A Dear Abbey letter. What is your take? - page 9

I would like to hear your opinions regarding this situation from a letter taken from Dear Abbey. Do you agree with Abbey? Or should the nurse have done something differently? DEAR ABBY: While... Read More

  1. by   SharonH, RN
    Quote from mercyteapot
    Actually, there have been several posts throughout the thread that implied the nurse needn't concern herself with the patient's privacy when the wife was in the room. Why else call the wife ridiculous, uptight, or any of the other names that have been thrown about? And allow me to take this opportunity to thank the nurse at Palomar Hospital who was respectful of my husband's dignity and my feelings when he was hospitalized last year. I'd hate to think that my nurse went to a bulletin board and made fun of me or my family just because they considered my feelings odd. Redundant or not, I don't think Abby's response was very nice, but what really bothers me is that it's been echoed so frequently throughout this thread.

    I was one of the people who stated that the wife's behavior was odd. That does not mean that the nurse need not concern herself with the patient's privacy when the wife was in the room. I KNOW I didn't state that, and I don't remember too many other people stating/implying that either.

    There are two issues here that people insist on intertwining: 1)the patient's privacy and 2) the wife's discomfort with another woman seeing her husband naked.


    #1 as far as I am concerned is quite a valid issue. #2 is NOT valid because the woman in this case was the nurse caring for him.


    There is a lot of self-righteous indignation on both sides about this issue but if we go back and look at the original post the wife's complaint was

    NOT that the nurse violated his privacy.

    NOT that the wife was embarassed to see her own husband naked.

    NOT that his dignity was disturbed.


    Her complaint was that another woman- the nurse caring for him- saw her husband naked and she can't get that image out of her mind. And that is absurd. THAT is what some of us have a problem with.
  2. by   Tweety
    Quote from SharonH, RN
    IHer complaint was that another woman- the nurse caring for him- saw her husband naked and she can't get that image out of her mind. And that is absurd. THAT is what some of us have a problem with.

    BINGO!:hatparty:
  3. by   Kalico
    Quote from SharonH, RN
    I was one of the people who stated that the wife's behavior was odd. That does not mean that the nurse need not concern herself with the patient's privacy when the wife was in the room. I KNOW I didn't state that, and I don't remember too many other people stating/implying that either.

    There are two issues here that people insist on intertwining: 1)the patient's privacy and 2) the wife's discomfort with another woman seeing her husband naked.


    #1 as far as I am concerned is quite a valid issue. #2 is NOT valid because the woman in this case was the nurse caring for him.


    There is a lot of self-righteous indignation on both sides about this issue but if we go back and look at the original post the wife's complaint was

    NOT that the nurse violated his privacy.

    NOT that the wife was embarassed to see her own husband naked.

    NOT that his dignity was disturbed.


    Her complaint was that another woman- the nurse caring for him- saw her husband naked and she can't get that image out of her mind. And that is absurd. THAT is what some of us have a problem with.
    Very well stated!! I totally agree!
  4. by   smk1
    Quote from SharonH, RN
    Asking the patient about their cultural and religious background as it may pertain to their care is very much the norm. I can't remember if it is a JCAHO standard or not, but it is most often on the admission form (which tells me that it probably is). So you are not wrong.
    Thanks Sharon for clearing that up. i knew i wasn't crazy.:chuckle
  5. by   mercyteapot
    [
    There are two issues here that people insist on intertwining: 1)the patient's privacy and 2) the wife's discomfort with another woman seeing her husband naked.


    #1 as far as I am concerned is quite a valid issue. #2 is NOT valid because the woman in this case was the nurse caring for him.


    There is a lot of self-righteous indignation on both sides about this issue but if we go back and look at the original post the wife's complaint was

    NOT that the nurse violated his privacy.

    NOT that the wife was embarassed to see her own husband naked.

    NOT that his dignity was disturbed.


    Her complaint was that another woman- the nurse caring for him- saw her husband naked and she can't get that image out of her mind. And that is absurd. THAT is what some of us have a problem with.[/quote]

    If you weren't one of the people who said it, then obviously, the remark wasn't directed at you. It has been said, though, and there's simply no point to claiming that it hasn't. And there is no need for you to dissect the woman's complaint for me; I know how to read well good, they learned me that when I was yung.
    Last edit by P_RN on Dec 2, '05
  6. by   Tweety
    Quote from SMK1
    Thanks Sharon for clearing that up. i knew i wasn't crazy.:chuckle
    We ask a couple of questions on our data base about these things it's true.

    But usually there isn't a notation on the chart. Hopefully, if it's something that affects care, we're communicating that to each other in some fashion.

    But honestly, nurses where I work aren't very culturally and religiously aware. We stumble through.
  7. by   Tweety
    opps.......I can't read.
  8. by   mercyteapot
    Quote from Tweety
    opps.......I can't read.
    LOL... you edited it before I could post my response this time!
  9. by   SharonH, RN
    Quote from Tweety
    We ask a couple of questions on our data base about these things it's true.

    But usually there isn't a notation on the chart. Hopefully, if it's something that affects care, we're communicating that to each other in some fashion.

    But honestly, nurses where I work aren't very culturally and religiously aware. We stumble through.

    So Tweety, if you note on admission that the patient doesn't eat meat or take blood because of religious issues, that this is not noted in the chart otherwise? Honestly, ya'll are asking for trouble. Maybe you could drop a note in the suggestion box or bring it up at the next staff meeting. Seriously.
  10. by   smk1
    Quote from mercyteapot
    If you weren't one of the people who said it, then obviously, the remark wasn't directed at you. It has been said, though, and there's simply no point to claiming that it hasn't. And there is no need for you to dissect the woman's complaint for me; I know how to read well good, they learned me that when I was yung.
    I thought i read most of the posts (over a hundred now) and i don't recall anyone stating that privacy was not important... If that is the case then it obviously is the very small minority opinion. Those who think the woman is odd, for the most part (in case there was one or 2 who did) are not saying the patients privacy is not an issue.
  11. by   nurse4theplanet
    Quote from SharonH, RN
    I was one of the people who stated that the wife's behavior was odd. That does not mean that the nurse need not concern herself with the patient's privacy when the wife was in the room. I KNOW I didn't state that, and I don't remember too many other people stating/implying that either.

    There are two issues here that people insist on intertwining: 1)the patient's privacy and 2) the wife's discomfort with another woman seeing her husband naked.


    #1 as far as I am concerned is quite a valid issue. #2 is NOT valid because the woman in this case was the nurse caring for him.


    There is a lot of self-righteous indignation on both sides about this issue but if we go back and look at the original post the wife's complaint was

    NOT that the nurse violated his privacy.

    NOT that the wife was embarassed to see her own husband naked.

    NOT that his dignity was disturbed.


    Her complaint was that another woman- the nurse caring for him- saw her husband naked and she can't get that image out of her mind. And that is absurd. THAT is what some of us have a problem with.
    yup
  12. by   Spidey's mom
    Whoa . . .haven't been here in a couple of days.

    Interesting turn of events . . . . .

    The only cultural or religious things we have had are Jehovah's Witnesses or 7th Day Adventists or the migrant workers from Mexico. That means blood or meals.

    I haven't noticed anyone saying that the wife's reaction should not be taken seriously - we just reserve the right to think it a bit odd.


    steph
    Last edit by Spidey's mom on Dec 1, '05
  13. by   rn/writer
    Seems like the temperature is rising and I'm wondering why.

    We all pretty much agree that any patient and his family deserve as much privacy and respect as is possible in such a public and invasive setting.

    We do seem to differ on whether or not the wife's reaction was strange and how far out it might be.

    But, again, we agree that her concerns shouldn't be dismissed just because we might feel her response to be an overreaction.

    There were comments made that the DA letter might have been questionably edited or even made up. Others suggested that the letter writer might have totally misinterpreted the situation or misjudged the nurse. I'm just amazed.

    The Dear Abby column (now written by the original Abby's daughter) is a semi-serious feature that tries to pass along some common sense even as it occasionally ticks people off. Although Jeanne Phillips (Abby) tries to give factual and responsible information and point people in the direction of help, sometimes she sticks her foot in it. Do the newspapers get their undies in a twist about that? They do not. Phillips is much like her mother was, in that she is quite willing to eat humble pie when readers tell her she blew it. And, secondly, a mini-controversy gets the circulation up--in every sense of the word.

    The second saddest aspect of this thread is that there is no mention of the wife speaking to anyone at the hospital who could have addressed the situation in the moment. Perhaps she's a timid person who needs the validation of an "authority figure" like DA to feel her concerns matter. I don't know. I do know that neither the nurse nor anyone else on staff could smooth ruffled feathers they didn't know about. That's a loss for all concerned.

    The saddest part of all this is the irritable tone of some of the more recent posts. I think there's room to say that people of fewer years may not have the same long-term view as those who've been around awhile without that having to mean the young are dumb. You can be incredibly smart, even gifted, in your early life and still find your opinions mellow with age. And even when you think someone has dissed you, you don't have to get your dander up and snarl back at them.

    With a few rare exceptions, the people on this entire forum are good, decent folks with tons of life experience and such a variety of backgrounds and outlooks that I feel myself enriched to have "met" them. I'd be willing to bet that most of you feel the same way.

    It's possible to disagree and even express that disagreement without taking offense. People can be wrong without intending to insult you. They can also be right without implying they think less of you. Isn't it a bit ironic that in a thread that is largely about respect, there can be such a prickly atmosphere?

    It bears repeating, there's always room for good, honest debate and dissent. But it's a waste of resources to let conflict become personal. Especially when we're not discussing a recipe for world peace but a letter in an advice column.

    Rodney King continues to be a confused and confusing soul, but he had a point when he said, "Can't we all just get along?"

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