Most of us have been brought up to believe in mainstream medicine and the doctors and nurses who deliver it. From a young age the unspoken words, “the doctor is always right” were ingrained in our brains, they studied and earned a medical degree after all.
Our mothers dragged us to the doctor’s office for our baby wellness checkups around ten times before the age of three and that was just for a general checkup, not for our vaccines, flu shots and other visits recommended by doctors or on the occasions we got sick. So starts a cycle that continues throughout your entire life.
As an adult, you're still recommended to see your doctor for regular checkups and on top of that, there are the doctor appointments we make when we have a temperature, a weird rash or muscle aches and pains. This is when we are only responsible for ourselves. When you throw a fetus into the mix, it’s the same ball game, but in the bottom of the 9th inning with bases loaded and the game tied. An all too familiar cycle, but 100 times as intense.
Even though you are growing a whole human inside of you, you have to keep up with your daily responsibilities, like holding down a job, so you can pay your bills and have a home to bring your baby to when he/she is born, making time for your partner and friends and fitting in those prenatal appointments with your OB even though all you want to do is eat and sleep.
However cutting into your feed and rest time isn't the only buttons your doctor pushes when your hormones are out of whack and you feel like if your strings are strung any tighter they might just snap. Keep reading to find out what annoying things doctors do that turn them from victor to villain.
15 They Push The Flu Shot
Walk into your local drugstore and you can have a flu shot for under $50.00. Flu shots are becoming the norm, in certain professions they may even be mandatory, so the fact your obstetrician is recommending you to get one during pregnancy is no surprise.
During my pregnancy, around the 22-week mark, my doctor asked me if I’d already had my annual flu shots, but I told him I wouldn’t be having one and here is why. Not only did common sense tell me they were ineffective, a handful of people in the office I worked in at the time who had gotten flu shots were constantly getting sick. I’d also read a lot about the potential danger they could cause me and my baby. So why was my doctor pushing the flu shot when my health and the health of my baby was supposed to be his top priority? Could the pharmaceutical companies he was employed by be pressuring him to advertise and push patients into getting the flu shot?
According to GreenMed Info, “Not only are there serious questions about the efficacy of the flu vaccine, there is evidence to suggest that getting the vaccine every year may cause damage to the immune system.”
I told my doctor about this. His response was to read the pamphlet written by the pharmaceutical companies to ease any concerns I might have about the flu shot.
14 They Have To Check You Down There
During the first few months of pregnancy you were your normal self with a cute little bump give five pounds. Then comes week 12 to 16, you step on the scale and read the number in disbelief. You step off the scale and back on, surely it's wrong, of course you couldn’t possibly have gained 15 pounds in two months! No one enjoys stripping down, sitting on one of those cold doctor's tables with the horrible disposable sheets in a hospital gown and waiting for the doctor to give you a pelvic exam, especially when you don’t look or feel yourself down there.
It’s necessary though. Having a pelvic exam can help your doctor determine the size and position of your girl parts, which is useful to know for the birth, and make sure there are no signs of infection that could harm your baby.
Shave your legs, put on your best underwear and suck it up for the sake of your baby.
13 They Are Biased About Vaccines
That awkward moment. It usually happens at your baby’s first wellness checkup if not before. Your doctor hands you the information on the vaccine schedule and instructions on when your baby needs to visit them for their 5-in-1. Then you give them the news, you are an anti-vaxxer that is provided you live in a location you haven’t yet lost the right to choose whether you want your newborn vaccinated. No you aren’t doing it for religious reasons you tell your doctor and you aren’t uneducated either, in fact, you’ve spent countless hours reading up on studies and talking to parents about what they chose for their kids before you came to your decision.
To come is your doctor’s spill about vaccines and how you’d be doing your child and society injustice if you choose not to have your child vaccinated. Some even insinuate if you choose to forgo vaccines you are a negligent parent.
Let’s not ignore that this topic gets people’s blood boiling, but whether you are pro-vaccine or anti-vaccine, your doctor should respect the saying, “mother knows best,” because in most cases she does. And your doctor does not have to live with the consequences of the decision, you do.
12 They Overreact
Some might argue it’s a doctor’s job to take every necessary precaution to keep you and your baby happy and healthy through pregnancy. Better safe than sorry is often their motto, and under most circumstances I’d agree with them. Sometimes though, they overreact.
From the first visit with my doctor, the thing I loved most was taken away from me, coffee. I’d been drinking coffee for over ten years, maybe I was a little addicted to caffeine. My doctor was convinced I shouldn’t have any, not even in moderation. I packed away the coffee pot for the duration of my pregnancy and poured the remainder of creamer I had down the drain.
Multiple studies conclude moderate amounts of caffeine are just fine for you and your unborn baby. I wish I would have done my own research instead of taking my doctor’s word on it at the time. It would have saved me 280 mornings of heartache.
What’s more, I’ve heard from countless moms since who have drunk coffee in moderation throughout their pregnancy, and guess what? Their babies were born full term, happy and healthy.
11 They Give You Too Much Or Too Little Detail
Doctor’s have a gift of rambling on about information you’ve already found online, from a baby book or on one of your pregnancy apps that give you weekly updates on the progress of your baby and make you appreciate Monday mornings just a little bit more.
Then there are the questions the internet, your baby books and apps gloss over, so you ask your doctor. While they were keen to share endless information about the growth of your baby, where they are floating around in your stomach and what information your birthing plan should include, there are topics they plead the fifth on. Perhaps it’s the gory details about birth you want to be prepared for, or the aftermath of it all.
You push for information, but your doctor is vague. Maybe they are cutting your appointment close with the next and want to wrap things up, maybe it’s all really as simple as they explained it in those three sentences or perhaps they just don’t want to scare you.
10 Telling You What You Should And Should Not Be Eating
Chocolate, spicy foods, pickles, potato chips, ice cream, and other sugary sweets and savory treats. The only thing that stands between a pregnant woman and her cravings is her doctor.
Many women like to use the excuse, “I’m eating for two," but they haven’t done their research, especially if it’s for that brownie or french fries they are reaching for. Julie Redfern, RD, LDN, a registered dietitian from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston said, “Many women who do ‘eat for two’ end up gaining an excessive amount of weight.” This could lead to gestational diabetes and a load of other health concerns for you and your baby. If your doctor is questioning your diet because you are gaining too much weight during pregnancy, it’s going to be hard to swallow, but take this advice for a healthy 40-week pregnancy.
On the latter, it’s important to acknowledge the problem isn't always putting on too much weight. If you are mom-to-be who is struggling with the idea of putting on a healthy amount of weight during pregnancy and maybe even restricting your diet to prevent weight gain, do your best to follow your doctor’s recommendations so that your baby can get the nutrients he/she needs to grow healthy and strong.
9 Sending You Home Because Your Contractions Are Not Far Enough Apart
You’ve gone full term and then between 37 and 40 weeks it finally happens, your water breaks or maybe your contractions start. It’s time to give birth. Your partner grabs your hospital bag and you quickly make your way to the car. “This is it” you think to yourself, "the next time I see my home I’ll have my baby with me." You call the doctor on the way, so they are ready for you, after all, you don’t want to end up like one of those women you’ve heard about who has given birth in the parking lot of the hospital.
While you do hear about this happening, take Florida Mom, Paul D’Amore, whose birth in the parking lot of the Boca Raton Regional Hospital was documented by a professional photographer, it’s unlikely you will be so lucky to have such a fast birth.
You arrive at the hospital and get checked in. Then comes the disappointing news, you haven’t even dilated five centimeters yet. They send you home all too eagerly and the waiting starts.
8 Going MIA
I felt comfortable with my doctor from the start, she was older, experienced and soft spoken. Although I realize most women aren’t as lucky. Many search the area they live from top to bottom to find a doctor they see eye to eye with, someone they trust to be a part of one of the most important moments in their life, the birth of their baby.
Sometimes something happens though, and no it’s not only in movies, your doctor goes MIA on the day you need them the most. Luckily for me, my doctor gave me and her other patients fair warning she was leaving the practice and made the transition between her and the doctor who would be taking her patients as smooth as possible.
Did I love my new OB? Not at first. Doctor/ patient relationships are no different than any other, you have to figure out how the doctor operates before you can trust them. Eventually I grew to like and trust my doctor, and he was true to his word. He saw my pregnancy through delivery and my postnatal checkups.
What about those women who show up to the hospital to have their babies and their doctor is nowhere to be found? Instead, the face of a stranger tells them, “Your doctor has gone on vacation and there is no way he can make it back in time for the delivery, so I'll be delivering your baby.” What they mean to say is, “your doctor has gone on vacation and there is no way he is canceling it just to deliver your baby.” What’s a girl to do, but pray for the best!
7 Get Too Personal
From your first antenatal appointment you are bombarded with questions by your doctor. You might be given a form to fill out with questions like, “Do you have any sexually transmitted diseases?” and “Is there a history of Cystic fibrosis in your family?” Although understandably asked, the doctor/patient relationship can become very personal at high speed. This can be hard, especially if you are the type who only talks about the weather until you really get to know someone.
Try not to get offended by the questions you’re doctor asks you. If they are asking you questions you don’t have the answers to, like whether a specific disease runs in your family, do what you can to find out. Doctor’s ask evasive questions to avoid complications throughout your pregnancy.
Is there a question that specifically irks you? Ask yourself why the doctor needs to know the answer to this specific question. If you can’t think of how it could help them provide you with the best prenatal care, ask them why they need to know before you answer.
6 They Can Be Passive Aggressive
Mankind, yes including doctors, aren’t perfect. Like the rest of us they have their flaws and like the rest of us, they can get upset and frustrated when something doesn’t go their way.
There is an unspoken rule a patient isn’t supposed to question their doctor. When they do, it offends them, they spent years in medical school after all and you did not. When an individual decides to go against what the doctor prescribes, that’s when the passive aggressive behavor all too often kicks in.
During my pregnancy I had a discussion with my doctor about vaccines. As a mainstream doctor, he supported the routine vaccine schedule. At the end of our discussion he asked me if I was on board with it, but I told him I needed to investigate things further for myself. He told me the door was open when I was ready to go and that I was now wasting his time. As I got up to leave I said goodbye and he flat out ignored me. Since when did love become so conditional?
5 Seem Way To Eager To Talk About Things That Make You Blush
Doctors are a kind all of their own, able to set aside feelings of shame and embarrassment and get down to the nitty-gritty. Without getting too graphic, words like “mucus” and “bloody show” were words I remember being thrown around nonchalantly by my doctor during pregnancy.
Another topic you really don’t want to discuss with your doctor is your sex life. Believe you me they will have questions about it, thinking so far ahead, they want to know what your plans are for birth control after you’ve given birth. For all of you ladies out there who think birth control is unnecessary just after birth, think again. Numerous women have gotten pregnant doing the deed for the first time after giving birth.
So how do they do it? How do doctors talk about sex, birth and afterbirth with a straight face while you are sat in the corner with your face scrunched up, jiggling your leg and twiddling your thumbs? Simple, they have scientific brains that see past the shame and embarrassment, not to mention they talk about this stuff every day with multiple other pregnant women who are just as equally squeamish about the topic.
4 When They Tell You Exercise Is A Bad Idea
Here is the thing about your OB, unless they have run extensive tests on you, how can they really know what’s best for you and baby during pregnancy? Sure things like no drinking and no smoking can be a general rule and of course there are many more general rules all woman would be wise to follow during pregnancy, but what about exercise?
Is the runner, lifter or swimmer who uses exercise as an escape and is in optimal health when they conceive really expected to spend a whole nine months…walking?
Some doctors are old-fashioned and still recommend no exercise during pregnancy other than low-impact activities. Maybe it has to do with that motto they love so much, better safe than sorry, but how safe is it really to expect someone who exercises four or more times a week to just stop? They could literally explode.
My doctor told me I shouldn’t be doing anything other than low-impact exercise during pregnancy, even though I’d been an avid runner for ten years. While by no means did I pull a Paula Radcliffe, I ran up until week 27 of my pregnancy, then it started to become uncomfortable, so I stopped. If you are one of those weirdos who actually likes exercise, who thought your doctor was the devil for a few moments after the words low-impact came out of their mouth, do some research for yourself before you give up the thing you love. There might just be a compromise called moderation.
3 When They Insist You Have a Birthing Plan Then Tell You Not To Count On It
In addition to getting you through a healthy pregnancy your prenatal appointments have a second purpose, preparing you for labor.
They are bound to share pamphlets and talk to you about the process, even recommend books. They will talk you through the different options you will have to combat pain during labor, then all of a sudden, the ball is in your court. Using the information they have provided you, they want you to come up with a birthing plan. If you don’t, they keep hounding you.
If you are like me you won’t only have to explain to your doctor why the only person you want in the room with you is your partner, not extended family and yes anyone with the word “mother” in her name counts as extended family according to you, and also why you do want all the anesthetics they can give you.
You spend hours thoughtfully thinking your birthing plan through and when you finally tell your doctor the complicated story behind your birthing plan they tell you, “You never know what labor could bring, so you have to be flexible.”
2 They Touch Your Belly
From an early stage each of your prenatal appointments with your OB will consist of the following, OB asking you to lay on their exam table. OB washing and sanitizing their hands. OB feeling around your stomach, so that they know which direction your baby is turned. The second scenario is similar, but instead of using their hands they get out their fetal doppler and grease it up with gel, so that it glides easily across your stomach. In this scenario your doctor is searching for the baby’s heartbeat.
While it’s a magical thing, feeling your unborn baby and listening to their heartbeat, it doesn’t mean you necessarily want your doctor’s hands all over your bump or near your bump for that matter. You wouldn’t let a stranger touch your bump, is it really that different when your doctor does it?
We all have a bubble and most of us just aren’t down with someone popping it.
1 Revealing Your Baby’s Gender When You Wanted It To Be A Surprise
Whether to find out the gender of your baby is a personal choice. Maybe it’s your first born and you don’t want to end up with a room full of pink or blue or maybe you are a seasoned parent who already has a boy and a girl and want your surprise baby to keep on surprising you.
Generally, doctors are good at keeping a straight face, but there are cases when there is a lack of communication and they don’t know you want them to keep it quiet or they simply trip up and call your baby a “he” or “she.”
The gender of your baby might accidentally be revealed, but that’s not to say the roller coaster ride is over. Throughout the rest of your pregnancy and your child’s life, there will be plenty of things your son or daughter do that will suprise you, so don’t get too upset with your ol' doctor for spilling the beans.