Medical/christian ethics. Long.(87 Posts)
Sorry if this is in the wrong place. I need advice on how to deal with a orthopedic surgeon (hereafter called X) who will not see me again until I go and ask my mother for forgiveness for the anger he believes I'm holding against her (but is harassing via email all the same!).
X is a family friend, in church leadership close to my parents. The denomination is evangelical. When he heard that I've been left disabled following a pregnancy, X offered to help me out of concern and is not being paid. He practices privately and is accountable to no one, at least in this instance. He checked at least twice that I was ok with his approach ('treating the whole person'). I gave consent, thinking that it sounded pleasantly holistic.
X has been taking a thorough history before doing anything - a deeply invasive process that took about seven hours, spread over 3-4 visits (plus very probing homework). While he was gentle and almost uncomfortably fatherly, it was clear that he was trying to zero in on anger towards DM during the questioning. DM was a controlling, possessive parent and I was a depressed teenager as a result. (Incidentally, X's history was a much more invasive and directive than a psychiatrist would carry out). I ended up actually apologising for not having much anger these days, having talked it through many years ago.
X now wants me to go to my mother re: forgiveness because (a) seeking forgiveness is obligatory for a professing christian and (b) it will create a physical release that will bring my physical up to a standard that he can use a medical intervention (steroid injection into the pelvic area).
On X's last visit, his manner was completely changed. He raised his voice and vehemently began to say I was ill because of the sin in my life; I needed to seek my mother's forgiveness for how I'd felt about her through my childhood and beyond. I tried to disagree and he held up my 'homework', half-shouting 'It's all over this!'. In the same tone, he virtually shouted what I'd written: 'deep unhappiness, isolation, annoyance...'. These emotions hadn't been connected with my mum and he'd made the word 'annoyance' up. When I pointed this out, he seemed very irritated and said 'Come on, there must have been anger!' He quoted a psalm in which the writer says that his bones ache as a result of sin (proof that bone problems can be the result of sin). Then another biblical example, of a man who had been thrown into torment because he had not forgiven a debt despite having had a larger debt forgiven himself. 'Would you say you were in torment?' he asked. I felt cornered because I'm clearly in torment. So I tried to engage with the request (why DM exactly) and X told me I was arrogantly overthinking when all that was required was faith, quoting the example of the Old Testament character who was cured of an illness by washing seven times in the Jordan, a river he considered unclean.
DH was tried to clarify the request and engage with it on my behalf, to which X repeatedly said 'look, I've been at this a long time' and went on to describe a past case where a woman in exactly my situation who hadn't done what he'd asked. He didn't want to say what had happened to her. X said the situation was urgent and deterioration would occur if the treatment didn't progress. He told me I may well have to hand over parenting responsibilities to my mother if I don't follow his 'request' (something I'd earlier said I had fears about, despite a specialist physio saying this isn't going to happen).
* X finished the consultation by telling me to arrange another when I'd done what he'd asked. I haven't done it and wasn't sure what to say to him, so I haven't yet contacted him (3 weeks later). He has now sent a couple of angry emails reiterating the urgent nature of the case and 'ramifications as stated'. I feel trapped.
* My very abusive FIL is also a church leader (same kind of church). DP refused to obey him and divorce me when we were struggling a couple of months into our marriage (FIL said that God would understand it was really an annulment because I was not 'as advertised'...) We eventually stepped back from relationship with them because it was simply toxic. I suspect he's the next person X would be sending me to ask forgiveness (X says God wishes everyone to be reconciled).
How do I deal with this? Is there anyone out there to help with this?
You aren't getting this on the NHS are you?
On phone. Can't post properly but will do later.
Report him to the royal college of surgeons. And tell him to get to fuck. He's barking. And manipulative.
And the only god in this scenario is the god complex he's got for himself
X is abusive and needs reporting to the GMC. You need to see your GP and ask for referral to a proper doctor. One practicing medicine not loopy, bullying nonsense. And I say that as somebody who attends an evangelical church.
He sounds completely unhinged. Can you find if he us registered with the GMC? and formally complain about his bizarre and unptofessional behaviour.
The man is clearly mad. You're not in the UK are you?
I wouldn't trust this man, and I'd find a proper doctor.
Here's the link to make a complaint to the GMC www.gmc-uk.org/concerns/making_a_complaint/a_patients_guide.asp. Remember that he is taking these beliefs with him to work and therefore you are not the only patient at risk from them. See your GP for a referral to a consultant.
I would chuck in a complaint about him to the hospital who employ him too. Bet he bullies the staff as well.
Omg. You ask who might help you deal with this, and I am really sorry that I have no idea who might help you get this person to leave you alone, but you and your DP sound quite strong and used to setting boundaries, so do you actually need help? Can you not just tell him you're terminating the "treatment" and to fuck off and never contact you again or you will have him charged for harassment?
This man is dangerously unwell and is not fit to practise medicine. He may be treating you 'privately' but he is accountable to his professional accrediting body.
Find out who he is accredited with (he will need to be to be insured - he is insured isn't he?) and speak with them, urgently.
Do not contact him whatsoever. If you do see him again record all conversations as evidence.
He could be struck off just for his behaviour so far. You have a responsibility to others to stop this person ASAP.
Are you in the UK? The man is a charlatan, if you are in the UK report to the GMC and ask for a referral from your GP to see someone who will help you.
His approach is bollucks.
And yes report him to whatever medical licensing body he is accredited by.
Are you in the UK? Do not under any circumstances allow this 'surgeon' near you with a needle. What he is proposing is barking at best, lethal at worst. Seriously.
If in the UK report to the GMC. He is accountable to them if working as a medical practitioner.
If not in the UK, disengage. Don't reply to emails.
Call the GMC
Don't enter into any further communication with the Doctor. Save all his communications to you
Run away. This man will not help. He's playing on your background to guilt you into doing something you don't want to do.
Set your email so he goes to spam. Ignore him and seek advice from another doctor, even if it costs you.
A religious belief is something to celebrate and enjoy as a member of a community, not something to guilt trip you with and make you miserable.
This is appalling on several different levels. Manipulative, disturbing, intrusive, unprofessional, etc etc.
If possible you should never see him again. Will that cause problems with your parents? Do you still go to their church?
mmm...nor really evidence based medicine is it? I would go to your GP and ask to referred to someone within the NHS. At the same time I would also report him to the GMC. There is no way his private faith should interfere with your treatment, whether you are a private patient or otherwise. This is deeply unprofessional and rather worrying since the behaviour you describe is very controlling and manipulative. I further worry, given his unprofessional behaviour so far, that he might consider 'bending' the rules on patient confidentiality and speaking your DM and other family members (Do you feel he knows more about your situation then you have told him?). Don't go back, cut all contact and get yourself treated by someone that respects and supports you - pretty much any other doctor.
...NOT evidence based medicine...
Not sure what to say but so sorry that God is being used as an excuse to bully you, especially when you are in need of proper help and support.
It sounds as though X is in need of his own counselling. People that spiritually abuse know their bible's/koran etc well but will leave out the bits that condemn their own behaviour. He is not a holy man and you owe him nothing. Please get some NHS/ safe private medical care x
Please please report him to the GMC. And get a referral to a pain clinic.
Check on GMC website if he's registered with them. Even if you're not in the UK but he is registered with them they can still consider looking into it. He sounds bonkers!
I try to respect peoples choices in belief as part of my efforts to become a peaceful Buddhist - but this is exactly the sort of thing that makes we want to tear down every sign I see for the Alpha course and shout loon at every JW that comes to our door and basically blow up every church I see.
It misogynist Christian patriarchal shit at best - at worse its EA at worst it could become physical abuse. Get some normal sane counselling with a woman who you are sympatica with.
Hi op wow well your post was the most incredible situation that I have ever read on mumsnet
There seem to be two completely separate issues here.
The medical one.
The religious one.
I would go and see your gp about the medical one, have nothing to do with this man, he is using his professional status to bully you about your emotions, I would report him to the GMC.
The religious one, Are you religious? I know people use their faith to help them through difficult situations but you seem to have people near you using religion to bully you.
Your husband sounds like a good ally.
Do let us know how you get on, good luck.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.