Death - page 4

I sitting here reading allnurses and I've realized something that I didn't quite put into context like this before..... I have no experience with death. None. I am 31 years old, and in my life, no... Read More

  1. by   Phoenixbyrd
    Quote from PlumeriaSun
    Thank you for sharing. I'm so glad the OP posted this as I too have concerns on how my reaction will be while experiencing a patients death for the first time. Reading all the replies have helped me gain insight, and for this I thank you!
    Ditto. 2 years ago when I began my prerequisites, my concern with how I would deal with death was the only issue that gave me pause. The responses here have been very instructive. I look forward to sharing my concerns in the future with AN - this community is awesome with its support and advice.
  2. by   Been there,done that
    "Can you tell I'm all over the place about this?"
    Yes , you are. You cannot possibly know how you are going to react.

    Depending on your personal background.. you will view ..and handle death on a personal basis.
    I feel I will not be able to support the family, if I break down . I think it's important for them to know I care... however..this is NOT the time for me to cry with them or evaluate my personal issues with death.

    This is a crucial time to remain professional.
  3. by   That Guy
    How did I react...I swear to god I saw the pt lurch upward when I removed their central lines. I was freaked out. I've seen way too many zombie movies to know where that was going.
  4. by   Stephalump
    Quote from ixchel
    Steph, may I ask your age? I feel a certain kinship with you. I think we're similar creatures based on our short tenure here at AN.
    I'm 27, and I agree! I'm going to enjoy sharing our experiences through wild and crazy nursing school!
  5. by   nurseprnRN
    another really important concept is this: every death brings back every other death. when your dog dies, you'll have the same feelings as when your grandmother died in some form or other-- the loss, the sadness, the grieving. anticipate this happening again when other deaths arrive at your door, as they inevitably will. this does not mean you have to fear death, because as we all know there are far worse things than death, and we see them every day. it does mean that you have to have an understanding of it, know enough that it does not have to destroy you when you attend a dying person or get that phone call from your cousin.

    if you haven't already read the classic kubler-ross "death and dying," get it and read it now. it made all the difference in the world in my practice. i couldn't understand why we were assigned it as students, but it opened eyes and hearts then, and continues to inform my practice and my life.
  6. by   brainkandy87
    Dying and the physical processes associated with it are far more exaggerated in your head than what occurs in reality. The important part is to disconnect yourself from the impact death has on those left behind and instead focus on your job as a nurse of making sure that process occurs as smoothly and painlessly as possible.
  7. by   K+MgSO4
    I watched my mother die when I was 15 and the nurses did all they could to keep her comfortable. This has turned me into an advocate for a comfortable, peaceful death. I am one of the first to suggest DNR with the docs if I see a pt slowly deteriorate over days and had multiple co morbidities and has voiced a desire.

    I am constantly educating grads and students and junior docs re end of life pain relief. The statement that gets them is usually if that was you what would you want?

    There is a pt on the ward at the moment that is biting a little close to the bone though. A woman with cancer who has had surgery unrelated to her cancer. I can see myself in her teenage kids. The fear, the worries, the vain hope that she will get better. They know she is dying but as a kid it is hard to grasp.

    Coming from an Irish rural upbringing death was a part of life. People were "waked" in their home before the funeral. Refreshments were provided by the neighbours. As a teen I was enlisted to make tea and sandwiches that were served in the room with the coffin. So it became familiar.

    As a professional you do not usually have the same emotional involvement. You get upset that they died expected or not and it may play on your mind but it is not the same grief that their,loved ones are experiencing.