When The Caregiver Needs Privacy As A Patient

I have been a caregiver for years. But when I got my kidney scare, along with a few other things, I was not happy. My first question was who is going to help me at my doctor appointments? So, I will be telling you today, how my sister stepped up as my caregiver. She help me with all the appointments and the procedural things I went through while getting treatment.

Hats off to her for the way she managed everything so gracefully. I learned a lot from her during that time. Being a caregiver is so much more than giving you company. It's also making sure you are eating your meals and taking your medicines and everything in between.

Caregivers can advocate for us at doctor's appointments

I learned from her that it is not necessary to be physically involved in everything, but it's important for caregivers to keep an eye on things outside of just the treatment plan. You can learn about this during your doctor’s visits. One day, before one of my doctor's appointments, I showed her my medical records. She asked me about the things that I was feeling not only physically, but emotionally and she wrote down something on paper that I did not know at that time.

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The next day, she put all those medical records in a closed file keeper. On our way, she asked me if I would personally like to tell all of these things to my doctor or did she need to be part of it. She also asked me how I would be more comfortable, her being in the room with me or waiting outside while I discuss everything with my doctor. Of course, I replied that I needed her inside with me because I was a bit anxious.

When we headed to the doctor’s office, she sat there while I told her everything about my symptoms and how I was feeling lately. After I was done, she pulled out her paper from the file and asked my doctor a few very important questions regarding my treatment plan. Are there any side effects, and how she should be dealing with them? It was amazing yet surprising for me how important it is to keep a track of everything on paper, she asked a few things that even I forgot to even think about.

We can forget things about our own health

That was a very valuable lesson for me. Even as a caregiver, you forget things when it comes to your own health. My first learning is to always keep a list of queries if you have any with you. You need to discuss everything in detail. Second, she let me say things first so that I felt confident about how things are going. She took her turn after that just ensuring that everything is in place and what else needed to be done. Then she asked me if I have something to discuss in private so she could leave the room. 

All of this really helped me in many ways, like how important it is to value the privacy of the patient, even if she is my sister, I deserve to discuss things privately if I need to. I learned how to value the patient’s opinion. As a caregiver, I had never thought about this before. I will always keep these little things in my mind.

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