Who should I be angry at?


This article is also a short story. Unfortunately, it’s a true story.

Written September 15, 2004, moved here from an old website I’m retiring.

I don’t know which one I should be angry at, my friend or that damn doctor.

My friend didn’t take care of herself. On the surface she was a laid-back, easy-going person, seemingly without a care in the world — everyone’s friend. Yet very few of the people who knew her really knew how sick she was… and how depressed she was.

Several years ago she had heart related surgery. I don’t remember exactly what.

She didn’t take care of herself the way that heart patients are supposed to and had to have another operation.

She still didn’t take care of herself. Her health deteriorated.

We had met her and her husband when we joined a mixed league for bowling many years earlier. They were also just starting in the league and ended up being our bowling partners — and friends — for years.

As her health deteriorated, she was no longer able to bowl. Her husband stayed on the team, but another lady took our friend’s place.

Our friend developed diabetes, and didn’t take care of herself.

She was everyone’s friend, but very few people really knew her.

Part of the reason she didn’t see a doctor was that she knew she would be told that she would have to have more surgery. They still had debt from the previous surgeries. Her husband was self-employed and they didn’t have insurance.

She didn’t want to build up more debt.

She didn’t take care of herself.

She had suffered for years from depression.

A sore — a blister — developed on one of her feet.

She didn’t take care of herself.

The sore didn’t heal.

After several weeks she finally decided she had to see a doctor.

The sore had developed into something worse. She was a diabetic and had not taken care of herself.

The doctor was not a doctor she had seen before. It seems that whenever she would go to see a doctor, it would be someone different than she had seen before.

The doctor — I don’t know his name, and I’m not sure that I want to know his name — apparently really laid into her when he saw the condition of her foot.

He asked her — practically accusing her — if she was an alcoholic, an addict, if she was on meth.

He told he that the sore had developed into gangrene and that they probably wouldn’t be able to save her foot or her leg, and, “oh-by-the-way, you might lose your other foot, too.”

Years ago, a lady that our friend knew had been hospitalized from complications arising from diabetes. She had a lot of problems, including the loss of both legs, before she died after a lingering illness.

Our friend didn’t want that to happen to her.

Our friend disappeared.

She was missing for two days.

Two days was the waiting period for a handgun.


I miss my friend, especially on Wednesdays, like today. On Wednesdays we go bowling.

My friend didn’t take care of herself. I miss her and I’m angry.

I don’t know which one I should be angry at, my friend or that damn doctor.


October, 2007

I’m not angry any more. I just reflect on how unfortunate it all was.

Unfortunate that she didn’t take care of herself.

Unfortunate that the doctor wasn’t more humane in her instance.

Unfortunate for her husband who has had a host of problems in the time that’s passed.

Unfortunate for the poor soul that found her body.

fitness, give me a break!, health, people, writing

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Opal Tribble Oct 8, 2007

    That is unfortunate and how sad. It also makes me angry that the doctor made those inaccurate assumptions about her. It's unfortunate that you have insensitive people like that and I often wonder why in the world do they choose professions that require a lot of interaction with the public?

  • pete Oct 9, 2007

    The last line sums it up:

    "Unfortunate for the poor soul that found her body."

    But now that soul has returned to the source. Such a sad story, I am glad that you were able to break it down and see it for what it is (at least it appears that way). Wishing you and her husband the best.

    Your writing is a pleasure to read, by the way. Nice style. 🙂

  • Sabrina's Money Oct 10, 2007

    Having lost someone to suicide, I understand your anger. I am still angry at the circumstances life created for the loved one I lost. Your friend was treated cruelly and seems to have only been thinking of what was best for her family instead of herself, so many people forget that taking care of yourself IS the best thing you can do for your family. I still get angry to this day, and it's been over ten years since my loved one took his life. I too feel for the poor soul who found him. I hope one day you are able to recall only fond memories of her – and not the sad ones.

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