1. Check how long it will take you to get to the office 12 times per day for at least a week.
This will allow you to plan out your optimal route, whether by car, train, foot, or horseback. On the day of the appointment, add an hour buffer, just in case. You’re going for “Dad going to the airport energy.” Your doctor will be impressed. Pro tip: Bring a book that you can pretend to read while you stress in the waiting room.
2. Call your insurance company and wait on hold during a staticky elevator rendition of “Glory of Love” for 10-15 minutes.
This is the only way to review what services will be covered. Be thorough. What STI tests are included in a routine panel? Are there any add-ons? Like, for argument’s sake, what if you wanted to be checked for scabies? Is that included? Or that weird rash you noticed? How about smallpox?
3. Tell your manager that you’ll be out for a doctor’s appointment.
Say “I don’t think it’s anything serious” with just enough of a tremor in your voice to imply that it very well could be serious. (Come to think of it, it might be serious…) This should get you out of some bullshit meetings.
4. Google “What does sexually active mean?”
Is it like you’re having sex right at that moment? In the past year? Ever? Does oral count? Does your vibrator count?
5. Prepare some icebreaker questions to make your doctor like you.
- “What’s up with that whole aspartame thing? Should I be worried? Am I going to die?”
- “Is that ‘one glass of red wine a day is good for you’ advice real? How about seven?
- “I mean, I feel like we’re dancing around this. Do you like me?”
6. Be sober for one day.
This will be enough to repair any liver damage you’ve accumulated within the past year. While you’re at it, prepare a reasonable-sounding lie about how much you drink per week. When did we decide being passionate about tequila was a bad thing?
7. Chug water the night before.
You won’t be able to eat or drink anything pre-appointment because you need to impress your doctor with your low weight. Additionally, find your flimsiest outfit. Weigh yourself with each of your styles to find the optimal pick. Pack a snack so you can begin stuffing your face the second you step off the scale.
8. Practice saying, “I’m totally stable, I don’t need to see a specialist. I saw this psychiatrist more than once, I’m totally stable on my meds, I just need a refill of Celexa, 20 mg, and if you want to add a sidecar, go right ahead. I’m stable. No need to pay extra for a specialist.”
This will be enough to demonstrate to your PCP that you are TOTALLY STABLE and aren’t just seeing them because you need a meds refill and your insurance covers a physical but not a regular psychiatrist appointment.
9. Practice saying goodbye in the mirror without sounding like a crazy person.
Repeat after me: “Thanks, have a great day, Dr. Smith.” You’ll be tempted to say, “Thanks, Dr. Smith. Am I going to die?” But remember that if you sound too unstable, your PCP will insist that you go back to your psychiatrist for the meds refill, and that’s expensive.