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Dating a former patient

Psychiatric   (22,130 Views 69 Comments)
by thepsychtech thepsychtech (New Member) New Member

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liberated847 has 10 years experience and specializes in CEN, CFRN, PHRN, RCIS, EMT-P.

504 Posts; 5,535 Profile Views

The fact that the OP came here to ask tells me that in all probability the deed is done and he's only looking for approval to feel less guilty...

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ButterflyRN90 has 5 years experience and specializes in Renal and Telemetry.

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The fact that the OP came here to ask tells me that in all probability the deed is done and he's only looking for approval to feel less guilty...

My question is though: How was he able to get the patient's contact information without using what was in the chart (abuse of power) or asking for her number outright (breach in professionalism)? Not imperative to answer, but I was a bit curious.

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Whispera is a MSN, RN and specializes in psych, addictions, hospice, education.

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She could have given it to him without him asking for it.

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liberated847 has 10 years experience and specializes in CEN, CFRN, PHRN, RCIS, EMT-P.

504 Posts; 5,535 Profile Views

My question is though: How was he able to get the patient's contact information without using what was in the chart (abuse of power) or asking for her number outright (breach in professionalism)? Not imperative to answer, but I was a bit curious.

Now a days it's easy to find people on Facebook

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SionainnRN has 5 years experience and specializes in Emergency Room, Trauma ICU.

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Now a days it's easy to find people on Facebook

And that would be super creepy and also a violation since the only way he knew her name was from her chart. Way too many worms in the can. Not worth opening!

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ButterflyRN90 has 5 years experience and specializes in Renal and Telemetry.

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She could have given it to him without him asking for it.

Even if she offered, he would have been able to decline. I still see that as not professional. I had a pt do this, I politely declined and when he asked :"Why? Got a boyfriend or something? " I flashed him my ring and said: "or something. " :)

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Whispera is a MSN, RN and specializes in psych, addictions, hospice, education.

3,458 Posts; 28,109 Profile Views

I'm glad you came here to talk about it, psychtech. It seems you have some feelings about the right or wrong of this, but weren't totally sure. It's good to check things out to settle your thoughts!

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liberated847 has 10 years experience and specializes in CEN, CFRN, PHRN, RCIS, EMT-P.

504 Posts; 5,535 Profile Views

And that would be super creepy and also a violation since the only way he knew her name was from her chart. Way too many worms in the can. Not worth opening!

Agree 100% this was the likely way they connected

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jojo489 has 3 years experience.

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I'm not sure how I feel about this. Personally, I would not date a patient.

BUT....I'm a strong believer that you never know where you're going to find love...or who you'll fall for. I don't think you get to choose. IF these two can wait out the time period and she can straighten some of her stuff out in that time....if it's meant to be, they'll find each other. It is easy to find someone on Facebook. She could find him with his first name and where he works.

And (hopefully I don't get flamed for this) just to play devils advocate.... My future husband and boyfriend of over three years does have psych issues and has been in some very dark places. He is an incredible man, and he has his issues but since we've met, he has had a support system that has enabled him to face up to his issues and be able to finally say some things out loud. We truly balance each other. So just saying, there is some merit to relationships help...sometimes. I know not every time is like this. I got lucky.

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SionainnRN has 5 years experience and specializes in Emergency Room, Trauma ICU.

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No one is saying that someone with psych issues doesn't deserve love, they probably need it more than anyone. But someone in the middle of a crisis should not be starting a relationship with her caregiver.

And to play devils advocate, what if he contacts her, she feels completely creeped out, but because he knows so much info doesn't feel she can turn him down? He is in a position of power here, that's why it's wrong. He may have felt a connection but she may not have.

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SionainnRN has 5 years experience and specializes in Emergency Room, Trauma ICU.

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It would be nice if the op could come back and give some more info.

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VivaLasViejas has 20 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in LTC, assisted living, med-surg, psych.

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I was recently on the business end of a psychiatric hospitalization, and from a patient's perspective I find it terribly unethical for a staff member to contact a former patient. Like others have said, the woman in question has enough to deal with---we are not always completely well when we are released from a facility---and the balance of power is with the caregiver, whether nurse, doctor, or aide.

Yes, it is true that mentally ill people need love too, but dating one who is (or has recently been) in a vulnerable position is not OK in my book. Our boundaries aren't always well-defined, and for a caregiver to cross them is wrong. I hope the OP hasn't gone ahead and done it.

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