I Will Not Play Your Gender Reindeer Games – Medical Edition

 

As a woman of a certain age, annual maintenance comes around and demands that I have my chest-level tender bits smashed between two cold, uncaring plates for medical purposes.  Alas, it is that time of year.  (Happy Valentine’s to me!)

Anywho. I got the call from my provider for my “pre-registration” in anticipation of my upcoming appointment and the conversation went nearly verbatim like this:

DP: Hello…

Provider:  Ms. Prynne, I am calling to pre-register you for your upcoming mammogram at the Women’s Breast Health Center.  Do you have time to answer some questions?

DP: Yes, sure.

Provider:  Also, I have to tell you this call will be recorded for quality assurance purposes. Are you ready to proceed?

DP: Yes.

Provider:  Great.  Is your date of birth XX/XX/XXXX?

DP: Yes

Provider:  Is your address still **********?

DP: Yes

Provider:  Now I have to ask you a few questions that may be sensitive in nature, but we have to ask these of ALL of our patients.

DP: Ok

Provider:  What is your current sex?

DP:  [Unsure of what I just heard. Thinking I have gone to this provider for ten+ years, my appointment is at the Women’s Breast Health Center and she is clearly looking at my chart]  “Excuse me?”

Provider:  What is your current sex?

DP:  [Chuckling] I am not answering that question.

Provider: Well, you have to answer or I can’t finish the pre-registration and we will have to re-schedule your appointment.

DP:  I understand.  But I am not answering that question.

Provider:  Well, I have a category of “none” (she asks hopefully)

DP: I am not answering that question.  I am sure my chart history already includes that information and you are free to pull it from there.

Provider:  So you refuse to answer?

DP:  Yes ma’am.

Provider:  {Sounding flustered} OK

Provider: {Sounding hesitant} What is your current gender identity?

DP: [Laughing out loud]

Provider:  We have male and female and several other options…..

DP:  I’m not answering that question either, ma’am.  And I am not that creative.  But I consider my sex is my gender.

(In hindsight, I should have made her read me all the “gender identity” options and explain to me exactly what each of them meant BEFORE refusing to answer because honestly, I really doubt I know all of them)

Provider:  [clicking on her keyboard] “Umm….Ok.”

Provider:  [after a pause] Is your health insurance still *******?

{And the conversation then goes on to typical territory…. “Any recent problems or concerns?  Any change in emergency contact information?  Is XXX still your authorized HIPAA contact” etc]

This gender business will be forced on us and everyone will act like it is all ok or at least rote unless we push back.  I was not rude to the provider-caller, but I hope she felt like a fool.  Also, I figure with the “recorded call”, I may be tagged as a deplorable of some kind in my electronic medical record.

I would suggest you all need to prepare yourself for these questions and have a polite, but excoriating, response.

(And you know some snotty consultants came up with the woke script the provider has to use to pre-register – probably as a fulfillment of a requirement for some government regulation.  What a waste of $$$)

-DP

Published in Healthcare
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  1. DaveSchmidt Coolidge
    DaveSchmidt
    @DaveSchmidt

    Skyler (View Comment):

    Fritz (View Comment):

    Ahead of my annual eye exam, there were new, online forms to fill out. Instead of asking my “sex,” it asked what gender I’d been “assigned at birth.” I clicked M, but when I went to the appointment I mentioned to the front desk folks that I thought it was a ridiculous formulation. “At birth,” I said, a quick visual once-over revealed that I was male. Duh.

    And the woman at the desk murmured something indicating agreement and thanked me for filling out the form anyway. I think the form came from being affiliated with a large optometrist network, so my doctor’s office couldn’t change any of it, but still.

    The problem with the “at birth” nonsense is that you can’t know. Birth certificates are all malleable nowadays, which is probably how Obama got his corrected and why it wasn’t immediately available.

    In the old days a birth certificate was a permanent record of the circumstances of your birth. But now you can go to court and have your parents’ names changed your sex changed, anything can be changed. It’s a meaningless piece of paper, making it perfect for government use.

    Use or abuse.

    • #31
  2. DaveSchmidt Coolidge
    DaveSchmidt
    @DaveSchmidt

    Brian J Bergs (View Comment):

    Dominique Prynne (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    I’d have been rude.

    I’d have acted horriblly insulted. Demanded to speak to a supervisor and filed a formal complaint.

    That’s how I am going to fight it. With as much passion as the other side.

    I so wanted to be! But, I kept thinking it’s not the caller’s fault she has to ask these stupid questions and I imagine that recording the call keeps her in line. I imagine she didn’t agree either (or maybe she did), but at least for now, I didn’t want to repudiate my southern memaw’s directive to be polite and act like a lady. (Oops….there’s the gender thing again!)

    What wonderful instincts you have! That’s exactly right that it is not the calling clerk’s fault. This is their job (my first job out of college was supervising a hospital registration desk). However, still file the complaint strongly noting the professionalism of the clerk but that they were required to ask stupid/insulting questions. This is the correct course of action. I assure you those comments get passed along and viewed by many people. We all need to take this action.

    My daughter was forced to ask these questions at a health fair attended by many recent east African immigrants. They had no bleeping idea what she was asking. In their culture there is male and there is female. It is assigned at birth. It does not change. In other words their culture recognizes reality. Asking these stupid registration questions was confusing at best and insulting at the other end of the scale

    Slight modification, perhaps. East Africans don’t assign the child’s gender at birth. They recognize it. 

    • #32
  3. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    Amazing. The good thing is there are lots of Veterinarians.

    • #33
  4. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    Here’s a tip. Don’t “pre-register”. I get badgered with incessant texts and phone calls for a week or before any of my appointments asking me to pre-register to “save time at check-in”. I ignore them.

    A couple years ago I realized they were asking me all of the exact same questions when I walked in the door as they had in my “pre-registration”. There’s no point. I haven’t pre-registered since, and I’ve never had a problem.

    I learned that most doctors in our system don’t even care about most of the questions they ask in pre-registration.  The first time I was asked intrusive questions at pre-registration, I exited the form and figured I’d deal with it in person.  At the time of appointment nobody so much as mentioned those topics.  My primary doctor (or her nurse assistants) do ask about some of them, and I just tell them to put me down as “didn’t answer” or “refused to answer.”  The last time I did it I got a little pushback, so I pushed back even harder.  That was the end of it. 

    • #34
  5. Nohaaj Coolidge
    Nohaaj
    @Nohaaj

    I went to an audiologist to get fitted for hearing aids.  On the form it asked for my pronouns.  I had read about guys in an engineering university who all wrote down “Sikorsky” and “Helicopter” for their pronouns.  

    So I used that.

     

    Nothing was mentioned during my many visits to that office, but next time I am asked for my pronouns, I will write those in again, and be very vigilant to make sure they use them, or they will hear about it. 

     

     

    • #35
  6. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    How did you answer the question about your race? The last online registration that I completed had a drop-down list of approximately 30 races. I never knew there were so many races. But the strangest thing was my race, Caucasian, wasn’t even listed. I had to fill it in manually. I told them later how grateful I was that they left me a blank line to fill out, as I would have hated being “raceless”.

    • #36
  7. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male
    @MiffedWhiteMale

    Brian J Bergs (View Comment):
    In their culture there is male and there is female.  It is assigned at birth. 

    It is not “assigned” at birth.  It is observed at birth.

     

    • #37
  8. WillowSpring Member
    WillowSpring
    @WillowSpring

    QuietPI (View Comment):

    They tried firearms – related questions on medical registration / preregistration forms a while back. I answered as politely as possible, “I’m not answering that, and please never ask me that question again.” The smile I got told me that I wasn’t the first, and the receptionist agreed with me.

    Eventually the questions were dropped.

    Then for awhile they were asking, “Do you feel safe in your home?” I never figured out how to deal with that effectively, but it went away too after a time. It seemed so silly to be asking that of a healthy 6’5″ male with all his faculties, who just drove himself to an appointment.

    The answer to “Do you have firearms at home” is clearly “Not enough”

     

    • #38
  9. Headedwest Coolidge
    Headedwest
    @Headedwest

    WillowSpring (View Comment):

    The answer to “Do you have firearms at home” is clearly “Not enough”

    I’d be tempted to answer “I have Daddy’s old shotgun.”  Because I do have it. No need to elaborate.

    • #39
  10. DaveSchmidt Coolidge
    DaveSchmidt
    @DaveSchmidt

    cdor (View Comment):

    Amazing. The good thing is there are lots of Veterinarians.

    In our area, the veterinarians are very leftist, especially the small animal vets.  

    • #40
  11. DaveSchmidt Coolidge
    DaveSchmidt
    @DaveSchmidt

    Nohaaj (View Comment):

    I went to an audiologist to get fitted for hearing aids. On the form it asked for my pronouns. I had read about guys in an engineering university who all wrote down “Sikorsky” and “Helicopter” for their pronouns.

    So I used that.

     

    Nothing was mentioned during my many visits to that office, but next time I am asked for my pronouns, I will write those in again, and be very vigilant to make sure they use them, or they will hear about it.

     

     

    What would the possessive look like?  

    • #41
  12. Fritz Coolidge
    Fritz
    @Fritz

    cdor (View Comment):

    How did you answer the question about your race? The last online registration that I completed had a drop-down list of approximately 30 races. I never knew there were so many races. But the strangest thing was my race, Caucasian, wasn’t even listed. I had to fill it in manually. I told them later how grateful I was that they left me a blank line to fill out, as I would have hated being “raceless”.

    If there’s a space for race, I usually write in “human.”

    • #42
  13. DaveSchmidt Coolidge
    DaveSchmidt
    @DaveSchmidt

    Headedwest (View Comment):

    WillowSpring (View Comment):

    The answer to “Do you have firearms at home” is clearly “Not enough”

    I’d be tempted to answer “I have Daddy’s old shotgun.” Because I do have it. No need to elaborate.

    Joe urges Jill to shoot their shotgun while standing on the front porch.  If for some reason Biden becomes a national hero, this might be the way to commemorate his achievements.

    • #43
  14. Bunsen Coolidge
    Bunsen
    @Bunsen

    Fritz (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    How did you answer the question about your race? The last online registration that I completed had a drop-down list of approximately 30 races. I never knew there were so many races. But the strangest thing was my race, Caucasian, wasn’t even listed. I had to fill it in manually. I told them later how grateful I was that they left me a blank line to fill out, as I would have hated being “raceless”.

    If there’s a space for race, I usually write in “human.”

    I usually answer…. Uh negative I am a meat popsicle.  Most of the time there is a long pause as they process if that was an insult or not.

    • #44
  15. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male
    @MiffedWhiteMale

    DaveSchmidt (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    Amazing. The good thing is there are lots of Veterinarians.

    In our area, the veterinarians are very leftist, especially the small animal vets.

    An aside, but it’s MUCH more competitive to get into Veterinarian school than it is to get into Med school.  For one thing, there are a lot fewer schools.

     

    • #45
  16. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    DaveSchmidt (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    Amazing. The good thing is there are lots of Veterinarians.

    In our area, the veterinarians are very leftist, especially the small animal vets.

    An aside, but it’s MUCH more competitive to get into Veterinarian school than it is to get into Med school. For one thing, there are a lot fewer schools.

     

    And in vet school you have to study a whole bunch of different species, not just one.

    • #46
  17. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    DaveSchmidt (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    Amazing. The good thing is there are lots of Veterinarians.

    In our area, the veterinarians are very leftist, especially the small animal vets.

    An aside, but it’s MUCH more competitive to get into Veterinarian school than it is to get into Med school. For one thing, there are a lot fewer schools.

     

    And in vet school you have to study a whole bunch of different species, not just one.

    And it’s more difficult to ask them about their pronouns. 

    • #47
  18. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    DaveSchmidt (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    Amazing. The good thing is there are lots of Veterinarians.

    In our area, the veterinarians are very leftist, especially the small animal vets.

    An aside, but it’s MUCH more competitive to get into Veterinarian school than it is to get into Med school. For one thing, there are a lot fewer schools.

     

    And in vet school you have to study a whole bunch of different species, not just one.

    And it’s more difficult to ask them about their pronouns.

    That sounds like a plus.

    But true, you can’t just ask them where it hurts.

    • #48
  19. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Fritz (View Comment):
    If there’s a space for race, I usually write in “human.”

    I usually put “Neanderthal.”

    • #49
  20. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Fritz (View Comment):
    If there’s a space for race, I usually write in “human.”

    I usually put “Neanderthal.”

    You could really confuse them with “Homo Erectus.”

    Perhaps especially at a urologist office.

    • #50
  21. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Fritz (View Comment):
    If there’s a space for race, I usually write in “human.”

    I usually put “Neanderthal.”

    You could really confuse them with “Homo Erectus.”

    Perhaps especially at a urologist office.

    You can try that for us and report back.

    • #51
  22. Jimmy Carter Member
    Jimmy Carter
    @JimmyCarter

    Skyler (View Comment):

    Fritz (View Comment):

    Ahead of my annual eye exam, there were new, online forms to fill out. Instead of asking my “sex,” it asked what gender I’d been “assigned at birth.” I clicked M, but when I went to the appointment I mentioned to the front desk folks that I thought it was a ridiculous formulation. “At birth,” I said, a quick visual once-over revealed that I was male. Duh.

    And the woman at the desk murmured something indicating agreement and thanked me for filling out the form anyway. I think the form came from being affiliated with a large optometrist network, so my doctor’s office couldn’t change any of it, but still.

    The problem with the “at birth” nonsense is that you can’t know. Birth certificates are all malleable nowadays, which is probably how Obama got his corrected and why it wasn’t immediately available.

    In the old days a birth certificate was a permanent record of the circumstances of your birth. But now you can go to court and have your parents’ names changed your sex changed, anything can be changed. It’s a meaningless piece of paper, making it perfect for government use.

    Like Our Constitution.

    • #52
  23. DaveSchmidt Coolidge
    DaveSchmidt
    @DaveSchmidt

    Fritz (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    How did you answer the question about your race? The last online registration that I completed had a drop-down list of approximately 30 races. I never knew there were so many races. But the strangest thing was my race, Caucasian, wasn’t even listed. I had to fill it in manually. I told them later how grateful I was that they left me a blank line to fill out, as I would have hated being “raceless”.

    If there’s a space for race, I usually write in “human.”

    Maybe “Marathon” 

    • #53
  24. Dotorimuk Coolidge
    Dotorimuk
    @Dotorimuk

    Brian J Bergs (View Comment):

    Dominique Prynne (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    I’d have been rude.

    I’d have acted horriblly insulted. Demanded to speak to a supervisor and filed a formal complaint.

    That’s how I am going to fight it. With as much passion as the other side.

    I so wanted to be! But, I kept thinking it’s not the caller’s fault she has to ask these stupid questions and I imagine that recording the call keeps her in line. I imagine she didn’t agree either (or maybe she did), but at least for now, I didn’t want to repudiate my southern memaw’s directive to be polite and act like a lady. (Oops….there’s the gender thing again!)

    What wonderful instincts you have! That’s exactly right that it is not the calling clerk’s fault. This is their job (my first job out of college was supervising a hospital registration desk). However, still file the complaint strongly noting the professionalism of the clerk but that they were required to ask stupid/insulting questions. This is the correct course of action. I assure you those comments get passed along and viewed by many people. We all need to take this action.

    My daughter was forced to ask these questions at a health fair attended by many recent east African immigrants. They had no bleeping idea what she was asking. In their culture there is male and there is female. It is assigned at birth. It does not change. In other words their culture recognizes reality. Asking these stupid registration questions was confusing at best and insulting at the other end of the scale

    But when you land in Nepal, you are given three choices for sex on the arrival card: Male, Female, Other.

    • #54
  25. iWe Coolidge
    iWe
    @iWe

    cdor (View Comment):

    How did you answer the question about your race? The last online registration that I completed had a drop-down list of approximately 30 races. I never knew there were so many races. But the strangest thing was my race, Caucasian, wasn’t even listed. I had to fill it in manually. I told them later how grateful I was that they left me a blank line to fill out, as I would have hated being “raceless”.

    I just answer: “Won it.”

    • #55
  26. kylez Member
    kylez
    @kylez

    I don’t know if you’ve ever heard James Lindsay, but he says we should “throw sand in their gears,” which this conversation sounds like.

    You should have said “hmm…I’m the one that has breasts.” 

    • #56
  27. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    kylez (View Comment):
    You should have said “hmm…I’m the one that has breasts.” 

    That may not mean as much as you think it means.

    • #57
  28. kylez Member
    kylez
    @kylez

    Arahant (View Comment):

    kylez (View Comment):
    You should have said “hmm…I’m the one that has breasts.”

    That may not mean as much as you think it means.

    Even adding “real” before breast might not. 

    • #58
  29. iWe Coolidge
    iWe
    @iWe

    kylez (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    kylez (View Comment):
    You should have said “hmm…I’m the one that has breasts.”

    That may not mean as much as you think it means.

    Even adding “real” before breast might not.

    “Attractive”?

    • #59
  30. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Nohaaj (View Comment):

    I went to an audiologist to get fitted for hearing aids. On the form it asked for my pronouns. I had read about guys in an engineering university who all wrote down “Sikorsky” and “Helicopter” for their pronouns.

    So I used that.

     

    Nothing was mentioned during my many visits to that office, but next time I am asked for my pronouns, I will write those in again, and be very vigilant to make sure they use them, or they will hear about it.

    There was a member here many years ago who jokingly suggested he/her as his pronouns and was going to demand people use them correctly. 

    • #60
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