A.T.’s letter really struck a tender spot for me. I had never had a pre-employment physical before being hired for my present job, but this one time was a doozy. I’m 26, female, brunette and a professional secretary. During my last job interview my prospective boss, a handsome middle aged man, said he’d hire me (at a terrific salary) as soon as I passed the company physical. I was on cloud nine as I left and mentioned the good news to the fifth floor receptionist. I asked her about my medical exam and she smiled saying it was just a routine physical and not to worry. She suggested that I get it over with immediately and I said, O.K. Then the girl phoned downstairs to the medical office to see if I could be taken right away without a prior appointment. She hung up and said that they weren’t too busy. So the young receptionist took me personally down to the nurse’s office.
Two medical assistants, both young women in their early twenties, greeted me warmly and welcomed me to the company. I was led to believe that a complete physical examination was mandatory for anyone newly employed. One of the two, a blonde, led me into a fully equipped medical examining room and instructed me to undress. I stripped bare and presented myself. At the assistant’s suggestion I slipped my shoes back on and I was ready. I had expected a gown of some sort, but to my surprise none was offered. The second assistant was called into the room and together they began to examine me. Part of the time I stood and part of the time I sat and at one point I was asked to bend over and spread my buttocks so that my anal area could be inspected. All results were written down by one while the other poked around.
After about ten minutes of this the blonde asked me to climb onto the table. I noticed the second girl was adjusting the stirrups. Nervously I assumed the classic position with my knees raised and my feet well spread. While I was lying there naked, one girl called on the intercom for the doctor to come in. The doctor was a young, handsome man. Embarrassed and blushing I laid there nude as the two girls exchanged greetings with the physician. With both young assistants in attendance the doctor examined my vagina. Several times he slipped his gloved fingers into me causing a sensation which I found curiously thrilling. The girls repositioned me slightly and next I felt the doctor’s finger slipping intrusively into my anus. The rectal exam seemed to take longer than it should have, the doctor’s finger lingering almost casually. Both assistants seemed riveted with interest and curiosity as they used their hands to hold my hips in position. Finally the doctor, having completed his duties, left the room.
The examination was far from finished, however. The blonde assistant took me into the bathroom for a urine and stool specimen. Next came the X-rays. For those I had to follow the younger woman down a lengthy corridor to the X-ray department. I simply can’t describe the unusual feeling of embarrassment I had as I walked along in just my shoes. I felt so vulnerable. Just a half hour earlier I was sitting in my best business suit being interviewed and now here I was in the same building walking around naked! I suppose I’m over- reacting, but it all didn’t seem natural to me.
At the X-ray room, the blonde turned me over to the technician on duty, a middle aged woman who seemed to delight in barking orders in a gruff voice. It was shoes off and onto the table as she positioned me this way and that. To my horror I was ordered to remain in the final posture, half kneeling with my bottom in the air, until the plates were developed. I felt totally absurd. Suddenly I felt a hand patting my rear end. It was the blonde assistant again. She reminded me not to move so I knelt fast. Next the second assistant arrived to see how things were going followed by the lab technician. They all stood around chatting. I could have died from embarrassment. The door was wide open and another female from one of the offices upstairs came in to spend her coffee break. As soon as I could I got my shoes on and dashed back for my clothes.
I got the job so I’m not complaining, but I couldn’t have imagined a more embarrassing situation. The idea of having non-medical personnel when a patient was nude seemed unthinkable. In fact later I described my examination to the head of the steno pool. She seemed shocked and surprised and told other female employees, especially the good looking ones and a couple of them admitted to similar experiences. Oddly enough these examinations always took place when the same two medical assistants were on duty. One very attractive secretary said she’d been called down every six months for a complete physical and always by the same two young women. She just assumed it was company policy. If there is something that I can do, just who should I complain to? Obviously these two girls set company policy. Maybe they get their kicks from having other women strip and be examined. Is there really any way I can avoid them in the future?
A deeply concerned reader, New Jersey
Dear deeply concerned reader,
You could try complaining first to the man who hired you - or to the personnel office. Then, we suggest you try places like the Better Business Bureau, etc. It might cost you the job - but it would be worth it if you want to stop this kind of exam from happening.