ndab Ah Yes, Medical School: NSWTHAIGTDWML-O-Meter Update

Thursday, June 15, 2006

NSWTHAIGTDWML-O-Meter Update

It starts with the look in their eyes. Vacant, but still brimming with a mischievous and psychotic slant that makes the blood curl. Their eyes follow you around, tracking your every movement, scouting your every action, waiting to signal to their brains that your behavior has become unacceptable to them for no obvious reason. It then follows to the nose, perched, haughty, with a sense of entitlement rather peculiar and seemingly unwarranted. It ends with the mouth. All lip-smacking aside, it is the grime and filth that emanates from their mouths that disturbs me the most, that chills my spine, burns through my stomach, and generally leads to day after day of soiling of my underwear (which may or may not consist of hot pink panties…or nothing at all). They argue, they scream, they complain, they demand things unreasonable, they kill you with kindness and then change suddenly to evil beast people. They roam mindlessly around the psychiatric wards, ready to gnaw any remaining morsel of dignity out of the wretched beings known as your average medical student.

Put simply, psychiatrists are the most annoying mother fuckers I have come across all year.

When I started this rotation I was pretty much convinced that psychiatric patients were crazy. But at least the schizophrenics I have encountered and had the privilege of knowing over the past few weeks have grown on me as I have overcome my own personal fears and become more comfortable with them. I have begun to admire their unique perspectives, sympathize with the wars going on in their brains, and tolerate the moments when they choose to stare into a keyhole for hours at a time. Maybe they aren’t crazy, per se, just different.

But the psychiatrists, on the other hand, are just fucking nuts. Period. One minute I’m their best friend, doing all their scut work, putting up with their emotional issues, and toiling around while trying to pretend like I am listening to them ramble on and on (and on and on and on) about their outside passions. Then suddenly the hamster furiously spinning in their brains has a fart and these psychiatrists become furious, demanding I do some inane task that bears no relevance to anyone or anything and wondering why I did not do that task five minutes ago. They start barking orders, getting irritable, and making no sense whatsoever. But then, out of the blue, they start throwing out things like “Hey, tomorrow is your last day…we love you guys so much, so let’s get a stripper to celebrate! Who’s going to bring the drinks? He he he” even though I know damn well that these people haven’t come within a mile of a stripper, alcohol, or anything other than their imaginary friends (not that there is anything [cough] wrong with imaginary friends) in years. So we’re best friends now and you want to smoke out? Huh? How the hell am I supposed to work with you people? MAKE UP YOUR FUCKING MINDS! GAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

OK I feel much better.

Look, I’ve learned that psychiatry is a very important field, there are some very sick people out there who need our help, and all those idiots that claim that there is no such thing as mental illness are just that, idiots. Props to anyone who can deal with this patient population and provide them with the care that they need. But I’ve also learned that it takes a certain amount of having a pathological personality to be a psychiatrist and function among this set of peers. While I am quite possibly the most neurotic person on the face of the planet, I am not yet crazy enough to qualify for this and could never see myself doing this. Of course, the beautiful irony of all this is that the one person truly crazy enough to make a great psychiatrist and work well in this setting is none other than Tom Cruise himself.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a stripper to order.

42 Comments:

Blogger The Angry Frenchie said...

What... the... crap...

:)

1:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Indeed - Tom cruise!

2:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So what's worse, anesthesiology or psychiatry? Glad you're narrowing down your least awful specialty.

Good luck FD.

3:27 AM  
Blogger Nathan said...

Excellent. One of the psychiatrists on my rotation told a joke like this.

"How can you tell the difference between the patients and the docs on a psych ward?

The patients get better and leave."

3:49 AM  
Blogger Kyla said...

ha! you totally had me fooled into thinking you were talking about the patients, especially with the lip-smacking line. I can see why you wouldn't want to go into this profession if the psychiatrists are more insane than the patients. wow.
so what's still on the table here? what's it going to be, FD?

6:38 AM  
Blogger amanda m. said...

The only thing worst than psychiatrists that I've run across are the social workers. I think it's because they don't have access to psychotropic medications.

6:46 AM  
Blogger MedStudentWife said...

hear hear on you & I also totally agree with amanda m...

As part of some language continuing ed. a zillion years ago, I took classes at the local psychiatric hospital. Those days I used to smoke & those were the days you could smoke in the building in the cafeterias (smoking had ceased in all other work areas)...

Long story short - some of the patients who had roaming priviledges used to come down and smoke.. I tell you - I met some of the most interesting ( in a good way) and some of the best conversationalists ever.... but maybe *looking furtively* Ive just defined my state of mind *lol*

Really - very nice people with issues, but still very human.. kudos on you picking that up

6:38 PM  
Anonymous Jenn said...

I'm a third year also--I more week left until I'm a fourth year! I think you should go into OB-GYN. I am and I can tell you we would love a few more nice, funny men around to break up the estrogen fest! I'm a little biast(sp?) but you seemed to really enjoy it and I think it is the best of all worlds. Let us know when you pick!

6:51 PM  
Blogger gabbiana said...

Amen. There's a reason all the shrinks I've ever met have had fucked-up kids.

7:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very funny and insightful. I still think you have a career as a writer ahead of you.

As for psychiatrists and their f*ck up kids... .what is really sad is how many of those kids I put through college with the money I spent at their parent's!

8:14 AM  
Blogger Passion of the Weiss said...

you don't know the history of psychiatrity...fake doctor...I do...

and also stop being glib.

11:00 AM  
Anonymous Nicole said...

So funny. The big joke at University was if you met someone and they seemed at bit off, 9 times out of 10 they would be a psych major. . .

12:18 PM  
Blogger genderist said...

You keep up all that glibness... and enjoy the stripper!

1:50 PM  
Anonymous TX-Roo said...

Your picture or link to Tom Cruise really should link to this:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8530918890580805143

I think it accurately portrays the psychiatrists you are working with.

I thought about going to med school and then came to my senses and just received my acceptance into an ultrasound program. Your blog was a great deterrent.

Keep up the good work...you supply me with unmatched humor! :)

TX-Roo

2:42 PM  
Anonymous Sid Schwab said...

As interesting as disorders of the mind are, the problem with psychiatry is that much of it is devoted to the self-indulgent wealthy, and the number of people a shrink can "help" is very small: by which I refer to the fact that they have a small number of patients that they see forever. And those that are really helped are those that respond to medications which, nowadays, are very often prescribed by primary docs, skipping the need for shrinks altogether. Consider surgery. The hours suck, but the help is clear and measurable. And not all surgeons are assholes.

8:21 PM  
Blogger Reg said...

I've always found my psych professors to be walking that fine line between sanity and totally nutso. Anyone foolish enough to go to med school and specialize in phsychiatry is just the "cream of the crop!"

2:03 AM  
Blogger Carina said...

Mount Misery by Sam Shem. It's a good read, and it's pretty accurate from what I hear. *sigh* I wish things were better. My mom had a psychotic episode last year, and it was scary dealing with the docs and the social worker who kept changing the diagnosis, listening to me and her hubby, and then ignoring me and her hubby . . . *sigh* It's just a sign of how broken the whole system is.

8:26 AM  
Blogger Name withheld to protect the guilty said...

Shem's "Mount Misery"...

Then you'll remember that "psychiatrists specialize in their defects." :)

10:26 AM  
Blogger FUNKYBROWNCHICK said...

What's that saying? ... Only the crazy people can truly help the crazy ...

10:31 PM  
Anonymous Raven said...

Word.

9:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fake Doc,

I'm going nuts waiting for MCAT scores... I could use another one of your posts to distract me and remind me how much worse it'll be once I'm actually accepted to med school...

11:55 AM  
Blogger medchic said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5:54 PM  
Blogger The Angry Frenchie said...

You want crazy? I've been waiting 60 days for my MCAT scores, and they're coming out today!!! AAEHFHHSDHHAGHGDJD

12:18 AM  
Blogger MedStudentGod said...

Every single, and I mean EVERY SINGLE med student I've ever met who wanted to go into Psych was, for lack of a better word, NUTS! They're so much so that you start to back away as they just stare at you with an incongruous grin and babble about something that makes no sense whatsoever. So, I'll be enjoying that rotation - whever I find out my 3rd year sched.

6:32 AM  
Blogger Sj said...

I can't say I personally know what you mean but it sure reminds me of the 'Jung' - a central character in the book Pilgrim by Michael Findley.

10:37 AM  
Blogger Paige Jennifer said...

Classic. I've never met a psychiatrist (or neurologist for that matter) who was balanced (insert Three Stooges noises here). Neither should be permitted to reproduce. Have you ever interacted with their offspring? One word - oy.

2:50 PM  
Anonymous pinacolada said...

haha =)

7:45 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow - so many people making gross generalizations with obviously no real understanding of psychiatry or psychology. Believe it or not, there are some people (actually sane people who aren't on meds themselves, and have no need for meds) who actually go into the psych field due to a real compassion for the mentally ill.

And might I add my concern about hte fact that Jenn, the third year med student who can't even spell biased correctly, was even accepted into med school with her writing/spelling skills is scarey!

7:34 AM  
Blogger The Angry Frenchie said...

Hey Anonymous, you misspelled "scary".

7:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, yes, but I'm not trying to be a doctor.

11:55 AM  
Blogger Dr. Underdog said...

I love this post!!

5:51 AM  
Blogger BLOG REVIEWS said...

*****

12:31 PM  
Blogger Dr. Wannabe said...

I should probably be offended by this post since my mom is getting her doctorate in psychology, but I've seen the people she has to work with. When I drop her off at work I always tell her to have fun with the looneys.

11:06 PM  
Anonymous Eric said...

i feel compelled (OCD) to opine:
in every field like every where there are the best and the worst and everything in between. but how do you compellingly write about that?

i'm intrigued as a therapist working in the mental health field - with the chronically ill and the "walking wounded" and all the rest. and at the same time, in order to be good in this field, a person has to know themselves well, and be on to their neurosis and their hang-ups and their issues and work on them like everyone else. and it's that pursuit, along with knowledge of the psyche and its development (and drugs, of course) that make a more valuable mental health worker.

and they are out there.

and another intrigue - this blog. thanks for it.

-eric

7:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You think you have problems? What about me. Try being a pre med at Stanford and you'll see what I mean. Every day I think my GPA will decrease. And it will likely decrease since I'm only a Sophmore, and have yet taken upper level science classes.

10:20 PM  
Blogger texags said...

The benefit of being a psychiatrist is I don't have to work with any other psychiatrists. I work with patients. Psychiatrists drive me nuts. Surgeons are only slightly farther down the list, and surgeons as patients are the worst. My wife is a physical medicine doctor and she has to work with every other psychiatrist in the hospital, professionally. She complains about it constantly.

6:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hehe..
your blog always makes me laugh out loud.. so funny :)
smart to keep humor thru your years of tough school!

5:36 AM  
Blogger Miette said...

I've been interested in psychiatry ever since I realised that _I_ was fucking nuts. I think you're onto something :-)

6:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what a funny entry. i've never worked in a hospital, but i have met some shrinks. while i wouldn't call them nuts, i would say that are amazingly narrow-minded and tend to see the world as a bunch of diagnosises. then again, doctors of all sorts do too. so glad i'm a journalist, where we get to write about you crazies!

2:56 PM  
Anonymous kristi said...

Look, I’ve learned that psychiatry is a very important field, there are some very sick people out there who need our help, and Acai all those idiots that claim that there is no such thing as mental illness are just that, idiots. Props to anyone who can deal with this patient population and provide them with the care that they need.

6:48 AM  
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7:59 AM  

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