Either mean it when you shake my hand or don’t shake my hand at all.

My oral surgeon has a terrible handshake.  Totally limp, only held on to my fingers (and just barely)…very off-putting.  He’s the one who reached out to shake hands with me when I left after this morning’s follow-up, not the other way around.  If he didn’t want to, why make the effort?  I wouldn’t have noticed.  Anyway, I was thinking about it and I’ve heard things (possibly only on TV, which makes them suspect) that lead me to believe surgeons are very careful about their hands.  If they hurt their hands (broke a bone, sprained a wrist, etc), they wouldn’t be able to surgerize, so that makes some sense.  And if that’s the case, I get why a handshake could be somewhat scary.  There are plenty of brawny, macho, out-to-prove-some-kind-of-irrelevant-and-stupid-point people out there who think a handshake is an opportunity to squeeze your hand so hard your bones scrape together.  But if that’s your fear, if your livelihood depends on NOT letting someone else hurt your hand, even accidentally, why would you shake hands with your patients?  I think it’s socially acceptable not to.  Especially if the alternative is a limp handshake.  Wave or something.  Nod your head and say goodbye.  I hereby give you permission to NOT shake my hand.  It’s creepy.


  1. Melvin?

    Warning: If you don’t want the opposite effect, never shake hands with my husband, aka Butter Tub. Vicious handshake.
    I agree with the president. A good dap fixes every problem.

  2. IBCRandy

    I don’t understand some people’s need to squeeze the crap out of my hand during a handshake. It’s like we’ve created a new sport: competitive greeting. Soon it will have its own reality show.

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