Professional Leadership and Communication for Healthcare
Task 7-conversation Recap
Student ID: 000509522
Western Governors University
My mother-in-law was in the ICU with acute liver failure and was given 6 months to live.
The doctor told her the prognosis before my husband and I arrived to the hospital; she wanted to
talk to me alone. She wanted to be a DNR, she was tired and she didn’t have anymore fight left
in her. She couldn’t tell her husband or kids they would try and talk her out of it and she is
afraid of becoming weak and letting them change her mind. She wanted me to tell my sweet
father in law that his wife of 36 years was going to die, to tell her son my husband that his
mother was going to die. She said she trusted me because I was a nurse and she knew I could
handle it and I wouldn’t try and change her mind because I knew what was happening to her
I walked out of the room terrified and pissed and honored. I looked at my husband who
had such fear in his eyes, I grabbed his hand and said we need to talk. I told my husband “Your
mom is very sick, her liver is failing and it won’t get any better. Your mom is going to die and
she doesn’t want any heroics when that time comes, she wants to be a DNR and we all have to
abide by her wishes.” He looked at me with such pain and said “Can she get a liver transplant?
How much time does she have? How am I going to tell my dad?” I answered “No she isn’t a
candidate for a transplant. The doctor said 6 months but they have no way of knowing a time it
could be longer it could be less. I will tell your dad if you want me to. Your mom wanted me to
tell you all that she wants to be a DNR. I can explain all of the medical stuff your dad, sister and
brother.” He couldn’t reply just nodded with tears running down his face. I was crushed and
knew it was going to be even harder with his dad.
We met my father in law at the restaurant across the street form the hospital for breakfast.
As I was sitting across from him I was thinking, I have to tell this man that his wife is going to
die and there's nothing anyone can do. I then felt like the whole place was closing in on me and I
rushed to the bathroom and began to cry uncontrollably. I couldn't do this, why did she have to
pick me? When we got back to the hospital I sat my father in law down in a family room and