Sooo...I had a patient the other day who spoke NO English. At least she didn't let on if she did. You'll understand why I say this in a moment. I used the phone translator to communicate with the patient and while it was extremely helpful, it was also extremely awkward! I would look at the patient and talk to the translator as if I were talking directly to the patient. For example, instead of saying, "Can you ask her if she needs anything?" I would say (while looking at her) "Do you need anything?" I was just trying to make a tough situation a little more intimate. It didn't work. She didn't look at me EVER. Whatever...I made it through the shift A-okay.Fast forward a couple of days....I had another patient who I didn't even need the phone translator for. It was a little difficult to communicate, but not so much that I couldn't do my job. She understood simple questions and I used gestures, etc. At one point her family was there and they would say "thank you" and usually "gracias" at the same time. When this patient was alone (and when her family was there) I would walk in and ask her questions like, "Do you need anything? Would you like me to get you a toothbrush?" or more important questions like, "Are you having any pain? How would you rate it from 0-10?" She had NOOOO PROBLEMO anwering my questions. She would say, "No, I'm okay," or "Not bad. 3-4 maybe." heavy accent, but it was clear she understood and I had no trouble understanding. Fast forward....her daughter shows up. It's a little girl (maybe 12) who speaks perfect English along with fluent Spanish. From the moment the daughter arrived, all of the mother's English/communication STOPPED. I would ask, "are you having any pain?" and the girl would start speaking in Spanish to her mother. The mother in turn would respond to the girl who would then speak to me. I found that SOOOO weird!! I can understand translating obviously when it's necessary, but being as though this lady clearly understood and communicated with me half of the day, I fully expected that she would answer me directly and instruct her daughter of her ability to do so that she would stop translating for and IMO hindering her mother. Here's an example...I mentioned earlier that I had asked the patient when she was alone (and when her adult visitors were present) "how would you rate your pain" and she would answer immediately, "not bad. 3-4 maybe." I asked the SAME question with the daughter present and the daughter spoke up, "are you talking about the board?" because we have a board with the smiley faces to help patients rate their pain. She then pointed to the board and started speaking in Spanish to her mother and then her mother responded to her in Spanish. Then her daughter told me, "she said it's the second one on the board." Okay, so when she was alone she was able to understand and without hesitation say "3-4" but now she needs a translator to use gestures and translation to say "the second one on the board"? What happened to 3-4 without all the back and forth? I don't get it. Why do you think this mother would stop communicating with me and allow this unnecessary translating once her child was present? It was truly odd to me as a mother. I almost felt it was rude and expected her to say to her daughter (even in Spanish) that she could speak for herself because she COULD and DID. By the way, she and her family spoke to each other in Spanish the whole time I was in the room (which I also found a little rude) but they never attempted to speak or translate for her and they were adults. What am I missing?