19 - Love Life Pain

The need for understanding, advice, or referral about hurtful problems affecting one’s love life pervades both patients and staff. A person’s primary relationship affects and is affected by everything else of significance that happens to him/her. Our human spirit flies when we are in love, and tanks when that relationship hurts as much as anything else can hurt. As a major aspect of the spirituality of most people, pain in intimate relationships can often benefit from sharing and discussions of further counseling care.

      In health care, who most people want to be with them in crisis is their current lover-spouse-partner. It makes it particularly difficult when that person and the patient are currently not on good terms.  On the other hand, crisis times can turn out to be opportunities for beginning the difficult process of getting help for the relationship itself if care givers notice,  listen and respond.

20 - Advocacy

Regardless of the quality of care they receive, some patients and families begin to feel neglected by the healthcare system or specific caregivers.  Sorting out who actually needs a different kind of care than they are getting, from the dependent style personalities who, sometimes unconsciously, have an insatiable yearning for attention, is an art only experienced caregivers develop.

        On the other hand, the health care culture easily gets preoccupied with procedures and protocols, that then misses issues that lie beneath. Some issues simply do not fit nicely into caregivers' worlds, such as chemical dependence. Indeed,   Iatrogenic issues are real, fairly frequent, and often serious in health care facilities.

         The word advocate, from the Latin "to speak for", fills a need for those who cannot be expected to realize how, when, or about what to speak for themselves. But it does take courage for a spiritual clinician of any discipline to  assist patients and caregivers to move towards mutual understanding of what is in the best interest of patients and within the limitations of systems of care.

Outcomes for Study:

1. Expresses concerns about care received
2. Empathy found and conveyed
3. Alternate care identified
4. Alternate care accepted
5. Alternate care received
6. Staff apology received if indicated
7. Increased satisfaction expressed
​8. Increased self-responsibility acknowledged

9. Expresses new appreciation for the limitations of healthcare

Outcomes for Study: 

1. Expresses negative feelings about one’s lover’s well being or the relationship itself
2. Receives conveyed empathy
3. Speaks openly about the relationship and situation
4. Considers referral for counseling assistance