i got the chance to talk to a young boy (11) about bullying today. his mother had brought him in to clinic to change his ADHD meds since they were “wearing off” 4 hours after his first dose, and his grades were suffering because of it. he was apparently talking a lot and being “aggressive” and getting into fights. but when he was asked why, it was clear that he was being bullied and was just retaliating, and no one was really taking him seriously, including his mom. so when there was a brief lull in the conversation as the psychiatrist went to get the swab kits (to figure out whether his body was metabolizing the meds too quickly), and the mom had asked me a bit of small talk questions, i decided to use the chance to explain why they needed the swabs as a segue into mentioning that it sounded like part of the reason the meds suddenly seem to not work as well anymore is because he was being bullied a lot at school. the boy finally looked up and nodded, clearly grateful someone was hearing what he was saying (the mom had kept hushing him at times during his attempts to explain why he was talking so much in class). so i gave him a few tips about bullying, namely that it might suck now, but it’s really only a short period of time that he’ll be in school and be bullied in his whole lifetime (shoutout to corbin bleu for that one haha), and that usually bullies are also missing something inside, and that’s why they pick on other people to make themselves feel better. i also added that they like seeing people get angry/react, so sometimes the best thing to do is be stronger and ignore them. he got more quiet and contemplative after i said that, and when the psychiatrist (who had come back in by that time) asked him later if he remembered what i said, he did. and i think he seemed to feel better by the end of the session, and i hope he’ll be able to do well. that kind of thing is much easier said than done, and it depends on the type of bully it is as well. but it definitely felt nice to feel like i helped someone, and with luck, help them see the world and other people a little differently through the rest of his life. i wish i could follow him long term, but of course, as a med student, pretty much all my interactions with patients are going to be transient, at least for now.
while sitting through rounds today and hearing the background of the kids there, i also thought up so many research questions that i think would be really interesting to find out relating to how abuse affects the developing psyche and relationships between people, etc. i don’t know if papers have already been published on these things, but there is so much that i have theories on that i would want the world to know if it can help prevent some of the trauma so many people suffer through their lives. also education of both boys and girls from a young age as an intervention for sexual/physical assault, and just treating other people with worth. it made me think about the christian ideals of how to relate to other people, and how amazing it would be if everyone could actually treat each other the way God intended us to live, in harmony… and how broken the world is currently. *sigh*. i have such high ambitions haha. which i think the attending i’m working with has already noted, because he was like “you can’t think that way, or you won’t last in this profession” a couple times when i asked about certain areas of the system that i feel like allow patients to fall through the cracks. it’s going to be an interesting month, that’s for sure.
ok time to actually get a full night’s sleep (only got like ❤ hrs yesterday, trying to get that stupid draft out). luckily this attending who’s covering for the other attending only rounds at 10am, so i have plenty of time to sleep in (relatively speaking) ^.^||! thank goodness.