Why (I think) it’s important to have a good relationship with your HCPs (healthcare professional/provider).
I’m passionate about a lot (if you couldn’t already tell). Over the past few years though, I’ve become passionate about the importance of having a good relationship with your healthcare providers. I say providers because it goes beyond Diabetes, beyond endos and CDEs. It’s your general practitioner. It’s your psychiatrist. It’s your dentist. It’s your eye doctor. Etc. Etc.
My goal is to find a Diabetes care team that gets that there’s more to me than Diabetes. On the other hand, I want everyone else to understand Type 1 Diabetes. I’ve talked often about my journey trying to find the right fits, but that’s not my focus for this post (it will come in time!). I want to focus on why it’s important to have a good relationship. I will primarily focus on the Diabetes, but it applies beyond that.
I never expect going to the doctor to be an amazing experience like going to Disney or Camp, but I don’t want to dread appointments (or have the desire to cancel them/not make them). I’ve found that if I don’t have a good relationship with a HCP, I dread appointments or am very inclined to cancel appointments (hey, sometimes it’s all on me).
So if you don’t get along with your HCP when times are good/okay…. What happens when things aren’t? What happens when you’re going through Diabetes Burnout? What happens when you just don’t feel like it? What happens when life happens- like college or stress or a death in the family or other mental health related experiences? What happens when you have supply or insurance issues? Would you feel comfortable talking about all of that and everything in between if you don’t feel comfortable with them during the not bad times? They’re bound to happen.
Would you feel comfortable asking for help? When something isn’t working? When your insurance is giving you hell?
Do you feel heard? Do you feel respected? Do you connect with them?
Do they get it? Do they get you? Some people really don’t get it. Some people may be great at what they do, but you don’t click. Some people may have all the credentials, but maybe they have a “God Complex” or don’t understand what it’s like to be a teen or a young adult. Some don’t get that there are other parts to life.
I feel like finding HCP is like dating/shopping.
If you find an outfit that looks great on the rack, but when you put it on, it’s not flattering or you don’t like it or it seems to expensive… Are you going to still buy it (granted- some people will).
If you’re dating and it’s just not working, would you keep dating that person? (granted- some people will).
You have permission to walk away from HCP’s that don’t fit. or don’t respect you. or don’t get it. I would like to note that due to insurance, SES, location, and other factors… this might be difficult or not possible.
But don’t forget it. I have a two strikes you’re out rule, but most likely…. your gut will tell you round 1.
Everyone is different. Including you and HCPs.
There’s already so much to Diabetes- a lot of not so great things- I think a bad relationship with your HCP should not be a part of it. They should be there for you. You should be able to work together for your health. (and they should even sometimes give you a respectful reality check when you need it).
I want someone I click with. That I feel comfortable with during the good and easy times so that when times are rough or something bad happens, I’ll be more inclined to not cancel appointments, be honest, reach out for help, etc (not to say that I’ll always do this- it’s a struggle of mine).
I want to feel comfortable. Now, I don’t expect to be besties or anything. But I want to feel comfortable and respected. I want to get along with my HCP.
Now- I think it is incredibly important that all of your health needs are met.
Don’t be afraid to stick up for yourself. Don’t be afraid to move on. This is your health. You’re living it everyday, not the HCP.
Hey you! Yes, you!
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