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I was curious because my therapist never ended up calling and I was curious about the experiences of other people.

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17 hours ago, Banana Smurf said:

I was curious because my therapist never ended up calling and I was curious about the experiences of other people.

I just saw my pdoc online from home 2 days ago and it went really smoothly technology wise. I am not tech savvy either at all. All I had to do was download this Microsoft meetup thing program and click on it and enter it and I was on camera waiting for her to enter me into the “meeting” (I was early by like 10 minutes before our scheduled appointment time).

Also, I didn’t even know my laptop had a camera until about 5 days ago. So, yeah.

Also, just yesterday I met with my tdoc online with a program called Zoom. All I had to do was click on the link she emailed me and it took me to a page and I was on the camera on my laptop and waited for her to “join” and then she did a few minutes later. It worked well but it was slow or lagging I think is the term. I saw her but it was not good quality of video chatting. My pdoc visit with the Microsoft program was much clearer and had no lagging.

So there you have it. I now know how to do telemedicine from home and I am tech savvy (not, haha ;)).

If you have any more questions let me know. 

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'Mine worked okay---not great, but good enough.  I think that it wouldn't work if I were in crisis.  We had a hard time getting me loud enough and her loud enough without background noise entering the picture.  I think i may take my laptop into one of the bathrooms (the only place that doesn't have a window to the really loud traffic).  Or I might try the phone version, but I suck at facetime and I don't see this being any better. 

It's not ideal, but it's better than going months without an appointment.  And because I steal her after my work hours appointment day/slot, I don't want to give it up.

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Both my pdoc and tdoc use https://doxy.me/ which is a free, HIPAA-compliant telemedicine site. Tech-wise it's okay. I appreciate that I didn't have to download any software or create a login. They sent me a personalized URL. I went to the URL a couple minutes before my appointment, and there's kind of a "waiting room" - and it let them know I was there. When they were ready, they switched things on. The picture was clear and so was the audio, little to no lag. I wore a headset for the sessions, so that the mic wouldn't pick up the audio, but neither of them did that so the software seems to be smart enough to not require a headset.

So... tech-wise, it's okay. I hate it though.

They both wear glasses when they're doing this, I suppose because they need readers to see the screens - but they don't normally wear glasses in session. Also, these glasses then show reflections of the screens or windows or whatever so it's even harder to see their eyes.

I hate that I can't see their whole body. I rarely look at my tdoc's face (I tend to study her shoes), but now there's no choice.

And when I try to talk about something hard... I can't feel them in the room. So I'm still alone, and that sucks.

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I had my first session earlier this week, and didn't care for it. The technology was okay, although for some reason my microphone wasn't working, so we had a phone call going at the same time. There was no lag between the phone and the computer screen, so that was good. But I still didn't like it - all the unspoken information wasn't transmitted in either direction. I have to do video conferencing at work all the time (and have for years), and I don't like it there, either.

The only good thing that may come of it is that my pdoc might introduce me to his two cats next week, which would be great! Otherwise, I'm hoping we can soon go back to in-person visits.

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2 hours ago, Geek said:

I hate that I can't see their whole body. I rarely look at my tdoc's face (I tend to study her shoes), but now there's no choice.

therapy is kind of a full body experience for me that involves very little eye contact. i curl up in my chair and stare at the paintings in her office when we talk about things that make me feel vulnerable, and begin to uncurl as it winds down. it's hard to look at her when we're doing more intense work.

i do EMDR with tdoc. it just occurred to me that that probably won't work via phone or video call. ugh.

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I had my second visit with my pdoc today (he does therapy, too), and I disliked it as much, if not more, than I did the first time. The technology worked okay, but I really need to be in the same room with him. It's very unsatisfying to just have a little picture of his head.

Of course, part of the problem is that I live alone and don't have a very active social life, so my weekly pdoc appointments have an outsize importance for me. The only good thing is that the pdoc said today that he didn't like it either, and was looking forward to getting back to in-person visits.

The other big problem for me is that I feel like I can bullshit him over the screen, which I definitely can't get away with in person. It defeats the whole purpose to lie to him, of course, but the temptation is nearly overwhelming. I'll bring it up as a topic of discussion next week, so he will be better able to keep me on the straight and narrow.

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Pdoc (with whom I do therapy) and I have done two telephone sessions. I think we could do video if I want but that would make me uncomfortable. I tend to find Pdoc’s phone voice soothing from times we have talked between meetings during a crisis, so I don’t mind the phone therapy too much. Yesterday I put him on speakerphone because I was sitting in my car cleaning things while talking to him (no privacy in the house). I was sanitizing my keys and the steering wheel and as much of the phone as I could do without hanging up on him, so that was a little weird.

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On 3/26/2020 at 3:41 PM, Banana Smurf said:

I was curious because my therapist never ended up calling and I was curious about the experiences of other people.

That's crappy of them, Banana Smurf.  Did they get back to you and apologize? 

 

On 3/28/2020 at 9:48 PM, Catnapper said:

The only good thing that may come of it is that my pdoc might introduce me to his two cats next week, which would be great! Otherwise, I'm hoping we can soon go back to in-person visits.

Bonus, Catnapper! 

My cat has commented audibly on some of my telephone sessions.  I hope my Drs appreciate that.  :D

I am loving not having to travel to my psychiatrist's office, as it was an extremely stressful  and inconvenient endeavor using transportation services for half a freaking day for a 15-minute med check.

My old therapist changed offices and terminated me in early March, so I still don't know what my new therapist looks like since we do telephone-only therapy.  It's weird but I'm grateful that I got referred at all and am able to continue therapy.

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17 hours ago, fantod said:

That's crappy of them, Banana Smurf.  Did they get back to you and apologize? 

 

Bonus, Catnapper! 

My cat has commented audibly on some of my telephone sessions.  I hope my Drs appreciate that.  :D

I am loving not having to travel to my psychiatrist's office, as it was an extremely stressful  and inconvenient endeavor using transportation services for half a freaking day for a 15-minute med check.

My old therapist changed offices and terminated me in early March, so I still don't know what my new therapist looks like since we do telephone-only therapy.  It's weird but I'm grateful that I got referred at all and am able to continue therapy.

No, and I'm not sure how to get in touch with someone. I'm not sure she's seeing anyone right now, though, and her office is usually pretty bad at communication. 

I called my school for a counselor in the meantime, but it's not really been much working on issues directly, more how they affect how I function.  I think I'll ask my pdoc what to do when he calls.  

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They sound like they don't really have their act together at that therapist's office, Banana Smurf.  I'm sorry.  It's good that you're advocating for yourself by talking with the school counselor and planning to speak with your pdoc. 

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my pdoc is calling me for a med check in half an hour, and then this afternoon i'm having a therapy session via zoom. 

i had completely forgot about this possibility, but this is activating a mostly-dormant phone phobia of mine that was quite bad as a teenager. i've gotten much better at using the phone and generally communicating in non-face-to-face ways, but it's like i'm back at square one suddenly. i'm feeling very afraid and nervous for this phone call, and apprehensive about the zoom meeting.

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It felt really weird at first to do telepsychology with my tdoc. After I spent a few sessions talking about how it was weird, and why it was weird, I got used to it, and now it doesn't bother me at much.

I'd say at first it felt harder to connect, and harder to open up. That's not an issue now.

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I'm still meeting weekly with my pdoc for meds and therapy, and still dislike it, although it's better than nothing. The only good thing is that he introduced me to his two cats this week, which was great as I am a huge cat lover. We have briefly talked about his cats a few times before, so it was nice to see them in person (more or less). The best part was hearing him use the voice he uses to call his cats - it was very charming, and made him seem more human somehow. 

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I’ve been helping run online support groups, and the best part is always meeting people’s pets. I particularly enjoy the ones who get their faces right up in there and take over the camera.

Some time ago my dog Agnes discovered that if she licks the screen of my iPad, she can usually get the picture to change. So I had to stop taking Zooms sitting on the living room floor with my iPad on the coffee table.

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@Gearhead Smart dog!

I'm with the rest of you.  Videotherapy is better than nothing but not the same as in-person visits.  I don't get out of the house enough and my pdoc visits tend to be my social outings for the week.  On the one hand, now I can have therapy without brushing my teeth or changing out of my pyjamas, but on the other, I miss the in-person connection.  Videotherapy feels less meaningful and real.

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16 hours ago, Gearhead said:

I’ve been helping run online support groups, and the best part is always meeting people’s pets. I particularly enjoy the ones who get their faces right up in there and take over the camera.

Some time ago my dog Agnes discovered that if she licks the screen of my iPad, she can usually get the picture to change. So I had to stop taking Zooms sitting on the living room floor with my iPad on the coffee table.

This is hilarious!!! Go Agnes!!!  🙂

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