Monday, November 16, 2009

Diction

A few months ago I wrote about how difficult it is for me to speak truths to the family of my patients some times, about my realization of the power of words, and my pursuit of speaking clearly.  I am still a work in process in this regards as in so many others.

Today as I prepare for a family meeting, I am thinking about some of the words/phrases that I use on an almost daily basis that are thankfully foreign to most.  Things like "limits of viability," "incompatible with life," "allow natural death"...  These phrases have very specific meanings in my world, but they sound cold, harsh, unfeeling.  Yet sometimes that is reality and there is no sugar coating it.  I wish there was.

6 comments:

the slackmistress said...

Incompatible with life is a phrase I never want to have to say. Big love.

Dr. Lisa said...

Thanks Nina, I hope you never say it or hear it. It sucks.

agent99 said...

I'm sure the families you work with are aware of how heavilty those words weight on you. As the parent of a profoundly handicapped child, the thing I most appreciated from our doctors was honesty and directness. Despite the severity of her condition, getting definitive diagnosis was an enormous relief to us. Wishing you strength and grace if you need it.

Jack said...

I have a dear friend who is a pediatrician at Childrens. I have told him many times that I am happy that I don't have to have to those conversations.

It is good that you are conscious about the power of what you say and how you say it.

JaxMom said...

Sorry for your day. Thanks for the reminder that no babies died in my world today. I actually shared that with a client board member who was having a rough day. No babies died in his world today either.

Dr. Lisa said...

Thanks all.. XOXO