Be Nice to Your Physical Therapist
I had an unusual experience yesterday. The son of one of my patients said something rude to me. His mother mentioned to him I had two horses. He responded that was two too many to have around. It's been a long time since a patient has deliberately said something rude to me. Most of the time I tell myself the patient had a brain injury and wasn't aware of how it sounded. This time it was a son and he knew exactly what he was saying.
The facility has very strong customer service standards. I couldn't even think about replying. Had this happened anywhere outside of work, I would have had a couple choice responses. At work, I had to keep quiet and continue my treatment despite wanting to cut it short. Obviously that little family unit won't make my top five on the enjoyable-to-work-with list.
There had to be a better way to handle it than saying nothing. I've become very careful with what I say to avoid any misunderstandings. Previous experiences around my department have shown no matter what, the hospital will support the patient. We've had patients and families do things no one would tolerate in the home. Yet, the administrators see no problem with it happening in the facility. Pointing out that this son was an uneducated jerk probably wouldn't have gone over well, even if true.
I don't think anyone will ever understand why people say some of things they do. The majority I come in contact with seem to engage the mouth before the brain. I have trouble with someone knowingly saying something rude, especially to someone caring for a loved one. I'm sure I have several not-nice thoughts at work. I keep mine to myself. I'm going to think about this and think about this until I come up with an acceptable I-should-have-said for next time.