When he got out, it was neat for him to see how nice it was to pick and choose who you wanted to take care of you or your family. If this doctor was a jerk, guess what? You never went back to him. If you adored your Pediatrician? You hung onto them like glue. The point being, if you're paying for someone's care, you'd obviously like to get what you pay for.
What happens when you're in a situation like braces though? Our oldest son began going to an orthodontist some time ago to begin the initial stages of work. To begin with, I had a hard enough time trying to deal with the fact that any orthodontist would want to work on a nine year old, but the more I asked around, I found out that this wasn't atypical.
Back in my day you had braces put on in Jr. High and had them taken off in High School. Bam you were done. There were no "phases" or "stages", just old school braces.
I can deal with the progress of technology and education for health and science, but it's still hard for me to swallow the idea of a NINE year old going to an orthodontist.
Regardless, as you can tell, this all started off on the wrong foot.
The sticker shock of how MUCH this retainer was going to cost was round two of my disdain. As the kind woman who was in charge of finances calmly explained the cost and reasoning behind it all, I felt a pit of disbelief, anger and fear well inside as I tried to quickly calculate the thousand and some hundred dollars for the retainer, then the THOUSANDS more for the future braces, etc. Multiply this by our younger three kids and you can understand the cause of my heart palpitations.
Okay. Here's where the fun begins. The bazillion dollar retainer is officially paid in full. Nice, right? Right. The bad part though is that I really don't like the office where our son goes. The women at the front desk talk about the patients or people as soon as they leave. If they're on the phone with someone, as soon as they hang up, they begin to rant again. I don't know why or how they don't consider the fact that people are sitting in the waiting room and we can hear them.
I actually can't say much about the actual orthodontist because I wouldn't know him if I saw him on the street. Months ago, he was all interested and focused when he wanted our business but we haven't seen him since. Our son checks in, he gets called back, he's gone for around 15 minutes then reappears with a file to turn into the rude front desk people. It's awesome.
I don't expect the orthodontist to sit down for a cup of coffee or anything, but for Pete's sake - a status report, update, indication of any kind as to how things are going - would be nice to know. I'm a therapist and I make sure that families know the progress of the people I work with. Not only is it common courtesy and professional, it's what you're getting PAID to do! The final straw happened today. Our son's retainer broke in the back. It was just a wire and no big deal but nonetheless, it broke. I called to ask to come in because it bothered his cheek and they told me that we would have to pay for the repairs or replacement which could run upwards of $275. Okay, I'm done. You can't tell me that the little piece of plastic and wire for his retainer cost anything over 50 dollars worth of materials to begin with, let alone how simple it would be to fix it. You want us to pay an additional cost of almost three hundred dollars for something we could solder together out in our garage? You have lost your mind.
Needless to say, the kids got to see some Mama-rage this morning as I took off from work, took them before school and stormed to the stupid orthodontist's office to deal with the awesome receptionists and the phantom doctor.
Sure enough, they called Christian back and like clockwork, he reappeared within fifteen minutes with some young girl explaining how they fixed the wire and wouldn't charge us since it was easily done. nice. Still no doctor, still snarky receptionists and we were out the door.
I'm glad in the end that we didn't spend more money on this place but if I had ANY idea of when his time would be complete for his retainer, it would be nice.
We now know to find a different office for the next umpteen years of braces for the four kids - and it definitely won't be here. I'm just mad that we're already paid in full so if we leave now, we'll lose out.
So that's my rant for the day. Life's too short to give your hard earned money to rude people who don't seem to care. If they provide good service, pay for it. If not, well then it's as simple as that snooty ladies at the front desk. It's as simple as that.
Please remember to Vote! (I've had a bad day.)