My doctor’s office thinks I’m fat


Huffygirl: the obesity epidemic starts right here

I visited a consultant at a new health care group recently, and it turns out, that they think I’m fat. And, they’re determined to do something about it. Every single stinkin’ time I go there. Yes, obesity is a huge problem in this country, and my doctor’s office is determined to nip it in the bud, starting with the biggest offender – me.

My first time there, as I left the office, the receptionist  handed me a packet of papers and said somewhat sheepishly, “Here’s some information on healthy eating.” My first thought was, “wow, how wonderful that they care about my health as a whole person,” until I got home and looked it over. Turned out these papers were all about obesity and weight loss, and what I must do to start taking care of my obesity problem, today. Really. To say I was insulted was putting it mildly. But I thought I’d be the bigger person. After all, they think I am. So I put it aside. I refused to let my self be annoyed.

Until the next time I went there. Nothing was different about my weight, so turns out, I’m still fat. When I went to leave, there they were again with the fat handout. Now granted, even if I was fat, and, spurned on by their wonderful diet information, had decided to do something about it, chances are, I’d still be fat when I came back four weeks later. And the next time. And the time after that.

So the next time I complained to the doctor, who I must say, had a good 30 pounds on me. “Your people think I’m fat,” I said, “and I’m getting a little offended by it.” Well, she looked at me, looked at my chart, tut-tutted and said “well yes, your numbers don’t quite meet our guidelines, blah, blah” and then she went on to blame the government. Yes, according to her, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act requires health care providers to provide, among other things, weight loss information to patients who, according to whatever mystery standards they are using, are fat. Then she went on to a well-rehearsed speech about how they are only doing this because of the government, and if I didn’t want to get a fat handout every time I came there, I needed to contact my congressperson, instead of complaining to her. So there. Instead of the lecture, it might have been nice to hear which obesity guidelines they were using that labeled me as fat, as according to BMI (body mass index) I’m still under the wire. But no. Just you’re fat, the government makes us say so, so there.

And so it’s continued. Every time I go there, or to any other office within that health care group, I get the fat handout. The last time I was there, I balked. “Don’t give me those fat papers again, I already have them,” I said to the receptionist on my way out. She started in with the usual diatribe about the government makes us, we have to give them to you, blah, blah, and handed me the fat papers again. In anger, I ripped them off of the stack of papers she gave me, and flung them down on the check-out desk, it turns out, on top of a huge stack of the same fat handout, left by other angry patients.

I have to confess that I am unfamiliar with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and even after reading about it, still do not see where it says in there that I’m fat. I’d be interested to hear from others if any of you have  had similar experiences. In the meantime, I’ve either got to look for a whole new bunch of doctors, or resign myself to being called fat every time I darken their door.

Huffygirl aka Fatgirl

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