Monday, July 29, 2013

Loyalty

"My undying fealty to you sir!"


I have a condition called extreme loyalty.  

Maybe it was the way I was brought up to always respect authority that led to this lifelong condition I have of extreme loyalty.  Wether my loyalty is to friends who have let me down, or a job that is no longer good for me or even a barber that doesn't cut my hair the way I like my hair cut.

I have a big problem changing my loyalty to whoever I happen to be attached to at the moment.

My last test of loyalty was changing barbers.  I had to change barbers because my old barber was only on duty a few days a week.  Plus, she is located down the ever more dangerous Route One (the deadly main thoroughfare to Rehoboth Beach which has already claimed three lives this season).  

I finally made the break last month and started to see a new barber in Lewes.  She cuts my hair just as well plus I have lessened my exposure to the Mad Max drivers on Route One.  Mission accomplished although I continue to feel guilty by abandoning my barber Gail without so much as a "Goodbye."  I just know she tears up whenever she thinks of my absence. 

Now my latest test is changing dentists.  I have a perfectly good dentist located even further down Route One.  He is an excellent dentist, perhaps the best I've ever had. He always keeps my appointments on time.  His office is spotless.  His equipment (dental) is state of the art and up to date.  He is friendly and takes time to talk to me.  I only have two problems with him.  HE.IS.EXPENSIVE.  Buy hey, I think most dentists are expensive.  The other problem is that his office doesn't submit my insurance claims.  I have to deal directly with the insurance company myself which over the past two years has been extremely frustrating.  Either they make my payment directly to his office (which they have done numerous times) or they claim they haven't received my claim.  I just had to call them again this morning about a May 23rd, claim.  

A few weeks ago my co-worker told me of a new dental office he had some of his dental work. He mentioned that not only were the dentists cute (we're both gay, we like good-looking men working on our mouths - what can I say?) but more important was their office is located in Milton, only a few miles up the road.

I love Milton.  I like to do business in Milton.  So close, easy parking and stress free driving UP Route One, away from the madness of the Horde going south on Route One to Rehoboth and destinations beyond.  Plus, and this is a big PLUS, they submit the dental insurance paper work.  

So folks, I'm considering changing dentists but that old guilty feeling is sweeping over me again.  What will my old dentist think when I tell him I'm seeing a new dentist? 

Help me get rid of this guilty feeling!



18 comments:

  1. Ron,

    Try to remember this is a business relationship. They provide a service to you for a fee. If circumstances arise that make their service less attractive to you or needed by you there should be no guilt felt in severing that association. If you told them their fee was too high and you were going to pay them less than what they asked, do you think they would have so much loyalty to you that they would accept it? In some cases for a long time customer they might if the proffered cut wasn't too high, but in most cases probably not.

    Or suppose they decided that business would be more profitable if they relocated to another state? Do you think they would stay put out of loyalty to you?

    They may like you as a person and you them, but if you leave what they will really miss is the payment, not the body. It's business, not personal.

    Does that help you with your guilt?

    Lar

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    1. Lar,

      All excellent points. You're right, looking at the situation from their angle I have no doubt they would relocated their business or do other things if it was to their advantage. Yes, your viewpoint on this situation does help me with my guilt. I'm just one of those guys who wants everyone to like me.

      Ron

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    2. But, Ron, everyone does!

      Pat

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    3. Oh Pat, not everyone likes me. Just this morning Bill spent a couple of hours with a former friend of ours. He dropped me but he still likes Bill. This former friend took offense to several of my blog postings and "dismissed" me as a friend. Believe me, there are more than a few folks (down here) who don't like me. Probably because I speak my mind and don't take direction from them.

      Ron

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  2. Ron:

    "I just know she tears up whenever she thinks of my absence." God, you make me laugh. Your funniest yet for me was - "that's my voice, no wonder I don't have any friends." I'm certain you're going to get some comedy coming at you after this one.

    Geez - the dentist relationship is a hard one to break. I've even had my dentist over for dinner. However, the reasons you give about the travel (possible accidents), the insurance business, the convenience of staying in Milton - are reasonable explanations. I just hope you get the same good treatment at the new location.

    As for barbers (in my case) I go pretty regularly to one nearby - but I don't have a major loyalty issue with this profession. Cutting my hair is like mowing a lawn. No special treatment - just a # 1 blade.

    Pat

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    1. Pat,

      You get my humor! Thanks!

      My dentist relationship is harder to break than my barber relationship. I do like my dentist but I hate traveling down Route One to him and taking care of my own insurance billing. At this time of my life I want to lower my stress level. I think the cost will be about the same but getting to and from the dentist and handling the insurance will be a LOT less stressful.

      Ron

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  3. Ron,

    Loyalty is such a good trait and I try to practice most of the time. I was referred to my LAST dentist by a friend and several co-workers because he was soooo awesome that they would practically lay down their lives for him. Me not so much. Besides a fear of dentists I was genetically blessed? with bad teeth and have spent in the last 30 or so years enough money to purchase a small car. Awsome a) had bad breath b) just made a mess of what was left of the teeth I had and c) was very expensive. I stayed with him for nearly 10 years and finally gave up on him and went to a wonderful and even more expensive dentist to get the job done right meaning full uppers and partial lowers. Estimated cost in the area of 10K. Although his office was just up the street and I did pay nearly 5K for the lowers I couldn't justify the other 5K so I went to Affordable Dentures who did the whole upper portion for 1500. Had to travel further into another city but they actually did an excellent job and all follow up appointments for adjustments etc. were included. I feel guilty that I dumped the dentist up the street but money sometimes talks.

    Oh by the way, I saw the Weinermobile in South Philly around the Food Distribution Center when I was in my twenties and was just as excited as you when you were a kid. I dunno, I guess there will always be a kid in us no matter how old we get.

    Jack

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  4. Jack,

    Same here, I've paid a LOT of money over the years for dental care. A LOT. I stop at implants though. I have several partials and I'm trying to hang onto the rest of my teeth now. Thankfully, I don't have the bad breath problem.

    Wasn't seeing the Wienermoble exciting? I loved it! I would have loved to have taken a ride in it.

    Ron

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  5. You received so many good comments on this one that I have nothing to add. Larry (first comment) said it best. These are all business people and "loyalty" isn't in their vocabulary.
    Few people are as thoughtful as you are, Ron. Loyalty, thoughtfulness, and goodness seem to be nearly extinct in this ruthless world.

    When I was about 26 I had my very first root canal from the cutest dentist on earth (this was in California). He was so incredibly handsome that it scared me. And he was young - - much younger than my 26. I had a strong feeling that this was HIS first root canal, too. He was so careful and gentle that I almost fell in love.
    I never knew a root canal could almost be pleasurable - - but, then, again, I'm a romantic masochist.....

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    1. Jon,

      You are right, business people "loyalty" isn't in their vocabulary.

      Your story about your California dentist was very funny. I had a similar experience with a GP doctor I had to use for my HMO plan. I couldn't believe how gorgeous he was. I was ready to have my prostate checked every time I saw him. He never did it! But when I had the women doctors and nurse practitioners they ALWAYS got the rubber glove out. And a couple of times they even checked my testicles. What was that all about? But the gorgeous doctor? Never once. Then I left my banking job and lost him as my GP.

      So you're an "romantic masochist?". No wonder you have a large straight, middle aged female following.

      Ron

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  6. I got rid of my doctors last year (primary care and GYN). they kept me waiting, they were rude, they did not want to change with the times. the MD I have now is FABU! do I feel guilty? HELL NO! my time is just as valuable.

    think of it this way, ron - it's your money, you have a right to spend it as YOU choose.

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    1. You're absolutely right Anne Marie! I just have to overcome this default position I have of staying "loyal". I wonder where I got this from, probably my Mother. She always respected authority, not matter what.

      Ron

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    2. Anne Marie, the same thing for me. My internist of many years kept me waiting while he saw multiple pharmaceutical sales people. I walked out of his office that day without seeing him, telling the receptionist why. That was four years ago. Then I found the best internist in the city. If his assistants are busy with other patients, he will come out to the waiting room to get me to keep me from waiting!

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    3. Talking about expensive dentists, fifty years ago I had a dentist in Miami, who insisted on using only gold inlays. I will have to say they are still in place after all these years with no further problems. My current dentist marvels at the gold in my mouth; he is reasonable, and the office always does all the insurance billing. Insurance pays all routine activity in full, so I rarely get a bill from him.

      BUT THIS IS MY QUESTION: My request is to be cremated when I die. All that gold should melt and go to the bottom of my ashes. Will my sons get it? Should they ask for it? With the price of gold now, that could help pay for cremating me.

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    4. Gold lasts forever David. You had a good dentist!

      Ron

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  7. I've changed dentists several times. I feel little or no loyalty, especially when I leave their office feeling like they've jackhammered my mouth - all for a simple cleaning. Now I like the hygienist and dentist I use, so I will probably be loyal to them until such time as they make me miserable!
    Peace <3
    Jay

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    1. Jay,

      I like my current dentist but I am annoyed that he doesn't have his office take care of billing my dental insurance program. For what he charges me, that's the least he could do. I always have problems with billing the dental insurance company. Every time except twice, they sent the payment to his office even though there is a Day-Glo sticker that says "PAY INSURED." I have to call and go through the telephone menu options. The last time they paid him twice! So frustrating.

      Ron

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    Dental Care in Milton - Milton Dentsits

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