I had several meltdowns today at dialysis.
My lines that transport my blood to and from the machine were unruly, and kept bothering me. I had to have them routed differently.
Nurse Whitney, the nurse who is still assigned to me, lost her cool, saying that this was putting her behind to accommodate me on where to have my lines placed.
With one hour and 5 minutes left to go on my treatment, I tried to get my backpack off the chair’s tray table so I could message my caregiver to see what we were going to do for dinner tonight.
The long strap caught on the tray table, and so meltdown #2 happened. A lady, a patient on my side began to yell at me repeatedly to shut up.
It only escalated my meltdown to where I was yelling, cussing, and saying “I am done!” over and over.
Nurse Whitney marched in and proceeded to terminate my treatment against my will, stating that I was a safety risk.
I was unable to calm down. Next thing I know, Whitney warned me that she would have to call the cops if I did not stop, that my “temperament” was causing the entire staff and patients to feel unsafe.
I had no choice but to leave, and have my caregiver pick me up earlier than normal. I only got 2 hours and 59 minutes of my prescribed 4 hour treatment today as a result of what I know In my heart of hearts could have been handled much differently, by Nurse WHITNEY.
I keep having these kinds of problems with Whitney….yet they keep assigning her as my nurse….even though she keeps dressing my catheter all crooked, and with crinkles and creases, and gaps in the dressing, and she, along with Tech named BELEN, are always the ones that causes my meltdowns there. It IS intentional.
I have been having problem after problem like this since August 2019 with impatient ableistic nurses and techs who keep moving my machine, touching me too near my face, and ordering me like I’m an unwanted animal.
I am unable to adapt to that hellhole anymore than I am able to. I literally cannot take having to go there another day.
This is where I am at tonight.
I need a miracle or I am going to BREAK INTO A MILLION LITERAL PIECES.
I need my community’s help, friends.
In addition, I wrote a review of my kidney center on Yelp. Here it is below, copied and pasted.
I wish I could give this place a zero, but the option was 1, so here it is.
I’m an autistic adult, yes, hello, there are hundreds of thousands (Actually, more than a million) of us autistic neurodivergent folks out there, and the past two of my three years of me having to get a vital lifesaving treatment that I am entitled to so I can stay alive for those who love me, at this center, have been sheer sensory hell….with only a small bit of accommodation for my sensory needs because they keep forcing me to deal with techs and a nurse who all have very little tolerance and patience for the challenges I experience as an autistic person.
I love my social worker, as well as many of the staff there. However, even though I have spent my 3 years educating them, some of the staff and the current nurse who is assigned to me, keep treating me as if the meltdowns—that some of them cause—is a behavior that I can control.
They do not get it—and don’t want to get it—that they continue to keep doing what I have told them thousands of times triggers me and then when I meltdown, I am yelled at, scolded, then thrown off of my machine early before the end of my 4 hour prescribed time, sent home, and today, my nurse even threatened to call the police on me, when I fought to finish my treatment.
After yet another meltdown that she and another staff member caused.
Today, I was upset, first about my lines being too uncomfortable for me, and then again because when I went to get my backpack to get my phone out to make a phone call, the large strap on it caught on the side table of my chair, and in frustration, I yelled. Because I yelled, I got sent home one full hour early. By threat and force.
Certain protocols have already been put in place at this center to mitigate my sensory hell, even so, my nurse still seems to enjoy causing me to get upset, so she can “make an example” out of me.
I hope Fresenius is reading this, because Santa Maria needs more kidney center choice, and I also hope Davita headquarters is also reading this, because this is cruel treatment of a person who has bent over backwards to educate them on my triggers, meltdowns, and how to handle me when I am in distress. So this kind of incident does not happen.
As per the Americans With Disabilities Act.
In closing, Autism is not a disease or behavior. It is a neurotype, and a disability. Me and the hundreds of thousand other autistic need for the medical community to finally GET this and stop treating us like we are animals and like the human beings we are.
#MedicalAbleism is real. Google it.