Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Of Doctors and Daughters


After retirement, our GP and her husband (also a doctor) moved to another city; sort of a new beginning.
A few years later, the husband died. I happened to come upon the obituary. It said that the deceased was  to be buried  at the cemetery of a city in the north of the country ; the location named was the one where their only daughter lived.

The daughter was a nice girl, but one that made her parents' life a misery. They had plans for her but she strongly disliked school and discipline. Her overall attitude had also isolated them socially, as their circle of friends used to be one of doctors and academics whose children followed in their parents' footsteps.

During her army service the daughter met a russian newcomer; they fell in love and decided to get married. It was not a bad decision. They were both without a profession, but his parents helped and put them on the right track.

In the meantime,  the
'new beginning' for the two doctors was rather one of loneliness. I met them once in the new city and they opened up.  They were each an only child to their parents, and so no siblings and nephews, only some distant cousins. They did keep in touch with their daughter who lived far, but failed to overcome their disappointment in her, so no close relationship.

When I read the obituary, I said to myself that  'frau doctor', the fresh widow, was probably going now to sell the apartment and move near  daughter and her family. The very right thing to do, and it would involve acceptance and reconciliation.
The daughter and son in law  were not perhaps highly educated, but still- good, decent people. That's what she needed in her old age - a good, caring family with grand kids to enjoy.

I felt glad for her, especially that she had once said some very kind words about my father. "He never leaves my office with the back to me; he moves slowly towards the door with his face towards me, out of  respect". Yes, that was him: always kind and respectful.

Dad

Both my parents were fond of their GP  as she spoke their language (rumanian) and shared their mentality. Giving medication was not her first choice. She used to advise her patients  to try  change of diet, leaving a toxic partner or place of work , minimal commuting. In a way she was ahead of her time; in those days the doctor was mainly expected to find the problem and give medication, not suggest how the patient should live his life.


47 comments:

  1. I am so glad she will reconcile with her daughter.

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    1. There's a sweet, happy side to reconciliation, especially within the family.

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  2. A good picture of your dad. It was nice to read that both of your parents were fond of the GP and I like her way of practicing medicine. Seemed effective. I do hope she and her daughter were able to come to a mutual understanding and respect for each other, coupled with love, to enjoy their time together following the death of her husband of her dad.

    betty

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    1. Thank you, Betty.
      The mother and daughter have a lot to do to improve and strengthen their relationship.It's never too late.

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  3. The Doctor should always try and find the problem in my way of thinking and then treat that problem.
    Shame about the daughter, but that's life she chose her own path and it probably happy, happier than doing something she didn't want to do..
    Take care.

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    1. Diagnose the problem first, treatment next.
      Apparently, the daughter chose well - a good husband to start a family with. She was happy with what she managed to achieve. Her parents wanted more of her.

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    2. Beautiful story. I love that she was such a good doctor ahead of her times. Even today most of doktors don't look for a real cause of the illness, just give you pills. Thank you for sharing this!

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    3. Patients are also to blame for doctors' attitude. They should insist on not being treated as objects but as human beings - getting to the bottom of one's medical problem and seeking the best solution for it.

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  4. Replies
    1. It's sad when parents and child don't see eye to eye in things that matter like career, for instance; but that's life.

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  5. It is quite sad that the parents were never able to reconcile with their daughter. It reminds me in a very obscure way of friends of mine who have a PhD and master's degree respectively, and three sons all with their doctorates, and their wives too have doctorates. When they sit at the family table for dinner there are seven Dr. Hofmanns and only lowly master's degree! I don't know how my friend might have reacted had one of his sons told him he wanted to be a plumber!

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    1. Things change.
      Doctors, nowadays, are not considered God's messengers any more.There's often disrespect and violence towards them.
      With degrees, it's even worse. Their value's often questioned as it appears one can buy them,or falsify them. There's a lot of manipulation involved in it.

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  6. I am estranged from my youngest son. His choice. Apparently, I was the worst mom in the world! Ah well. I have mostly let it go. His brother and sister tell me how is is doing. It's been quite a time.
    A lovely remembrance of your father!

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    1. It happens. The main thing is that your youngest son is in touch with his siblings, and you are able to know about his condition and whereabouts.

      Time, will hopefully, bring him back to you. Time is a great healer when it comes to family ties.
      Thanks for mentioning remembrance of my father.

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  7. I feel its natural for parents to have expectations and to want the best for their children, but it must be such a burden on that child when those expectations are strict and conditional. Their daughter obviously attained happiness but such a shame that she was made to feel her parents' disappointment.
    Hopefully, as you say, time is a great healer and perhaps so in this case.

    Your Father sounds like a lovely man, so respectful and so respected.

    I too admire the GP's way of treating patients. It's a great gift to have and when we can come upon that type of thinking and treatment.

    Your insights are always thought-provoking and wise Duta, lovely to catch up with you again xx

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    1. ן totally agree with your words about the daughter.
      I'll never forget the GP's words regarding my father's respect for her.She said she had never met such a respectful person in her whole career.

      Thanks, Sue, for your kind and lovely comment.

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  8. A sad story to remind us to be more accepting of our children's choices, difficult as it may be to do so. I know my daughter is making a choice right now that I am not happy with, but I support her 100% because she's my child and for her to be happy makes me happy.

    So your parents spoke Rumanian and I see that you responded to a Spanish comment, I'm curious how many languages you speak dear DUTA?

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    1. You're doing the right thing about your daughter, Alicia.

      I translate spanish comments with Google's blue translate icon.
      My native language, rumanian, is a latin language; so are spanish, portuguese, italian, french. The common source makes it easy for me to understand words in these languages, and/or learn them if I so wish.

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    2. Thank you for the response. You're correct, I myself speak English (first language) and Spanish. Being able to speak Spanish makes it easier for me to understand Italian and French, never thought about Portuguese.

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  9. My father wanted me to become an employee in the European Union, and then marry a rich man ! I did the contrary, I worked in American companies, learned English, spoke French and German and then married an Italian ! I was the disappointment of his life ! This teached me never to force my child into something he doesn't want. And he became a Graphic Designer and makes the publicity for big companies like Coca Cola or Ferrari or Nike and I can be proud of him.

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    1. Oh my, Gattina, you were quite the rebel! But, apparently you did well, And so did your son.
      Anyway, you've mastered three major languages,seen the world, and married an italian! I'm sure you are the envy of many.

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  10. Hi Duta, Wow, there is so much in your post, I was especially moved by your story about your Dad and how he left a room with facing the Dr. out of respect.

    I hope that a new blossoming of the mother daughter will come out of her moving close by.

    Blessings and Shabbat Shalom! ♡

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    1. Yes,my Dad's behavior was and is moving.

      I hope too that mother-daughter reconciliation has reached its target of bringing the two together. They need each other, and should stay close showing love and care for one another.

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  11. It is a sad story...I hope the ending is/was a happy one for the "fresh widow"...I hope both mother and daughter grew closer...and shared happy, loving times together.

    Only last night I was relecting upon our family doctor from when I was a kid growing up in Gympie...a Dr. Lindsay.

    And, I also reflected on all the stories my mother and grandmother used to tell my brother and me about their family doctor...the doctor attended the births of both my brother and I. That particular doctor, a Dr. Talbot was a much-loved doctor. To this day, in the city of Rockhampton, where both my late brother and I were born there is a retirement village and aged care facility named in his honour.

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    1. As far as I know, the story of mother-daughter has a happy end.

      Doctor Talbot sounds as one of a kind, as a human being and as a doctor(especially, judging by the honors he got).

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  12. I love to hear that language (rumanian) though I don't understand a single word.

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    1. It sounds like portuguese. It is a latin language but also has a lot of foreign words adopted from its neighbors - slavic lanuages and even turkish.

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  13. I love the words she said about your father. That shows a great degree of both kindness and observation and sensitivity. I hope the reconciliation will be a happy one. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. I hope it does for her. Often youth can disappoint. But people can season as the years move on. I hope in both cases it is good.

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    1. Thank you.
      True, youth can often dissappoint. However, parents should not despair; there are ways to make things work even in the most stubborn cases.

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  14. That is a very nice photograph of your Dad.

    All the best Jan

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    1. I'm glad you think so. He was a pleasant-looking man. In the picture he was already retired and a bit overweight. He was holding a prayer book in his hands.

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  15. As parents, we must give our children the benefit of the doubt sometimes.

    Wishing you well, my friend! Stay Safe!

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    1. Definitely.
      Parents represent maturity,wisdom, and above all experience - so it's up to them to find ways of avoiding antagonism and disobedience.

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  16. You don't find many doctors these days who don't tell you how you should live your life. But I think it's great how they let their daughter live life. Sometimes, parents can dwell too much on education and it still didn't make that much of a difference after all. Yet education is important. Love how you brought this full circle. Awesome photo too. Happy Weekend! & thanks so much for your comment, too!

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    1. Thanks Ellie, for your kind words.

      In those days, doctors used to mention only sugar and salt as potential 'killers', and advise against them. Nothing more.
      Nowadays, they get more involved in the patient's way of life, and that's good.
      Education is very important, yet one shouldn't make too much of it, There's life to be lived and savoured.

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  17. I just hope I don't need to see a doctor for the Coronavirus anytime soon. I think I made the right decision not having kids!

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    1. Not only for the corona virus, but for any health problem. I always say - don't ever need a doctor or a lawyer!
      As for kids,I'm afraid future has nothing good in store for them.

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  18. Thanks for this blogpost. I also love what you told about your father. How he was in contact with the doctor. Nice picture with his book and hat. How old was he on the picture?

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    1. Thanks, Aritha for your kind words about my father. He was retired, but honestly to me he always looked ageless.

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  19. I was a disappointment to my father because I didn't want the profession he had chosen for me and not the "ideal" husband neither ! I choose what I wanted and married whom I wanted. He disagreed and all his life long I had to hear that, but we had always a contact and spent important fests together. We never interferred in what our son wanted and he did very well, is happy in his job and earns a lot of money !

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    1. You certainly got what you wanted. Not everyone knows what they want, and so parents interfere and sometimes cause a world war.

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  20. I think I'm close with my daughter because I don't try and tell her how to live her life the way my parents did. Once they become adults, you have to treat them like adults and let them live their lives the way they want to.

    I like my doctor, she makes house calls and doesn't tell me how to live my life. I would just stop seeing her and find someone new if she did.

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    1. I'm glad to know you've got close relationship with your daughter.
      I agree with your view "treat them as adults", and also with that of doctors to refrain from telling patients how to live their life.

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  21. A sad story in many ways, but one which apparently has a better ending as you have said, Duta. I felt badly that the parents and their daughter had many years of estrangement over their expectations vs. her choices which did not seem to be the worst she could have made. Thanks for sharing the wisdom or your parent's GP. We have not seen a medical MD as our primary care for years, but instead our routine visits are with a nurse practitioner. We have found that she takes the time to listen more.

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    1. Yes, pity on the many years of estrangement!
      Kudos to you for finding the way that is good for you - visiting a professional that listens more; the Md-s seem to be too busy for that.

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  22. The glimpse of your father's respect for his doctor is beautiful. I am fortunate to have a doctor who allows me to have a part in decision making, who listens instead of just prescribes.

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    1. Your doctor is the kind of doctor any patient looks for:considerate, listening, helping with the right decision.

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