I’m so honored to be featured in a Prevention magazine article, “When Your Doctor Makes You Feel Fat,” by the incredible Harriet Brown.  (Seriously, if you don’t know her work, please check it out!)

When I saw that Harriet had put out the call for people to share their stories about being discriminated against by their doctors for their size, I knew I had to get in touch with her.  You can read more in the article about one of the more egregious times this happened to me.

What I want to talk about today, though, is all the “small” indignities I (and other curvy folks I know) have faced at the doc.  Over the years, this has manifested as many things: from sideways glances as the nurse slides the scale up another notch to “the lecture.”  You know what I’m talking about, right?  This is the one where your doc gives you a lecture about how you have to lose weight immediately or you will die tomorrow—and you were only there for an earache.  And I know that this is something that happens to many people, regardless of their size.

I think my favorite (read: most loathed!) technique is the “scared straight” or “tough love.”  I met with a doc once who was so condescending from the get-go that I could barely even speak the whole appointment I was so on the brink of tears and/or rage the whole time.  This person shared with me how she was currently on a diet, eating x calories, and if she could do it, I could do it.  I just had to have “willpower.”  (Yes, she actually said willpower!)

What all of this has added up to for me is a sort of death-by-a-thousand-papercuts phenomenon.  I expect that if I see a doc (especially a new one) that I will likely get this kind of treatment.  That is, I did expect that.  Over the past couple years, though, I’ve undergone a different process for finding doctors.  I vet them; in my mind, our first appointment is a job interview.  You can read some really excellent tips on how to do this in this great post over at The Rotund.

Because now that I’ve become more in touch with and empowered about my body through yoga, there’s no going back.  Do I have health issues to work on?  Sure.  Who doesn’t?  But no matter what anyone has going on, we all deserve to be treated with respect and curvy fabulousness!

What do you do to make visits to the doc more pleasant?

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