Friday, May 5, 2017


I never thought I would become one of those bloggers who went MIA. A lot of things have played into it, including not wanting to blog using the hospital or clinic computers, being super busy and have little desire to come home and do anything that was not work related. Even the work related stuff I sometimes had no energy or desire to do. I was behind on my work for months and only just caught up.

I have had serious issues with my residency program with regards to faculty and staff. There were a lot of things that happened that made it clear I wasn't treated the same as the other residents. There was a time last year where everyday there was something. I was so baffled as to what was going on and why. Little things were blown out of proportion and attributed to me. People perceived things how they wanted and it was accepted by the program director as the truth without ever hearing from me.

I remember one Saturday or Sunday after I was done with my 12 hr shift, I drove to my "adopted" auntie's house and just cried. That was the day that my eyes started opening to what was really going on. She is a Nigerian college professor and recognized what I was telling her. She said things that had I experienced without me even telling her. Even though I didn't feel better, talking to her helped me stop feeling like I was going crazy, because I had been scratching my head trying to understand what was going on and nothing was making sense. To give you an idea of what I am talking about, one of my co-residents had made a comment around that time that she felt like I was being hazed.

Well, things got worse. I am not someone who lets people walk over me so they had a challenge because I brought everything they did to my program director's attention. He was part of the problem too, so I went higher. There recently was a meeting where long story short, they admitted they haven't always handled things correctly with me, let's start afresh, clean slate. Uh hum.

As I sit here typing this I have been denied time off to go to a job interview. I can't get anytime of until July 10th as if this job will be reserved for me. This was something that was initially approved because "you guys are usually allowed time off for job interviews". Then her "boss" who was one of the people who started the campaign against me last year, sent me an email yesterday stating otherwise. When I spoke to the initial person that had approved it, it was very clear that she was flustered and did not know what to say to me. I understood what was happening so I told her it was fine. I can go to my doctor's appointment which is not about anything life threatening but I can't go for a job interview?  Talk about day light witchcraft.

Because I had never encountered anything like this before, I didn't always handle things well. I would get emotional and feel bad and waste time crying and talking to people who had no intention of helping me. Now I know what not to waste my energy on. I was upset about it yesterday and feel a bit down today. I could go to the top and get them to intervene but I'm picking my battles, although this one is not over.

The one thing that has always been in my favor is that my patients love me, both patients I meet in the hospital and my clinic patient. Not a single faculty can has anything bad to say about my patient care. That's one thing they can't control. So when I get frustrated, I focus on that.

I have said it openly to the chief resident and anyone who would listen, I would never encourage a black female of whatever origin to come to this program. I wish I had paid more attention to race and racial issues while I was applying to residency, I never would have ranked this program number 10, talkless of number one. While I am not happy that this has been my experience, I have very recently chosen to learn from this. To stop being horrified that people can hate your guts but still relate with you like they love you. The average naija person won't talk to you if they don't like you, If they have to work with you they will be civil and professional, but to go as far as acting like you are friends, is something I have never encountered before and it scares me. I can't tell based on how people treat me if they really like me or can't stand me and it's a very uncomfortable feeling.


  1. hey sting, ehugs. it's because of your race and nothing else. you just have to hang nin there till you finish.i have been through this at my former work place being a black woman. I just say "fake it till you make it"

  2. I was so excited that you finally put up a new post, but was so sad and mad for you after I read it!!! Racism is very much alive in this country and I can relate with what you're going through. I experience it everyday at work, but you come to a point where you learn to play the game, so to speak. You learn like AB did and "fake it till you make it ". You learn to put your game face on and never let them see you sweat or flustered.
    You're a smart lady and I know you can make it through. My thoughts and prayers are with you, continue to stay strong and encouraged.

  3. I'm so mad they are treating you this way.

    Working in America as a black person isn't easy moreso as a Nigerian. Hang in there.
    Kpata kpata schedule a doctor's appointment on the day of your interview or just call in sick.

    These same people will probably shaft you at the end of the residency so above all be loyal to yourself.

  4. Blessings I will like to tell you I don't know how you feel. That would be a bold faced lie! Two words: psychic torture. That is what the experience is called along with self-alienation (experience promotes) in addition to feeling and being displaced. The other pieces that supports the rupture is the culture and traditions that is embedded in our thinking that impacts the way we think, see, act and analyze ourselves, people and our relation to it all in the context of our place in the world.
    As people of African descent no one prepares you for this outside of your world of black governance where your understanding is in alignment - cultural, spiritual, political, soco-economical etc. Those of us who experience it don't know how to articulate it in a way that not only guards our brothers and sisters but also give them valuable tools to navigate the the world of "othering," "inferior designating" designed to place them exactly where you are. It is the psychological deconstruction of your mind (psychic torture). To deliberately deconstruct and reconstruct you into whom the determinately designate who you ought to be according to their racist construct. The key, staying rooted in Your authenticness by remembering the strength and power of your ancestors running through your veins and dancing on the soles of your feet as a birth right and not as appropriation. Know with unwavering certainty that you cannot play small and hide your excellence in order to make others feel bigger and supposedly Superior. This will not serve you it will only further their agenda to ensure your mediocrity by which will suit the comfortably. Be ever mindful to guard your mind because if you are not careful you will internalize those toxic ideologies that will turn you against yourself (self-negation) seeing the color of yours in as part of the problem.

    Understand, you cannot change them. You can only change you by creating a shift that allows you to stay authentically who you are while accomplishing what is required for you to do what you feel you were ordained to do without losing your center. Youndo not have to give up/abandon your indigenous knowledges in order to attain another, rather you marry them, they can coexist in the landscape of you. People choose to be who they are because it is what serves them, your hurt feelings and moral is of no consequence. Do not let that interrupt your journey and take you off your path. Your are responsible for you. You are your responsibility.

    As we say in Trinidad, "shit will happen regardless, so walk with a shovel on your back and be prepared to move that shit out of your path so you can get on about your business."

    Mercy I wrote a book. I hope what I've shared helps.

    1. I was just reading and going Oh my God, oh my God, barely able to sit still while reading ur comment.

      "To deliberately deconstruct and reconstruct you into whom the determinately designate who you ought to be according to their racist construct"

      I told the medical director of our clinic that she wants me to be Caucasian and I'm not Caucasian. I said u need to go learn about Nigerians and eye contact. She pretty much said, well u r here now.

      I had to tell her to tell me how she wants me to be because she complained about the tone of my voice, facial expressions, eye contact, body language. I wanted to scream.

      I have shed tears just for being myself. Thank you so much for your comment. I knew I wasn't crazy.

  5. Being there, done that, just make sure they don't fire you. I have seen that happened before. If you can't get time to interview, u will not be able to start work on time but your job will wait. Look for jobs with phone interviews initially, there are some that will also interview on weekends. If they don't let you do interviews, u need to be suspicious that they might be plotting to fire u before the end of the program. I have seen that before. People are quick to say that u must be doing something wrong otherwise they can't all be against, well I got it because I have been in that situation before. Also, when you start to work it is a different story, even stupid MA and nurse managers will be rude to you. It gets more frustrating when the people that are supposed to be voice of reasoning are actually your skeptics. The comforting truth is that there is always a better option for a doctor, just make sure you graduate. Goodluck!

    1. The director graduate medical education of all the residency programs affiliated with the hospital happens to be my med school mentor. He sees what is going on and has told me not to worry, that no one can fire me without his say-so and it's not going to happen. He was so upset when he heard what has been happening. He's not black but straight up told me that the area my program is located is not conducive to African Americans. I blame my naivete.

  6. This post made me so sad and angry all at once. Hang in there Sting!! They can't break you! You're bigger than them. Stay strong! Stay focused! And keep in mind all that Rhapsody Said!!
    Praying for you! x


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