Thursday, November 12, 2015

How to Handle Family Dynamics Around a Dying Loved One | Judith Johnson

"While there are times when the motivations of family members for asserting their particular point of view regarding the "well being" of a critically ill loved one are self-serving at best, more often the motivation is love. Yet, terrible things are done in the name of love and the dynamics of power and influence that can develop among family and loved ones can be shocking. All too often, tensions escalate as judgments and discord fester, while no one knows how to step forward and lance the family wound by talking honestly and respectfully about differences of opinion and differing styles of response to the situation. Frequently, childhood politics surface and you suddenly find yourself the seven-year-old kid who used to be bullied by her older sister.

While everyone might sincerely believe that they all have the patient's best interest in mind, they may have diametrically opposed views about what that would look like and how it is to be accomplished. Unfortunately, all too often family members polarize against each other behind the scenes rather than uniting in support of the patient."

This article has many excellent guidelines: Having an opinion does not make you an expert (good advice in all situations).  Let the patient make as many decisions as possible.  Talk to family members about your concerns, not about other family members.

How to Handle Family Dynamics Around a Dying Loved One | Judith Johnson:

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