Families from Hell - page 12

I know that when people are in the hospital everyone is stressed out including the families; but man I can't stand when the families do all the talking for the patient, jump down my throat like a... Read More

  1. by   janettalinda
    I'm amazed to see yet another duty added to the nurses list of duties. Now we are expected to change Depends for our pt's visitors! You're right, Ruby, this thread is sometimes very funny. Anyone who doesn't like it, should go to another thread. I'm still laughing about the Depends story.
  2. by   sjaubert
    Quote from anniem54
    I'd really like to meet the families whose problems you or other nurses are able to "fix." Nursing is rooted in helping, caring, "fixing," but there is so much out there that is simply unfixable. The families who tend to be so difficult for me are the ones who are acting out of dysfunctional family and social patterns that may go back for years in that family unit, and think its okay to be nasty. I listen and am kind and compassionate, and I do what I can but my priority is patient care and safety, not "fixing" the family problems. I so rarely have the time to sit and talk/listen with patients or families. I also was taught that treating the family is part of treating the patient, but the simple REALITY in hospital nursing at this time doesn't allow the time or energy for that, especially when the family thinks that abusing the nurses is acceptable behavior. I also think that the vast majority of nurses are compassionate and caring people who want to do their best. Having a work culture that allows abuse of the caregivers is a good way to burn out alot of great nurses.
    I go to work and i do my job as a nurse the best i can with all the limitations that nurses face. My answer to families from hell is that we're all dying. If you treat me right you'll probably get treated right. I say screw traditionalist arguments. I'm not a therapist for codependents, dysfuctionals, psychotics, and the simple. If you take crap you are not setting limits for appropriate behavior and communication degenerates. "Oh go ahead and curse me mrs. johnson. I understand your husband is dying." "While you're at it mr harris, tell me how lousy a care giver i am. I can take it if it makes you feel better." Those days are long gone as far as i'm concerned. I go to work and i become a trouble shooter in a unit where vital equipment breaks, where paperwork continues to grow and is ever redundant, where administration dogs you over trivialities, where i'm a logistics adjuntant for ancillary, where i'm blamed for situations i can't control, and on and on. I'll be damned if i'm going to be sucked dry to suffer psychological fatigue care of emotional dynamics. What ever happened to love thy neighbor as thyself? I repeat, 'as thyself"? I'm not going to cry with you about dear aunt abby's not being able to walk again to go vote next year. That may sound cruel but while i would be crying i would not be able to get her medicine on time that i'll be blamed for if its late. Most of these people would not give two cents concern for me if the shoe were on the other foot. This is just the tip of the iceberg too. And, after i get off my shift its back to the passive agressive, selfish, greedy, vice strewn world with traitorous leaders and back stabbing neighbors and others who remind me i just tend to care too much. I believe jesus had it right about not casting pearls before swine. Have a nice day all.
  3. by   lindarn
    Quote from ruby vee
    i'm not sure which two posters you're referring to. but this is a vent thread, and it's useful for venting. it's also pretty funny at times, and i'd hate to see it closed just because you don't wish to read it anymore. please, exercise your right to ignore it.

    i had a new request yesterday. patient asked me to help his mother change her depends. i had two icu patients, one of them intubated, on a balloon pump and having runs of ventricular tachycardia. i couldn't leave the unit to go to the visitor's bathroom and help this woman with her toileting even had i wanted to. (which i didn't.) patient's wife was at bedside, and had brought her mother-in-law in to visit. i suggested she help out.

    "oh," said the patient. "she doesn't like to do that."

    like i have time to toilet the visitors as well as the patients! it's my favorite part of the job.

    mil was a sweetheart and thanked me later for standing my ground!
    why wasn't a balloon pump patient a 1:1 asignment? it is innappropritate and unsafe to have another patient when one of the patients is on the balloon pump.

    lindarn, rn, bsn, ccrn
    spokane, washington
  4. by   SDS_RN
    I occasionally work overtime night shifts at my workplace (10pm to 6am), and some family members have the audacity to stay in the room all night to ensure that the patient is being cared for. They'll even keep a tablet or legal pad, and jot down when the nurse or aide enters the room.

    Other family members boldly ignore the established visiting hours, and will straggle into the facility at 1am. Night shift is a good thing when your workplace actually gives nurses the authority to enforce the visiting hours. However, the managers at my facility tend to coddle to visitors and allow them to get away with anything.

    Same thing at my facility. We have had several patients families that keep track of every little thing that was being done. A lot of families would stay over noc w/ patients when I worked on surg & peds. Most of the time they did little or nothing for the patient.
    Parents would expect you to come in and feed their child in the middle of the noc. Sorry not an overnoc daycare get your butt up and feed your own kid. Or they would have to "go get something from home" then they would not return until 3-4 hours later. I had a family that went "house hunting" in a town an hour away. They left before I came on @ 7p after several phone calls inquiring when they would be back finally at one o'clock that noc they showed up. Yeah I'm sure they were really house hunting. Makes me sooooo angry that people with ill children dump them off for the nurses to babysit.
  5. by   JaneyW
    I was "fired" by a problem family member yesterday and had mixed feelings about it. It angered me that he was blaming me for all of his frustrations regarding his daughter's care (adult and independent daughter!) and claimed I hadn't explained my rationales thoroughly simply because he didn't agree with my rationales. I was registry there and he worked there as a rad tech so of course knew so much more about everything than I did and felt he could question my nursing judgement (which was sound and backed by the MD). But then again I was kind of relieved to be taken out of the situation.

    The manager and staff were aware of the family and didn't blame me and I was able to help the poor nurse that took over the patient with phone calls and meds and such because I was familiar with the patient. However, I am a compassionate and good nurse who did nothing wrong and it chaps my hide that he didn't realize that I was doing what was best for his daughter. Maybe he realized it later as the POC didn't change even after his lengthy meetings with the MDs on her case. I just wanted to finish my shift and get out of there!

    This is a very emotionally difficult job. Maybe nurses need an annual retreat for venting and reinspiring. I know I need one right now!
  6. by   AngelfireRN
    I became of the opinion very quickly that most family members need 1 of 2 things. Either 1) a good slap, or 2) a tourniquet around the neck. That would solve a lot of problems right there, however, the legality might pose an issue, lol.