I just got off the phone with Al‘s facility. I talked to the nurse. Al has been on my mind more than usual and I just felt something was wrong. Of course they never made the attempt to call me and tell me he wasn’t acting himself. He refused to go out of his room. He refused all activities. The only thing he did was going to meals.
She just happened to be the nurse that called Social Services when she had already went through Al’s room. So she and The S.S. went through Al’s room again. She told me he was embarrassed by talking so rudely to staff yesterday.
I stopped her in mid-air and said,”No the reason he is quiet is because he feels threatened once again. You were in his room searching and then you brought someone else in to search again.”
She said,”We needed to find the money.”
“No, you needed to call me first. If you would have made me the priority you would not have had to search because I did it for Al. The money is gone. I knew it, Al knew it.”
“He had several codes he was breaking.”
“The screwdrivers were to use to take backs off and I will take these home tomorrow when I come. The candy is not on the floor, the basket is. If he has to keep the candy on the bed, then he has to get up from the recliner each time he wants a piece. The nail clippers..”
“We already took those a way from him. If he wants to use them he will need to ask us.”
“Oh, so he can use them with supervision, is that what you are saying?”
“No, he is a diabetic. He needs his nails trimmed professionally.”
“I see, so you are going to keep them and he can use them if he asks for them but then you won’t let him have them because they need to be done professionally. Why wasn’t I called first?”
“We wanted to see if we could find the money first.”
“Bad reason. From now on there will be no searching unless I am present. Period. You say he is quiet. Yes I imagine he is. The only things in life that matter to him are his cars and coca cola. Every time I turn around you are sending something home with me that is his. Of course he is wondering what you are going to take a way from him next. He isn’t like you and me. He doesn’t have a spouse or kids. He has no job. He can barely walk. He is here instead of having freedom like you and me. All he has is his collections. Your facility has made it very clear that if anything comes up missing you will not replace it, so why do you give a hoot if a car or money or anything comes up gone? Let him have his loved items. If it comes up gone then it is his loss but he enjoyed it up until the missing time.”
“Oh, I see you don’t care if his stuff is stolen.”
“Yes I care but I care more about Al’s feelings and attitude. He is very sick. I am tending to think more about keeping him calm and as content as possible. Those cars and coke things can be replaced. He can not.”
That was our conversation. She ended it with, “I will call the S.S. lady and tell her what you said.”
I wished her a good day and said good-bye.
- Why Privacy Matters (spideroak.com)
- Fifth of hospitals failing to treat older patients with dignity, says review (guardian.co.uk)
- The Disappearance of Discretion (annaleawest.com)