I had no idea how hard this letter would be for me to write…I’m no longer hurt or distressed by the whole affair but I’m still full of rage. It’s hard to be succinct and coherent when you’re mad!
So…my blogging friends, help me out here! Whaddya think? Constructive criticism most welcome.
Dear Dr H,
On Thursday 20th December ’07 I had an appointment with you that left me feeling disrespected and very disappointed.
You will recall that the primary reason for the appointment was to check my latest round of thyroid test results but that I was also concerned about my ovulation/fertility chart and questioned my low, erratic temperatures.
As we discussed my efforts to conceive via home insemination I was shocked and incredibly distressed when you suggested I consider having sex with my sperm donor. Whether it was meant in jest or not, I found your suggestion to be incredibly inappropriate and plainly homophobic. I imagine however, that such a suggestion would be equally as abhorrent to a heterosexual woman trying to conceive with donor sperm. I’d also like to point out that most research suggests that inseminating with fresh sperm results in almost the same level of success as intercourse.
I am a relatively new patient of yours and was attracted to your practice because of your progressive approach and your respect of complementary and alternative modalities of healthcare. Perhaps naively, I made the assumption that your progressive approach would carry into social relations and that you would have had some experience treating lesbian and same-sex attracted women in a sensitive and appropriate manner.
The healthcare needs of lesbians require the same level of respect and sensitivity as do those of any other woman. Those needs, however, can be vastly different. I would like to direct you to the volumes of research completed by a local GP, Dr Ruth McNair on lesbian healthcare needs. A dedicated website can be found at http://www.dialog.unimelb.edu.au/index.html. You may be particularly interested in the fertility and parenting section. Though currently on maternity leave, you may also be able to contact Dr McNair through the Carlton Clinic.
I will not be returning to your practice but know of other lesbians who do see you and think they’ll greatly benefit from your greater knowledge and sensitivity.
PS – Blog post number 100! Do I get a prize?