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A Piece of My Mind
November 21, 2007

Perceptions

Author Affiliations
 

A Piece of My Mind Section Editor: Roxanne K. Young, Associate Editor.

JAMA. 2007;298(19):2237. doi:10.1001/jama.298.19.2237

“So, how old are you anyway? I just ask because you look really young, and I want to know that you have enough experience to handle my case.” The young woman who said this smiled serenely at me as we made our way to my office for the admission interview. In fact, I was only three days older than she and a month away from our 27th birthdays, a fact that had struck me when I skimmed her psychiatric records.

“We're the same age,” I said, in what I hoped was a confident tone, and opened the door to my office. “But I assure you I have some experience and enough supervision to help you in whatever way I can.” She smirked, and although I made it through the interview, I too doubted the veracity of my statement. Plagued with misgivings, I asked myself if I should have told her my age and whether in my inexperience as a psychiatry PGY-2 resident, I actually did have anything to offer a contemporary.

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