You’re Fired!

I had such a frustrating experience with my kids’ pediatrician today. I am sure you all know my struggles with Virginia’s weight and month after month of weight checks that leave me feeling inadequate and ridiculous. Today was the king of all inadequacies, the day I was told in not so many words that by my persistence to breastfeed I was slowly starving my baby. “Irregular Growth Curve” are the three words he kept pounding into my head. He was not interested in persuing any other causes for her slow growth. Once I said I was not willing to supplement with formula he stopped being interested in my baby being his patient any longer. Over and over again I told him it is not a milk supply issue. I have been breastfeeding for 13 years. I know what a healthy milk supply looks like. I told him I would take her to the hospital for tests, but because I disagree with his course of action he was just plain not willing to entertain any other possibilties. He told me to find another pediatrician who is content to “sit by and do nothing”. And he was implying that by doing nothing I was jeaopardizing my child. He was arrogant, condescending and just plain stubborn. Not qualities that befit a children’s doctor IMO. You will be proud of me, I didn’t yell or even raise my voice and I didn’t even cry…well until I got outside. LOL I cancelled her nine month appointment and as soon as I had my composure back I called another pediatrician for a second opinion.

I am so sad to be leaving my pediatric practice. I have been going there for 13 years! I hope they give him a hard time for losing six of their patients at once. If only he had been even the tiniest bit flexible I would have been willing to continue in his care. But he, as so many other doctors, believes he knows best because he is a doctor and has a degree.

FWIW if you are in UT the name of the Dr. is Jeff Erickson at Mountainview Pediatrics.

January 23, 2009 - 11:19 pm Dolly - My cousin, Tammy has a new little daughter with weight gain issues...Here's her post on doctor visits:http://bsymomof9.blogspot.com/2008/11/wonderful-news.html *She's another mother mom-who knows about doctors! :)

January 24, 2009 - 10:29 am Robyn - Tamra, good for you! I hate when people overstep their bounds. YOU'RE the mother, and the doctor is the help! I have a friend with a tiny, tiny baby, and because of the pressure she felt, she stopped breastfeeding and started formula feeding, and wouldn't you know it, but her baby is still TINY! It's just the way she is. She's accepted this now, and we make jokes about her "fat" baby. The best doctors that I've had experience with have always been DOs (doctor of osteopathy). You should try one! The first experience I ever had was when my first daughter was born and she was slightly jaundiced. The MD that was on call at the nursery told me that I needed to bring her back to the hospital to test her blood every day for the next week to keep an eye on it. What a pain. I had received too many recommendations for a doctor named R. Mitchell Adams (a DO in Provo) not to try him. I saw him the very next day and I told him that I had to head to the hospital for jaundice tests. He looked at her, and said in the most casual tone, "She's all right. She's looking good." And he was right. She looked fine and she WAS fine. So she was a little yellow! Aren't most newborns? The other doctor was way over the top. It was so refreshing to see a doctor who believed my daughter's body was fixing itself, just like bodies do. He was a really great doctor, and I was sad to have to find a new doctor when we moved. I've tried several doctors where we live now, but all the pediatricians I've been to have stepped on my toes as the mother (you know how doctors can be condescending and pushy, as if they're in charge of the child's medical care, instead of the mother, because the mother knows nothing). I decided to take my kids to a family doctor (who is a DO) instead of a pediatrician, and man, has that made my life better! He's respectful of my position as MOTHER, who knows best, and he offers his help and expertise, but he's not demanding. My husband had a DO who performed a minor surgery for him, and he also had great things to say about him. Good luck finding a doctor who's helpful and supportive. Robyn

January 24, 2009 - 1:01 pm Heather - I have had weight gain issues with 3 of my kids. Kelsey was really chubby at 2 months and was 14 lbs. but then stayed 14lbs until about 9 months, then slowly started growing. I know there are tests to test different thing wtih slow growth. We were going to have test run on Kelsey until my mom told me I was the same way and they ran test and found out I was just small. Kelsey eventually gained weight and is now in the 60%. Kade is my other small one he will be 4yrs next month and only weighs 27lbs. I had to do the weight checks with him but never supplemented. For him right now all my doc says is to try to get him to drink Carnation instant breakfast everyday. I don't think its really making a difference. Now with Kennedy my doc says he would be worried but with my other kids he just says to do what I am doing. She is 20 months and hasn't hit 20lbs yet. And I know your other kids have been bigger, well so has one of mine. At 4 months Kaitlyn was 18lbs 4oz and just kept growing. I think as long as your daughter is doing everything else she is doing she is probably doing okay. You didn't post how much she weighs but if you are concerened I think it would be good to find another doctor that will do tests first before telling you to give supplements on the best milk for her. Just what I think.

January 24, 2009 - 7:19 pm Vanessa - Sometimes it isnt the amount of milk you are producing but rather the nutritional value of your milk. Ive heard it can change with age, weight gain, your own nutritional habits, etc. I hate to see you lose your doctor of 13 years over something like this. I would definitely get a second opinion on it before I severed the relationship completely.... We have a great pediatrician and I have never felt condescended to by him before. He is a big believer in a mothers instinct which is nice and he is a great listener.. His name is Tom Metcalf with Wasatch Pediatrics if you are interested. I hope you find what you are looking for and that ultimately Virginia gets what she needs.

January 24, 2009 - 7:28 pm Brandi - Good for you, Tamra! (((((())))))

January 25, 2009 - 2:21 pm April - So sorry to hear about this. I know that was very frustrating. It can be so frustrating! I'm nursing too. Raygan-Elise started solids then I stopped b/c reflux got worse. But new doc says we need to start again. So, I did. So far so good. We'll see. How much does she weigh now? In photos, she looks great! What percentile do they say she is?

January 29, 2009 - 3:36 pm Laney Cheney - Sorry for the trouble, Tamra. I'm glad you maintained composure-- under the same circumstances I'm not sure I would have been able to report the same. I hope you find out with you need to about your daughter and her growth. Follow what you feel from God-- He's the best guide you can find on the topic!

March 3, 2009 - 5:23 am Jessica - OMG what an ASS! Good for you Tamra, seriously. OMG what an ASS... stories like that really piss me off. Hang in there. She is beautiful. Yay for her tooth!

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