to see me the day I announced my decision to self discharge (due to multiple incidents involving other patients).  I eventually got assigned to a psychiatrist who seemed interested in caring for me, but they prescribed me medication that caused another serious health issue (if they look at my health record they would have been aware of the problem I'd face).  As a result of all this, I've been off work for about 25 weeks and never want to see/trust another health professional again.  I've already informed most of the people involved that I will never walk into their premises again.

13 Replies 13

Hey Trans22,
Thank you for sharing what is happening for you. First of all, we are so sorry to hear that your experience has been such a challenging one. It can truly be so disheartening when we have the courage to reach out and for it not to feel very helpful at all.

It can take some time to recover from such an experience and to build up a level of trust again. We hope that this is a time that you can treat yourself gently. You made it through a really tough time and that is something to feel proud of.

We acknowledge that talking to a health professional may be the last thing you feel like doing, and that is completely understandable. If you do ever feel up to it, you can give us a call at any time on 1300 22 4636 if you feel like talking to someone. We are here for you, and you don't have to go through this alone.  QLife are another great organisation to talk to, too. You can call them on 1800 184 527 or check out their webchat.  If that is not what would be helpful right now, that is totally okay too – we hope that our lovely community here can be a good source of support.
 
Once again thank you for being so open here. You never know who might be reading this and feel less alone in their journey.
 
We are here for you 24/7 😊
 
Kind regards
Sophie M
 

Thanks Sofie.  I have a medical condition that isn't helping and is going to require several months of patience on my part.  The symptoms of my situation that I've suffered are depression (severe), difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep, lack of energy, & feeling non-functional.  My workplace has been really understanding with my slow return to work and I now realise that my GP has made the correct calls on my capabilities as far as work is concerned.  I've been taking baby steps in the right direction.  I have weekly checkins with a rehab person at work, who has required that I get a new mental health care plan and a referral to a psychologist.  I have one in mind that I clicked with in 2021 while doing leadership coaching sessions.  I expect that I'll follow though on it in the next few months.   Work has a fairly comprehensive safety plan in place for me.  The symptoms of my medical condition seem to be easing, albeit very slowly.  Most importantly, my sleep has improved from 2-3 hours/night without medication to 5-6 hours/night without medication - I hope to soon no longer be reliant on medication that helps me sleep.

Dear Trans,

 

I really feel for you and understand the frustration with the medical profession. In recent weeks I also felt at the end of my tether trying to get the right help for complex mental and physical health issues. The most challenging issues I’ve had recently are linked to severe mental health effects that have arisen from very dysregulated hormones while going through perimenopause. But recently in the city I was able to see a hormone specialist who was totally on the same page, really understanding and has tweaked the prescriptions I’m on in a way that I can feel is really helping. So sometimes when it feels all is lost, along comes the right person or people to help. Having said that I’ve had to research such people to find them but it’s been worth it. So I really hope the psychologist you have in mind works out. It sounds like you have a few people giving some support such as the rehab person and your GP at least assessing your work capacity accurately. It’s really good too your sleep is improving. It makes such a difference.

 

So just wanted to send you some support and let you know you’re not alone in feeling frustrated with the medical profession. It’s finding those key people who can really help you and it often takes some time and effort. I hope you keep feeling better and find all the support you need.

 

Take good care,

ER

Thanks Eagle Ray.  The nurse that spoke to me on my last night at the mental health hospital said that I was going through a really bad menopause.  The way I think of things now is that medicine is all about bell curve statistics and I was/am a statistical outlier.  The supervising endocrinologist said words that led me to this way of thinking - my medical history supports it.

Dear Trans,

 

The understanding between hormones and mental health impacts seems to be still poorly understood among a lot of health professionals. I’ve read about multiple cases now of individuals who’ve ended up in the psych hospital because of perimenopausal/menopausal mental health impacts that go beyond the understanding of what most doctors think when they think of menopause. Late October and again in January I came close to admitting myself to the nearest psych hospital. In my case the right balance of hormone meds is working and starting to give some of my life back. I had to search to find a hormone specialist who was on the same page and really understands what’s happening. So I feel so much for what you’ve been going through and I know it can be exhausting and demoralising trying to get the right help. I really hope things become easier soon and you can find the right supports to help you through. Being a statistical outlier would make it more challenging and you need those health practitioners who are really with you and getting you on your journey. I really hope you can find those supports and that your journey becomes easier going forward.

 

All the best,

ER

therising
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi Trans22

 

I'm so glad Eagle Ray has been able to give you a relatable perspective and much support. It can make so much of a difference when someone's able to say, I understand how you feel because I can relate to some of the overwhelming, stressful and/or depressing challenges you've faced.

 

When it comes to specialists, I figure the best ones are great detectives. Like any great detective, they'll listen carefully to the witness (the person who's witness to all their own symptoms or feelings), they'll seek plenty of clues (both the obvious clues and the least obvious ones) and they'll open their mind to possibilities. Their job is not to simply focus on the usual suspects.

 

It's terrible that you've had to go through so much challenge, so much torment and so much upset to be able to reach the conclusion that you fall outside the norm when it comes to certain conditions. I think when specialists will only diagnose through textbook cases and/or only reference similar cases to ones they've come across before, it doesn't do the patient/client any favours. Give me a wonderful detective any day, one who'll wonder to the degree where they'll ask around to see whether any colleagues have come across what a patient/client seems to be suffering from or they'll do some other further research into it.

 

While I've never cut a GP or specialist out of my life for misdiagnosing, I have cut them out for refusing to listen carefully to me. I figure, if you're going to ignore clues from one of your best witnesses, you're not the best detective for the job. I recall some years back when I presented to my GP with what appeared to be an anxiety attack. These symptoms had started to become more frequent and they were increasing in intensity. My GP said 'We'll start you on anti anxiety meds'. My response was 'No, I don't experience anxiety. This is not anxiety. I need you to figure out what it is'. He insisted I make another appointment to discuss the meds further. I sought a 2nd opinion as things started to get worse. Long story short, the 2nd GP ordered a brain MRI scan and based on what I consider to be a miracle, I was having a full on migraine in the MRI machine. What I had been experiencing were silent migraines (migraines without headaches) that were setting off my nervous system. The 2nd doctor listened carefully and wondered. The first one refused to listen or wonder beyond the idea of anxiety.

 

I think there are times where we gotta push things and be insistent. There are times where we have to fully trust what we feel and not be led to doubt our self or our feelings/symptoms. And there are times where we should be referred for continuing investigation, as opposed to simply being told 'Sorry, can't help you' or 'What you're going through is just a part of life' (grrr😡). Btw, got told that 2nd one by a GP after making an appointment based on a serious and depressing lack of energy. Second opinion revealed sleep apnea. There should be a money back guarantee at the end of receiving no help or no difference at all. After all, we're not paying for no answers or to experience no difference at all. Based on our experiences, I think we're eventually able to develop a good sense of whether someone's an excellent detective or not, if our time and money are well spent or not. A key clue is if we become excited by their attitude, as opposed to being disheartened by it. Two very different feelings indeed.

Hope
Community Member

Hi you are very brave for disclosing this I had a physiologist betray me a number of years ago and haven’t been able to face one since. 
I have a couple of supportive friends but I too wish there was something better in the system. 

I do however have to rely on GPs and acouple specialists but it would be nice to think I could discuss something with a professional without feeling I may be betrayed again. There is stuff holding me back in my life I’d like to resolve for good

Dear Hope,

 

I just thought I’d let you know that I too was severely betrayed by the first therapist I saw who acted in a highly unprofessional and damaging manner. However, I did eventually find a really good psychologist. I’ve also told her about that first bad experience I had so she knows I have vulnerability around trust. So it is possible to find a good person to work with. It can take some trial and error though and it is really important to only settle with a therapist who feels right and you know you can trust them. I did have to try a few more before I found the right one and I learned to quickly discontinue with anyone whose approach was not working for me. There are some articles online I’ve read in the past on red flags to look for when trying to find the right therapist. It might be worth having a read of things like that but also listen in to your own intuition if you do try therapy again. I just wanted to encourage you that it is possible to find someone who is a good fit and is trustworthy. It can just take a bit of time and effort.

 

Take care,

ER

Thank you for your advice, im yet to decide if I will give another one a go my trust was broken serverly in this area.