Poll: Is Big Doctor Watching...Your Kids?

My dh took our son to CVS pharmacy to get his sports physical the other day.  I was shocked to hear the questions she asked him. It was like Child Protective Services questions asked of a child suspected of being abused.  They asked him if he felt safe at home and does he always wear a seatbelt, does he feel anxious or nervous.  I thought...is this customary for drs to ask here in Arizona?  According to friends and neighbors...IT IS! My dh filled out the form saying he was homeschooled.  Do you think this had anything to do with the line of questioning?  I would have thought Arizona was less inclined to do things like this than California, but he was not asked anything like this when he did his sports physical for football. My dh didn't answer the question of immunization on the form, but I wonder what she would have said about that.  She did say he wasn't due for his booster yet but asked if he had his immunization record and my dh simply said no. What I am concerned about is that some dr, who doesn’t know me or my family, could interpret the answers to these questions in a way that would lead to my family being investigated for no reason. I have seen cases in California where these seemingly innocent questions have lead to someone having all their kids taken away only to find a few yrs later that these allegations were completely unfounded, or worse yet, lies told by jealous family members or neighbors.  After which the damage to the family (mostly the children) was already done.  These questions don’t apply to most people, but they could lead to abuse without probable cause. I wouldn’t object if they found my son in their office with bruises all over him or acting funny, but not as a routine where any 4 yr old could say something that might be interpreted by the untrained eye to be the beginning of years of devastation for a family. Doctors are authority figures imposing to young children and these days to their mothers as well.  Parents afraid of a confrontation, who don't know the laws and/or who are not effective communicators may say the wrong thing, be bullied into allowing a line of questioning that subjects their child to being badgered.  A young child may not know how to answer these questions or answer incorrectly so it may be misinterpreted. If you allow the questions, you take the risk of you or your child saying something that might be misinterpreted as incriminating.  If you don't allow them, you risk coming off looking like you have something to hide! What say you?  Do you know your rights?  Do you know how to gracefully and efficiently get out of a situation like this?  What would you say?   Have you ever been asked these kinds of questions?  What do you think about this practice?  Do you think it's inappropriate? If you'd like some help in honing your skills so that you can be more assertive in situations like this, check out Say What You Mean Every Day over at  Art of Eloquence.com


  • jojosblog

    I know and some of them NEVER get questioned. I think the system is broken because they are trying to find a one size fits all solution for a very complicated issue that is quite different for each person/family. People are no longer empowered by common sense and independent thinking but by a rigid formula. God didn’t make cookie cutter people. I’ve said it so many times. There is no one size fits all solution. Instead, there should critical thinking, discernment and effective communication.

  • Cindy Holman

    Wow – it’s shocking isn’t it? However the flip side is that there ARE many children who are abused emotionally and physically as children – and no one intervened in their case – I’m sure they would have been glad to have been “taken away” – I have 2 very good friends who fall into this category. This is probably why they interrogate EVERYONE now. Not fair. But it simply must happen so that all children are safe. It’s a conflicting subject to be sure as many innocent parents have been accused and that is not right.

  • BeckyJoie Oakes

    That was suppose to say “a teenager who has” not “how has”. Oops.

  • BeckyJoie Oakes

    I’ve had the questions asked repeatedly in the same appointment. Strange, huh? We have a unique situation in that one of my special needs children is a teenager how has language learning issues, including speech-he also has memory issues. He is homeschooled but is covered under a private school umbrella and not under the county. So when asked what school he attends, he forgets or doesn’t say it correctly. I always have to answer. I used to work in the medical field also and it is sometimes assumed that if a parent answers for a child, it could be a possible indicator of abuse or too much control by the parent. I’m always concerned about what the doctor will think. Especially when this same child can’t remember our address and phone number and such things no matter how often I teach it to him.

  • jojosblog

    Thanks Laura for that in depth comment. I knew it was mandated but had no idea how or what the drs and nurses thought of it. You are right that we need to prepare our kids. Wish I had known before my son went. Never had this happen before.

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