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posted by hubie on Tuesday May 14, @11:05PM   Printer-friendly
from the to-thine-own-self-be-true dept.

"What's wrong with your skin?"

My heart beats faster. I instinctively wrap my cotton cardigan tighter around me and pull the sleeves down over my wrists.

"Oh," I say, after a quick pause during which I try to recenter myself after the surge of stress brought on by my patient's question. "I just have sensitive skin." I smile at the young patient perched on the examination table in my pediatric infectious disease clinic.

"My skin gets super dry sometimes, especially in the winters and when I'm washing my hands a lot, which I do all the time here!"

I spin around on the stool to grab a pair of nitrile blue gloves. Then, because I'm worried my patient thinks I'm putting on gloves to protect them from me, I say reassuringly, "It's not contagious. I always wear gloves." It's not an infection-prevention policy—the glove-wearing; it's an Evelyn-anxiety-avoiding policy. I don't like seeing, under the bright examination room lights, the dry red rashes on my hands when I'm placing my magenta stethoscope on a patient's chest; they are an unpleasant reminder that the rest of my body is more inflamed and uncomfortable.

[...] I have been lamenting to my husband that this eczema-flaring me is just not the best version of me: I am covered from head to toes in eczematous plaques, my hair is greasy from the steroid oil I've applied to my scalp, and my clothes are sticky from the emollients and are lined with skin flakes. [...] The longer the flare goes on, the more I grieve the loss of and yearn for my clear-skinned self, free of eczema-related anxiety, because that is what I keep thinking is the best version of me. The more I chase after her, the farther away she feels.

What false narratives might we be writing about the best versions of ourselves?

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Barenflimski on Tuesday May 14, @11:14PM (9 children)

    by Barenflimski (6836) on Tuesday May 14, @11:14PM (#1356971)

    I constantly tell myself and everyone else, "Things could be worse."

    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by anubi on Wednesday May 15, @02:56AM (7 children)

      by anubi (2828) on Wednesday May 15, @02:56AM (#1356990) Journal

      Disclosure: I am over 70...

      One thing I have noticed since the adoption of widespread of Television and subsequent public-address type media, where there is an "influencer" and lots of followers, is that the marketeers/advertisers will purchase the sending end, whatever it takes, and dominate the narrative to their benefit.

      Their sole aim is to convince us we aren't presentable unless we embrace their product.

      Their whole game plan is to play us competing with each other for social signalling that we are a team player, not a forlorn outcast who is too poor to keep up. Well few of us do make that kind of money, but we keep up with purchasing the promoted memes.

      By Charging It! Just call! You will have the money in minutes. Wired directly into your account!

      Ok, now they have us exactly where they want us. In debt. Payable only in Dollars. It's now the problem of whoever fell for this ruse to do whatever it takes to get dollars to repay. Lest that cuddly fatherly little advertising bear that spotted you the cash foreclose on you in court, forcing you to sell everything you have at fire-sale price to immediately raise the cash that you obviously don't have.

      The poor quickly become a helluva lot poorer, and the rich become richer, profiting off the people who who followed some influencer to join in some rat-race to impress someone else.

      It's not worth it to me to buy into this. It was a fool's folly when I was a kid to pay 3X the going price for britches to get the fashion ones with the brand logo stitched onto the butt. This pales in comparison to what I see today.

      Only thing I know to do is lay back, and watch this thing run it's course. I have seen too many houses passed on via inheritance, only to be lost to wealthy investors who are slowly but surely buying up the neighborhood and renting them back out. All because someone took out a "second" to purchase a fancy car.

      I know of one family that did this "creative financing" thing to buy a luxury SUV so they could make the rounds to impress their friends and relatives with displays of affluence. That ended up costing them their almost paid-for family house. All their equity went to legal fees and forced liquidation.

      The purchase of that thing was definitely a "December to Remember". Seeing their experience, I opted for a 20 year old diesel van. To replace my 40 year old Toyota, which I would have kept, but I did not know how to navigate the DMV smog-check bureaucracy to clear the engine modifications needed to make it run on alcohol-laced fuels. And had the city code enforcement all worked up by some neighborhood Karen that considered an older car to be an "eyesore".

      All she had to do was wait me out for California to refuse to renew registration for smog test, then use a city statute regarding storage of unused vehicles in public view, even though it is registered no-op.

      I wanted to change out it's older carbureted engine to a later fuel injected one (2TC to a 3TC).

      People like that who have the chutzpah and means to enforce their wants onto others is a major driver of this engine of debt. I'd much rather be poorer, than have to be a thief. Simply taking from others so I can keep up appearances.

      So, what is the best version of myself?

      A clean-cut guy, heavily in debt, but keeping up with the Joneses, even though I might have to pull off shenanigans to keep up appearances?

      Or maybe an old shaggy guy who is determined to make do with what he has and not present a load on his neighbors?

      I had the opportunity once to choose my neighborhood? I avoided those high class ones as it was quite apparent to me that these were aggressive high income people who demanded everyone else keep up with them. Property values thing. Near and tidy. Who cares if you never see your neighbor, as long as he keeps up appearances? The automatic garage door comes up, a car enters or emerges, the door comes back down. That's it. Anyone outside is some service provider. A gardener perhaps.

      I moved into a neighborhood where people knew each other and would help each other. But those folks are slowly but surely dying out, and the new people moving in are generally not all that least not with me, and will call code enforcement if you don't keep your bushes trimmed neatly. My old neighbors would quickly come to my rescue should anyone come around and mess with anything, and we were well known for chasing out door-to-door salesmen. Just simply following them around, cellphone in hand, taking photos, and "calling up the neighbors" on it would make them leave. If they confront me, I just point to the neighborhood watch sign and say "it's my turn to do this".

      We've had very few instances of mischief. Usually those from several cities over. But as the rich move in, the decent people are displaced, and the neighborhood is slowly becoming the very thing I tried to avoid. Spoiled Rich People who won't mingle with the commoner. Yet expects the benefits of living here. Neighbors who give a damn about his property, even if they call code enforcement on us. We can't really fight this. We simply have to move out to another laid back area and let the rich have all their paid security in place as all the displaced swarm the rich neighborhoods in search of catalytic converters, bicycles, wagons, kids toys, and anything else not locked up in the house.

      So, I ask again, what is the best version?

      "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
      • (Score: 2, Disagree) by DadaDoofy on Wednesday May 15, @10:38AM (2 children)

        by DadaDoofy (23827) on Wednesday May 15, @10:38AM (#1357018)

        I don't know, but you sound like "get off my lawn" bitter. Unless you are Elon Musk, there will always be people who have more than you do. Focusing on it and obsessing over it is a waste of the little time we have. Class envy is one of the things packaged up and sold to us so we become distracted and weakened.

        • (Score: 2, Interesting) by anubi on Wednesday May 15, @09:40PM

          by anubi (2828) on Wednesday May 15, @09:40PM (#1357114) Journal

          "Class envy is one of the things packaged up and sold to us so we become distracted and weakened."

          Yes. That is a very effective motivator to get people to willingly sign debt papers. In our society, use of economic force to compel someone else is financially rewarded, use of physical force is not tolerated. The elite have economic forces at their disposal, whereas hoi-polloi bourgeoisie have physical force. But given a survival situation, physical forces win. The pen is mightier than the sword, as long as even a bigger sword is backing up the pen.

          It's mostly a matter of organization. Acting alone, a man can accomplish little. However if they organize and cooperate, they can compel those who do not do this.

          A veneer of "civilization" can degrade back into a feudal warlord system ( i.e. gang system ). Few of us want to see a return to slavery mode. But that mode does exist for much of humanity in our history. Occasionally the apple cart does get too top-heavy and toppled. It happened to the French a little over 200 years ago. I think something very similar is brewing in the western economic banking sector as people wake up to how much interest they are paying as rent for something that is coined out of nothing. I am talking about that debt burden I keep harping about. That fractional reserve system that keeps one party eternally slaved to paying off debt.

          "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
        • (Score: 5, Funny) by Azuma Hazuki on Thursday May 16, @11:45PM

          by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Thursday May 16, @11:45PM (#1357291) Journal

          You have entirely missed the point of that post. Not surprising considering your post history, but still.

          I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Thexalon on Wednesday May 15, @11:34AM (2 children)

        by Thexalon (636) on Wednesday May 15, @11:34AM (#1357020)

        One set of concepts around material wealth that I encountered decades ago and I've found quite useful is to divide the stuff you buy into 3 categories: Necessities, Comforts, and Luxuries.

        Necessities are the barest of essentials: Roof over your head, food on your plate, clothes on your back, medical care, a bed, soap and other basic cleaning supplies, some sort of way to get to the places you need to get to, utilities, stuff like that. They obviously should be the first place your money goes.

        Comforts are where you put your money into making your life noticeably better and you use regularly: A couch, a computer, Internet access, a more comfortable or reliable vehicle than a 40-year-old truck, casual dining out, a home you own, stuff like that. These are are a reasonable way to spend money that doesn't go into necessities.

        Luxuries are everything else: The stuff that doesn't spark joy, the fancy meals, the fashionable clothing, live shows, vacation trips, etc. Indulging yourself once in a while isn't a big deal, but you shouldn't be spending big bucks here on a regular basis and definitely not putting yourself into debt to get them.

        And the real key is that you have to decide which of these things a purchase falls into without listening to advertisers in any way, because they exist to convince you that stuff that's really a comfort item is a necessity, and a luxury is a comfort item. And there are some borderline things, e.g. I recently had to replace a car, and I'm in a great financial position so I chose the luxury of buying a car new, even though where I live having a car of some kind is a necessity, so the luxury part is the difference between what I spent on the brand new car and what I would have spent on the very used beater.

        One other complication to just be aware of: A lot of guys think beauty products are an indulgence for women. Sometimes they are, but women know that in a lot of professions how good they look will determine how well they are paid. For example, waitresses get better tips and female executives are more likely to be promoted if they look prettier, so the effort to put on makeup in the morning isn't just a woman trying to look pretty for the hell of it, it's also an unofficial part of many jobs women can hold.

        The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
        • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 16, @12:09PM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 16, @12:09PM (#1357198)

          > divide the stuff you buy into 3 categories: Necessities, Comforts, and Luxuries.

          Good suggestion, as far as it goes. But there is another category which could be called "problems". A wise friend once said something along these lines, "There are two kinds of problems, the ones that can be fixed with money and the ones that can't be fixed with money. If you have enough money (reserves?), then there is only one kind of problem."

          • (Score: 2) by Thexalon on Saturday May 18, @11:00AM

            by Thexalon (636) on Saturday May 18, @11:00AM (#1357483)

            But there's also a range of problems, with different priorities on how important it is to fix:
            Problem A: My well pump has gone kaput, preventing any pressure to any of the faucets or showers in my home.
            Problem B: The carburetor on the classic car I've been restoring won't f***** work, dammit!

            This advice would have you fix problem A right away (because water is a necessity), but problem B can wait and isn't really a big deal.

            The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday May 15, @01:25PM

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday May 15, @01:25PM (#1357029)

        >social signalling that we are a team player, not a forlorn outcast who is too poor to keep up.

        That was so 1950s... by the late 70s / early 80s it wasn't about being a team player, it was about being superior: above the crowd.

        >By Charging It! Just call! You will have the money in minutes.

        The voodoo that is money supply economics has been a bank game since WWII, and I'm not sure how to feel about that. On the one hand, easy credit has enabled the dirt poor to purchase and often own houses, to build some tiny modicum of wealth that they can at least reverse-mortgage in their retirement if they want to remain independent of and non-reliant upon their offspring / the welfare state as the case may be. On the other hand, it's clearly a siphon of that same wealth back to the banking industry (which itself is a pointy pyramid wealth concentrating institution.) I suppose it works out to a kinder and gentler carrot to encourage nosey-to-the-grindstone for as long as we poor shall live, but we already seem to have a "labor" surplus, at least from my perspective when I look around at all the people who "hold down a job" paying good money for little or no visible contribution of value.

        >The poor quickly become a helluva lot poorer

        Yep, how do you make the dirt poor poorer? Take away their dirt, for a start, but even then they have basically zero net worth. So, give them back a little 1/4 acre of dirt to "raise the family on" and put them in debt: negative net worth, with constant demands for things they must take out more debt for: not only the house they live in, but the (basically disposable) automobile(s) they must have for their dual income jobs to pay the debt on the house and the automobiles and the power to not freeze in the winter or fall into a permanent Mexican Summer Siesta the rest of the year, fuel for the (risky) automobiles, insurance for all of it, taxes on the property... Don't worry the little darlings about math class in school, we want a bunch of worker bees who don't understand that they've signed on for a 40 year treadmill run...

        >watch this thing run it's course.

        If history is any indication, it's course will eventually spin off the smooth highway into the weeds of revolution and subsequent societal collapse - only to restart from the crumbling wreckage again.

        >All their equity went to legal fees and forced liquidation.

        What's 5000 lawyers at the bottom of the ocean? A good start.

        >some neighborhood Karen that considered an older car to be an "eyesore".

        I'll venture to say that you're in a "bad neighborhood." Heard a statistic that over 50% of US homes are in some kind of HOA, when moving by choice we opted for the minority non-HOA location. Neighbors have gone through a series of pit bulls, built a pool that they never fenced adequately don't maintain and it's green probably breeding mosquitoes (but no more than the creek behind their house). Other neighbors raise yappy barky dogs, everybody seems to have chickens these days (didn't when we moved in 11 years ago). In short: Heaven. at least relative to an HOA.

        >We've had very few instances of mischief.

        Us as well. There's a rental trailer a few houses over that used to sell drugs. Quietest most trouble free neighbors we ever had. Replaced by a PTSD veteran and his girlfriend who seem to have a Meth habit - might be getting it under control now, haven't seen the cops out there for almost a year, the year before we would see them once or twice a week. But none of that rises to the level of mischief. Our house is at the end of a long private driveway. The worst mischief we suffer is people driving into our property to turn around and sometimes getting off in the grass leaving ruts - though to be fair the rut-leavers have always had some kind of reason to be at our home, the lost vehicles generally turn around without messing anything up.

        >as the rich move in

        New neighbors on the other side from the Meth trailer paid 1.8 million, and seem to be in the process of spending another million on "projects." They're a noisy bunch, not just construction but parties and toys with engines. Not as disruptive as the yappy dogs, but a new annoying noise on the block. And, no, they're not getting friendly with the neighbors.

        >paid security in place as all the displaced swarm the rich neighborhoods in search of catalytic converters, bicycles, wagons, kids toys, and anything else not locked up in the house.

        Colombia took this to a whole other level, the rich have tens of millions of US dollars and more, the poor have nothing but organized gangs who do things like kidnap the rich's children for ransom. So, do the rich change the social structure so the poor aren't in a spot where they're tempted to kidnap children? No, they hire private security and buy $10M houses in Miami (Key Biscayne, specifically) so their children have somewhere they can play in the street safely. I'm actually 20 years out of touch with Miami real-estate. I did recently look up my 1200 sf "starter house" that I bought for $76K in 1992... it recently changed hands for $1.2M, and yes it has been renovated, but the square footage, location, and lot size have not changed.

        🌻🌻 []
    • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Wednesday May 15, @02:02PM

      by Freeman (732) on Wednesday May 15, @02:02PM (#1357038) Journal

      Just because you could literally be on fire, doesn't mean that things couldn't also be better. Even, if you were literally on fire, things could be worse to a certain extent. "Things could be worse" is just something you say, because things sucks and you can't do anything about it. And/or the options you have are worse than the one you're currently choosing.

      Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Wednesday May 15, @01:42AM

    by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Wednesday May 15, @01:42AM (#1356979)

    "Let go of the best version of ourselves?" That's a terrible outlook on things.

    I've lost a few limbs I was born with and I've decided long ago that whoever I am today IS the best version of myself: whatever happened had to happen, and my body today is just cover of the book of my life. Don't like it? Go fuck yourself because whatever you may think of me, I made it so far and I'm a better human being that I ever was since I started out. And there's no point lamenting what I don't have no more or what could have been if I had live another way because it's not gonna change anything.

    The lady's skin condition is a terrible thing to live with. I sympathize. But she needs to learn to love herself first and foremost.

  • (Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 15, @01:45AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 15, @01:45AM (#1356980)

    There is no better version of me. I'm all there is. What you see is what you get. Suck it up, snowflakes!

    • (Score: -1, Redundant) by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 17, @07:32PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 17, @07:32PM (#1357408)

      Anonymous Cowards are 2 a penny and we're all better versions of you.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 15, @02:46AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 15, @02:46AM (#1356988)
    The best version of me is likely to be in a different universe.

    But is it really me? 😉
  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by shrewdsheep on Wednesday May 15, @08:41AM (3 children)

    by shrewdsheep (5215) on Wednesday May 15, @08:41AM (#1357010) about your skin, then it is a no, thank you. Re-calibrate your values.

    • (Score: 2) by quietus on Wednesday May 15, @11:39AM (1 child)

      by quietus (6328) on Wednesday May 15, @11:39AM (#1357022) Journal

      That's not what she was trying to say, I think, but to answer your point: how many people around you wear glasses instead of lenses? I bet it's a fair minority.

      • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Wednesday May 15, @02:07PM

        by Freeman (732) on Wednesday May 15, @02:07PM (#1357040) Journal

        Screw contact lenses. I have allergies nearly all year round and contact lenses suck. Have you ever had gunked up contact lenses, because your eyes are just like that due to allergies? Have you had a speck of dirt or anything behind a contact lense? Yeah, that sucks a whole lot. I had contact lenses for a while and you "can see more of the world"/whatever. Screw it, if you're constantly inconvenienced. Glasses are somewhat inconvenient, but they're a whole lot sturdier and won't cause a tiny speck of dust in my eye to feel like someone is scratching my eyeball with a jagged fingernail.

        Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
    • (Score: 4, Informative) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday May 15, @01:28PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday May 15, @01:28PM (#1357030)

      If you've never had "bad skin" don't start judging. Skin problems can quickly make life worse than miserable.

      Now, if the concern about the skin is how it looks, yeah: recalibrate that priority, even if you are a pediatrician. But: rashes vulnerable to infection, poor resistance to sunlight, or water... oozing pus or blood, cancers... bad skin can be really bad and even if it's "just red spots" those red spots are usually an indication that worse is on the way if you don't take steps to prevent it.

      🌻🌻 []
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by VLM on Wednesday May 15, @12:08PM (2 children)

    by VLM (445) on Wednesday May 15, @12:08PM (#1357024)

    my pediatric infectious disease clinic

    Works at an infectious disease clinic, visually looks like she has leprosy, can't figure out why everyone's stressed out about it, must be someone else's problem or some vague mental health issue. I think it more likely the "real problem" is her patients get freaked out when they see her looking like she has the black death. Not everyone can do every job; most women physically can't do most high paying blue collar work and I'm too short for the NBA. If you can't do your job, find another. Go into pathology or research or something. It's not everyone else's problem. It's like the personal trainer at the gym who's fat and weak, or the weight loss dietician who's fat, or the toothless dentist, its just not a good look in a customer-service oriented profession.

    WRT her inflammatory skin condition, she seems to be willing to try anything other than dietary modification. Addicts will tell themselves anything to convince themselves they need to consume something bad for themselves. Pour lotions all over herself, feel uncomfortable for weeks, anything other than not eat weird probably inflammatory foods, probably very high carb count too. You want to experience hostility, go tell an alcoholic to try not getting drunk; likewise try telling a carb addict to try not gobbling junk food, LOL. Someone else must have caused the inflammatory skin breakouts, not me. Someone else caused the obesity. Someone else caused the T2 diabetes. Can't they just sell me an expensive pill to fix it all?

    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday May 15, @01:46PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday May 15, @01:46PM (#1357033)

      In school I had shaky hands... there were other reasons too but the shaky hands pretty much steered me out of medicine as a career - who would trust a surgeon with shaky hands?

      >Can't they just sell me an expensive pill to fix it all?

      They're trying, and the cynic in me wonders just how deeply the tobacco industry engineered our foods to this end: causing problems that have expensive fixes.

      🌻🌻 []
    • (Score: 2) by pdfernhout on Friday May 17, @12:43AM

      by pdfernhout (5984) on Friday May 17, @12:43AM (#1357300) Homepage

      Example: []
      "My daughter gave me a juicer that she wasn’t using, and I started my Reboot journey on February 21st, 2015. I opted for a daily regimen of eating only nuts and fresh fruits for breakfast and lunch, and then make a Mean Green juice for dinner. I am on day 40 today April 1st. The first 3-5 days, I still had the hives about the same. But, as of today, I only have just a few hives, so few of them that I hardly notice that they are there unless I go to look for them!"

      Also related: []
      "The feature-length film follows Cross, who was depressed, weighed 310 lbs, suffered from a serious autoimmune disease [Urticaria/Hives], and was on steroids at the start of the film, as he embarks on a juice fast. Cross and Robert Mac, co-creators of the film, both serve on the Nutrition Research Foundation's Advisory Board. Following his fast and the adoption of a plant-based diet, Cross states in a press release that he lost 100 pounds and discontinued all medications. During his road-trip Cross meets Phil Staples, a morbidly obese truck driver from Sheldon, Iowa, in a truck stop in Arizona [also suffering from Urticaria] and inspires him to try juice fasting. A sequel to the first film, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead 2, was released in 2014."

      Unfortunately, there is little profit to the sick care system in such solutions. And it would also costs livestock-heavy and refined-foods-heavy agribusiness lots of money. And since sick care insurance gets to keep a percent of total premiums as profit, the more money spent on health care the better for their bottom line too.

      So, everyone wins big by keeping sick people sick -- except for the sick people of course. Sick doctors like from the article have a conflict there though -- but cognitive dissonance suggests they usually will ignore non-pharma alternatives since most doctors are essentially trained to be pharmaceutical representatives and incentivized to stay that way. As Upton Sinclair quipped: "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it."

      See also: "Drug companies’ payments and gifts affect physicians’ prescribing. It’s time to turn off the spigot" []
      "Each year, about half of all U.S. doctors accept money or gifts from drug and device companies, totaling more than $2 billion. These payments range from free meals during which doctors listen to drug reps pitch their latest products, to travel to luxury locales to serve as paid “consultants.” The conflicts of interest created by these payments are clear. Yet the medical community has resisted stopping this flow of cash, arguing that industry payments do not harm patients and may even have benefits. Few serious efforts have been made to rein in this practice. We believe stronger action — a total ban on drug industry payments to physicians — is needed. Now."

      And also: "Deadly Medicines and Organised Crime: How Big Pharma Has Corrupted Healthcare" by Peter Gotzsche" []
      "In his latest ground-breaking book, Peter C Gotzsche exposes the pharmaceutical industries and their charade of fraudulent behaviour, both in research and marketing where the morally repugnant disregard for human lives is the norm. He convincingly draws close comparisons with the tobacco conglomerates, revealing the extraordinary truth behind efforts to confuse and distract the public and their politicians. The book addresses, in evidence-based detail, an extraordinary system failure caused by widespread crime, corruption, bribery and impotent drug regulation in need of radical reforms."

      The biggest challenge of the 21st century: the irony of technologies of abundance used by scarcity-minded people.
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Freeman on Wednesday May 15, @02:32PM (1 child)

    by Freeman (732) on Wednesday May 15, @02:32PM (#1357041) Journal

    A relative who was/is an MD worked in ER for some time and a Family Practice. For the longest time they had issues with Eczema. Part of it may have been the constant hand washing / etc. I think part of it was literally just stress. Stress does all kinds of bad things to your body and makes you more prone to sickness. People can break out in hives from stress. The relative eventually got it under control, but they tried all kinds of things. I forget, if it was something like Apple Cider Vinegar *Not a recommendation* (looking at it on google, pretty sure they got the side-effects of using Apple Cider Vinegar, skin irritation) or the like that finally helped enough to get it under control. It may have just been one of those things they tried, because nothing was working. See a health professional, if you are having trouble. Even then, your mileage may vary. Just because X thing is a problem, doesn't mean anyone will be able to help you. We don't even know what we don't know. Still, modern medicine is usually quite good, certainly compared to just a generation or two ago.

    Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Runaway1956 on Wednesday May 15, @08:11PM

      by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday May 15, @08:11PM (#1357099) Journal

      I think part of it was literally just stress.

      To some extent, at least, you can control stress. Way back, in my Navy days, I found myself in a job that was a couple paygrades over my head, and over my experience. I allowed the lieutenant to manipulate me into feeling personally responsible for each and every person who worked for me, both military and civilian. He figuratively beat hell out of me at least twice a week, over stupid BS. "Why was Seaman McCarthy seen drunk, staggering down the street in Bangor on Saturday night?" I was getting ulcers, couldn't keep food down, and suffered whether food stayed down or not.

      Went to the club one night, alone, sat in a corner nursing some drink or other. After a couple hours conferring with myself, me, myself, and I agreed that it wasn't worth it.

      Next time lieutenant asked me about one of my people's off-duty conduct, I answered, "I can't do anything about my people's off-duty time. If you witnessed something that warrants Captain's Mast, or a Court Martial, you should write him/her up. I witnessed nothing, so I can't do a thing."

      The worst the lieutenant could do was write me up, have me busted back to the ranks, at which point, I would be responsible for no one but myself. And, I just didn't care anymore.

      The ulcers were gone inside of two months. I've never had a recurrence. If you don't care, you can't be stressed, now can you?

  • (Score: 1) by crahman on Thursday May 16, @12:15AM (3 children)

    by crahman (6852) on Thursday May 16, @12:15AM (#1357134)

    If this is tech news, then what isn't? Yes, people struggle with important personal issues. But are they coming here to find experts to help them? Would any of us come here for that? The hard sciences, and the people who work in them, are not in my experience the best place to seek such counsel.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by janrinok on Thursday May 16, @01:45AM (1 child)

      by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Thursday May 16, @01:45AM (#1357140) Journal

      Thank you for your interesting comment regarding this particular story. It is posted under the 'Random' topic, which is something that we have been asked to do by many of our readers. The topic includes subjects which are outside the range of STEM news but which it is felt that the community might wish to discuss. The subjects are submitted by community members.

      One of the problems facing sites such as ours is that there are far fewer original creators of technical news than was once the case. We rely on submissions from the community to provide the material that we publish for general discussion. We can and do use bots to find source material to supplement that provided by others but many of the former RSS reads are now increasingly using AI and various GPT sources in order to reduce their running costs. The result is that we have less good quality reporting on traditional STEM topics from which to select our stories.

      It has always been the case that not every story will be of interest to every member of our community. This story has resulted in a reasonable discussion. You are correct in pointing out that this is not the place where people come to find answers to their problems but if it provides an interesting discussion, or better yet encourages even a single community member to consider an issue that they might be experiencing, then perhaps its publication here can be justified. Nevertheless, we will continue to be guided by our community and the material that they submit.

      I am not interested in knowing who people are or where they live. My interest starts and stops at our servers.
      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by anubi on Thursday May 16, @04:36AM

        by anubi (2828) on Thursday May 16, @04:36AM (#1357149) Journal

        Look how much reaction this story ois getting.

        Even based on that alone, it's an indicator this was well worth putting up.

        "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
    • (Score: 2) by quietus on Thursday May 16, @02:41PM

      by quietus (6328) on Thursday May 16, @02:41PM (#1357214) Journal

      The article comes from the Journal of the American Medical Association, being published among things like Cardiovascular Burden of V142I Transthyretin Variant and Causal Inference About the Effects of Interventions From Observational Studies in Medical Journals. The reason for publishing it there (and here) is, I guess, not about seeking council or complaining about personal problems. I'm also pretty sure this is not about touting your handicap, or personal feelings, to the rest of the world.

      When you are working in a medical setting, but also in a 'tech' setting, you are taking your personality, with all its influences, with you to work -- and you should be aware of that, as it can have a serious impact on the quality of your work. A simple example is the attitude of 'toughing it out' (e.g. pulling an all-nighter) in tech, or the crazy shifts young medics have to make in the beginning of their career. Both are statistically guaranteed to result in stupid decisions.

      The difference though, is that in a medical setting the impact is limited: you can only make a mistake on a couple of patients during your shift. In tech, however, your actions may impact tens of thousands of people.