Thursday, June 2, 2011

racism in a conversation with a patient.

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Entering a patient's room (not that this is of any significance, but she is from Holland, and not American, and maybe I state that only to show that racism is present everywhere in this world). She was half way through a blood transfusion and a visitor was saying good-bye.

Patient: "I was just talking with my friend about this blood, she was asking me if it came all the way from China! You know, if this was Chinese blood."

Me: (utterly baffled): "I'm sorry? If this was blood donated from China?"

Patient: "Yes. Well, you know, I don't want to turn into a monkey."

Me: (utterly shocked and horrified, hiding these emotions): "Are you implying in some way that Chinese people are monkeys?"

Patient: "Well you know what I mean"

Me: "No I don't know what you mean. I can tell you that your blood was donated locally and I can assure you that Chinese people are not monkeys. My daughter is Chinese."

Patient: (not missing a beat and not even remotely remorseful for her prior remarks): "Oh she is! Do you eat a lot of Chinese food?"

Me: (leaving the room): "I'm not sure what that has to do with my daughter being Chinese. I'll be back to check on you in 30 minutes, if you need anything before then, please call".

What I should have said: "No, we like to eat monkey brains".

god help me.

23 comments:

  1. ACK! What is wrong with people? I had a similar conversation with a dental assistant...except I had stunned silence when I said, "my children are Chinese."

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  2. Oh my goodness. There are no words for this one.

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  3. Ignorance. Pure, pure ignorance. This woman sounds like a horrible person. I honestly don't know how you kept your composure.

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  4. My response would have been, " No, Arsehat, we don't eat a lot of Chinese food we eat a lot of Dutch women with cancer"
    Sorry, that was not at all helpful and sinks me to her gosh awful level but comments like the one you received just make me snippy.

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  5. Oh my god ! I can't believe it.
    I wish I could react as calmly as you did.
    Congratulations.
    Virginie

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  6. She's not only ignorant she's also very very ungrateful, it doesn't matter who donated the blood!!! I would have said "I don't know if it is Chinese, let's wait and see if you turn into a monkey"
    Saddly people like her are everywhere

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  7. Ewww... She should feel blessed that anyone would be willing to give her blood.

    That is one gorgeous photo of your girl :o)

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  8. Da&* that woman was stupid!!!!!!!!!!

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  9. A wise friend of mine once told me when things like this come up... say a loudly, and pained "ouch". It will give you a minute to compose yourself and maybe even give the the person an idea they are heading down the wrong road with you.
    Kate

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  10. Um...wow. I think that's about all I can say. No words beyond that.

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  11. And yet this (your patient) is an individual that I share a space with in the human race, which to me feels like sharing an elevator with someone who just passed GAS.

    Did she at least offer an apology when you went back in thirty minutes?

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  12. As Kim would say, GOOD...NESS. Stupid lady. I am not surprised you kept your composure...you are so good that way. Still kind of baffled re: Chinese and monkeys. New one on me. But.......truth be known, El is a little monkey ;-)

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  13. Turn into a monkey????!!! WTH? Ugh.

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  14. pfff, im dutch and that makes me sad! It really isnt a trend here in Holland I promise, she doesnt sound dutch at all! , but may i just say one thing, and im not saying that what she said is ok, but if she is really really old.. its possible that she was in a Japaneese war camp.. Alot of dutch people where and alot of people died, it could be an answer , because alot of dutch people where in indonesia when the war broke out . and they just really hang on it things like that .

    If she is young?? you might want to skip her on the coffee round :-)

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  15. o, that is horrible!! I'm sorry you had to met someone from the Netherlands with such stupid Ideas!!

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  16. I think I just would have said (in answer to the question...do you eat a lot of Chinesse food?)...NAH, just monkeys.

    Idiot, GOSH.

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  17. I would have given her the exact answer Vida Mía provided.

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  18. Well....that was different.

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  19. Things that make you go Hmmmmm.....

    I do dig your last line though, I'll stick that in my memory file bank of snark.

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  20. That person needed a Clue Bat.

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  21. Oh my gosh....this is truly so very sad & shocking...wow...

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  22. Oh my god ! I can't believe it.

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