After six months (and prodding from friends), I realized I had to share this encounter! Ever get a weird after-hours phone call from your doctor? I have…and it ended in a fight:
“Hello?” I answered my cell phone as I walked to Penn Station from my office one evening after work.
“Hi. This is Dr.—–. I hear you want to leave me?” asked my obgyn doctor who I had been seeing for a month and a half after I learned I was pregnent. I was startled by the call from–let’s call her Dr. Don’t Go. I had called her office that morning to request that my files be transferred to a new doctor. She wasn’t pleased with the news.
“Yes,” I responded flatly.
“Why? Did I do something wrong?”
I couldn’t believe she was calling me after hours to discuss this! I didn’t want to tell her all of the very good reasons why I was switching–such as always waiting 1.5 hours to be seen, rude staff, rundown examination rooms–because I was worried she would be offended and then take her precious time sending my files to my new doctor. So, I used the most obvious reason:
“No, you’re okay. I just don’t want to have my baby in Newark Hospital.”
“Well have you seen it? It’s a nice hospital,” she replied haughtily.
“Don’t care. I am not delivering my baby in Newark, New Jersey!” Everyone knows Newark is a cesspool for violence–I didn’t want my baby-to-be or family members anywhere near that place!
“What hospital do you want to go to?”
“St. Barnabas in West Orange, so I’m switching to a doctor who delivers there.”
“Oh…well, I used to deliver there…I have an application out for another hospital nearby. I could deliver your baby there. I should know something by April or May.” This made me cautious as I wondered why she would no longer be delivering at one of the best hospitals in the state…
My patience was running out. I had made my decision and that was that! I yelled back angrily, “And what if I stay with you and your application is denied at this other hospital? Then I am fu*ked and I will be forced to deliver in Newark or switch to another doctor at the last minute! This is my baby and I can have her wherever I want, so please transfer my records to my new doctor!”
Dr. Don’t Go was silent for a few seconds. “Okay. I was just trying to fix the situation so that you could stay with me…”
“I don’t want you to fix the situation. I want you to transfer my files to another doctor. I have to go now! I am going to miss my train back to South Orange.”
“Okay, we will transfer your files.” CLICK.
So, to all of you potential mothers-to-be out there, learn from my mistake. Research in which hospital you wanted to deliver your baby BEFORE picking your obgyn. I did the reverse and chose based on my insurance and convenience to home–ooops!