“As a patient with a history of IV drug abuse I often feel looked down upon when seeking treatment for legitimate pain. Although I completely understand the concerns and drawbacks caregivers may have, when dealing with former addicts. It can be frustrating to be labeled and treated differently continually, because of past mistakes- and often this has kept me from seeking treatment, knowing I actually needed it. Especially considering it is something that took an enormous amount of strength and willpower to overcome. It is hard knowing that I won that fight, still to be treated like I am and will always be a drug addict.
Most of the caregivers I have come across since being reformed, still seem to hold that assumption- most have even withheld adequate treatment for my pain operating under that assumption. And I feel like the assumption that I am a drug seeker is actually why my condition got so severe before anything was done to follow up on "why"I was having such severe pain, and it took multiple visits to be taken seriously enough to consider there was an actual real reason and not just that I may be an addict seeking drugs- before any further testing was considered.
Being treated this way over and over, you can imagine how refreshing it was to have a caregiver who actually encouraged me to speak up and communicate with her about how I was feeling instead of being scowled at, anytime I expressed that I was in pain. For the first time in a long while, as a patient I felt as though I was being treated fairly- like a normal human being and not just a junkie. That's who I WAS not who I am- and I almost cried with relief, to come across someone who treated me with decency and kindness in spite of my history, instead of discouraging me and making me feel guilty for requesting treatment for my pain. Thanks Marti.”