One of the most difficult task a doctor must do is when he will declare a prognosis or a diagnosis to a patient, especially when the findings are terminal or in a chronic state. But the most difficult of all is when the patient is your relative; much worst… you’re immediate family.
So far, one thing I learned here in school is to be… a toughie. Your professors will show dissatisfaction on your work, criticizing every bits and turns that you do and your mentors will mock you. I know it’s a part of the training, to become a five star physician. But in terms with your family, how can you not show a bit of emotion? How can you say an outcome without making you feel that you’re not giving a verdict to a person you grew up with?
A very good example is Dr. Cristina Yang of Grey’s Anatomy. (I’m not really a fan but I watched some episodes) I remember she ruthlessly delivered to a family that the corpse of a man will be used as an organ donor. She mentioned every single organ in front of the wife and the 5 year old daughter like, how about the heart… the liver… kidneys… the skin… Astonishingly, she delivered that.
I was told that in those instances, I have to treat my family as my patient. And when that time comes, I know that I have to be the strong one. That I have to exude some hope and strength, because I know, that it will be the only thing my family will hold on to. As of now, I have to train myself...