An article appeared in the Washington Post yesterday on medical offices blending health and faith.
The OB/GYN office mentioned in the article, the Tepeyac Family Center, is where my OB/GYN practices. In fact it was Dr. Fisk at Tepeyac who delivered Cecilia.
Here was my letter:
I read your article on washingtonpost.com and would like to comment. I am a patient of Tepeyac Family Center and greatly enjoyed all my visits there last year and earlier this year during my first pregnancy and have continued to be grateful to them for a wonderful delivery of my daughter last January. But I’d like to explain why I sought them out as my doctors.
Several years ago, when I was away at college, I sought out a local doctor because my throat was bothering me and, due to a history of being very susceptible to strep throat, I wanted to get it checked. Even though I was only going there for a throat ailment, the doctor tried to put me on birth control pills. I declined because I don’t believe in contraception but the doctor persisted on encouraging me to get them. I never went back. A couple of years later I went to a doctor for an illness and the subject came up that I had just gotten engaged. The doctor asked if I was on any contraception and when I said no, she simply said, “well we will get you on some.” Not only did the doctor not ask me if I wanted contraception, she arrogantly assumed I would not want children once I got married. I have even had my endocrinologist, whose only concern should have been my thyroid gland, encourage me to get on the pill.
I would like to point out that while your article mentions the concern that medical centers combining health and faith do not inform the patients of all their options, I have never once had a doctor try to push the pill or some other form of contraception on me and also mention Natural Family Planning. Not once did any of the three doctors I referred to above mention NFP as an option and I have to wonder how many doctors out there do. While I am sorry some patients feel “rubbed the wrong way” or “judged” by such practices as Tepeyac’s, there are, unfortunately, just as many who have felt the same way by doctors who do push contraceptives.
Doctors who encourage patients to take contraception or have abortions believe these things are okay or good. Doctors who don’t pray for or with their patients believe prayer isn’t necessary or doesn’t help. Every doctor practices according to what he or she believes. If a patient believes contraception is a good thing and they want to be on it, they should go to a doctor who believes likewise. I go to a doctor who believes as I do that contraception and abortion are anything but good and it is important that such doctors continue to practice their beliefs for those like me.