Dear Doctor

Dear Doctor,

I warned you I’m a little phobic of injections. It’s not my fault you didn’t take me seriously.

It may not be a phobia, but it’s  definitely more than just a fear. I can see you don’t understand that. At all.

When a needle sticks me, (apart from the psychological part, fear) I start to cry.

I don’t care if you think I’m childish,I don’t care if you think I’m overly dramatic,

For the simple reason that you are not my friend. You are my doctor.

I don’t need your sympathy, or want it.

What I do want, is: after it’s over, when my burning face vibrates, and my arms,

And my legs feel too light and too leaden by turns,

When my breathing is coming heavy and when I’m shuddering from the shock,

When I ask you, dear doctor, through my chattering teeth and wavering voice, to

“Please give me a minute” to collect myself, I expect you to give it to me.

I understand you see many patients. I understand many of them may be exactly what I profess I am not. But that is irrelevant to me.

When I am covering my mouth while crying in gasps, ashamed, trying not to make a scene, and I ask you, firmly but politely, for “just a minute”, I expect you to look away for sixty seconds until my breathing is back to normal. Not mock me and refuse to let me cover my trembling mouth, while asking unrelenting questions in a misguided, patronizing attempt to “divert” me.

I know it may be hard for a learned, busy person like you to understand, but most of us really do know what’s best for ourselves. Not in everything, but at least the basics.

I don’t care if you go home and make fun of me to your family. I don’t care if you never understand this thing, this fear, but I don’t believe that understanding is a requisite for you to show some courtesy as a doctor to your patient. You may owe me no courtesy, but I have not paid for discourtesy either. I have paid for medical care, and that includes giving me a minute to catch my breath.


A Disgruntled Patient

P.S. Trypanophobia, a fear of needles and injections, includes among its symptoms: feeling faint, nausea and panic attacks. My exact symptoms. Just so you know.

P. P. S. I would’ve included a picture, but I’m phobic. Pictures also cause some symptoms. And yes, that’s a real thing.

P.P.P.S. I won’t be back.