How much personal info do you share with pts? - page 5

by Bouncyball

I am a second year RN student. I have had some really nosy, pushy patients the last couple of weeks and it has made me wonder where to draw the therapeutic communication / your asking me too many personal questions line. I know... Read More


  1. 0
    Most I have shared is I'm married ( I do wear my rings to work), I have no kids but I have a cat. Sometimes, depending on the patient, if we get on the subject, I will tell them about my eventual goal to go for anesthetist . And if they ask where I'm from, I will tell them the town I'm from, but nothing more. I think once I had a pt that had family in the same neighborhood as me, and I mentioned I lived in the nearby neighborhood.
  2. 0
    I dont really share much besides little tid bits like I am married, have kids, etc. Hell I dont even tell my co workers personal things lol
  3. 3
    Quote from hey_suz
    Depends on the relationship with the patient. I've learned to let my affect and manner set the stage for not sharing much and people respect that. In primary care though we might see the same person repeatedly over a period of years and I feel comfortable sharing a little bit with them, but only as it really pertains to the conversation, and put it right back on them. It gets much easier over time. It just is kind of a double standard that we ask all these questions and then not share about ourselves.And just wait until the "who are you going to vote for!"
    You just say "I'm planning to write myself in, you should to, I'll give you a great cabinet position." :-)
    GeneralJinjur, wooh, and SHGR like this.
  4. 1
    What you might share is going to depend dramatically on what type of nursing you practice.

    In hospice nursing, for instance, we maintain very firm professional boundaries. We also seek to develop very trusting relationships with our patients and families.

    To make those things work together it is important to remember that there are "public" elements to us as nurses...things people have mentioned before like marital status, children, common interests, etc. There are less public things like personal experience with death or disease that might be shared.

    The bottom line really boils down to the intent and focus...
    Our intent must always be to facilitate communication and the development of a therapeutic relationship in order to meet the patient needs. If the focus of the conversation EVER becomes about US then we have violated a boundary and must back up and re-direct.
    It we are giving information that causes the patient or family to worry about us, console us or to feel a need to care for or protect us then our relationship is no longer therapeutic and must be changed ASAP.

    There is no question that the care of people in their homes over weeks and months vs. care in the acute setting leads to slightly different communication patterns.
    SHGR likes this.
  5. 0
    Re: Who we're going to vote for:
    Quote from Pistachio
    You just say "I'm planning to write myself in, you should to, I'll give you a great cabinet position." :-)
    Nice! Another little tidbit to put in my arsenal when smiling and nodding doesn't cut it.
  6. 0
    I don't give any personal information. Period.
  7. 0
    Quote from JerseyBSN
    I don't give any personal information. Period.
    Would it be fair to guess that you work in an acute care setting where you do not establish long term relationships with your patients?
  8. 0
    It's best not to focus on your personal life with patients. You are there to take care of them; keep the focus on them!
  9. 0
    Good point, our personal lives are NOT the focus...the therapeutic relationship and the patient are the focus.
  10. 0
    I have a whole different persona who has no husband and no kids and three dogs when a patient asks. It's none of their business. However, I have broken my rules on rare occasion. The little lonely sick lady who just wanted a connection, the scared woman who was worried about a c-section scar (I showed her mine, she was freaking out!), and my little old man that was trying to talk me into going home with him! LOL you will figure it out and learn, white lies about this stuff doesn't hurt. Just stick to a story.


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