The 10 REAL Reasons Men Don't Go to the Doctor


You are reading page 2 of The 10 REAL Reasons Men Don't Go to the Doctor


290 Posts

Batman, some of the experiences I mentioned in my post occurred at an early age. By early, I mean adolescence or early adulthood, before one develops the social and communication skills that maturity and life experience brings. If I could go back in a time machine now and put myself in the difficult situations I encountered, they most certainly would have never happened. But it's the young people who most often encounter this kind of crap. They are easily pressured into submitting to something that will haunt them for the rest of their lives. It was at age 16, when I went in for surgery for my broken finger, that I had the horrific experience I mentioned in another thread. That might not have happened to someone much older. I can remember my mother telling me in earshot of the nurse, "these people are here to help you so do exactly what they say." I had every intention of being the good compliant patient. Oh, how I regret that. :angryfire

I have to disagree with you Batman, about being "polite but firm." How can I be polite to anyone who disrespects me? To me, standard of care is the polite request to respect a patient's modesty. If I have to speak up and remind someone to do something so basic as provide privacy, then it's really the second request and I have the right to get forceful. Experience has taught me that asking nicely will not get the desired result. Only when I have snapped at them, with liberal use of the "f" word or "b" word, and demeaning them in the process, did I ever get the result I expected. A cleaned up example; "Shut the door moron, were you born in a freaking barn or what?" Yea, once I had a doc tell me I was not nice, only once.

Before I retired from my last law enforcement career, I spent several years doing off duty employment as security in a hospital. I noticed that when medical people spoke to each other, it was direct, succinct, to the point with no sugarcoating. When communication was corrective in nature, it was often demeaning. I have found that approach works well when dealing with medical staff.


239 Posts

In regard to women being treated better than as must be a real upper end world you live in.



85 Posts

TuTonka...the ladies are given a great deal more consideration to their modesty issues....and any male doctor making the equivalent statements about females that the lady did whose article caused this thread ..that male provider would be in a world of trouble.

sven mulick

8 Posts

what a horrible woman that doctor is. she is the perfect example as to why men avoid medical exams. she should be number one on her list.

i liked most of the comments. other than tutonka the commenters expressed concern for the dignity of male patients and the reality that men are treated far worse than female patients. i've heard it's very common for female doctors, nurses and others to insult or demean men just to try to be funny or show their lack of concern or respect for their dignity and self-image. things that would never be said to female patients by either gender. they also do it to show the power they have over the patient.

i love how the obgyn that commented decided to fire the terrible nurse (or whatever she was) on the spot. it should always be done that way. male nurses are constantly walking on glass and know that one dumb mistake will get them fired when and if they deal with female patients. female doctors, nurses and techs believe they are untouchable and they usually are.

i agree with many when i say that my number one concern with seeking medical help is the lack of respect, modesty, dignity and privacy that women show male patients. as someone said, we can usually choose the gender of the doctor we see and i am very comfortable with male doctors but we don't get to choose our nurses, aides or techs and almost always get stuck with females. that's just not acceptable. it blows my mind when medical "professionals" can't understand that, or most likely pretend not to understand. i will give an uneducated guess (though i have done much research) that the reason the vast majority of men won't seek medical care is the same as mine. when will the medical world understand that, or stop pretending?


116 Posts

Well, I can understand some of the points she was attempting to point out. The problem is the fact that it was written by a Female. Don't get me wrong here ladies, I love ya to death, but you really have no idea how my head works and thinks any more than I do yours. After working in a hospital for 7 years as the ONLY male nurse, the only thing I really understand is that I will never understand women in general. You know, the Mars and Venus thing.



Disclamer: I intended no blanket statment about women in general. Everyone is different. Your experience may vary....blah, blah, blah......

Anxious Patient

524 Posts


I wonder if you post on Dr. Bernstein's blog which features many threads on patient modesty. I also have concerns about my modesty when I'm in the hospital and sympathise with your concerns. But one thing that bothered me with the comments on those threads was after the male posters demanded the right to chose the gender of all their providers, in the same breath they then encouraged a male nurse to sue his hospital when the nurse complained that he was rejected by a female patient who had demanded the same right to chose.

sven mulick

8 Posts

First of all Anxious Patient there are many different authors with many differing viewpoints on that blog. But also I think the idea that many men have is if we don't get a choice why should they (women)? If male nurses can't do certain things or go certain places with female patients why should the female nurses be able to do with male patients what male nurses can't do with females? If female nurses are allowed to work in Urology clinics and other areas of men's health as well as with naked men in all clinics and hospitals why aren't male nurses allowed in ObGyn or other female related situations? Females not only work in those places, they dominate them. Men realize "if we can't beat them, join them", but that is not allowed. So of course many men are going to support the male nurse and his lawsuit.

Apparently what's good for the goose is NOT good for the gander, both in gender choices and nursing duties.

Anxious Patient

524 Posts

Women dominate nursing today because 98% of them are women. Maybe there should be an effort to recruit more men into nursing school. That might change the lopsided number. I can appreciate your modesty concern too, as I am a hospital patient (female) and have felt compromised when there is a crowd of strangers in the exam room and nobody tells me who they are and why they're there. Most just standing with arms folded. I find that disrespectful, and feel like a side show. Someday I'll get the guts to let them know how I feel.

sven mulick

8 Posts

Go for it Anxious Patient. There's no excuse for them doing that to you, and even if there was you deserve to know why. Sounds like a miserable situation. I can only hope I never get treated the way you are.

If you make a stand it will be better for you and make it a little easier for future patients.


1,221 Posts

Specializes in Peri-Op. Has 10 years experience.

It didnt seem to make sense to me, I have a close friend that is an OB/Gyn that takes home about 75% of what I make because of his overhead with the office and malpractice..... he got PO'd when I showed him my check..... I may still go to medical school but I would rather have time with my family and young kids for now.... nursing school was more than they should have been put through to start with given I worked full time too.....


154 Posts

Specializes in I have watched actors portray nurses.

As a new poster, and a non-medical field male, I found this information on male modesty and gender issues very interesting, and now feel compelled to add my 2 cents. I must say I believe some of the responses to Dr. Orange's article were a little heavy handed. I think she made some good points, and seemed to do so with direct language. I don't care if one calls them testicals or "balls." They are part of my body and they need to be examined for cancer. However, I think the very fact that such responses did occur clearly illuminates that a raw nerve has been struck. Yes, there is clearly a double standard when it comes to the default value of male modesty. A female is, by default, extended the assumption she is highly modest (whether she is or is not), and a male tends to be, by default, assumed not to be (even thought he may be very conservative and modest.) This reflects society in general. Just look at the countless examples: 1) female correctional officers performing strip searches on men; 2) female gym teachers in the boys locker rooms; 3) females popping in the men's public restrooms; 4) Frat hazing involving male nudity in front of females; 5) Males in group physical exams (sometimes fully nude) with females present, etc. Yes, a double standard exist. Nobody is asking these men about their gender perferences beforehand -- regardless of the reason why they are not asked, the fact remains they are not asked. I don't think anybody disputes that a double standard does exist. It does. But's let's try to work on changing how men's modesty issues are treated, at least in the one area where the highest societal standards need to be set -- the medical field. The assumption just seems to be that "they're men, and they don't really care." A nurse or doctor (male or female) should always say to themselves, what if this was my father lying here on the table, or standing here nude bent over a table? How would I want his modesty to be respected, despite the fact that he would likely not saying anything about it. Granted, men themselves tend to pepetuate this inaccurate gender generalization, probably more so than women. But the sad truth is that for those men that do care (I happen to believe it is most men), they will not say anything about it.

I like that more males are going in to nursing. I believe that is a good thing if for no other reason than to speak up on men's health care issues because we are too backward (translation: socialized) to be silent -- it is very anti-macho to say something like: "Please close the door because I am embarrased about my penis size, and it isn't really necesary that the medical supply saleswoman sitting outside the office has to see it?" Granted, most doctors (male and female) will not need to be asked to close the door. Amazingly, however, some will and when that does occur someplace, it is most likely to occur with a male nude patient in the exam room, not a female patient (translation: lawsuit). I love that many now speaking up on this male modesty issue are female. Men, as a group, can be their own worst enemies on health issues.

Personally, I have had great nurses and doctors in my life thus far. Most nurses are female. That means intimate exams and procedures are going to be done in front of females. I have had male and female doctors. I have been very lucky to have caring, professional people take care of me. Now, as a middle age male with symptoms, I have had to endure some recent prostate exams (past 3-4 years or so). Twice by a female doctor and once by a male PA. The first experience involving a female doctor, whom I really didn't know very well as she had only recently replaced my retired male doctor after many decades of service to me, was absolutely mortifying to me (the experience, not her) -- not because she was unprofessional, and not because she said or did anything to further embarras me, but OMG... the very concept ... the very idea of having a person (and, yea, a female person at that) insert a finger in my rectum ... standing there with no clothes on, bent over the table ... in the cold light of the office; well, let's just say I was as a red as an apple for probably a week afterward. As it was my first such exam, I hadn't really expected that level of embarrassment. She was very professional about it and matter-of-fact and handled it well -- Thank God! Amazingly, I found it difficult to say anything to her afterward. What do you say after that? "How bout them Yankees?" And, to make matters worse, I thought I was going to urinate uncontrollably right there standing in front of the table. I didn't know it at the time but I've come to learn that when that part of the body is touched, erections can result, and an urge to urinate can occur. (it would have been nice to know that beforehand) The whole thing was extremely embarrassing. I was thinking, at the time, "oh my God, she is going to think I'm some weirdo for getting an erection!" The two subsequent prostate exams (one by female doc and one by male PA) were a little more tolerable in that I was a little more mentally prepared beforehand. The one done by the subsequent female doc, was done a little differently. She had me lay on my side -- I much prefer that! I felt more like a patient in that position, know what I mean? The male PA had me stand and bend over, like the first doctor did. There is just something humiliating about that position. With him, I did feel a little less concerned about an erection because, I think, I just knew he would not consider I was weird or something. It's difficult to explain, but I think it goes like this ... since he has a penis himself and since there is clearly nothing sexual about the context of the experience, he must (the thinking went) know on very fundamental level, that these darn penises sometimes just do their own thing. I've come to realize and appreciate that of course professional females in the medical field, certainly MDs, realize that as well (even though they don't have personal experience on which to reflect). I know that better now, in part, because I've read some of the threads on here. Thank you! I hope they teach nurses that in nursing school. The irony is I never really got a full erection thank God; but the worrying about the possibility was downright exhausting. In all cases, the person doing the exams (the doctors and the PA) were the only ones in the room with me. That's just common sense isn't it -- minimize the guy's embarrassment, right? The door was closed in all situations. Again, common sense, right? I have had other intimate examinations and procedures done that involved embarrassment, but as I get older they get easier to endure. Had these things needed to be done when I was a preteen or teenager, well, I think it wold be better just to put me under beforehand and let me wake up fully clothed without knowing what happened.

I have been cleared and I am now in relatively good health. However, I do now get a prostate exam done once per year.

In closing, I would like thank you all for the wonderful care you deliver day in and day out. I do have two questions to throw out:

1) Why is the prostate exam sometimes done with the man standing and sometimes lying on his side? If it is simply a matter of physician preference, I think I will begin requesting the lying on side procedure.

2) why don't physicians and nurses present a brochure or document BEFORE the prostate exam (and other intimate male exams and procedures) that explains erections may occur and if they do it is common, normal, involuntary and certainly doesn't mean there is anything wrong with the patient? It is just sort of ignored, but I think having that information to read beforehand could have saved me (and probably many others) from some wasted stress and anxiety.


50 Posts

I for one am ticked and angry that this so called Doctor made statements so demeaning to males. And it galls me no action was taken against her either. The majority of men will not go to the Doctor or Hospital because we just do not want the hassle or argument, we have our modesty and it doesn't matter what you have to say. It doesn't make us feel better you have seen it all, we don't care if you no longer have any sexual feeling for the opposite gender, we don't care if you think we are being childish, we don't care you consider yourselves professionals, it is so easy for you to make these judgments when you are the clothed one in the room So all of you in the medical field , heads up, Its your Husband, Boyfriend, Brother, Son, Uncle, Grandfather, and other men in your life your causing not to go to the hospital. We really don't care what you call us or what you have to say, were modest and tired of having to put up with your calloused approach to our dignity. We would just rather not deal with it. So every tme you assume men are not modest, or have no modesty or our modesty is childish and someone you love passes away, you know why. It is sad , but true. And every time to disregard a young mans or boys modesty, just think about the consequences, that will be the last time he will go to the doctor unless it is an emergency.

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