EEK! There's a MAN in my room! - page 4

At my facility, some residents have tried to avoid care from employees who are African American as a matter of policy. Usually, they say, "I don't want a working with me!" When this happens, they... Read More

  1. by   FireStarterRN
    You'd better believe it, Leslie! Interestingly, we hear yada yada yada about respecting the culture of immigrant groups. A nursing journal recently did a big spread about Muslim patients, going on and on about how the women would only have a woman nurse, etc, and how we are supposed to respect their wishes and accomodate every single cultural preferance no matter how absurd they sounded to us.

    Well, I want the same consideration G-dmit! Just because I'm a native born American citizen doesn't mean I don't have rights to preferances! And I prefer that any intimate type care be given ONLY BY WOMEN!!!!
  2. by   leslie :-D
    Quote from jlsRN
    And I prefer that any intimate type care be given ONLY BY WOMEN!!!!
    i have been a bit more articulate w/my preferences, and demand any intimate care be given by women.

    actually....i've never "demanded" per se...
    it's just something i've expected.
    and i let my expectations be known.
    no hysteria.
    nothing to talk about.
    only a female provider, will treat me.
    end of discussion.

    i suppose it's not surprising to learn, that i am likely one of the worst pts conceivable.
    i think that's why i get along with all of my pts and most of the families.

    leslie
  3. by   elizabells
    Quote from fins
    the fact that we're tremendously discriminated against (with impunity) has to factor into it at least a little bit.
    I'm sorry that a personal history of sexual violation seems like impunity to you. This is NOT THE SAME as the wage gap, the glass ceiling, and historical denial of maternity leave. This is about not sending your patients into a panic attack borne of PTSD. This is about respecting that some of us have not gotten over our traumas enough to avoid hurting your feelings. This is about people who have repeatedly been denied a choice about who touches and enters their bodies finally being able to make that decision for themselves.

    I recognize that it makes your job harder. Want to know how hard our day-to-day lives can be? Want to know about the panic attacks I have on the subway when a strange male edges a little too close for how crowded it is? Want to know how I wear long sleeves, in a 90 degree New York summer, because the prospect of being catcalled for wearing a tank top (and yes, it happens) makes me too afraid to leave the house? Because I could tell you those things. Many of us could. Don't you dare tell us we have no right to make these choices.
  4. by   FireStarterRN
    Quote from earle58
    i have been a bit more articulate w/my preferences, and demand any intimate care be given by women.

    actually....i've never "demanded" per se...
    it's just something i've expected.
    and i let my expectations be known.
    no hysteria.
    nothing to talk about.
    only a female provider, will treat me.
    end of discussion.

    i suppose it's not surprising to learn, that i am likely one of the worst pts conceivable.
    i think that's why i get along with all of my pts and most of the families.

    leslie
    :yeahthat:
  5. by   wayunderpaid
    Some in this forum seem to think that the choice people have when choosing a provider is presents us with the same kind of choice available in an inpatient setting, as the OP suggested in the beginning post.

    In an outpatient setting people have many more choices when it comes to choosing providers, people can then exercise their choice according to their gender bias.

    People have choices and consumers have choices. My primary is a woman, not because I am a perv, but because she is an excellent and caring clinician.

    Inpatient is a whole different story. Last time I was brought to the ED (for a real emergency, lol) the provider who saw me was a woman. If I had all of a sudden decided that a man had to see me, I am sure that they would have made me wait another 2 hours, laugh, or perhaps both. They might have shipped me to the psych ED too, lol. A couple of months ago I was working on the floor with 3 other male nurses and 1 female (can you believe that??). Can you imagine accommodating peoples' gender desires if we had all female patients and they wanted female nurses?? It is the same thing both ways. We were actually all laughing because no one ever remember that being the case!

    I am sorry for those who believe otherwise, but personal gender choices do not trump patient safety, skill and load in delineating assignments. Whoever does it as a matter of practice is a poor clinician. With the scarcity of bedside nurses, choosing gender based on preferences is poor practice.

    BTW, The argument that males are getting a piece of their own because of discrimination in other fields is logically flawed at best, bigoted at worst.

    Some of the previous posts may find themselves in a situation in which they are told, "I am sorry, but we cannot accommodate your request", in the same manner that we tell VIP patients "I am sorry, all private rooms are occupied by patients with contagious infections". Then they will have to make a choice of not getting the care needed, or looking for another facility. They may actually have to pass the best hospitals in their search for their sexist-based healthcare preferences. Someone said they'd leave the hospital and sue!!? I'd like to see that in a court of law!

    Not too long ago I witness one of the gutsiest providers I have yet to meet. A woman was refusing everything the medical team was offering. So he told her that there is nothing else he could do for her, and discharged her in front of the speechless residents during rounds.

    BTW, this is an appropriate time to provide quality education to patients and their families regarding gender and nursing. If we are going to advance this profession to make it more inclusive, we have to educate the public. No better time and place than when you have their attention.

    OP, you are absolutely right! You may want to be looking for a new place that does not discriminate.
    Wayunderpaid
  6. by   58flyer
    I hope I have made it clear in my prior posts that I have no problems with patients stating their preferences. My only issue is when a facility makes rules regarding gender that is not equally applied.

    Many of the ladies here have spoken of their preference for same gender care (NYDreamer, jlsRN, earle58, annmariern, Djuna, elizabells). If I were your caregiver I would have no problem in respecting your wishes and I expect that if I were your patient you would respect mine.

    The simple reality is that there are more females working in healthcare than males. It is far easier for a woman to have her preferences accomodated that it is for a man. For a man it may come down to a choice between having a female or several involved in his care or not having the care at all. My recent experience with the urologist is one example. Now my PCP suggests that I have a colonoscopy which at my age (51) is probably a good idea. But I struggle with it because again I am faced with an all female team, except the doc. So it probably won't happen and I could miss a vital health screening that could prolong my life. Another example is my former employment where we had an annual wellness physical provided by the employer. It came into existence about a year before I retired. A great idea but the team was all female. Female doc, female nurse prac, female MAs. They offered the whole range of screenings including ultrasounds of the testicles and prostate, digital prostate exams, you name it. It was a manadatory exam which freaked me out in a big way. The doc and nurse did their tasks at the same time which meant the poor guy had 2 women working on him at once! Can you imagine a male doc and male nurse both doing intimate exams on a female without a chaperone? Didn't think so. But that was the situation I was faced with. I got the EAP and my atty involved by saying I would have the required stuff done at my expense at a doc of my choice with the results forwarded to the wellness center. After that the regs were relaxed to allow men to decide to accept or decline the services of the wellness center. I later learned that 50% or more of the men were declining the more intimate aspects of the screenings. Which is sad when you think about it, if they had the common sense to have at least one member of the team male, more men could have accepted more of the services which could have helped save lives. The program was great for the female employees but men made up 85% of the agency. Someone wasn't thinking.

    The website posted by jls was interesting. While sexual assaults against women can account for the reluctance of some women to accept intimate care from men, the same is true of male reluctance to accept such care from women. The report even stated that men are least likely to report sexual abuse. So the real figures on sexual assault against men are estimates at best. Especially when the attacker is female. In my case the attacker was not only female, but a nurse as well. And it occurred in the clinical environment. It happened in 1973 and it was 2001 before I could even tell a counselor about it for the first time. I never told anyone about it before that. Of course I feel the same way about intimate care from members of the opposite sex as many of the ladies I mentioned earlier.

    The gender bias is not based on patient preference, but on facility rules. I have personally requested same gender care when it was clearly appropriate only to be ridiculed or have care delayed. And that was when men were obviously available to accomodate my desires. I recall one instance where I was accidentally shot by another officer. The bullet didn't penetrate my body armor but it was a powerful round and still managed to crack the sternum and set up a wierd arrhythmia in my heart. Once in the ER a particular nurse said I would have to have a foley placed since that is what they do in all GSW cases and that she would have to do it and I would have to have it. I told her that I wanted a male nurse to do the procedure and got some highly inappropriate responses to the point where I terminated care and transferred to another facility. A full hour passed before I got to the other hospital all the while wondering if my heart was going to stop. Strange, they managed to treat me without the foley. Another time was after an aircraft accident. The ER staff was great and accomodated my wishes but when I got to the floor things fell apart when I asked for same gender care. Again I terminated care, rented a car, and drove 1K miles to get back home.

    To me the real bias regarding gender is that there are not enough men to accomodate the chronically modest/traumatized male patient. We accomodate the women, why not the men?
    Last edit by 58flyer on Nov 16, '07
  7. by   elizabells
    Quote from 58flyer

    To me the real bias regarding gender is that there are not enough men to accomodate the chronically modest/traumatized male patient. We accomodate the women, why not the men?
    I don't disagree with you at all on this. Males who are abused have just as much of a right to their experience as women, and I do think it is unconscionable that your requests were belittled, causing a potentially dangerous delay in treatment. My issue was not with you at all, actually. It was with the idea that the feelings of discrimination some male RNs encounter should somehow trump the very legitimate needs of some female patients. I also think it's unfortunate to have it enshrined in policy that males cannot perform intimate care for women. What worries me is the idea that a patient of either gender would be forced to elucidate the reason behind their request for a same-sex caregiver, to be judged by a third party whether it's "good enough". Compelling an assault victim to put their story up for judgement can be yet another violation. This is why so many cases never make it to court.
  8. by   FireStarterRN
    Males who are sexually abused are overwhelmingly assaulted by other men. Basically, male human beings are the ones prone to sexual crimes. It's statistically highly, highly unlikely for a woman to be a perpetrator of a sexual crime. I'm talking facts here, not some philisophical argument regarding equality and rights.
  9. by   SuesquatchRN
    Gender is not the same as race.
  10. by   58flyer
    Quote from elizabells
    My issue was not with you at all, actually. It was with the idea that the feelings of discrimination some male RNs encounter should somehow trump the very legitimate needs of some female patients. I also think it's unfortunate to have it enshrined in policy that males cannot perform intimate care for women.
    I'm glad we are on the same page elizabells. I agree with you all the way on this. No patient should have to accept any form of care that would compromise the patient's emotional well being. That defeats the purpose of the care in the first place. It isn't about the caregiver, it's about the patient. As Leslie so eloquently put it, mental health has to be considered too.
  11. by   58flyer
    Quote from jlsRN
    Males who are sexually abused are overwhelmingly assaulted by other men. Basically, male human beings are the ones prone to sexual crimes. It's statistically highly, highly unlikely for a woman to be a perpetrator of a sexual crime. I'm talking facts here, not some philisophical argument regarding equality and rights.
    Statistically? Facts? The fact is that males are highly unlikely to report a sex crime committed by a female. Therefore it is practically impossible to evaluate to just how often this occurs. Just how can a weak female overcome and abuse a big strong male? It's easy when the victim is a patient and an adolescent and is weakened by a way too strong dose of anesthesia, and the perpetrator happens to be his nurse who may have had a past abuse incident herself and sees this as a way of striking back. Just theorizing. I couldn't bear relating the incident on the witness stand even now. Even if I could identify my abuser and try her today for her crime there is no way I could give testimony in a trial even after 34 years, so she would probably get away with it. Men just don't report sex crimes.
  12. by   SuesquatchRN
    Quote from 58flyer
    Statistically? Facts? The fact is that males are highly unlikely to report a sex crime committed by a female. Therefore it is practically impossible to evaluate to just how often this occurs. Just how can a weak female overcome and abuse a big strong male? It's easy when the victim is a patient and an adolescent and is weakened by a way too strong dose of anesthesia, and the perpetrator happens to be his nurse who may have had a past abuse incident herself and sees this as a way of striking back. Just theorizing. I couldn't bear relating the incident on the witness stand even now. Even if I could identify my abuser and try her today for her crime there is no way I could give testimony in a trial even after 34 years, so she would probably get away with it. Men just don't report sex crimes.
    If you're theorizing why couldn't you bear to recount it?

    I'm confused.
  13. by   58flyer
    Quote from Suesquatch
    If you're theorizing why couldn't you bear to recount it?

    I'm confused.
    Just theorizing as to her motives.

    Besides, this forum is anonymous, so it's easier to talk about things you never could in person, when everybody knows who you are and you have to look at them later. I didn't go into much detail either if you noticed.

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