Welcome to The Purple Punch! In life there are many people or organisations that annoy me. Ones who’s actions or lack of action cause unnecessary stress in what is for most people an already very stressful world. This makes me want to punch people, preferably with words that will stick with them so as not to make the same mistake again!
The Purple Punch Story
The story behind the Purple Punch series started with a typical afternoon on Twitter. It began with a discussion about a purple powered super hero going around defending other bloggers from people and organisations that cause unnecessary stress. This led to the idea that I could give other people a platform where they can call out shoddy workmanship, poor service or just poor examples of humanity.
This Weeks Purple Punch
The Purple Punch will be award this week by myself to the nurse who took it upon herself for scolding me for being a week late for my Depo-Provera injection within seconds of me arriving. I already felt low after a week of being an hormonal wreck and with my anxiety I was dreading my appointment.
I sat there explaining that I had called well over a week ago and was stressed enough that there was such a long wait for my appointment knowing it would be overdue which was making my severe anxiety worse too, I didn’t need to be told off.
She went on to tell me she knew how I felt as her daughter broke her leg on holiday. It took 2 weeks to see a GP. I had to interrupt… I wasn’t on holiday, I booked in at my local GP and I didn’t expect to be told off bearing in mind the recent booking system changes I knew nothing about.
There has never been any changes in the booking system in the whole time she worked there apparently. The whole 6 months. I have been going for years and it started as a walk in surgery with appointments bookable on the day at 8am. They then removed the walk in service but continued appointments which could be booked at either 8am or 1pm. It then went back to 8am booking within a few days which was what I had to do for my previous appointment.
Explaining with severe anxiety these changes are stressful enough without having her tell me off too I had hoped that would be that. But no, she proceeded to tell me to ‘calm down and stop worrying’. I’d just explained I have SEVERE ANXIETY! I couldn’t just calm down.
I almost ran out of there feeling like a failure. Instead I told her that a year ago I would have. A year ago I may well have run outside and done something stupid. I was in such a bad place then. Telling someone who is anxious or depressed to calm down or stop worrying are the 2 worst things you can say. Especially seconds after they explain their anxiety to you, it leaves us feeling much worse.
She then made me feel as if the whole issue was that I had to take a pregnancy test. Fuming isn’t the word. I’ve had Depo-Provera enough over the years to know the rules and was fine with that. Being told off like a child for being late and made to feel bad for it annoyed me. Having my anxiety brushed off got to me even more though. I think eventually she kind of got what I was saying as she tried to hug me.
Only because I have a great support network now was I able to voice my opinion. Normally I wouldn’t. I felt I had to because the next person to be scolded for a late appointment, something beyond their control they might not cope so well. They might not feel like they have support. I see so many people on twitter knocked down by situations like this. They may not feel strong enough to defend themselves and say something, they may well bottle it up and react later.
We shouldn’t feel we have to defend ourselves like this though. Especially in a place where appointments are hard to come by. We shouldn’t feel we have to defend ourselves to professionals who should know how to talk to patients. They should know how to respond to being told a patient has severe anxiety and depression. We shouldn’t have to dread booking that next appointment, facing those same people or organisations. A simple 5 minute appointment shouldn’t leave someone feeling stressed and anxious still a week later.
To the nurse I saw that day – Please, please read up on anxiety and depression. A large portion of your patients suffer these debilitating illnesses and your attitude is extremely unhelpful. Think before you speak. Don’t tell us to calm down, tell us you understand, tell us it’s ok. Don’t have a go at patients the second they arrive when you have no idea how they may be feeling.
Share your Purple Punch!
Purple Punch is here to give you a place to put these people/organisations straight and feel you have a voice too. Whether publicly or anonymously the purple punch is a place to rant and get it off your chest. Relentlessly Purple wants your guest posts with one Purple Punch featured every other Wednesday. Get in touch via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or email- firstname.lastname@example.org to have your Purple Punch featured!