tessie Asked March 2010

How should I give comfort to an older person who is dying?

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Gershun Oct 2015
SonofSmitty that hospice worker who said that to you should be fired. Talk about insensitive! Don't give it a second thought. As a fellow christian I can tell you with assurance that God does not want you to grieve that experience any more. Just picture your Father in the better place that he is in now. Peace and Hugs to you.
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SonofSmitty Oct 2015
My Father died after suffering about a week from cancer. While I was away foe awhile and then returned, I returned just a few minutes before my Father died. I kissed him and whispered into his ear that he was loved. Then he died a few minutes later. Unfortunately, I asked the Hospice worker who had been caring for him the last week if my Father had suffered much while I was away on a military mission. She said, "OH yes! He suffered horribly the last few days!". I was devastated! How can a Hospice helper say such a cruel thing to a family member? I would have preferred that she lied to me than hear that! It still grieves me and haunts me to this day over 25 years later when I think about it. So, be CAREFUL what questions you ask from Hospice (Or anyone else caring for your dying Family member or friend) because you may not like it and it may haunt you as it has me the rest of your life! Even as a Christian I still grieve that experience and would never tell someone surviving a person's death such irresponsible words even if they were true.
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My mum died in hospital following a stroke which left her paralyzed down one side It was sudden and unexpected and she developed pneumonia rapidly.Myself and my 2 sisters were with her, and it was explained to us that she had little chance of making a recovery. She had an oxygen mask and could not talk, but was able to communicate via the squeeze of a hand if we asked the right questions. Intravenous drugs were administered to fight the infection, but by mid afternoon there was no improvement. My sisters left to make arrangements for their children, families and pets and I stayed with Mum. I asked her if she was in pain (she had been agitated for a while) - squeeze. I asked her if she wanted me to do something about it - squeeze. The Consultant arrived and I asked her to help Mum with pain control and to relieve the agitation (We had previously had a discussion - privately - about Mums fear of dying and an even bigger fear of the living death of being incapacitated in a care home. We had talked about this - my sisters, I and Mum.). She explained that in order to do this, they must stop the antibiotic, as it would clash with the other drugs. I asked if was it appropriate to do this, and she said it was and they could always go back to the original treatment if Mum improved.So we went ahead with a syringe driver containing a cocktail of drugs to relieve pain and make Mum calm. My sisters returned and I shared the information. Mum appeared so much better, but became increasingly unresponsive - to the degree that only her open eyes moved - and they roamed endlessly, seeming to see something that we could not. We stayed with her - touching, chatting, kissing until she passed away in the early hours of the morning. This is my experience, and I will always wonder if I made the right choice for Mum. Some days I feel as though I hastened her death and it hurts so much. Really, I know that I did what was best for Mum and that the medical staff were all in agreement, my sisters also. Still a bitter pill to swallow. I hope this experience may help others
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N1K2R3 Jul 2012
Number One: Correct him....but do it gently with respect.
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NumberOne Jul 2012
More and more Dad is forgetting names of things. Should I correct him or just realize that he called the President of the US, "Osama bin Laden" instead of "Obama" ? Or a handicapped sticker, "emergency". ?
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My friend has stage IV colon cancer and just had a port put in to remove fluid. She is moved to the state of Washington to be with her daughter and I am in Iowa. Her husband just passed away 3 years ago with brain cancer. She has been through alot! I talk to her frequently on the phone... I don't want to say the wrong thing so I just make small talk and talk about her dog and what's been going on in town.
When she told me the cancer was back and she had 6 months to live the only thing she cared about was her 2 schnauzers. I took one and my girlfriend took the other one. That made her happy but she misses them terribly. Any advice on what I could say to comfort her. She was given 6 months to live in February 2012. The fluid is building up more and more and she is sick to her stomach and vomiting. I would love to see her again and just be there for her even for a couple of days. I don't want to intrude with her family.Any advice?
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N1K2R3 Apr 2010
Be there. Let them talk. Listen to their stories. Be kind. Be cheerful. Be attentive. Read magazines together or by themselves. Make sure they see the outside, especially now in the warmer weather. If you don't have a porch, then take them outside. ( not the mall). keep music playing. Keep the food delicious and plentiful. Ask them about their thoughts. I could go on and on. I did these things before my husband passed.
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PirateGal Apr 2010
I would be first and foremost yourself and as supportive as you can be in such a trying time. Man you all have me crying now! Be strong be brave and have heart!
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jackiejnsn Apr 2010
As a hospice nurse I have learned it is not the nursing training that is most helpful, it the calm reassuring presence of having someone there that cares and is non-judgemental. These people place enough judgement and blame on themselves, most of time they feel it is their fault and that they are hruting their loved ones by it, just be there and be open to do or talk about whatever they want to. Let them lead in the decision making as long as possible. Thanks for being there and caring, it's not easy and takes a special person to do it.
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patrica61 Apr 2010
Just be there. the sound of your voice, you could also bring a book and read or some soft music. i was with my mom, when she passed away last year, she did not know anyone at the time only me. I held on to her and sang and just talk. She died in my own arms holding a statue of the blessed mother. She went in peace.her battler was over .
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