I am an American. - page 6

In the last staff meeting, NM states Dr. A has complained because the female nurses make eye contact with him. We were instructed to respect his (and other doctors) culture and NOT make eye contact... Read More

  1. by   kimmeymarie
    In nursing school I was taught to respect the cultural preferences of my patients, not the Doctors. What a load of crap, if a Doctor thinks I will not step up and say something that will benefit my patient because his culture is unaccepting of it, I have 2 words for him...."TOO BAD" If you don't like it and nurses here offend you....GO HOME!!! and practice medicine there. Maybe the nurses in your own country will be less offensive to you.
  2. by   darrell
    Quote from UnionRN2
    In the last staff meeting, NM states Dr. A has complained because the female nurses make eye contact with him. We were instructed to respect his (and other doctors) culture and NOT make eye contact or appear assertive. When asked to clarify assertive we were told assertive was "asking or suggesting something for the patients".
    Cultural bias does not always equal bigotry. That being said, however, I think somebody probably had to review her response a few times after this. It seems like one of those knee-jerk responses that could have been better phrased!

    Were it me (I'm a male, but I have never been able to generate any intellectual support for gender discrimination), I'd probably avoid appearing to be on crusade but otherwise just move forward with quality nursing care. There are bound to be rough spots in any inter-cultural interactions. I may disagree with what was said, but I wouldn't go out of my way to make the NM's or doctor's lifde hell over it. It's far from the most ridiculous stuff I've run into.

    It's tiring, I admit. My time on the floor is supposed to be about helping people heal - I'd rather not spend it in social maneuvering. Still, maybe this is a case of nursing care being needed by staff....

  3. by   Not_A_Hat_Person
    Has anyone from this doc's culture (maybe a fellow doc) talked to him about this?
  4. by   CHOOZLIFE
    I too have had to deal with this sort of treatment! Recently I went to the asst nsg director and told her I was ready to go back to school. I work for the government and they WOULD HAvE paid my way for BSN etc. She said Great...get your paperwork started so I did,,and got accepted where I wanted to go. Then when I came in to her office on my day off...she called me in and told me they decided NOT to let me go to school at this time because I "didn't listen" when she told me to drop something I felt strongly about, and because I did not listen to a doc when I was told not to send a pt to the ER. The pt thought they were having another stroke...my bad..I covered my butt and the pts...besides they insisted on getting checked out and I knew there was a time limit in which to do so. The doc is foreign...why..in our country...should we have to go by their way!?
  5. by   Dave419
    As a man, I've always wondered about the insecurities that would make a man "afraid" to look women in the eye when talking to them. I've worked in the past with men of a certain religion and it was the same thing--no eye contact with women. Dudes, man-up!! And women, celebrate the power you must have when men can't handle you looking them in the eye!
  6. by   CHOOZLIFE
    You need to under stand though that as nurses we do need to be assertive...actually quite often depending on where one is working as a nurse..and if this nurse..like me..has to work with a closed minded doctor..mit makes every work day challenging, negative, if she can't properly advocate for her pts.
  7. by   CHOOZLIFE
    True, but it just goes to show a person is not at a higher level of thinking if these foreign people feel the need to inflict their values on us. That would be what... The Concrete Operational stage? Where evrything is black and white and what they believe just HAS to be the 'right' way. Sad...they should test for this in hospitals and then have to have a special colored sticker on their badge to warn the rest of us who have to deal with them lol.
  8. by   lossforimagination
    I think they should sue this arrogant guy for sexual harrassment!
  9. by   a54flo
    I have two comments. First, I like the post requesting the NM to put this into a policy format; you know that will never happen. And second, when I am in any meeting where upper management is blathering on and on about some inane topic, I just think to myself: "3 u's" because there are 3 u's in shut the **** up! I have zero tolerance for much of the nonsense in nursing anymore. So, everybody, let's make "3 u's" our mantra!
    Last edit by tnbutterfly on Aug 5, '10 : Reason: Language
  10. by   nursemarion
    Quote from NocturneRN
    It's not always that simple. Even for those who are determined to respect the "ways" of a "majority culture," it takes time to figure out what those "ways" are. It's possible that this doctor's behavior is the result of misconceptions, rather than any intent to force his native culture on American nurses.
    He probably went to medical school here as so many do. Then they stay instead of returning to their own countries so they can make some $$$. Sorry, I don't buy it. I am so tired of the predjudice against women everywhere. I am also tired of docs with huge egos. We are all people for goodness sakes. Can't we treat each other with respect?
  11. by   netglow
    I dare ya facility administration, I double-dog-dare ya!

    Each and every one of the nurses in that meeting now has a nice little "Ace in the hole" or a "Free spin" to be used over, and over.
  12. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from healthstar
    very interesting. i always wondered about this too. eye contact is important to americans but offensive to other cultures. i agree. why should some people put their culture aside to respect other peoples culture. it is going to be very difficult for me to communicate with a person that does not accept eye contact. i can never carry a conversation without eye contact. i have talked to some arabic and chinese people about their culture related to eye contact; and they said it is okay to look at them in the eye, but just for a sec, they just don't like it when people stare at them while talking.
    if i were in this guy's country and the culture there was that it was offensive to make eye contact, i'd avoid making eye contact as much as i could and apologize for my rudeness if i forgot and looked someone in the eyes. this guy, however, is in my country and rather than all of us adapting to his culture, he needs to adapt to ours.
  13. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from chloecatrn
    op, could you do this? could you look briefly at this doc when you're speaking to him, then carry on the rest of the conversation? also, could you speak to your nm about talking to legal about the ramifications of what this doc is asking the nurses to do? if you're not openly and actively communicating with a doc about his patient's condition, then you'll be just as liable if something goes wrong.

    i do, however, want to stress that my discomfort with this situation is because of the potential ramifications for harm to the patient, not because he's in america and should do things "our way". the united states is a great melting pot, and it's important to have respect for all cultures. if this were a patient, would you be saying the same things? if you would, you might be setting your workplace up for a huge sensitivity retraining if the patient felt the need to complain.
    while it is important for us to respect all cultures, we, too have a culture that needs to be respected. all too many people seem to forget that in their zeal to be politically correct. the nurses in an american hospital should not have to turn themselves inside out to respect physicians from other cultures. we have our own culture and they, having chosen to live on our soil and work in our environment, need to respect that. if it were a patient, one could presume that he also chose to be in the united states and that no one kidnapped him and drug him unwillingly across our borders. most of us believe we should cut a little more slack for a patient because they're sick, they're scared, they're vulnerable. but even then, there are limits. anyone who is in our country should expect to have to deal with our culture. we'll try to accomodate the patients as much as possible, but if someone inadvertently looks a male saudi in the eye and he finds it offensive, perhaps he should just try to cut us some slack being as how he's in our country and all.