DOCS. And then there's my practitioners: my internist of 20 years (undergraduate, Amherst; medical school, Georgetown) who practices thoughtful but very traditional medicine. He doesn't have any doubt about the existence of EI/MCS, counts a coupla dozen of patients in his practice as sufferers from it—and knows he can do little to help—no quack making money off a credulous female. He has, however, recommended me to reputable MDs into alternative healing modalities such as homeopathy, for this is just the sort of ailment Western medicine can do nothing for, so that alternative means have to be tried. He has seen me walk in a couple different times over the years at my stripped sick weight of 15 pounds under my Eastern European peasant genotypic set-point, shaking with the Parkinsons'-like symptoms I get when I am acutely ill. He doesn't doubt the very-present symptoms I present. He has been practicing medicine long enough to know that people have all kinds of intolerances and reactions and susceptibilities; and he has no problem accepting mine. Same same with trusting that I know the difference between when I am stressed out (the six-month period when I had minor surgery, my father died, my cat died, my car blew up, I was involved in a vicious menage-a-trois, my boss was trying to fire me before I departed for grad school and the uncertainty of freelancing—but my EI wasn't acting up) and when I am sick (as when I moved to Charleston, SC with my POSSLQ of the time: downwind from a paper mill, downriver from a plastics factory, and my fellah then bought a new car. Within a month I was incapicitated and housebound). Most folks can similarly tell the difference between having the flu, as opposed to having the jumpy belly/nervous stomach attendant on a bad job.

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