My husband won't let me do bed baths - page 8

I told my husband that we are doing bed baths in lab on Friday. He looked at me strange and asked me why on earth I would want to do that. I told him that it is just something you do as a nurse. He... Read More

  1. by   carolinapooh
    Quote from atrice
    My husband laughed at me when I told him we were doing bed baths on one another in lab. It's practice and allows you to feel partial empathy for the patient. It's not like the client, even being sick and incapacitated, does not have feelings and insecurities about the whole bed bath thing.
    DH and I made jokes about the fact that, for our Diagnostic Reasoning/Physical Assessment class, we did breast and abdomen last week. It was sophomoric (of course ) but it stayed between us and I was able to get my nerves out and relax a bit before actually having to bare all for my lab partner...

    Going into lab I felt a whole lot better (like the giggles were out or something!) and I was still nervous, but I just told myself that hey - I took SHOWERS with women I didn't know as well as I know my lab partner when I was in basic training in the Air Force....when we were behind the drapes on the exam table, I looked at her, said, "let's get this over with", and dropped my gown in the front. After the first five minutes, we went into this nurse-patient sort of mode, and it wasn't a big deal any more.

    This guy needs a bit of adjustment somewhere. Well, maybe in several "wheres", actually....
  2. by   IrishIzCPNP
    Quote from carolinapooh
    This guy needs a bit of adjustment somewhere. Well, maybe in several "wheres", actually....

    He doesn't want other students including men to do bed baths on his wife. What's the problem there? I won't allow it to happen to me. I will not undress for the other students and allow that to happen. There's no reason for it. It's one thing to have a medical professional do these things but having your fellow students who you have a personal relationship with is completely different. I don't see where he was against her doing this as a job but against her having it done by fellow students.

    It's not unreasonable. When it comes to the bedbaths I am willing to have somebody pretend with a dry cloth the basics of what they would do. I have been a patient needing a bedbath and I hated it. It was a low point of my life. I will not have it done again for this reason.

    I think it's a real shame that the difference can't be seen here. There is a huge difference between doing things and having things done as a medical professional or by a medical profession. It's completely different to have fellow students with whom you may have a personal relationship with touching private areas on your body.

    I do not know the policy of my school yet but I will not do it and I'm pretty confindent that I won't have to do. If they want live people they need to hire models...that is the reasonable thing to do.
  3. by   Bonny619
    We never had to do bed baths on other students...we never even had to practice bed baths, they sort of just said...go for it!
  4. by   elizabeth321
    Quote from WhichOldWitch?
    Just curious........Have you mentioned to your DH the nurse's role when it comes to fecal impaction?
    OK I know this statement was a bit of a reach....but do you guys really talk that much about what you do at work with your SO? Mine is not interested...we occassionaly have very general conversations but we have a life outside of work and there is no time to talk about these details to this length. Nor is there the desire.

  5. by   Fun2, RN, BSN
    Wow....sorry you had this trouble.

    I actually partnered with a female for bed baths, but for our assessment, I was with a male. We didn't do perineal care on each other, so it wasn't a big deal, and we had bathing suits on.

    Big my thought. So a student sees part of your usually exposed 'skin'. It's not like you are going behind the curtain and doing something that is unappropriate.

    Maybe you shouldn't tell him that you never know if the female classmate is lusting after you more than the male classmate. Your male classmate may not be who he should be worrying about.

    BTW, my hubby didn't have a problem with it. His remark was, "I guess you better work on your tan." :chuckle (....which I didn't do.) haha
    Last edit by Fun2, RN, BSN on Oct 7, '06
  6. by   BlueEyedRN
    Quote from Jules A
    Lol, maybe I'm just lucky but neither my husband or myself "tell each other stuff we can't do all the time". Seriously though, being a nurse or nursing student is not the same as someone outside of the health care arena choosing to strip down to their underwear in front of collegues.
    Okay, I was exaggerating. We don't get that way unless it is something really important like about the kids (as in, "you can't let our three year old help you push the lawn mower") or money (as in "you can't buy a brand new Pathfinder when we're still trying to pay off your loans from nursing school") and we talk about it and come to an agreement. I was just trying to say that maybe instead of everyone attacking this husband, it wouldn't hurt to look at it from his point of view. It sounded more like he misunderstood and he needed reassurance. And I really do think it's just as weird and inappropriate for nursing students to give each other bed baths as it would be in any other area. They don't need to learn this kind of stuff on each other. That's why we have clinicals. I thought the mannequin baths were actually much better for the real experience because mannequins are much more likely than young healthy adults to fall out of the bed on their heads--one danger in giving bed baths to real patients.

    It bothers me that everyone else would take this opportunity to go so far overboard with their accusations against someone they don't even know. If he really is that kind of a jerk, that sucks and it would upset me as much as it would anyone else. This situation does not sound that serious. It sounds like a normal husband reacting to something uncomfortable; maybe overreacting, but still normal. Not quite "domineering" and "severely immature." This kind of bashing isn't helpful. My own husband could care less about me handling the bodies of naked men on a daily basis. He knows nursing makes me happy so it makes him happy too. But when we were newlyweds, he was a little like that and other guys flirting with me bothered him. He got over it. I'm sure this guy will too.
    Last edit by BlueEyedRN on Oct 7, '06
  7. by   katapn
    I pray that I am wrong about this, but this has absolutely nothing to do with bed baths.

    Please give this some careful consideration.

    I had a conversation with my friend, Kim. I tried to tell her that her husband's jealous behavior was abusive. I went so far as to tell her that their situation was escalating ( I had seen the signs for the better part of 3 years) and that if she didn't get some help, he would inevitably kill her. She dismissed my comments....maybe out of denial, or just out of frustration, maybe she loved him, she didn't want to give up, maybe she was TRULY AFRAID and was unable to share that with me. She believed that he loved her and that they could work it out.....sadly love has nothing to do with this. After all, we are nurses, we are supposed to understand, we are supposed to use therapeutic communication to let our patients and our loved ones know they are heard. We are supposed to find the appropriate intervention to make things better, in practice and in our personal lives. We are the care givers. We are HUMAN!

    2 short months after Kim and I had that conversation, her husband shot her in the head and killed her.

    You may be in an abusive relationship if your husband is jealous or possessive of you. Jealousy is the PRIMARY sign of abusive relationships. Is he controlling or demanding? If he is trying to dictate what you may or may not do within your scope of practice, he is absolutely being controlling and demanding and his jealousy is plainly obvious. This has nothing to do with bed baths.

    Does he try to isolate you by limiting your contact with family and friends? I could go on and on here but I will say please just google "abusive relationships" and educate yourself on this subject. Please, I implore you to talk to someone about this. You are not alone, even if it feels like you are.

    I know, I lived it too, but I was lucky.

    My beautiful friend, Kimberly Deanne Jackson, RN was not.

    Please talk to someone about this. Please.
    This has nothing to do with bed baths.
  8. by   ltg623
    I think people who are non-medical don't see things the way we all do. You see one you've seen them all !!! You really do need to find out why he has a problem with this and explain it is not a sexual thing. He would absolutely die if you were in my BSN Health Assessmant class...we do all kinds of exams ...of course not male or female GU...on each other and we spent a good part of the class hysterical laughing because someone always comes up with soemthing funny to say. The instructor even ends up laughing at us. There are 3 males in the class, 2 of which I work with in the ER. We have a blast !!! But back to your problem...your husband has to understand naked bodies of the opposite sex are just part of our work day just like a painter has paint brushes or a mailman has mail. NO BIG DEAL..... He needs to articulate what his feelings are a little better and why he feels this way. OOOOOH if he told me I COULD NOT DO.... you better believe I WOULD DO.......
  9. by   casey12873
    OK, in defense of insecure men all over the world, I feel I must say something. My husband, who I love dearly, is VERY jealous and insecure. It doesn't change the way I feel about him in any way, shape or form. I've found the best way to handle this is reassurance that he is the man I love. However, I didn't have to do bed baths on my fellow students--thank God--I would've quit nursing school at that point!! Many people I know have misunderstood my husband's feelings in the past--including myself at times--but the ones who truly love me and my husband have been supportive and understanding. If this is the one you love, you support him and as Tammy Wynette so eloquently said, "Stand by your man." This may sound silly/old fashioned, but I happen to believe wholeheartedly in that statement. My husband knows that if I happen to disagree with him, I will still do what I want, so I don't think of his behavior as abuse. AND, vice versa. My advice is to try to reassure him and help make him feel comfortable about what you need to do as a nurse.
  10. by   BSNtobe2009
    Quote from Marie_LPN
    LET you?

    Might want to work on settling this now, though, or it'll just keep going on and get worse. He needs to get over the fact (and his insecurities with himself) that there's nothing sexual about any of the procedures.

    (I wouldn't have problems with this, mainly because i wouldn't tolerate my huband acting like they're my father telling me what i can and cannot do, especially when it pertains to unavoidable aspects of my career, but that's just me.)
  11. by   BSNtobe2009
    I wouldn't be comfortable doing the bath thing either with a classmate. However, as an adult, I don't think I could walk into a classroom and have the nerve to tell an instructor, "I can't do the bath with another male because my husband won't approve of it, won't let me, etc." I would feel like I was 3 years old.

    There are things in a marriage that are true partnering (money, child rearing), but some things fall under the catagory of where a husband needs to "deal with it" and this is one of them.

    We aren't talking about you wearing a dress that he might feel is a little too sexy or revealing...we are talking about a college class where you are receiving an education, and learning to work around a body is part of it. He needs to learn to deal with his own insecurities now before they escalate, and yup, they are insecurities. It's nothing but pure jealousy.
    Last edit by BSNtobe2009 on Oct 7, '06
  12. by   edowhitetop
    You live in the United States of America. You are over 21. The activity you describe is not illegal - in fact, it is a required part of your training. NO ONE has the right to "won't let" you. Reminds me of someone I dated many years ago. He told me that I should not worry because he'd LET ME keep working. Guess what - we never did get married!


    Hang in there - with your nursing studies, that is!
  13. by   Fun2, RN, BSN
    Quote from Lt
    we do all kinds of exams ...of course not male or female GU...on each other and we spent a good part of the class hysterical laughing because someone always comes up with something funny to say.

    To change the subject because I'm sure the bed bath problem is over by now...I hope......I wanted to comment on ltg623's post.

    When we did bed baths, my partner was already in her hospital gown, bathing suit underneath, and just kept it on instead of going to the restroom to change first.

    She walks in and introduces herself as my student nurse, and I said out loud, "You know there's a nursing shortage when patients have to give each other baths." :chuckle It was funny.