Last week’s apparently controversial poll asked whether you thought newborns were cute or ugly. While the majority sided with “cute”, it was a tight race with “cute” only winning by two. I guess my poll question wasn’t as awful as some believed being that so many people believe newborns aren’t all that cute.
This week’s poll comes after our two stays in the hospital over the last week. My wife and newborn daughter were at United for ~65 hours when she was born and we were later admitted to the NICU at Ridges beginning Monday and stayed through Thursday because my daughter was severely dehydrated. A stressful and miserable time for sure but these difficult times were made more stressful by the way hospital staff seemed put off by questions about the care provided and how they would go about it.
As someone with a brain and with an interest in having the members of my family receive appropriate care, I ask questions–lots of them. I also expect my family members to receive a level of care which should be consistent with that of all other human beings. Unfortunately, based on my experience (and my experience when The Rooster was born), it would appear that hospital staffers forget that they are not working on in animate objects and are instead dealing with people who are intelligent beings with feelings.
- My wife made a choice with her OB months ago to do a natural birth and not a C-section. Less than an hour before she actually gave birth (without any complications at all) another OB who was associated with my wife’s chosen clinic but was not her doctor came in to tell her that she absolutely would have a C-section or she would have an over 20% chance of being incontinent. After berating my wife for more than 10 minutes, I intervened when I noticed she was becoming upset. The doctor, whose bedside manner was as advanced as that of a wild boar, seemed almost perturbed that I would dare note that she should not be pressuring my wife into this decision and I didn’t care for it. We ended up opting for a completely different doctors to do the delivery who was soft, sweet, and apparently amazing at her job (which consisted almost entirely of standing with her arms crossed and saying “push” every 4 minutes) because there were no complications.
A feeding tube was inserted into my daughter without our consent. It’s not as if an hour’s delay would have led to her death and it’s not like we weren’t in the hospital. Instead of coming to consult with us prior to the procedure, they just intubated her first and told us questions later. When we told them that we expected they would communicate with us fully at all times and prior to any medical procedure which was not routine and was not necessary to keep her alive in the very short time (imminent death) we received what I like to call the “stink eye roll”.
There are many other examples including barriers to having my wife be fed because “that’s the way the computer system works and it isn’t my problem,” and, “I should have taken a before and after photo of that,” which would have included sensitive body parts. Many of these are too numerous to mention but fit the models noted above. When I feel that medical staffers are grasping at straws about the procedures they plan or the potential for complications may be greater than potential benefits, I speak up and I do not expect the “stink eye roll” or a lot of confused looks.
Being that we have only spent a short time in the hospital for these two births, I wonder if anyone else has a larger sample of experiences to counter or add to the negative experiences we have had with the medical professionals we dealt with. Do you think many doctors lack bedside manner and treat their patients like inanimate objects? Do you feel that you are not communicated to clearly and effectively and instead left to float in some unknowing void? Have you pushed back on medical staff members and met resistance when you did as if they were saying, “how dare someone question our knowledge even if we are not all that sure of it ourselves?”
Whatever you have to say about this one go ahead and comment on and vote on the side bar and then feel free to check out our expired polls in the archive or read through the previous posts about polls here.