Psychiatrist: Honesty, a secondary policy…?

His honesty I mean, my new psychiatrist’s (Li’s). For instance, when I went the first, second and third times, he gave not the slightest indication that he knew me or even of me, and when I mentioned that I was a writer and had written DIVIDED MINDS, he acknowledged only having seen “some twins” on CPTV (our local public television channel) and was wondering if that might have been me…

Now, as of my most recent visit, I come to discover that Li had known all along who I was and that I was the same person he had seen on the TV show and that I had written said book. For all I know he has already read the goddam book and has not admitted it even now. Worse, he admitted this last time that he recognized my name and remembered me from the times in the 80s when I was hospitalized  at a local psychiatric unit right — he had been the chief resident at the time it so happened and would get reports about me and listen to discussions at grand rounds, apparently. He had this info right from the very first phone call I made to him, i.e. when I left an initial message on his answering machine he knew who I was.

Essentially, quite despite my plea at the very first visit that he be honest with me and “never deliberately lie to me” he has decided that honesty would be only on second thought with me, just one out of several strategic possibilities and not his first and only approach. I do not understand this, but it both scares and upsets me terribly. For one thing, I fear enormously that it signifies that he too is part of  the great DO conspiracy I have mentioned so often, if not here then in my older Wagblog. This is not to say that Dr B (Li) s a DO (doctor of osteopathy equally trained in psychiatry and medicine as any MD); he is not. He happens to have attended the same med school as I did, and did a residency as I said at a hospital I was a patient at several to many times.

However, the DOs who have treated me, or been assigned to me, have to a one been in on this conspiracy to tag me as a drug-seeking addict because of my narcoleptic need for Ritalin (a condition they dismiss as either faked or at a minimum not real, merely claimed). As a consequence, they have treated me abysmally, not taking any time to deal with any of my physical complaints but “assuming ” all to be likewise connected to these putative “false claims” of narcolepsy, which is to say not real either. I do not trust Li NOT to fundamentally to believe this, and therefore, despite his dispensing the medication (just as other MDs did in order to “placate me”), to regard me with skepticism, even cynicism. In this case, I would find it impossible to continue to see him, being  likewise utterly unable unable to trust him  — naturally — to take me seriously because of course he never would.

The thing is, I am no longer willing to argue the narcolepsy business. I know I am innocent of any such charges of faking or simulation, and do not need to excuse or explain myself to anyone who questions it. I know how sleepy I have been since the age of 19, and know how disabling the sleepiness has always been. I also know that I have never abused Ritalin, only that I always needed a certain therapeutic dose that no one ever tried to find, because no one ever trusted me to need Ritalin from the get go (despite a diagnosis in the early 80s by a neurologist, Dr Neuren, at H.  Hospital, following an EEG that might not prove anything now, but was enough for him then…). Once that dose was determined by Dr O, a sleep specialist and psychiatrist, I have not needed more and in fact have usually used less than that on days when my chronic sleepiness has not been overwhelming or I have been able to stay physically busy enough to stay awake. I have also learned not to fight taking a nap, and sleep on demand most days, even when that means twice or three times a day, say from 6pm till 9pm and then from 2am till 9am plus another nap the next day at 11am until 2pm…

But where was I? I was speaking of the conspiracy, and I do not joke. I believe quite firmly that these DOs have been infected by someone else who believes it, and have swallowed her opinion hook line and sinker…but be that as it may, if Li himself also refuses to see beyond whatever he recalls of me from the past, then it is useless to continue. I do not even want a “second chance” or to be given the opportunity to somehow prove myself. I do not need his approval or his acceptance of my diagnosis of narcolepsy. I do not need him to believe that I have it, or to give me Ritalin on the basis of some begrudging agreement that he will do so, but only because he does so for so many ADHD patients that he is not afraid for hs license…If that is his attitude, well, F___ him to the max and up the A—!  I don’t need that sort of BS and will willingly and immediately dump him and go elsewhere.

Iin faact, he ought to have “recused himself” before even taking me on and admitted that he already knew me and could not ethically do so, because he already had formed a negative opinion of me that I would have to change…

THIS is what I fear, basically. I do not know if I can surmount this. I do not know that Li can reassure me it is not the case. I do not know that I can ever trust him again, given his recent admission of betrayal, however much it was a “sin of omission. He knew full well what he was omitting and why, and he also knew that I was asking for precisely the information he withheld…


I am going to take off the week of Aug 2-9th in order to be absolutely left alone, because I know no other way to get my thoughts in order and to have some time to get both work and some artwork done…I can’t seem other wise to allow myself a workweek, and feel like no one else will. At least no one respects my right to be left alone during the week, not even at the hours I requested, and I feel so bound to answer the phone and email that I can’t even let it ring between the hours of 10 and 5pm without answering it. Also, I cannot turn the answering machine down, so I have to listen to it, which is a really awful way NOT to “answer the phone”, because they “get to me” anyway that way…So I am taking a week off, to think about how to deal with this, and also to work on my own things.

I hope I can do it. I am lying to those I cannot tell the truth to, those who will not let me be and do what I need to without making me feel guilty, and I am telling the truth to those with whom I can be honest without feelng that they might spill the beans to the former or try to intrude on the week. They know who they are…and the others do not read this blog.


One thought on “Psychiatrist: Honesty, a secondary policy…?”

  1. Hi Pam,

    I’m sorry to hear that you don’t feel your therapist is being honest with you, but, remember, you are under no obligation to stay with him, if you don’t feel comfortable with him. As you know, it is extremely important that you feel basic trust for your therapist. Do you have other options? I still think that you must get therapy from someone, preferably on a weekly basis, so don’t give up looking! However you look at it, replacing Dr. O is likely to be a challenge because you were with her, relatively happily, for quite a while. I wish I could advise you further, but I only have experience with one therapist since I became psychotic.

    I’d love to hear about what you’re working on artwise. Keep being creative Pam, you’ll work this problem out somehow. Try not to worry too much. The last thing you need is more stress. If you feel like it, write to me. It’s always a pleasure to hear from you.


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