Fibromyalgia and chronic pain are real, so stop treating patients like crap

* Warning, contains a major rant, proceed with caution. The “you” in the following paragraphs refers to the horrible health care workers that chronic pain sufferers deal with on a daily basis. 

I get so frustrated when I see fibromyalgia/chronic pain ignorance stereotyping. The other day I stumbled on a blog that was all about how people with fibromyalgia are just drug seekers. I won’t provide the link because I have no desire to increase the traffic on this craptastic blog. I read about ER nurses who complained about people with “fibromyalgia” and “chronic pain” (the quotes are their’s, not mine). They were so full of hatred toward these poor people who came to the ER for treatment for pain. These health providers  horrible judgmental morons, enjoyed the feeling of superiority on the mentally deficient fibromyalgia patients (again, their words, not mine). They enjoyed the authority they had over these poor people trying to get treatment for pain, and they used their authority to make sure their patients felt as miserable and small as possible. They made sure the patients knew they were the scum of the earth for taking pain medication. How dare these patients try to take pain medication? Their illness is all made up, so they are just pill seekers looking for a fix, right?

I was horrified to read this. Actually, horrified doesn’t even describe how I feel. It’s like every horrible ER nurse or doctor I’ve ever had contributed to this crappy blog. I would like these horrible health care givers to know, I have fibromyalgia, and I don’t take narcotics.  Got it people? I went to the ER one time for intense pain, I received about 5 Vicodin  some of which I still have 2 years later, and I was pushed out the door. I was probably labeled as a drug seeker, since the workers in the ER were just like the ones on the blog I ran into. So hey idiots, guess what, you can’t push that “you’re illness is fake because you are always taking narcotics” line on me, I DON’T TAKE NARCOTICS. What do you have to say to that doubters? And because I don’t take narcotics, I am in constant pain every moment of every day, does that make you feel better about yourself now?  And, God forbid, I did take narcotics, it is none of your freaking business. Who are you to judge whose pain is bad enough for treatment and whose isn’t? You work in the freaking ER where we all know the worse doctors and nurses end up.

There are so many people in this country who do not receive treatment for their chronic pain because their health provider is obsessed with the idea that they might become addicted. Yes, that is a legitimate worry and should be addressed and discussed, but is not treating someone’s pain correctly a good fix for that? It sounds like a great idea to me, let’s punish chronic pain patients because the addicts abuse their medications. Yep, that sounds like a reasonable solution.

My illness is not fake. I am not depressed. I am not crazy.   I have a great life besides the fact that my body is falling apart, and I have never and will never be a drug seeker. And even if I was, it would be my problem, wouldn’t it? Not yours, so get off your high horse and pray that nothing bad ever happens to you and you end up in the hands of your narcissistic compatriots in the ER. For once, stop thinking of yourself and how superior you are and have some compassion for those who lucky enough to be healthy.

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5 thoughts on “Fibromyalgia and chronic pain are real, so stop treating patients like crap

  1. Thank you for writing this post. You are brave, as we all should be. Unfortunately, the pill-seeker label just keeps getting worse, and we have a reason to be this frustrated. Thank you for speaking out on behalf of us all. – Meg

  2. WOW. You said it in better words even I have ever used to try to explain this to people, and I thought I was good at explaining things. All I can say is THANK YOU for supporting others like yourself, cause we need support. sure ain't gonna get it from a doctor, probably not a friend or relative either, cause you know us. we're all liars and make excuses. god forbid we even act like we're in pain or mention we're in pain without judgment or being accused of being full of crap. I wish it was just me that had chronic pain (back pain) in this world cause I wouldn't wish it on my worse enemy, but at the same time, so glad I'm not alone. it's bad enough trying to appear normal/hold a job/do things you wanna do – without incessant nonstop pain with no relief – but then you have to be treated like crap for it as well. thanks again for posting this. god bless you.

  3. THANK YOU for writing this. I only wish those smug doctors and nurses who label people without any basis or understanding of what the patient is actually feeling would end up with a similar problem. for life! I have had 2 failed back surgeries, one botched sinus surgery and am immuno-deficient. Have to take monthly IVIG infusions for lack of anti-bodies. I get frequent and painful sinus infections. And because I don't always get a fever or they can't see it on a CT scan doesn't mean its not there. Currently fighting off Staph endermidis infection as we speak. The ER docs are by far the worst. But I've recently been in the hospital and was actually told by a resident that "I seemed very busy trying to find something wrong with myself." So it just sucks all around. That kind of stupid, hurtful thinking makes someone who is fighting a chronic illness and huge pain feel even worse. If you complain to the hospital, it gets into your file and they treat you even worse. I have never been so angry about anything in my life. I've been told its menopause, in my head, I'm a pill seeker and there is nothing wrong with me. How can that be true with CVID? Here's a concept a decent doctor told me. He thinks the reason so many doctors are so rude is that they always blame the patient when they don't have an answer. Understanding this may help some of us understand it, but if you are fighting to stay alive from an infection that could kill you, its not going to make much difference. I would rather have a robot treat me. The robot would research things on the internet and medical journals and be up to speed on serious health conditions. No attitude, just the plain facts. I've been butchered by 2 botched back cervical spine surgeries, one sinus surgery where my turbinates were chopped off and had a tooth pulled from infection. In one year, I went from being a busy lady running my own co to a total invalid. I've had to fight to get help at every step of the way. These doctors have been negligent and rude. I enter into a new office visit with hope for help and a pleasant attitude. But at every step of the way, I've been treated like crap. its time we all made our voices heard. I guarantee if you are living with epic pain, fatigue, nausea and inability to work, you will be highly motivated to get help. along my journey I've had TWO doctors who treated me with compassion, both over 60. Maybe its an age thing. whatever it is, there are a ton of doctors out there who are just plain nasty.

    1. ER docs are the worst! My husband thinks I'm joking when I say don't take me to the ER unless I'm dying, but I'm not, so I know exactly what you mean. I've really developed a hatred for doctors. Of all the doctors I've seen, only my current one even sort of treated me like a human being, I feel your frustration.

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