She's making me nutz.....

  1. This is so disrespectful to patients. I also hate it when nurses refer to their patients as: "Honey" "Dear" "Sweety" "Darling"
    It is so condescending!
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  2. 20 Comments

  3. by   ComicRN
    Oh my gawd.....I absolutely HATE it when I hear anyone referring to a resident as "honey", or anything like that. You know what else I can't stand?.....when staff refer to a patient by their last name only. I keep thinking how I would want to kill anyone if I ever heard them refer to one of my parents like that. Why do people get like that? And, why do they continue to work in a profession where they are working with PEOPLE when all they do it treat people as objects? Heather, I'm so glad you brought up this subject.
  4. by   Heather27
    Alright..this may be a gripe more appropriate to another board, but...

    I have a staff member that consistently treats my residents like children. She talks to them like they're five. OMG, the other day...she ACTUALLY looked at me, pointed at one of my residents and said, "Heather...I'm gonna take you-know-who for a B-A-T-H." I couldn't take it...I dragged her butt (well..politely asked) to the conference room, closed the door, and let her have it. I've spoken to her about this on at LEAST five other occassions. They aren't KIDS!!!!! What would YOU do???!!! I'm at Wit's End Corner with her..she agrees to modify her approach, then does it again... I swear... I could just...........
  5. by   Heather Plate
    HELLO, I JUST WANT YOU TO HEAR FROM A NURSE WHO AT TIMES DOES REFER TO RESIDENTS AS DEAR OR SWEETIE. I WAS RAISED IN A FAMILY TO RESPECT MY ELDERS AS WELL AS OTHER HUMAN BEINGS. I REALLY CARE VERY DEEPLY FOR THE RESIDENTS I CARE FOR AND WOULD DO ANYTHING IN THE WORLD FOR THEM. WHEN I USE A INDEARMENT I MAY NOT KNOW THAT I HAVE USED IT BECAUSE IT COMES FROM MY HEART. I HAVE NEVER HAD ANYONE TELL ME IN MY 15+ YEASR AS A NURSE THAT I HAVE OFFENDED THEM. I FEEL IF YOU CARE FROM THE HEART THEY ARE INTELLEGENT PEOPLE THEY WILL KNOW HO IS SINCERE AND WHO IS CONDESENING. SO PLEASE, BEFORE YOU CONDEM ALL NURSES WHO MAY USE A "DEAR, SWEETIE,ETC." JUST REMEMBER MAYBE WE CARE VERY DEEPLY FOR OUR RESIDENTS AND IT COMES FROM OUR HEARTS, THANKS FOR LISTENING!
  6. by   ComicRN
    Heather Plate - please know that I realize there are two different kinds of people who use "dear" or "sweetie" and I CAN tell the difference. The people I condemn for using those words are people who refer to EVERY older person in that manner. I agree that there are times when it is appropriate.

    I also grew up in an environment where I was taught to respect people older than me. That is why I always refer to a patient/resident as Mr. or Mrs., or at least ask them what they prefer to be called. I am 46 years old and was recently in the hospital as a patient. Everyone referred to me as "Mrs....". It felt really weird and I immediately asked everyone to call me by my first name. However, I had a technician from the cardiology department consistently call me "hon". Ewwww, I hated that. She was probably in her 30's.

    Anyway...my point is that I agree with you. I would not automatically assume that a staff member was being condescending if they called someone "honey". But if I saw a pattern, I would say something to that staff member.
  7. by   ComicRN
    Heather Plate - please know that I realize there are two different kinds of people who use "dear" or "sweetie" and I CAN tell the difference. The people I condemn for using those words are people who refer to EVERY older person in that manner. I agree that there are times when it is appropriate.

    I also grew up in an environment where I was taught to respect people older than me. That is why I always refer to a patient/resident as Mr. or Mrs., or at least ask them what they prefer to be called. I am 46 years old and was recently in the hospital as a patient. Everyone referred to me as "Mrs....". It felt really weird and I immediately asked everyone to call me by my first name. However, I had a technician from the cardiology department consistently call me "hon". Ewwww, I hated that. She was probably in her 30's.

    Anyway...my point is that I agree with you. I would not automatically assume that a staff member was being condescending if they called someone "honey". But if I saw a pattern, I would say something to that staff member.
  8. by   ComicRN
    Woops.....sorry. I quess I got a little over zealous with the "post reply" button!!
  9. by   mustangsheba
    Well, Hunnies, since you ask, I have to 'fess up - but I sometimes call even the docs sweetie. I always ask people what they want to be called, and I am not condescending even to children. Yes, there are different ways to use endearments. I'm also very touchy/feely. And I grit my teeth every time I hear someone talk to anyone like they have one brain cell. It's all in the delivery.
  10. by   janleb
    Another point is when you work LTC you really get to know your patients. And just like you would call a friend hon or sweetie. I go to MC Donalds sometimes and this girl at the drive through window calls me hon q time I am there. It drives me nuts, my kids even kid me. In the hospital setting you really don't get to know these people on a long term basis, so I think MR or MS is appropriate ( just ask). Most people can tell if it is condescending.
  11. by   bigred
    Well Heather, I guess you'd be dragging my butt into that little room too. I too am guilty of calling the residents in the nursing home where I work as 'honey' or 'sweetheart' when they are ill and need extra reasurment or tlc. The residents know who is sincere. When people call me 'honey' or 'sweetie' or 'dear', I take the comment to be kind and caring, not condensending. Maybe this co-worker of yours does have condensending behaviors. For a minute there, I 2nd guessed myself. Then when I read the other comments, it reaffirmed my actions. I do however agree with you re referring to the elderly by their last name only. That irritates me.
    Bigred
  12. by   Heather27
    No no no, bigred...it's not the "dear", "Hon", or "nana"s that I object to!! It's the way my particular staff member treats my elderly residents by doing things like SPELLING words around them...re read my original post, hon. LOL Just kiddin'... I call some of mine "hon" or whatever, simply for the reasons that ..uh...someone above this posted....you get to know them. It's all in the attitude........
    Peace!
  13. by   nursejanedough
    That's right, sweetie bigred, I am so glad you see the difference. Most normal people who are secure in their intelligence, patience, etc., don't mind if fast food, store clerks, even nurses call them sweetie, honey, etc. I do have a problem with the elderly residents/patients who may be "with it" or "in La La land", called "sweety, baby, honey or whatever", by the staff. We should all show respect and call them Mr. or Ms. So and So. Very rarely there will be an unusual nickname that some resident has been called for "years" and you will call them by that name. That's like calling President Clinton, "Hey, sweetie lips." Oops, bad example. You know what I mean, show some respect.
  14. by   duckie
    I confess I often use the terms "sweetie" and "honey". I love my residents very much and think of them as family, and I often refer to my family this way. I have been on the same unit at the same LTC facility going on 6 years. I've seen many residents come and go, but before they do, we learn to love each other. Sometimes it just feels right. Like last night...I have a resident that cries all the time. She could lead a much better quality life but she chooses to cry and very seldom ever sleeps for more than a few minutes at a time then she wakes up crying again. I feel it is because she is scared. At times it is very frustrating not being able to calm her, as when she cries she won't tell you why. Other times she's very with it. Last night I had several other residents complaining that she was making so much noise. I went in to speak with her, to try and calm her and nothing I said helped. I just closed my eyes and said, "God please help me find a way to help her." I pulled her side rail down, laid down beside her and held her in my arms, gently rubbing her face and I sang gospel songs to her. Within 15 minutes she was sound asleep and she slept for over four hours. As I held her I called her endearing names many times, for I wanted her to feel loved. I don't feel that the way I spoke to her was not respectful but instead it made her feel loved and secure. I think it all depends on who says it and how it is said, as many other posters have stated.

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