When Mike’s wife was discharged, he sent her straight back to the emergency as he felt she was too sick to come home.
If you want your partner to get the best of care, you have to ruffle feathers. At some point in time don’t be afraid to ruffle and say, “No, I don’t accept this. This is wrong. You’re doing it wrong.”
Where I got into this with my wife quite a few years ago, we had her in the hospital in horrendous pain; we didn’t know she had MS at the time. To make a long story short, they called me up to come down and take her home and she’s worse than when I brought her in. I said, “What’s wrong with her?” and they said, “We don’t know, we’re sending her home.” I said, “She’s worse now than when I brought her in. Why would I want to take her home? She can’t even stand up she’s bowled over in pain”. “You have to take her home she’s been discharged.” I took the wheelchair, turned it around and walked right back to the emergency room and said, “She’s yours,” and had an argument with the doctor. “What am I going to do, taking her home and she gets worse? Bring her back? I have 2 young children at home. I am not taking her home.” I turned around and walked away. It wasn’t easy, but I turned around and walked away.
And that’s what I’m getting at; as a caregiver you’ve got to know when to stand, and men tend—again I’m only giving a perspective here—men tend to stand up and say, “No, this isn’t the way it’s going to be.” And walk away. But your spouse or your partner has to know you’re not walking away and leaving them, you’re doing it because they need the help and hopefully that answers your question.
More from: Mike
- Navigating the system – MikeAt some point you have to ruffle feathers. Mike went right back to the emergency department with his wife after she was discharged.
- Interaction with professionals – MikeMike describes what he appreciates about his interaction with the specialist.
- Health system issues – MikeMike would appreciate an information service for caregivers.
- Hospitals and facilities – MikeWhen Mike’s wife was discharged, he sent her straight back to the emergency as he felt she was too sick to come home.
- Trying to find the right balance – MikeIt is not easy for Mike to speak with his wife about his needs; he doesn’t want to make her feel guilty.
- Legal issues – MikeMike’s wife started a journal and wrote about every meeting and person she dealt with. The journal was very useful later when the insurance company came to assess her situation.
- Personal growth and transformation – MikeWhen things aren’t being done correctly, Mike says you have the right to stand up and say “No, we have to find another way.”
- Support from family and friends – MikeEven though Mike’s wife has a strong family, they did not remain in contact when Judy was diagnosed with MS.
- What is it like to be a caregiver? – MikeMike is always looking to see what is going on around him to keep his wife safe.