Bad Parents

  1. 18
    I've seen my share of bad parents but haven't seen anything like this before.

    I've been a pediatric nurse for my entire career- 6 1/2 years. 4 1/2 in the hospital and the last 2 doing pediatric home visits. Most of my patients are oncology patients. They therefore all qualify for Make-A-Wish.

    Last week I'm at one of my patients' homes and there's a flier from Make-A-Wish on the fridge. Mom is from another country originally, let's pretend it's Mexico. So she says to me "look how nice, these people are giving me a free vacation to Mexico." And I say "is that what your son wants to do? It's his wish." She says "No, he wanted to go on a Disney cruise but I don't want to do that." I was so mad at that point and told her that that's not how Make-A-Wish works.

    Today, Mom wasn't home when I went to see the kid and he usually will tell me the truth about things when she's not there. So I start talking to him about his Make-A-Wish and he says "I'm going to Mexico." And then when I ask him if that was his choice he says "no, my Mom wanted to do that." As he continued talking, he said "My Mom made me say that I wanted to go there." The kid's grandmother lives there, there is no doubt in my mind that if they did this as his Make-A-Wish, he'd get left with Grandma while Mom goes out clubbing.

    One of the rules of Make-A-Wish is that the wish has to come from the child. This kid is not going to have another opportunity to go to Disney. He lives in the projects and, though he's stable right now, his prognosis is very poor. That this woman would use her son's cancer to get a free vacation for herself is disgusting. I called his Social Worker and am considering calling the local Make-A-Wish office myself. People don't donate money to that organization so a child with cancer can sit in his grandmother's house in the developing world while his mother has herself a free vacation.
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  5. 3


    Sigh, what we hear and witness to when working with kids and families.

    ~PedsRN~, Wheels28, and Esme12 like this.
  6. 2
    I called his Social Worker and am considering calling the local Make-A-Wish office myself. People don't donate money to that organization so a child with cancer can sit in his grandmother's house in the developing world while his mother has herself a free vacation.
    Wow, I am so sorry for your patient. That must be horrible for you to witness. I started out in nursing absolutely sure that I wanted to be a NICU nurse or even peds, but honestly, I don't have what it takes to deal with these types of parents, and during my clinical rotations at a children's hospital, I saw way too much of it.

    I know you are angry, and you have every right to be, but I think the problem is not with Make a Wish, it is with the unethical parents in these situations. I think what you did was absolutely correct, but I would not dissuade people from giving to the organization. I agree with you and I would talk with a representative from Make a Wish. The only issue is what is the mom going to do to you or the child? You always have to worry about retaliation. You are between a rock and a hard place.

    This is a very interesting dilemma and I will be interested to hear the feedback and also how this situation turns out for you and your patient.
    Not_A_Hat_Person and Esme12 like this.
  7. 23
    I agree, what a disgustingly abusive move on that mom's part. And I wouldn't blame you at all for calling Make-a-Wish and filling them in. It's inexcusable. And you're right, the people who donate their hard-earned money to groups like Make-a-Wish aren't doing it to make the parents happy. When my son was in liver failure, our oncologist strongly suggested that we consider arranging a wish for him and offered to contact the Rainbow Society on our behalf. Most 5 year olds want to do Disney and when we met with the Rainbow counsellor he was asked if that was what he wanted. His answer was, "Well... <long pause> Yes, I'd like to go to Disneyland. But I'd really like to go fishing with my Papa." She asked me a few questions about "Papa" (my dad) and then she smiled and said, "Adam, you're going to do both!" We went to Disneyland, Knott's Berry Farm and Sea World, then spent 5 days at my parents' house before flying home. My dad was unfortunately not able to be there, but my brother stepped in and took all three of his nieces and his one nephew fishing. It was AWESOME! We all still talk about it 25 years later. Is that what I​ would have chosen? Probably not, but it was what Adam wanted.
  8. 1
    This is so sad... There are SO MANY parents like this. People can be so selfish...
    Esme12 likes this.
  9. 9
    KelRN215, as a regular contributor to Make-A-Wish, I thank you for speaking up. I'm horrified to think that a parent could be so low as to deny their dying child a wish, that good-hearted people are paying for.
  10. 0
    How disgusting. This reminds me of my friend whose mother committed her to a mental institution and took a cruise during the stay. Yes, I would inform MAW. Thank you for advocating the child.
  11. 1
    Kel....I contribute to the MAW...call them. Let them know what the kid said. You go girl!
    poppycat likes this.
  12. 0
    I totally agree with the other posters. Please call MAW, this child deserves to have HIS wish granted. SHAME on his mother.
  13. 2
    My parents were an accident.
    Last edit by aklgap on Jan 24 : Reason: Grammar
    cardiacfreak and ArmaniX like this.


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