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Bad Day

I work with a lot of foreigners from all around the globe. Sometimes it becomes very difficult to explain things thoroughly without there being some kind of miscommunication which can be very frustrating.

On this particular day there was a lot of miscommunication going on. A fellow worker of mine, who is a very nice Ethiopian woman, went into a patient room so I could pass her pills to her. We both approached the room laughing and joking as we always do. I gave the patient her pills and stood there while she asked the patient if she wanted a shower since it was her shower day. The patient said, "Yes, I would like a shower." Then the women began to say to the patient, "no you don't want a shower you want a bed bath." Okay at this point I'm a little confused, I was always taught that you must respect the patient's wishes if not you could be neglecting the patient. So I step in and say to the women "she said she wanted a shower!"

She then turns to me and says in broken English "no, she wants a bed bath. Don't you want a bed bath? You're getting a bed bath."

I then turn to her and say "she says she wants a shower so we have to give her a shower." We weren't getting any resolution to this problem so we decide to talk to the charge nurse. She explains to me that the patient is unable to get up because she needs three strong men to help her.

Okay end of conversation right! Wrong the women keeps going on and on about how I was in the room telling her she should have a shower etc, etc. Which was a complete lie. I then turn to her and say "that's a lie!" She doesn't say anything and walks back to the patients room and yells at me,

"Don't ever talk to me again unless you talk to the Charge Nurse!! I'm never going to talk to you again!"

Okay I'm thinking to myself what just happened here. She seems very ticked off but at what? I had no idea why! Strange! Anyways I decide that now is the best time to talk to her about why she got so upset. I wait until she goes into a room and follow her.

"I feel really hurt when you yelled at me back there. Is there any reason..."?




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