My massage therapist and me, that is.
Oh, she hurts me. Which is unfortunate, because she works out of the building I live in, so all I have to do for a massage is stick some slippers on and wander downstairs. No shoes, no coat, no car. It's lovely.
Until she touches me.
I've taken to telling her, every single time I go in and even if I'm feeling really good, that I'm in a major flare and experiencing severe pain, so please, please be gentle.
"Okay," she'll say. "I'll go really easy today."
Then I lay down and she basically beats me to a pulp. She digs her fingertips into places I didn't even know it was possible to feel pain; she pokes at my defibrillator (OW, and, WHY?) until once, I actually yelped (and yes, I've told her not to). It's so painful I hold my breath through most of the massage; hardly the most relaxing way to spend an hour. It would be different if I felt better afterwards, but I just feel beat up.
I've heard nothing but good things about this woman. I have friends who swear by her and won't see anyone else. And I've tried talking to her about it, but she truly does think her way is best. I get the feeling she doesn't quite believe I have RA; that she thinks all I need is toughening up.
So I'm leaving her and going back to the massage therapist I used to see when I was a student. This woman calms me down instantly, which is a feat in itself because I tend to be a little hyper. She understands arthritis, she knows where I hurt and never does anything without asking first. She also knows the whole defibrillator story, and she knows how it's healed, where it hurts and where I'm not as strong as I should be.
Basically, I'm giving up. Massage Therapist A doesn't get rheumatoid arthritis (or the fact that you shouldn't poke at people's submuscular devices) and I don't suppose she ever will.
Have you been in a similar situation? Did you keep trying to explain, or just decide not to bother?