Can You Hear Me

Can You Hear Me? Part II

Dear Nurse,

“For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.” Isaiah 41:13

Dear Nurse,

Your job is the most important in health care. You come in contact more with patients than any other medical professional. You make the difference.

I am a sexual assault survivor, and because of this I struggle with seeing doctors and medical professionals; having medical tests done. You can help the days I have tests and appointments go well.

I know you are busy, but taking the extra time to care about me can make my day. If I appear depressed to you, please ask what you can do to help. Listen if I share with you. I don’t expect answers, or suggestions, only an ear. Even while you are completing the work to get me ready for the doctor, instead of silence, a conversation with me can make my day brighter.

Knowing you care fills one of the many holes inside my heart. If you are preparing me for surgery or a procedure, assurance all will go well, and a calm voice, can ease my ever present anxiety.

Having no expectations of me to give you a urine sample when I arrive will help tremendously as this is an area which I cannot control because of my abuse history. I cannot go to the bathroom when I want to, and pressure only makes it worse. Your understanding of this can ease my frustration and assure me I am not at fault.

Your friendly face, the tone of your voice, and the time you spend with me, all have the ability to brighten my dreary days. You can be a comfort to me, a piece of strength for me to grab hold, and possibly the reason I make it to tomorrow.

Thank you for being the person who comforts me and assures me when I seek medical care. You make the difference.

Your Patient,


Have you had a bad experience with a medical professional because of your abuse history? Try writing to the person who hurt you. Again, a tape recorder on your phone can work well too. Don’t hold back your emotions.

Let them out. Then, after rereading your letter – days or weeks later, try rewriting the letter like I have done here. See how your perspective might change. I realize it takes time to heal and change, and I have letters which haven’t changed yet too. So don’t be discouraged.

© 2018 Susan M. Clabaugh. All Rights Reserved.

1 comment on “Can You Hear Me? Part II

  1. Awesome letter, Susan! I know some nurses who are caring and compassionate – and others who are more like Nurse Ratchett. Your letter will make a difference.

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