Not long ago, I wrote about my housemate, a woman several years older than me who lives with chronic, unrelenting, severe pain due to a number of chronic medical conditions. I ranted about how none of the doctors will prescribe this woman any pain medicine, because of the dumb drug laws in this state, which are very strict. But IMHO, they’ve gone way too far. If you’re wealthy, of course, you can pay a doctor to give you pain medicine, but because this woman is on SSDI and gets Medicare, she doesn’t have much choice in who she can see. Now she is being accused of “doctor shopping” and is required to attend an evaluation for substance abuse before anyone can prescribe her anything. As far as I know, this woman has never been addicted to drugs! Oh, but she might *get* addicted. *eyeroll* She might even be distributing, even though she is 60 years old, can barely walk, and doesn’t know anyone here anyway. So I guess she’s just supposed to LIVE with the pain? If it were me, you’d better believe I’d be “doctor shopping.”
She’s supposed to be having surgery (knee and shoulder replacement), but they keep putting it off and in the meantime, are doing NOTHING to help her.
I wouldn’t normally get involved in something like this, because under normal circumstances it would violate my boundaries (and probably hers too), but I wrote this letter of my own accord, because I am at my wit’s end and my boundaries are being violated anyway, by this woman’s constant pain I must deal with. I will not toss her on the streets (although I could and may have to if things don’t get better or she gets much worse) but it’s very, very difficult to live with someone in severe, chronic pain who talks about nothing else, even if it’s a close relative like your mother, but this is a woman I didn’t know from Adam until last October. I don’t know how much this letter is going to help (it’s probably more useful as a rant to get things off my own chest); she probably needs to get an advocate (I know they’re out there), but I have no idea how she would go about getting one. The behavior of the so-called “medical profession” toward people like my housemate is appalling, in my opinion. So I ranted off in this letter, which I hope you can read. You may need to click on the photos to make them large enough to read.