internet-doctor

Why I love the Doctor/Rose fandom

Do you know what? I love the Doctor/Rose fandom. Periodically we fall into a gloomy mood where we feel like we’re dying as a fandom, or things aren’t like what they used to be. For just a moment, I want to focus on the cool things happening. 

Last week, over 20 self-rec lists were solicited in ask boxes. The fic reading/writing community is so incredibly encouraging, and this is perhaps the best indication of that lately. It wasn’t just the established, popular writers who got asks, either. I reblogged several from newer authors and some who don’t get as much exposure. That made my heart happy. 

The addition of several new fic prompt/rec blogs in the last month is a good sign that we aren’t dying. People love this ship enough that they want to inspire our creators to new works. That’s a high level of involvement and dedication to the fandom, and it’s not something you find in dying fandoms. 

We’ve talked a lot about the struggle new authors have to get recognised, so @legendslikestardust dedicates a weekly post to finding a new author and promoting them on the blog. They also specifically promote SFW fanfic, since another concern is how much harder it is to get noticed if you don’t write smut.

But smut is still a part of fandom, and it’s a part many people love, so the same people who run that blog also run @dwsmutfest to support that side of the fandom. 

If you like visual prompts, @dwficprompts posts pictures every day to get your creative mind going. I’ve gotten several plot bunnies based on these pics–it’s fantastic. 

And of course, I started @doctorroseprompts because that’s where my passion is. After reblogging prompts from other prompt blogs with, “This could be Doctor/Rose…” and giving a scenario, starting my own prompt blog just seemed like the logical next step. 

And as a prompt blog owner, nothing has made me happier this month than seeing people combining the prompts for all these blogs. The more prompts there are, the more new fanfic we get. February has proven that. To see people taking a prompt from their Fluffuary card and adding it to one of our Valentine’s prompts, or basing their story on a picture from @dwficprompts… it’s just a great, great thing.

I love the Doctor/Rose fandom because I love the people in it, and the way we encourage each other. I love that instead of giving up when it seemed like maybe we were dying, members of our fandom have invested themselves in its revitalisation. This is why we are amazing, and this is why I’m proud to be a part of this little corner of the internet.

Why we don’t answer medical questions online.



Why it’s bad for you:

  • We could be anyone; this is the internet, after all. You believe that anonymous internet medipeeps are doctors, but they may not be. If you don’t know someone’s name and number, can you really trust them with your health? It’s risky to trust information from unnamed and unverified sources.And that includes us!
  • You also don’t know if we have any undeclared interest in particular treatments. I might be telling you to take drug A because I’m actually working for said company.
  • Many medblrs are still medical students or very junior staff. Which means that although we know a lot about many things, we are by no means qualified to take on our own patients and offer health advice without supervision in our day job. And if we can’t do something in real life, we’re not able to do it online either.
  • We don’t get anywhere near enough information to make a decision in most anonymous health-related asks. But we can’t bring you back to ask for more information.
  • When you see your healthcare provider, a lot of things happen. They take a detailed history, including asking lots of questions about things you may not have considered to be related to your problem. It’s much harder for us to ask all the right questions if you send an anonymous ask.
  • They then they examine any body system they think is relevant. This is sometimes enough (for the kind of things we see the GP about), but often they will need to order some blood tests and occasionally further investigations.  There is a lot of information we can only get through seeing and testing you.
  • If your situation is complicated, you’ll still need to see a doctor in real life, who can do the right tests and refer you to the right speciality.And without all of the above, there is a very real chance that we may miss something that shouldn’t be missed.
  • Sometimes the only way you can diagnose something serious is with a very thorough history and examination, and the right investigations. A history may make you suspect something serious, but it never confirms it.
  • If we reassure you that you’re OK because we don’ know the whole story, you will probably put off going to the doctor, where otherwise you may well have decided to attend. This may mean that you get diagnosed and treated later. Which could have serious consequences.
  • Some topics require asking a specialist in that field, and even a trained doctor in another field may not be very helpful. A medical student or a nurse aren’t the same as a cardiologist, who is not the same as an orthopaedic surgeon.
  • Your health is important, and your concerns are real. Therefore you deserve to have the full MOT if you are seriously worried about your body, not just some anonymous person reading a few lines and telling you you’re probably OK (but should go to the doctor anyway). You are not ‘bothering the doctors’ if you get yourself checked out.


Why it’s bad for us Medblrs:

  • By answering a medical question, you’re asking us to take a certain level of responsibility for you. Both ethically and legally.
  • If we mistakenly told you your symptoms weren’t serious, but they actually were and and something bad happened to you, we would blame ourselves. Believe me medics blame themselves a lot.
  • We’re under strict legal frameworks of what we can and can’t do. And most frameworks would suggest that taking responsibility for strangers on the basis of hastily written asks would be a bad idea for all involved.
  • You could sue us because something bad happened to you, even if you neglected to metion loads of relevant symptoms. You probably wouldn’t, but there are lots of people who sue for all sorts of reasons and if we answered enough questions, we’d probably be sued eventually.
  • Bearing in mind that we don’t have to answer asks as part of our degree or job, we’d be on a shaky footing legally when it came to defending our actions. Most of us are not legally covered for it.
  • As students or juniors, we don’t take our own patients. We’re not allowed to take responsibility for the treatment of patients in different departments or under different teams, let alone random anonymous strangers online.
  • Some of us struggle with depresison and anxiety, and the stress of taking on resonsibility for someone’s health and possibly life outside of the legal framework we are comfortable working in can be triggering.
  • Nobody is obligated to work for free; and anyone with experience and training has spent a lot of time and money to get there. Answering medical questions looks suspiciously like work for free. There is a difference between someone volunteering to work for free and free work being foisted on them.
  • When we work in hospital, it’s as part of a team. We have seniors we can double-check with when we’re out of my depth or dealing with something we haven’t seen before.
  • But online we can’t exactly ask our seniors or tutors ‘This random person on Tumblr gave me an incomplete history, but can you advise?’ because they wouldn’t take responsibilty for someone who is not their patient. And that would leave us with nobody to turn to if we had questions. Which would mean worse advise for you.
  • GPs see patients alone, but they’ve had years of training on how to diagnose serious things out in the community, and when tto refer to hospital. They still refer to hospital a lot, because even they can’t find everything out by themselves.


I’m not against senior clinicians (like some of our medblrs) choosing to answer health-related asks; Anyone who is a fully trained clinician to a level deemed competent to take their on patients has every right to use their expertise in their field as they see fit. When done right, it can be useful.

But I feel it can be difficult for junior medblrs to reply to asks, and I’m worried that there’s a pressure for many of them to answer asks that they don’t feel is within their competencies at this point in time. None of you have to answer a single clinical question that relates to the asker’s health; you have a right to say that you are not yet comfortable, or trained, to do it. 

This is not about specific medblrs or specific asks; please don’t feel that you’ve done anything wrong if you’ve asked or answered such a question. I just wanted to make clear that if someone feels they shouldn’t, or can’t answer a question, it is not because they don’t care or don’t respect the person who asked it. If we tell you to see your doctor, we’re not trying to be flippant or lazy.  

(Edited the last paragraph for clarification)

Match16.com

Imagine you own a dating website called Match16.com (I checked; it doesn’t exist). Because you’re so smart and popular and successful, every single person on Earth uses your website and will faithfully follow your dating recommendations. However, if you match everyone up, and there are two pairs of people such that person A from the first couple prefers person B from the second couple, and person B also prefers A, then A and B will elope and leave their former partners lonely. So don’t do that!

Another important note: the only distinguishing factor of a potential mate is their Myers Briggs type. Body type, age, languages spoken, race, sexual preference - none of these affect the chemistry between any two potential mates. Just mbti. Got it? Great.

So here’s where it gets interesting, even with all of those convenient assumptions: ISFJs are super common, comprising roughly 14% of people, and ISTJs are not far behind. However, ISFJs are “ideally matched” with ESFPs, which make up a far smaller slice of the population. So when you run out of ESFPs, maybe you hook up the remaining ISFJs with ESTPs, their second best match? Well, if you do that, the poor ISTJs will have no one left, and the ESTPs that you paired with the ISFJs will prefer the ISTJs, who in turn will prefer the ESTPs. So that doesn’t work. Now what?

Well it turns out that this silly little conundrum is actually an extremely important problem to mathematicians - and not for the obvious reasons! Turns out that this problem - referred to as the Stable Roommates Problem - is part of a class of matching problems that shows up all over the place in really important ways. For example, a variant called the Stable Marriages Problem is used to match servers and clients on the internet, doctors to patients, and even design efficient markets, which is why the Nobel Prize was awarded in 2012 for an efficient way to solve this problem.

So, being a programmer myself, I quickly set to work coding up a little simulation of 100 representative people. 14 were ISFJs, 2 were INFJs, etc. I used mbti theory and a little bit of intuition to create preference lists for each of them. I think it’s too much to go into every single reason why I designed the preference lists the way I did, but here’s a quick explanation:

My preference list as an ENTP is as follows:
INTJ
INFJ
INTP
ENTJ
ENFP
ISTP
ISTJ
ISFP
ENFJ
ESFJ
ESTP
INFP
ISFJ
ENTP
ESFP
ESTJ

My reasoning in making this list is based solely on my type, so I think it’ll apply mostly to all ENTPs, and the same pattern should work for any other perceiver-dom. If you’re a judger-dom, however, I altered it slightly. If you’re an ESTJ, for example, instead of going to ISFP after ISTP, you go to INTP, because INTPs lead with the inverse of your first function, making them preferable to a feeler with whom you’d have much less in common.

Here’s the full chart:

Then, I ran the algorithm, dumped the data into Excel, and made this Radar chart to show the quality of the relationships. The 1′s mean that those types are paired to their ideal match, while the big numbers (like 14) mean that that type is with their 14th best match and thus are going to have a crappy relationship.

As you can see, most people are pretty happy. The island of death is relatively small, and includes several unhappy ENFPs. However, of all the types, I have the most faith in the ENFP’s ability to adapt to a relationship against which the odds are stacked, especially since these unhappy relationships are most frequently between two ENFPs. ISTJs are also among the unhappy spouses, and I think that ISTJs will leverage their patience and dedication to make the most out of a poor situation. The other types are paired with partners relatively close to optimum, so overall, people are quite happy.

This brings up an interesting question, though: Why is it that the frequency of types doesn’t correspond to the frequency of their ideal match type? Why must we have imperfect marriages at all? And how is it that there are so many ENFPs that they’re forced to unhappily consort with one another?

The best I can come up with so far is that ENFPs must be really good at relationships - so good that they can reproduce far more often than expected given their typology. So, uh, kudos to the ENFPs, I suppose? Or perhaps we should be mad that sociocultural influences idealize ENFP relationships so much that ENFPs are unhappily common? You decide.

My dear agender and nonbinary children, 

My letters have only attracted the attention of hateful people twice and in both cases, their insults and anger were aimed at you. I have to admit that this left me completely puzzled: It’s beyond my imagination why anyone would carve out time of their busy days to insult other people online. It’s a pathetic way to spend precious time that they could better use to educate themselves about the beautiful diversity of gender identities in our world - or, for all i care, they could lock themselves in their room, mumble their nonsense to themselves and spend their days in lonesome anger while we are out here supporting each other and living our colorful lives. 

I’ve only just blocked them as i got a message of one of you telling me that hateful people have been getting to them and made them question their identity - and this not only kick-started my motherly instinct once again, it also made me realize that those two hateful encounters i had online were no isolated cases. So, i want to write to you, to all my agender and nonbinary kids, and share some facts with you, just in case the hateful people made you forget them: 

Agender and Nonbinary are valid and real gender identities. That’s the most important part, so important that i have to bold it. Yes, you are agender! Yes, you are nonbinary! And that’s beautiful! 

Nobody but you can decide if you are agender/nonbinary. Not me, not your parents, not anyone on the internet, not politicians, not doctors.. You, and only you, can decide which label fits best. Agender and Nonbinary are both labels people may have never heard of or may “not believe in” - that doesn’t make them any less real. It just means those people are uneducated about gender identities. Nice people will let you educate them or research it on their own when they stumble upon those words. Mean people don’t deserve any of your precious time. 

You may want to read my letter about pronouns. To sum it up: All pronouns are valid. Your pronouns are valid. 

It’s okay to block people. It’s okay to report people if they send you hate speech/death threats etc. I wrote a letter about how to deal with hate messages.

@help-mypartner made a big list with gender positivity blogs. It can be very helpful to surround yourself with positive people, people who support and love you just like you are. Hopefully following more gender positive blogs will counteract the mean people you may encounter! 

Remember that you are not alone. Even if you know no other agender/nonbinary people offline, they do exist, they are real - just like you are. And i strongly believe that i speak for all of them when i say: 

Keep being your beautiful agender/nonbinary self; you’re amazing just the way you are. 

With all my love, 

Your Tumblr Mom

hello

I’m just lookin for an internet friend. :)

likes:

Doctor who, food, watching random episodes of law and order, conspiricy theorys, unsolved mysteries, doodling, and writing short stories.

dislikes: racism, sexism, homophobia, the american school system, trump, 13 reasons why (please don’t fight me on this i’m tired), and rom-coms.

(you can find out more likes and dislikes by asking me)