Thursday, September 2, 2010

Calling Dr. Parent: HOB's Rebuttal

My people.

HOB often threatens a rebuttal to my posts in which I describe some of his less-than-admirable (nutty) behavior. Normally I can distract him with a burrito or a full complement of compliments about his big, strong, manly arm muscles.

However, this time the man actually sat down and wrote his response to my last post about his behavior during medical mishaps. I publish it here for your perusal and include this photo showing how strong the man truly is. Each of those pigeons weighed fifty pounds.


Hello Betty fans! This is HOB (Husband Of Betty).

What a life I have living with The Muse! She weaves a tale of intrigue, captivating her audience while offering the impression of a woman harboring great conviction and emotional balance during these tough medical times.

While I can say that the facts are correct and she is all of what you read, there are some elements that are left out, perhaps due to perception, that will likely change your understanding of the story of my response to medical issues.

Let me explain my background – and Betty’s, to show how different our young lives were with regard to the reaction to illness. First of all let me mention that my father was the one who set the tone in my own family regarding medical matters. He was an only child, and his mother was very protective. Some would say over-protective. Betty would label those kinds of families hypochondriacs. His parents cherished every part of his anatomy and adorned the halls of their home with his pictures.

My father's mother was suspicious of every pimple and every rash that expressed the portent of something tragic. Each of these blemishes could potentially steal little Richard (father of HOB) from that protected world. Also my father’s family always had good health insurance, and surprisingly an abundance of life insurance, perhaps because death had been a common companion at some point in their history. All of this excessive concern with health was transmitted to HOB at a very young age, and it was reinforced at all times.

Contrast that to Betty’s life on the farm in which she was constantly attacked by germs (recall the cow incident, or the chicken attack, or even egg gathering). She lived out in the country, far away from doctors, and her family had no health insurance. Every doctor’s visit and every treated illness would extract a substantial price, literally taking food from the table.

In addition, there were five relatively healthy children to carry on the family tradition - and should one (the youngest and smallest Betty for example) unexpectedly fall into an uncovered well, or be impaled while driving the tractor at age 13, or be disabled from a horse kick when cleaning a stall, or even having some lingering malaise from drinking water from the well that the county inspector had condemned due to high levels of toxins in 1963, it really was a small matter compared to the larger scope of life. They had an abundance of children. Some level of suffering and disability was to be accepted. In fact, not much attention was given to tragedies. They occurred, were acknowledged and then the family moved on. Why linger in despair when there was so much to do?

Given our divergent backgrounds and radically different approaches to illness, the appearance of our first child – and at that time the ONE child –Sonny Boy, it took great effort for HOB to think like Betty , and what he called her laissez-faire attitude. During the early stages of parenting when HOB discovered there was no urine in the diaper, which for caring parents should have alerted them to imminent danger that was so efficiently expressed in The Medical Encyclopedia of Child Health, HOB had to affirm the only possible diagnosis listed – that of ACUTE KIDNEY FAILURE. This was medical evidence of the highest order.

Also, let me point out that Betty took some glee in her calmness during these incidents. You might remember how HOB began to turn white when he saw the skin being pierced by the curved needle? Betty may have forgotten to mention to her readers that moments before she had pointed to a significant volume of fresh blood pooling on the emergency room floor from a nearby trauma patient who was screaming in agony behind a translucent curtain divider. HOB was mixing the images in his mind of Sonny Boy, the trauma patient nearby, and also he was remembering his own not-so-insignificant blood-filled traumas from childhood.

Before you pass judgment on HOB, you need key background information that will allow a glimpse into HOB’s mind and the mind of Betty.

HOB’s mind was seasoned by years of training with an ultra vigilant parent. In contrast, Betty’s learned approach to the inevitable cycles of life was honed in the stark crucible of limited resources and her parent’s practical nature.

Between the two extremes you will find a middle road and a measure of balance.

60 comments:

Shan said...

Well said, HOB, but I still can't help giggling... just a little.

Jo said...

So true - we learn what we live.

And then we learn some new stuff after we start our own families.

Nice rebuttal!

Baby Sister said...

Oh. My. Gosh. I am laughing inside SOOOOO hard!!!! (my head hurts...no real laughing allowed...)

HOB, you're hilarious. Well done at defending yourself.

RawknRobynsGoneBlogWild said...

Betty's still the boss! She has my vote. What was the issue again? Sorry HOB. You do look mighty strong (and handsome), though.
xoRobyn

Michelle said...

HOB you are just as hilarious to read as Betty- fantastic, I am sure my husband will sit down and do the same thing someday to something I wrote.

TS Hendrik said...

Nice to hear the other side. But I'm still picturing that empty diaper and can't help but laugh.

Kazzy said...

My own hubby and I are still reconciling our different upbringings. :)

faye said...

Excellent rebuttal.......
HOB made a great case in his
defense...the man has wit to go with
those manly arms....yay !!

A girl needs 2 Talk said...

Oooh la la! HOB! :) :) :)

Firstly, hello! Secondly, that picture of you is really nice. :) Thirdly, we don't laugh at you. We know Betty is very happy with you, so that means you're nice. :)

Completing agreeing with all you have to say!

slommler said...

Ha! Well stated dear HOB! So glad to hear your side of the story and to meet you. you and your wife make great story tellers.
In my house it is about the same. Dr. John worries about everything to do with medical and I take it with a grain of salt. So it does make for some interesting conversations!! LOL!
Good luck on your next foray to the ER!
Hugs
SueAnn

DG at Diary of a Mad Bathroom said...

Another clear case of opposites attract.

Nat said...

Haha! Very well written HOB :)
Coming from an overprotective family background and being married to a man whose family are the complete opposite, I can empathise with the differences in opinion/panic level.

Brian said...

That sort of sounds like our family! Hey, HOB, ya done good, ya need your own blog!!!

Brian Miller said...

way to stand up HOB...

Elisabeth said...

Well the truth lies somewhere between, as you suggest, HOB.

And after all, you two find yourselves together. There has to be something in that. The complementarity effect, I say.

Great post, Betty and HOB. Thanks.

Madi and Mom said...

LOL
Oh my word HOB revenge is sweet right? This is hilarious....I too am an only child so I completely identify with you. IAs a child, I believe my dr. had a cot set up for us at her office because I was there frequently.

LOL BB you are WOMAN I hear you roar and you are braveto turn the blog over to HOB!!!
Thanks for the Friday LOL
Madi and Mom

Mamma has spoken said...

Oh HOB I'm just happy that there is a man out there that does want to go to the doctor AND have their children to go too. Even with having great health insurance, my hubby doesn't like it when any of us makes a trip to the doctor's office.

Gaston Studio said...

roflmao, hob, good rebuttal!

Old Kitty said...

Dearest HOB! :-)

Hello and great to meet you finally!!! You should guest post more often!

You two were so made for each other! The blogworld is a richer place with both your energies!

Take care
x

Old Kitty said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Out on the prairie said...

There are 2 sides of a coin, but when flipped it sometimes lands on one side more.I like the story, my Grandma in KS liked to fix things with boubon, kept only for extreme uses. The farm fix alls worked and when I finally got that tooth fixed after too long the dentist was amused at the bourbon fix.We had 6 kids.Fun post!

HulaBuns said...

HOB this was great! I agree with Old Kitty that you should guest post more often and that you two were made for each other!

While my hubs and I have a similar situation (opposites attract) - I still blame my craziness on him...Also, I'm certain that our being opposites contributes to our dysfunctional (but fun) communication. ;)

Joe Cap said...

Very eloquent post! I think that you should be blogging to, HOB.

Hilary said...

LOL.. good rebuttal. I'm sure you'll both be amused to see which one of you each of your kids take after... ;)

Alissa said...

Very funny. It reminds me a bit of my two parents who take a different approach to all things medical. My mom being the one who things hospital visits aren't necessary unless maybe a limb is hanging off and my father for whom a runny nose requires a trip to the doctor.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Nice try on the rebuttal, but the cat vommit incident is ingrained in my mind now and forever.
Hope your kids achieve that level of balance.

Marlene said...

Oh my......Bossy Betty, you have definitely met your match.

This was just too funny!! I love the 50 pound pigeons!!! HA HA HA HA!!

Patti Lacy said...

Two word meisters in the same family!

So fun!

Patti

The Empress said...

What does this man do for a living that he is so eloquent??

Here's what mine would say, "just tell 'em we're all different. End of story. Who reads this stuff anyway? There's enough books and newspapers without looking for more stuff to read out there. I don't get it."

Or something very close to that.

Catherine said...

Bwahahaha!!! OMG ~ I am laughing and laughing. You two are funny ~ must be a lot of fun living at your house! :)

Have a fantastic ~ medical emergency free ~ weekend!
xo Catherine

Writing Without Periods! said...

Love this post. Because it is so true and well said.
Mary

Pat Tillett said...

Great job! I'm thinking this should be a regular feature on BB's blog.

Pat Tillett said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sarah said...

It's official--poor Betty IS living with a hypochondriacs!

Aging Mommy said...

It's like reading Bossy Betty II -you may have had different upbringings and consequently different attitudes to health issues but HOB sounds like your twin :-)

Julie said...

I smell a HOB/Betty blogging team!!

What a great writer you are HOB. And thankyou for the very in depth explanation of why you are the way you are!! From now on I will try to keep that in mind as I read Betty's stories.

By the way, HOB, Betty rocks!!

Tracy said...

OMG, Betty, I told you it was hereditary but I can see it may be environmental as well.

Poetic Shutterbug said...

Sorry, I had to pick myself up and back on my chair. I fell off of it laughing so hard :D

Sandra said...

LOL! I love that HOB got his word in edgewise!

baygirl32 said...

very nice rebuttle, but I still can't help giggle

Ann said...

Indeed HOB there are two sides to every story. Now, knowing all the facts, I still find the whole thing hysterically funny. I think the two of you must make for a very well balanced team :)

Peggy K said...

Point/Counterpoint. Loving every word of it!! You two make a great team!! Can't wait til we hear the boys' side of this!!

The Chicken's Consigliere said...

Oh HOB, I have a better understanding now-thanks. I come from the Betty camp of an abundance of children. I once spent two weeks on the couch and lost 10 pounds because I couldn't eat before my parents were convinced I was sick enough to go to the doctor where I was diagnosed with a nasty case of strep throat. I understand why they call penicillin a miracle drug. I try to be more alert to my own kids but sometimes I have to bite my tongue over certain complaints, such as, "my leg hurts, I need to go to the doctor". Yeah, well, you played basketball preceeded by a month of nothing more strenuous than World of Warcraft....

Leanne said...

Oh, MY!!! I am thrilled to hear from HOB today, and I do believe the record has been set straight. Betty, it certainly takes a man of this caliber to keep up with you, dear friend. I think dinner table discussions would be so very entertaining in your home! LOVE this so much!

Daisy said...

Well, it's always good to hear the other side of the story. You two are quite a pair. HA! Thanks for sharing your point of view. :D

Cheeseboy said...

I am so, so much like your husband it is not even funny. I google every symptom my sons or I ever have. My wife just rolls her eyes.

Joey @ Big Teeth and Clouds said...

Sorry Betty, I'm on HOBs side on this one.

I feel I can do this because so many in blog land sided with my own husband (should we call him HOJ?) when we argued via blog over a rainbow.

I think it's completely understandable that his contrasting upbringing left him a bit more concerned with things like wet diapers and falling into wells.

Liz said...

so you finally pushed him to the tipping point, huh, Betty?

why was teasing about overprotective, hypochondriac-ish behavior the final straw?

Maria@BubblegumandDuctTape said...

I'm a new follower and I'll have to say that, after reading your response, it's great to get the other side of the story, from the other person, from their perspective. Now I'll have to go back and read what started all of this!! it sounds so interesting, I just have to know.

The Retired One said...

Well done, HOB and Betty,you too! All I can say is that sonny boy may need some serious therapy during his formative years. haaaa

Happy Homemaker said...

Damn! You write good!

Betty Manousos @ CUT AND DRY said...

Thanks for the giggles!!
Such an adorable HOB!

B xx

ds said...

Nice defense, HOB, but I'm glad she hasn't given you the book back. As the Nervous Parent of our household I had to stop reading stuff like that because it drove me mad...

Jimmy said...

Very well put HOB, defining the differences in your backgrounds and outlook on emergency situations from the number of expendable children in the families to the pool of blood on the emergency room floor that contributed to the cause for your removal is more than enough to qualify you for an occasional rebuttal or even a blog of your own, I would follow along if you start one--just don't tell Betty OK.

Now in an emergency situation if I were lying there with my leg cut off heaven forbid I think I would choose Betty to sew it back on but you would be welcome to read her the instructions from your book :)

Pat said...

Great rebuttal and you sure can write, I'll give you that. But I'm sticking with Betty, even though you are a handsome rascal at that!

Lourie said...

I think I am somewhere in the middle. And I have a bad habit of looking symptoms up on the internet. I think I have every disease known to man now. Haha.

Tabor said...

You both seem to be a good match. Congratulations on your long survival.

Fragrant Liar said...

Ha! I stand validated. You two were meant for each other. ;-))

VM Sehy Photography said...

I like your description of life on the farm. Both my parents grew up on farms and you pretty much nailed it. Tragedy happens. Move on. We have six more kids to fill in the gap in case something happens to one of them. However, my mom did end up with a serious illness that gave her a heart murmur. This meant I got penicillin shots if I so much as sneezed. So I ended up being closer to your wife in reaction to medical emergencies because I will avoid the doctor at all costs.

Saunar Buboy said...

Very Well said.. haha

PPLIC