This post has been shared by the AdvoConnection Blog. It was written with a patient-client audience in mind, but might be useful to you, too.
It is provided so you can find it in a search here at myAPHA.org, but you’ll need to link to the original post to read it in its entirety.
Don’t Let Medical Professionals Make You Feel Guilty
A recent post on social media caught my eye…. My husband was very clear. He didn’t want his life prolonged. But they guilted me into it! So I told them to go ahead and put him on a ventilator… I wish I hadn’t done that. I will always feel guilty. And, a comment from an email a few months ago…. They told me the only thing they could do was amputate my mother’s foot because it would turn gangrenous. I didn’t really understand it, but they said it was an emergency and I had to make the decision right that moment. I learned later that it wasn’t THAT much of an emergency, and there were other treatments they could have tried first. I don’t know why I let them guilt me into it! Now my mother blames me. She won’t let me forget it. So why do I raise this with you today? When we are faced with difficult, if not impossible, medical decisions, it’s extremely difficult to make a choice among the options we’re given, especially when the pressure mounts to do it quickly. Further, the options are so often what the medical professionals want, at the expense of what we know our loved one wants (or we want for ourselves.) No one makes their best decisions in the face of difficult emotions; fear and uncertainty taint our abilities to think straight! So – how to handle these situations? What should we do when we feel like we are being guilted into quick decisions? Put on the brakes! Halt! Stop! And take a deep breath…. RARE are the times when any life-altering decision must be made so quickly. VERY rare. So begin by giving yourself some space to think. From there, remember you do not have to make these sorts of life-altering decisions alone, without support and input from others who can guide you. You have the right and the responsibility to ask for, and to get help with very difficult decisions. So here’s some food for thought around difficult decision-making. The first thing you must realize is that not all medical professionals have your best interests, or your loved ones’ best interests in mind. I realize that sounds harsh and accusatory. But when you realize that the pressure THEY are too often under is more about the bottom line (as imposed by their bosses), then you realize that…