Don’t be nice, it’s scary



I’ve been going to this dentist for a while now, I found the office on Angie’s list years ago when I was searching for someone I could feel comfortable with….I hate the dentist and I hate sitting in the dentists chair. Those shiny little metal hooks, all those instruments lined up ready to gouge me when I least expect it….. It’s terrifying.

So when I started going to this office for my cleanings, I was happy to find that the dentist and all his staff are incredibly gentle and nice. They make sure I’m comfortable, explain everything they are going to do before they do it, and give me time to deal with my fear of having them poking around in my mouth.

But, I think I’m going to quit. I’ve been thinking about it for a while now…. something about that office bothers me.

They are very nice. Actually, TOO nice…..



There is something twilight zone-ish about walking in and having everyone, EVERYONE ask me about a vacation I took months ago, after my last visit. It’s not just “Oh hey, didn’t you say you were going on a trip, how was it?”

No…. it’s “Oh, how was Disney with the kids? You were going to stay at the Dolphin hotel, right? I heard it rained that weekend, 4 months ago…. cause I was just at home thinking about you guys on your vacation and decided to track the weather the whole time you were in Florida so we’d have something to talk about when you came in for your next cleaning…”

And it’s the whole office. They ALL know. It freaks me out.

Obviously they take note of what we talk about,  so the patient feels like they are important and cared about….  I should be thrilled that I’m treated so well, that they try so hard to make me feel like what I say to them really matters, as I chat around the pair of hands stuffed in my mouth…

This happens every visit. I walk in and it’s like these people are my best friends. But not my real, genuine best friends. It feels too Stepfordy. Too perfect. Something is wrong. NO ONE is that nice all the time.

On the one hand I really want to know how to get my own staff to this level of polite perfection, I would love them to answer the phone by telling everyone what a great day they’re having!  On the other hand, I feel if I dig too deep, ask too many questions, they might lock me in a back room never to be seen again. It’s how my mind works. You’re treating me too well, what are you hiding???


3 thoughts on “Don’t be nice, it’s scary

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