How to give bad news - page 2

Years ago, my sister lost her newborn son to a birth defect. She knew about the defect prior to his birth, and had been assured that everything would be fine. Unfortunately, within hours of his... Read More

  1. by   CA CoCoRN
    Quote from OBNurseShelley
    You don't MAKE THEM UNDERSTAND, they will soon enough, just let them have hope and support them by answering questions and making them comfortable.
    ... there's nothing wrong with having hope, sometimes it's all people need to cope.
    Yep!! If you can gently find out if they have a theological or other belief system that they can find comfort in...and have the appropriate rep (e.g Imam, Preist, Rabbi, fellow Buddhist, etc) counsel and comfort them, that helps too.

    Don't ever say, "I know how you feel..." Even if you've experienced loss. Patients tend to find that belittleing and almost condescending. If you can, however, open up a dialogue (if your pt is open to it) as to how you coped, resources you used, etc. if you exp a loss such as theirs, THAT may help.
  2. by   FutureNrse
    Quote from OBNurseShelley
    Sorry to hear your sister is not coping well. Hang in there and support her the best you can.
    I wish I could but unfortunately I no longer have any contact with her, due to many different things. First, I was pregnant at the same time she was, and it was difficult for her to be around me after my son was born. Then, due to her lack of coping skills she started using drugs. She did reach out to me once and ask for help, and I tried to help her, but by this time she was very "out of it" and it fell to me to take steps to remove her older child from her care ( that child is with her father now). Sadly, about 6 months ago, I heard that she was pregnant again.
    I didn't know what to feel when I heard. Part of me is worried sick about any baby in her care since The amount of drugs she did seemed to destroy her mentally. On the other hand, I worry that if anything should happen to the baby, that it would be a final blow for her that does her in. No matter what happens, I can't see it being good for her.
  3. by   WhatToDo
    Hopefully it will go better this time for your sister.

    I don't know if you have ever heard of the stages of death and dying (Kubler-Ross), but it's just one theory of how people deal with death. The first stage is denial or shock, many people feel this right away when someone dies or shortly before the death. But I don't think it's healthy if it lasts several years. People go through the stages (denial, anger, depression, bargaining, and acceptence) at different rates and don't necessarily go through them in the same order.

    Is your sister in any sort of therapy? Dealing with grief is very difficult for some people, getting some therapy may help.
  4. by   FutureNrse
    Quote from WhatToDo
    Hopefully it will go better this time for your sister.

    I don't know if you have ever heard of the stages of death and dying (Kubler-Ross), but it's just one theory of how people deal with death. The first stage is denial or shock, many people feel this right away when someone dies or shortly before the death. But I don't think it's healthy if it lasts several years. People go through the stages (denial, anger, depression, bargaining, and acceptence) at different rates and don't necessarily go through them in the same order.

    Is your sister in any sort of therapy? Dealing with grief is very difficult for some people, getting some therapy may help.
    I doubt that she's in therapy, it's not her kind of thing. Yes, I have read about the stages of grief. I think my sis is stuck in denial and will never come out of it. The last time I seen her, she was telling me wild stories about how she thinks her ex stole the baby for his new wife, and paid of the nurses to pretend that he was dead. I kept reminding her how we bathed and dressed him after he passed away, but logic couldn't overrule her wishful thinking

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