It’s Dr. Naito, NOT Dr. Stacey

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Some of you are in the habit of referring to physicians by their first names, tacking on “doctor” before the name. In all honesty, those of you who do this are quite honestly showing disrespect in doing so, even if it isn’t your intention.

Please bear in mind that we physicians must endure four years of medical school, anywhere from 3 to 7 years of residency training, and for some physicians, additional years spent in fellowships. In addition, we must keep up with continuing medical education (my yearly requirement is at least 50 hours), maintain licensure, and recertify every few years for our board certification credentials.

So when doctors bristle at you calling them, “Doctor Bob”, “Doctor Stacey”, or “Doctor Karen”, don’t be surprised. It’s not cute, it’s far too casual, and again, it’s downright disrespectful.

I do NOT like being referred to as Dr. Stacey at all. I worked very hard to become a physician, and I deserve to be referred to properly. In addition, I refer to other physicians as Dr. (last name) at all times, unless a colleague gives me permission to refer to him or her on a first name basis.

If you have an issue pronouncing a doctor’s last name, ask the doctor for assistance in pronunciation. Sometimes, the physician may suggest that you use the first letter of the last name as an abbreviated version. For example, I could be referred to as “Doctor N”, which I am fine with. I will not respond well to “Doctor Stacey” or “Stacey” by a patient.

In case you were wondering, Naito is pronounced like “night”, with a long “o” at the end.

Are there any medical doctors out there who would like to chime in on this one?

Disrespect

Last month, while working an urgent care shift, I caught a bug from one of my patients which progressed very quickly from a viral upper respiratory illness to a bacterial infection. Because I was so congested, the infection also seeded in my upper airways, and I developed bronchitis. Whenever bronchitis sets in, I am in for a world of hurt, because the coughing jags are so violent that I almost pass out from them since I can’t get a breath in.

In an effort to keep social media world happy, I posted my health status just so people would know why I sort of backed off from social interaction during that time. I felt horrible, and my voice was reduced to a strange, congested baritone mumble.

What irritated me was that several people jumped onto social media with health advice. I understand that people were concerned and trying to be helpful. However, there were two facts which kept floating through my head, and which left me scratching my head over how people thought it was appropriate to post advice.

FACT #1: I never asked for any advice from anyone. I was merely posting facts about my condition.

FACT #2: I am a board-certified family practice physician who works regularly in the urgent care setting. Don’t you think I would KNOW how to take care of myself? Why would anyone offer unsolicited health advice to a physician?

I couldn’t help but be bothered by the influx of posts suggesting things like, “drink tea with honey”, or “take zinc”. As an urgent care doctor, I am just as likely to give general, common sense advice about upper respiratory infections as I am to give prescriptions for medications and order in-office nebulizer treatments. I know all about zinc, tea with honey, vitamin C, salt water gargles, etc.

Besides, I ended up needing a course of antibiotics, two prescription inhalers, two prescription cough medications, and three over-the-counter decongestants. No amount of tea with honey, zinc, or salt gargles would have fought off the infection and reactive bronchitis I had developed. One person on Facebook hounded me via Messenger, and when I said I couldn’t chat, sent me a bizarre set of instructions for a concoction which included red wine. I became irritated and berated him for giving me health advice, whereupon he took the opportunity to insult me for no good reason. His disrespect was so blatant that I blocked him. I don’t need that kind of hostility in my life.

Sorry, but I think it is presumptuous and insulting to attempt to give health advice to doctors. In the age of Google, so many people fall under the assumption that they are suddenly experts when it comes to just about everything. Don’t trust everything you read on Google!

When I really think about it, I doubt that people would give automotive advice to an auto mechanic, or financial advice to their CPA’s. So why insult someone with 7 years of medical training and 14 years of experience as a practicing physician?

I believe I have made my point.

Bullshitters

I am getting incredibly tired of people who open up their mouths and declare that they will do something, then when push comes to shove, they back out of their promises. This sort of thing happens both in business as well as in my personal life, and I am completely fed up. Whatever happened to the days when a person’s word meant something? Is our society failing so much that people no longer hold themselves accountable when they make promises to others?

I maintain that if a person has no intention of following through with something, then nothing should ever be said, regardless of how “spontaneous” or “imaginative” that person is. If I hear, “Let’s do this!” or “I’m gonna take you to this place”, then I believe that it will come to fruition. Whenever I state that I will do something, I ALWAYS come through, even if my enthusiasm for the task has waned.

Remember, your actions are far more telling than your words are.

This Is The Type Of Girl That You Should Stop Taking For Granted

One of my dear friends sent this to me right after I got walloped with a recent and painful breakup. Without going into details, I was raked over the coals for YEARS, dumped repeatedly for no good reason, and was constantly belittled and disrespected. Yet I kept loving, kept giving, like a fool.

I am copying and pasting the body of the article here so that you can read it more clearly. The original source is filled with annoying pop-ups. I don’t know who the author is, but he or she nailed it with the giving, caring woman who gives herself to undeserving men.

The original link to this article can be found here:

http://www.spiritualunite.com/articles/this-is-the-type-of-girl-that-you-should-stop-taking-for-granted/

This Is The Type Of Girl That You Should Stop Taking For Granted

She’s the girl that does everything for you and never asks for anything in return.

She texts first. She asks how your family is doing, how your job is going, how your friends are. She takes a genuine interest in your life. When you call, she answers. When you whine, she listens. Whenever you need her, she’s there. No exceptions.

She doesn’t hold any grudges against you. She’s such a forgiving soul. Whenever you screw up, she doesn’t stay angry. She deals with the hurt and moves past it, because she believes that you’re worth it.

She’s the type of girl that wants to know you, all of you. She asks about your childhood. About your exes. About your parents. She wishes you would be as open with her as she is with you. She wishes you would trust her with your deepest secrets.

Even though you haven’t done much to prove that you care, she’s always making you feel special. She does little things, things you barely even notice, that add up to a lot. She tags you on cute photos. She shares her funny stories. She compliments your looks and your laugh. She makes you feel like you matter.

She keeps trying to break down your walls and push her way inside — even though she secretly knows you’re nothing but trouble.

After all, you’ve hurt her before. You’ve gone days without responding to her, and still, whenever you text her, she answers within minutes.

You’ve canceled plans with her, but whenever you ask her to come over, she still says yes.

You’ve made her cry (you know you have), but she still does everything within her power to make you smile.

You’ve done so many things to chase her away, but she’s still there.

She has given you a million chances and you’re still expecting more. You assume that she’s always going to be there, that she’s always going to want you, no matter how poorly you treat her.

But she’s not going to stick around forever. One day, she’ll get sick of this one-sided love. One day, she’ll realize that she deserves to receive all of the things that she’s been giving. One day, she won’t care about you anymore.

If you’re smart, you’ll stop taking her for granted before that day comes — because she’s the type of girl that will make your life worth living. She’ll take you on romantic rooftop dates. She’ll create scrapbooks to showcase her love. She’ll never let you forget how much she cares.

You both know that she should be long gone by now. She shouldn’t still be pining over you. She shouldn’t still be trying to turn your sadness into happiness — but she is. So stop taking her love for granted.

Stop stringing such a beautiful girl along.

via Thought Catalog

Relationships Aren’t What They Used To Be – REPOST

angry-man-and-woman

I wrote this in early 2014, but it’s worth a repost. I am posting near the day which SHOULD have been a six year anniversary for me. C’est la vie.

Relationships take some work to keep them humming along, and some couples are actually fortunate enough to find a formula which nurtures their interaction and enables them to beat the odds. Sadly, though, it just seems like most people these days are too quick to jump ship. Perhaps it has something to do with the promise of the bigger, better deal which multiple dating sites proffer, but I believe the restlessness and discontent are largely due to laziness. Our society is so rapid fire, with the convenience of social media ironically causing a veritable breakdown of true communication and intimacy, that as soon as conflict arises with someone, the instinct to flee seems to rear its ugly head. Gone are the days of working issues out over many decades, staying the course and serving as an example of everlasting love. The art of compromise seems to be lost, and people often will cohabitate or marry with separation or divorce viewed as an easy escape route. It’s no wonder that breakups seem to be happening more frequently now.

Love and relationships are almost treated like fast food, and the sad thing is that through the common lack of willingness to constructively work through conflict, many relationships become disposable. Like fast food, weak or unstable relationships begin to resemble fast food, full of empty calories and ultimately bad for the system. Also like fast food, weak unions may cause cravings for more of the same, and a vicious pattern may ensue. If you ask yourself why you keep picking the same type of person, it is time to look at the reasons why you are drawn to that type of person and do whatever personal work you need to do in order to break such patterns. Otherwise, you will find yourself in the same situation with the next person.

I have talked to couples who have been together for four, five, six decades and they have all said the same thing about weathering the storm through the years and enjoying a lasting union. It seems to boil down to two very important guidelines:

1. ALWAYS RESPECT EACH OTHER. Psychologists say that a clear sign of impending demise for a relationship is when partners fail to respect each other. Insulting, name calling and blaming are the clearest signs, but there are other indications of a lack of respect, such as lack of emotional support for a partner when major life events occur. This doesn’t mean that successful couples never fight, they just argue in a constructive fashion and allow each other the opportunity to vent all frustrations and concerns without interrupting or attacking.

2. DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF. Rather than nitpicking about little things, successful couples let them go. If irritating issues arise, calmly discussing the issue is far more successful than bickering about minor incidents like the trash not being thrown out, or the toothpaste cap being left off. However, both partners must be receptive to active and constructive communication. If one partner is hostile and unyielding, the petty issues will erode intimacy and affection.

Don’t Bully Your Coach – REPOST

personal-training-clientBefore I dive into this topic, I want to make sure that everyone understands that this is meant to be general, and is not directed at anyone in particular. But because I have had numerous conversations with other coaches and trainers recently who have described behavior in their clients which I find unacceptable, I thought this was a good topic to cover in my blog.

First of all, when you hire a coach or trainer, you are hiring that person for his or her knowledge, education and experience. When you challenge fee schedules that are in place, and expect the coach to give you bargain basement pricing just because you are short on funds, or because you don’t see why you should pay that much for someone else’s time, it is insulting to the coach. In addition, coaches and trainers are trying to run businesses and have expenses which need to be covered. I recently saw a quote on Instagram which I loved: “If you think a professional is expensive, wait until you hire an amateur.” Please keep this in mind when you are selecting a coach, and have respect for what he or she offers.

If a coach is designing a customized plan for you, do not expect the plan to be ready within minutes. It takes time to create a customized plan for a client, so please be patient. Once you get your plan, please do not ask incessant questions, especially if they are presented in the middle of the night. Since I am a physician, I understand what it means to be on call all the time, but I will not put up with a 2 am text asking me whether it’s okay to substitute swing lunges with seated leg curls!

Another sure way to aggravate your coach is to be non-compliant, whiny, and intent on changing every aspect of a well designed plan. Why even hire a professional to help you if you are dead set on being a person who uses the word CAN’T all the time? If you trust, admire and respect your coach, then let your coach work his or her magic and help you to reach your goals. Otherwise, you are wasting both your time and energy and those of your coach. Allow your coach to guide you and be your motivator, and speak up if you are faltering in your efforts or if your self-confidence is flagging. Let your coach be truly that: a coach.

Yes I AM a Doctor!

doctor-bag2It appears to be a lifelong curse for me to have to deal with people who never seem to take the fact that I am a bona fide medical doctor seriously. Most recently, I was challenged by a hater who didn’t bother to check facts and find out WHY I had “board-certified physician” on my main Instagram profile. All she saw was B.A. in Exercise Science and stupidly assumed that I had no other credentials. I purposely left out all my medical certifications and titles because I had to include my fitness background, writing and modeling descriptions in a limited number of characters.

She attacked me by posting a challenging comment on MY Instagram post, so I wrote to her clarifying my background and then blocked her because her comment was rather scathing. She returned through a different IG profile and BLASTED me, hurling profanity at me via another public comment. So I threw all her filthy words back to her and blocked her again. I REFUSE to be bullied by haters, especially those who don’t bother to do some research before hurling false accusations and insults against people they don’t even know.

Even those who know me through social circles will exclaim, “Oh wow, you mean you’re a DOCTOR doctor? That’s amazing!”, as if my medical training and career are somehow not supposed to be taken seriously by those near and dear to me. I want to yell, “YES, I am a doctor! Why didn’t you believe me the first time I told you? Why do I have to somehow prove it to you?” What irks me is that I don’t see these people doubting the abilities of their friends who work in any other industry, be it certified public accounting, law enforcement, or any other respected profession. I honestly resent the insinuation that my credentials somehow don’t count because I don’t wear a white coat all the time (by the way, I can’t STAND wearing those polyester nightmares) or flaunt my professional title like a badge.

For those of you who question what my credentials are, I will be very clear. Several years after I obtained my Bachelor’s degree, I completed four years of medical school which culminated in a medical diploma. After that, I completed my internship year (which was also my first year of family practice residency training) and became licensed as a physician. Two more years of residency training in family practice followed, then I sat for my specialty boards and became board-certified in family practice. Eight years later I had to sit for board recertification, and that process will repeat itself every eight years until I retire from medicine.

I am not a nurse or a physician’s assistant (though those professions are highly respectable, and attract some of the smartest and most compassionate people on the planet). What I AM is:

Degreed.
Licensed.
Board-certified.
Physician…ahem, a.k.a. Medical Doctor.
Yessir.

I may not be conservative or conventional, but I expect the same amount of respect as a physician who chooses to fit the mold and wear conservative attire and a white coat. My patients refer to me as Dr. Naito, not as Dr. Stacey or Stacey. I have worked VERY hard to become a physician, and I also recognize how hard my colleagues work as well. That is why when I am around other physicians, I err on the side of caution and refer to them as DOCTOR and not by their first names unless they specifically ask me to refer to them on a first name basis.

Let The Doctor Rest

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One of the biggest grievances I have as a physician is the fact that people assume that I am on call all the time for every random medical question. People will ask me questions at the gym, the grocery store, and via email. Many people have even contacted me on Facebook with detailed medical questions which they expect me to answer, and some will even cop an attitude when I very nicely tell them that I cannot address their question via Facebook message. No other profession deals with the same amount of queries. Would you ask your tax person a detailed question via Facebook?

I have even gotten texts in the middle of the night (thank goodness I turn my ringer off while I sleep) with medical questions. Sometimes the questions don’t even pertain to the person asking, but to a friend or relative. That is when I get annoyed, because it isn’t my responsibility to dole out free medical advice to everyone.

I realize that by putting my foot down and setting boundaries, I will cause some individuals to seek diagnoses on their own, which is also quite frustrating. They will go online and attempt to find a diagnosis, despite the fact that they have no medical expertise whatsoever. These are the people who infuriate doctors, because they will march into doctors’ offices and behave as if they have all the answers. This type of attitude is not only frustrating to medical professionals, it can be downright dangerous when the wrong diagnosis is made.

Please understand that I will not diagnose your niece’s boyfriend’s strange skin condition, even if you send me five images of the condition, taken at different angles and at different stages of the flareup. Such requests take unfair advantage of all of my schooling and post-doctoral training, which I have every right to charge for. As a matter of fact, it would be irresponsible of me to respond to such requests.

If the medical malady is of an urgent or emergent nature, then I suggest that you avail yourself of the appropriate service. Urgent care centers and emergency rooms exist for a reason. I am not a stand-alone urgent care center, nor am I a doctor on call 24/7. Please respect my time off.

For those of you who are physicians or surgeons, I welcome responses to this post.

Falling Off The Radar

I will never understand how and why some people will expend a great deal of energy discussing potential projects or other opportunities, displaying enthusiasm and expressing a strong desire to get started right away, only to completely drop off the face of the earth, never to be heard from again. Instead of mincing words here, I will come right out and say that I detest such people and think they are cowards, liars and bullshitters. Once someone tries to bait me with incredible promises and then disappears with no explanation or apology, I cross that person off my list. Seriously, what is WRONG with people these days? Is the concept of honoring one’s own word and upholding a certain amount of integrity dying in this fickle society?

It is impossible to endure countless lures with no follow-through without developing a biting cynicism. I have heard some individuals remark that flaky behavior is confined to major metropolitan cities like Los Angeles, but I beg to differ. For one thing, I have dealt with people all over the country, ranging from small towns to large metropolitan areas, who have displayed what I call “empty promise behavior”. Secondly, I was born and raised in Los Angeles, and have never been the type of person to make a promise I cannot keep. Accordingly, the majority of my friends who are also native Californians are blessed with complete integrity and do not make false or empty promises.

Please don’t be one of those people who talks big and can’t deliver on ANY promises made. It’s tacky and it makes you look like a complete douche.

Bullshit spray

Yes I AM A Doctor!

doctor-bag2It appears to be a lifelong curse for me to have to deal with people who never seem to take the fact that I am a bona fide medical doctor seriously. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard friends exclaim, “Oh wow, you’re like a DOCTOR doctor? I had no idea!”, as if my medical training and career are somehow not supposed to be taken seriously by those near and dear to me. I want to yell, “YES, I am a doctor! Why didn’t you believe me the first time I told you? Why do I have to somehow prove it to you?” What irks me is that I don’t see these people doubting the abilities of their friends who work in any other industry, be it certified public accounting, law enforcement, or any other respected profession. I honestly resent the insinuation that my credentials somehow don’t count because I don’t wear a white coat all the time (by the way, I can’t STAND wearing those polyester nightmares) or flaunt my professional title like a badge.

For those of you in the group which questions what my credentials are, I will be very clear. I completed four years of medical school which culminated in my medical diploma. After that, I completed my internship year (which was also my first year of family practice residency training) and became licensed as a physician. Two more years of residency training in family practice followed, then I sat for my specialty boards and became board-certified in family practice. I am not a nurse or a physician’s assistant (though those professions are highly respectable and draw some of the smartest and most compassionate people on the planet). Degreed. Licensed. Board-certified. Physician a.k.a. Medical Doctor. Yessir.

I may not be conservative or conventional, but I expect the same amount of respect as a physician who chooses to fit the mold and wear conservative attire and a white coat. My patients refer to me as Dr. Naito, not as Dr. Stacey or Stacey. I have worked VERY hard to become a physician, and I also recognize how hard my colleagues work as well. That is why when I am around other physicians, I err on the side of caution and refer to them as DOCTOR and not by their first names unless they specifically ask me to refer to them on a first name basis.