Now in her mid-40s, she said she behaved as she had been taught during residency and fellowship training.
“I was trained by all men who walked into the room and barked, ‘Get the NG [nasogastric] tube working.’ “ One time, she recalled, her mentor threw an instrument at her in the OR. “I never had a female mentor, and what I was told when I went into surgery as a woman was, ‘You’ve got to be tough.’ I think men get away with a lot more than women” when it comes to bad behavior.
She arrived in Nashville feeling as though she was being “sent away and punished” but said that the program helped her better regulate her emotions and soften her brusque demeanor.
“It’s really like group therapy,” she said. “The most powerful part was listening to other people’s stories and telling my story.” Role-playing the incident was particularly hard.
The course has helped her immensely, she said, teaching her relaxation and self-monitoring skills and improving her outlook about her practice. “I was not functioning well, but I did not realize it.”