Good Cop, Bad Cop

So I have a close working relationship with a surgeon where essentially I play bad cop to his good cop. The whole Hood Cop/Bad Cop concept is a method of interrogation. In our practice it is ostensibly around the good cop sending a positive message with hope and the bad cop (supposedly me) giving the bad message.

Well this is all around want people want to hear. It happens to be the good cop message.

But let’s recalibrate this. I probably am more pessimistic but the actual attitude I take is not of taking the ‘bad’ side but of being realistic. The statistics I quote are grounded in fact. I can’t and nobody can predict the future and some people have to have a good outcome and some have a bad outcome. Neither the good cop or the bad cop can predict the future but that can be honest about the chances even if they can’t tell who will do well and who won’t.

The realistic message needs to be heard when there is a situation where the gains can be modest and the trade-offs are high. Not everybody will take the odds offered: some people will end up hurt.

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