PSYC290N – Lifespan Development
Required ResourcesRead/review the following resources for this activity:
InstructionsAs we explored this week, late adulthood is a dynamic, rich time of life with many transitions and times of both growth and loss. One of the most profound experiences in late adulthood is that of death and dying both our own death and the loss of loved ones. In our readings this week, we learned about how important cultural contexts are in understanding the death and dying process. As current/future healthcare professionals, having an understanding of how others process death and grief is key to being able to provide quality support and care. For our final assignment for this class, you will be reflecting on the following scenarios.
Part I: Imagine you are 77 years old. You have lived a happy, fulfilling life, but have recently learned you have terminal cancer and are reflecting on how you want to spend your last few months and what you would like for your final wishes. In 1-2 pages, describe what you would like this last chapter of your life to look like. Consider:
Part II: Imagine you are a nurse, social worker, hospice volunteer or other healthcare professional working with a 77-year-old terminal cancer patient who is struggling with her end of life decisions. She is stoic and hard-working. Her culture values privacy and independence. She doesnt wish to burden her family and so changes the subject anytime her children try to broach the topic of her final wishes, taking care of her house/pets, her will, etc. She becomes uncomfortable anytime you or other care providers ask to discuss her wishes on things such as DNR orders, religious wishes, or final arrangements. Her children are concerned about her and are worried they dont know how to best fulfill her wishes and are imploring you to help. In 1-2 pages, consider:
Remember, as you reflect on these topics, connect your own experiences and ideas to the theory and research we are learning about in class, referencing your text and at least two other sources.
NOTES ABOUT ME THAT MAY HELP THIS ASSIGNMENT: Black/African American, Female – Born and raised in a micropolitan in the southeastern part of Alabama in the Southern United States also known as the Wiregrass Region – Religious Preference is Baptist but grew up with diverse familial influences of non-denominational, Holiness, COGIC, and Catholic – My family and cultural heritage view death as a time to celebrate the life of a loved one and typically includes a wake, stories about our loved one, laughter, etc. We view funerals as a time to be very emotionally expressive about our loss. However, it has been acceptable and known to cremate loved ones due to financial strain or burdens. Communication is open and tends to follow the path of what is known personally about the individual to best respect or accommodate their wishes. – Review and apply as necessary the cultural competence of Black/African Americans.
Writing Requirements (APA format)
As a 77-year-old woman with terminal cancer, I would like my last chapter of life to be filled with quality time spent with my loved ones. My cultural heritage is Black/African American, and in my family and cultural heritage, death is viewed as a time to celebrate the life of a loved one. This typically includes a wake, where family and friends gather to share stories and memories of the person who has passed away, and to offer support to each other during this time of loss.
In terms of communication about death, my family is typically open and honest about their feelings and thoughts. We believe in being transparent and respectful of the individual’s wishes, and we try to honor those wishes to the best of our ability. In terms of my own final wishes, I would like to be cremated and have my ashes scattered in a location that holds special meaning to me and my loved ones. I would also like to have a small, intimate gathering of family and close friends to celebrate my life and to offer support to each other during this time of loss.
As a healthcare professional working with a 77-year-old terminal cancer patient who is struggling with end-of-life decisions, my own views on death and dying could potentially impact my work with this patient. It is important for me to be aware of and to actively work to overcome any personal biases or assumptions that I may have, in order to provide the best possible care and support to this patient and her family.
To help guide this patient and her family through this difficult time, I would first seek to build trust and establish a rapport with the patient. I would aim to create a safe, supportive, and non-judgmental space for her to express her thoughts and feelings about her end-of-life decisions. I would also work to educate the patient and her family about their options and the potential implications of those options, in order to empower them to make informed decisions…..
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