Every Christine I have ever met, I hated. It’s funny cause one of my best friend’s name is Christina but it’s totally different. Her name ends in an A and the others all end in E. Don’t be offended if this is your name. It really has nothing to do with the name itself. But the first Christine I met in my entire life was a judgemental bitch, the next one was a thief and a liar and ripped off a bunch of nice guys by playing the “vulnerable and broke” card, the next one went after my husband, and the one after that, well, this is why I am writing about her in this story. She is a patient. No, actually, she WAS a patient. For years. I helped her with her kid when she got hit with rocks by some asshole kid in the school playground. I fixed the daughter up, helped Christine deal with the school and the teachers to make sure the other kid was properly disciplined, and patched up her broken teeth and damaged face. Then later on, on a weekend, when Christine had an abscess and emailed in extreme pain, I ran to the office to help her get out of pain and do the root canal that was needed to get her comfortable. For years, I treated her, educated her and her kids on oral hygiene, and basically did what all of us do: work our ass off for our patients, put up with endless “my insurance only covers ….”, listen to how they would rather give birth than have dental work done, run the business of managing our practice, and go home exhausted to our families, if we are lucky enough to have one.

Then in April, Christine comes in for a routine cleaning after missing 2 years of cleaning appointments, and emails me after the cleaning claiming my hygienist over-billed her. She complained about how long my hygienist took to open the sterilized cassette, bitched about how slow she was at cleaning her teeth, and claimed that her bill did not reflect the time that was spent on scaling. So what would you do? I refund her a half unit of scale in good faith, thinking that would be the end of it. But any of you who have met a Christine before, you know exactly where this is going. To hell.

It’s been 6 months now, and I get an email from her each and every Monday morning like clock work. Complaining about something else. Trying to find something she can file a complaint against me sooner or later. She is setting me up. She knows it; and I know it. But until it actually happens, I have to put up with her constant bullshit. I have spent endless hours replying to her, reviewing her chart, going through it with a fine-tooth comb (haha, that’s a funny analogy), and thinking I have answered all of her ridiculous questions. But then another Monday comes around and there she is in my mailbox again. Questioning another bill, or another chart entry, another note in her clinical chart. After requesting and receiving her entire chart (clinical notes, xrays, intra-oral photos, and ledger) she is going through it trying to find something, anything, that she can get me on. I don’t really know why because most of her appointments to my office for the past 9 years were insignificant. She has been a patient for 9 years and aside from cleanings and maybe a filling or two, plus the daughter’s injury on the playground, and that root canal, her visits to my office have been routine and basic. So God only knows what’s up her ass and what got her so riled and I will likely never know because it probably has nothing to do with me to begin with. She is clearly on a mission to destroy one dentist after another because, well I can only guess, someone did something to her and clearly damaged her psyche beyond recognition. A good friend of mine who is in the security business did some digging for me and found that she has some website or blog about how businesses rip you off. So she goes place to place, finds something minor wrong, tears it apart, makes it way bigger than it is, then makes it a conspiracy against the consumer, and well, now you are f%$#ked cause you happened to be her next target.

I will never understand why some people are like this. A dog with a bone. Literally. I am her bone and she is not letting go. I showed her emails to a friend of mine who is a lawyer and he said he has never seen someone like this (and he has been in practice for 47 years!). Yep, I attract the crazies, that’s for sure. That’s what everyone at work tells me. They all say they have worked with many dentists but I definitely attract the insane. Don’t get me wrong. 90% of my patients are like amazing, but there is maybe 1% to 5%, I don’t know, that are, well, Christines, but to a lesser degree. I think every dentist can relate to this. If you have been in practice long enough, you have encountered, or been complained about, by one of these people. And stress and nuisance aside, these people steel years off our lives after putting us through the grinder. And most times, it has nothing to do with us. They are damaged, broken, empty shells of human skin and bones, void of logic or feelings, with too much time and too much access to the internet. They believe they have been wronged and must rid the world of evil, starting with their dentist. If, however, you are “lucky” enough to get a crappy review, you will find that you are not the only one. They have reviewed, crapped on, and bitched about every one they come in contact with. Just look at the google reviews they post. They are endlessly one star negative rants from one place to another, usually small one owner, hard working businesses that just happened to not put enough lemon into her water, or were 5 minutes late on her delivery. Whatever it is, they are NEVER happy. Christines are never happy and are fuelled by other’s suffering so they go on these missions to rid the world of whoever pissed them off. I remember reading a sign a while ago that said: “if you think everyone around you is crazy, maybe you are the one that’s crazy”. So true. I am going to shed some light on this and help you if you have a Christine in your practice or if you have had disciplinary action filed against you by one of her flock. Be respectful, be transparent, answer their questions, don’t put up with crap, but always come across helpful and calm. In the end, whether or not they report you, you will always come ahead of the game staying calm and being helpful giving them the benefit of the doubt. As my lawyer friend says, watch what you say and assume they just need clarification. In the end, there is nothing you can do if they decide to screw you, but staying calm through this process will save you a ton of aggravation. Also, when this is said and done, and it could be years, you will look back on this and realize it wasn’t as big as you made it out to be. We always do this; human beings are emotional creatures. We build things up so much and we over-react in the moment, but when we look back years later, we realize had we stayed calm, it really wasn’t as bad as we made it out to be. And never quite as catastrophic.

So if you have a Christine, and you can tell who she is before this escalates, dismiss her from your practice – do it properly, however, and be careful. Consult a lawyer to make sure you have done this right or contact us at UPB Dental Academy to help you. If she is already become a nightmare for you, get in touch with me so I can help you make this better. From one hard working dentist to another, we should always have each other’s back and I am sad to say that in the past decade, I have seen a huge decline of that type of professional support. I have seen dentists throw other dentists under the bus, and that’s the one thing I will never understand because there is enough shit out there that we should have each other’s backs but that it not always the case (I have been under the bus a few times lol), without knowing the full story. But just know, I will have your back. I will help you manage and maneuver through the shit show of Christines, because I know how hard you work, how much you stress, and how difficult being a dentist and running a practice can be. Having been through the worst of it, and wishing I had someone to help and guide me, I want to be that for anyone who is suffering with this type of situation. Today is just one of those days. Tomorrow will be much better. But feel free to contact us so you can get some help, advice, and be able to know you are not alone in the crazy battle of “con artist vs dentist”.