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willfulone
09-03-2008, 01:28 AM
Is it ever okay to lie?

If I were to answer that before today, it would be a resounding "NO". I just don’t like the idea of it. I don’t even fib. But, I told a whopper today. And I am just sick about it, but not sure I was wrong, or right. I am a tad shocked and may not be making sense. If not, sorry.

Story:

I was on my way to visit a friend who lives in another city over an hour away from me (I had the day off). Beyond that, I do not want to be too specific in case someone here has friends or relatives within a 100-mile radius of me and has not heard or wishes for their family/friend’s family business stay private (if it applies to them). I do not wish to inflict painful things on another. And the specifics have no bearing on the lie I told. It will not be on the news, so why air such stuff is what I figure.

I held the hand of a teenabge boy who died today. I was by his side taking pulse, respirations, etc. to relay to 911. He was in and out of it and rambling/mumbling. He called me mom (it was a public place and he was alone except for the bystanders trying to assist while waiting for an ambulance) and whispered sorry over and over. "Mom, sorry, sorry…mom." He was in a bad way, and I really did think he was not going to make it. I did not want this child to die thinking he was unloved and unforgiven. He was so, I don’t know - small (not in size, but spirit maybe – or just because I flashed to my son when he was a babe and was I dying to get back to him and hug him right then). He was just so pitiful in his worry that it broke my heart and I could not watch him in his fear of no forgiveness.

The lie I told: "Honey, don’t worry. It is okay. I love you and always will. We will get through it."

He did not die right there. He was DOA at the hospital. The policeman who came to the scene called me at my friends to deliver the news since I had to give a statement and I had talked to 911. Or, for whatever. Maybe because I was shook up and he did not want me to wonder all my life. I don’t know. But, he called to let me know the boy died on the ride to the hospital.

Now, I am sick about this.

I think, maybe I did something nice by easing his fears of dying with his mom upset at him. Had he lived, he would not remember me at all I do not believe.

On the flip side, if I had not said the words, would he have tried to hang on and maybe made it? Willpower is a mighty thing and can overcome much. I have seen people who seemed like they would die a day or two earlier, but they kept waiting and hanging on until their loved ones made it to their side before passing. (I KNOW this does not happen tons, but it DOES happen.)

God, I hope his mom is not upset I did that. I think I am gonna barf again.

Was the lie I told acceptable or not?

Shadow_Ferret
09-03-2008, 01:32 AM
You did the right thing. He passed away knowing he was loved. What better gift can a person give?

JLCwrites
09-03-2008, 01:40 AM
Ok... first of all, you have been through a traumatic experience. Give yourself some time to 'heal' from what you've just witnessed. But the most important thing to remember.... you were there with him. You gave him the gift of not dying alone. You comforted him, and did your best to show him how much you cared. Maybe, if given the chance, you can look up his mom and relay part of his message to her. She would want to know that her son cared about her even at the end of his life. (Although you may not want her to know he was feeling guilty.) I am very sorry you went through this. You were his angel and helped to guide him into the next level. Give yourself some time to get through this... hug and kiss your kids... let them know you will always love them, no matter what they do.
(hugs for you too!)

Niniva
09-03-2008, 01:40 AM
Kindness to the dying is always acceptable. The fighting spirit was gone from him, which is why you perceived him as small. The mother could potentially turn her grief on you, but she would be misguided. The boy gained peace from your words.

A lot of time, the "I'm sorry Mom," isn't for being a bad kid, but for making the mistake that brought him to that point. Not for being bad to her. Just for making a error that would bring her pain.

I'd have an issue about talking to the mother to let her know that he was so concerned about hurting her. Would she want to hear his last words or would it be an intrusion into the privacy of grief?

In case you are still wondering: Thank you for taking care of that boy when his mother couldn't; you have brought me comfort.

Mr Flibble
09-03-2008, 01:40 AM
You did not lie

For that moment, for him, you were his mother. Whether you are now, or were before, does not matter. At that crucial moment you were, and you gave him what he needed to die happy, knowing that his mum loved him.

It's not possible to do anything more for anyone.

His mum would be happy that you helped him in his last moments.

Fenika
09-03-2008, 01:41 AM
The lie I told: "Honey, donít worry. It is okay. I love you and always will. We will get through it."



As I understand it, you are concerned with deceiving this boy.

However.

Based on how you explained this story, I believe you spoke honestly and sincerely. You're spirit touched his. If that ain't love, then what is?

Ol' Fashioned Girl
09-03-2008, 01:45 AM
I do believe there are angels among us... and you're one of them. And you didn't lie.

"Honey, don’t worry. It is okay. I love you and always will. We will get through it."

Every word of that is the truth.

Fenika
09-03-2008, 01:51 AM
On the flip side, if I had not said the words, would he have tried to hang on and maybe made it?


There is no way you carry a thread of blame for this kid's death. He did not slip away because you comforted him. He was only comforted. The rest is what it is.

Take strength in what you did, and know you did it well.

Beach Bunny
09-03-2008, 01:51 AM
I think that you did the right thing. I don't consider what you said a lie. I see it as speaking for his mom when she couldn't be there. If this had been my son (and I know that it is not), I would be very grateful to you for what you did. *hugs*

awatkins
09-03-2008, 01:56 AM
Thank you for being there for him. I'd want someone to do that for my child. *hugs*

Jersey Chick
09-03-2008, 02:00 AM
This is one where it's okay. What more can you do for another person but assure them that they are loved? I'm in the group of those who would want someone to do that for my child as well. You gave peace and comfort to someone who needed it desperately, and that's never wrong. Ever. End of story.

Judg
09-03-2008, 02:08 AM
WO, I share your deep hatred of lying. But sometimes there are other priorities. He needed love, you gave it. Don't second guess yourself on this, or torment yourself with what-if's. Truthfulness is a great and important virtue. Love is a greater one.

CaroGirl
09-03-2008, 02:18 AM
You didn't go into specifics, which I understand, but how do you know he was apologizing to a mother who wouldn't forgive him for prior misdeeds? He might have been saying sorry because he knew he was dying, or for any number of reasons. You acted as his mother by proxy and for that you should be commended. Also, by your account, you didn't call him son or in any way reinforce his thinking you were his mother. All you did was reassure him that he was loved. Give yourself a break.

I'm sorry you had to witness something so tragic.

willfulone
09-03-2008, 02:31 AM
Thank you all. You have eased my worries on this. It is easy to intellectually see the reasoning of the rightness. It is the emotion that has me warped on it. I am seeing the light, thanks.

joyce
09-03-2008, 02:57 AM
Bless you for doing what you did today. I hope if something terrible happens to my daughter and I'm not there, someone like you is. I want someone to tell her it's ok and she's loved, because she is. If I was the mother, I could do no more than feel an absolute love for you easing any grief my child might have felt at his last moments. You are a very special person.

MsK
09-03-2008, 03:12 AM
I just want to hug you after reading that. You definitely did the right thing. *hugs* and bless you for giving of yourself the way you did.

mlhernandez
09-03-2008, 03:25 AM
You did the right thing. DH is a medic, and I was a medic for quite a while. We've both done this a few times. When you're holding a dying person's hand, and you just *know* they aren't going to make it, you agree with whatever comes out of his/her mouth because you just want to provide whatever little comfort you can. I've done the same thing to Alzheimer patients who mistook me for a daughter.

Gah. Now I'm depressed and remembering exactly why I stopped working in the field...

JLCwrites
09-03-2008, 03:30 AM
You did the right thing. DH is a medic, and I was a medic for quite a while. We've both done this a few times. When you're holding a dying person's hand, and you just *know* they aren't going to make it, you agree with whatever comes out of his/her mouth because you just want to provide whatever little comfort you can. I've done the same thing to Alzheimer patients who mistook me for a daughter.

Gah. Now I'm depressed and remembering exactly why I stopped working in the field... I have a huge amount of respect for EMTs and Medics for this reason. What a tough job. (Hugs for you too!)

Snowstorm
09-03-2008, 03:51 AM
Willfulone, I'm so sorry for what you went through, and I'm sorry for the child. Perhaps you could consider talking with the mother, after a time, when you're ready. She might take some measure of comfort knowing her son was thinking and talking about her.

Take care of yourself.

Susie
09-03-2008, 03:56 AM
What you did was extremely wonderful and touching and it's great knowing that there are folks in this world that still care enough to help. You didn't do anything wrong, only right. (((((((HUGS))))))

KC Sunshine
09-03-2008, 04:06 AM
You're a wonderful person willfulone. You did a wonderful thing, and should be proud. You brought great comfort to someone. *big hugs*

stormie
09-03-2008, 04:09 AM
You have me in tears. What you did is what I'd want someone to do for my loved ones if I wasn't there when they died.

It wasn't what I'd call a lie. And I also know that many people can't hang on until their family member is with them. You did a beautiful thing and helped that child die peacefully.

Be good to yourself for the next week or so. You'll need to--it must have torn you apart.

Pagey's_Girl
09-03-2008, 04:17 AM
If I'd been his mother, I would have been forever grateful to you for being there and doing what you did. You did the right thing. ((hugs))

maestrowork
09-03-2008, 04:25 AM
I am so sad and sorry to hear your story. It just saddens me.

But you did the right thing. I would have done exactly the same thing had I been there. You comforted the boy when he most needed it, when his own mother wasn't there. It's a very brave thing that you did, and I had a lot of respect for that.

Again, I'm very sorry for what happened, and I hope you find some peace in this.

JoNightshade
09-03-2008, 04:32 AM
As others have said, you didn't lie. Even if you'd said you were his mother, which you didn't, I still wouldn't consider that a lie. No matter where you are, when a kid needs someone, and you are there, you are his mom. And I guarantee if his mom was there she would have said exactly the same thing.

In a week or so, you might consider writing a note to the mother just to tell her what happened, to assure her that in her son's last moments, he had someone beside him to hold his hand and comfort him - even if she couldn't be there physically, she was there in spirit, through you. I think that would be a great comfort to her.

Keyan
09-03-2008, 05:30 AM
Thank you all. You have eased my worries on this. It is easy to intellectually see the reasoning of the rightness. It is the emotion that has me warped on it. I am seeing the light, thanks.

You totally did the right thing. What better could you have done? And how much worse would it have been if you hadn't said those things and he still hadn't made it?

Good for you. I'm glad there are people like you.

CACTUSWENDY
09-20-2008, 07:11 AM
I enlarged the type so we could read it.


Is it ever okay to lie?

If I were to answer that before today, it would be a resounding "NO". I just donít like the idea of it. I donít even fib. But, I told a whopper today. And I am just sick about it, but not sure I was wrong, or right. I am a tad shocked and may not be making sense. If not, sorry.

Story:

I was on my way to visit a friend who lives in another city over an hour away from me (I had the day off). Beyond that, I do not want to be too specific in case someone here has friends or relatives within a 100-mile radius of me and has not heard or wishes for their family/friendís family business stay private (if it applies to them). I do not wish to inflict painful things on another. And the specifics have no bearing on the lie I told. It will not be on the news, so why air such stuff is what I figure.

I held the hand of a teenabge boy who died today. I was by his side taking pulse, respirations, etc. to relay to 911. He was in and out of it and rambling/mumbling. He called me mom (it was a public place and he was alone except for the bystanders trying to assist while waiting for an ambulance) and whispered sorry over and over. "Mom, sorry, sorryÖmom." He was in a bad way, and I really did think he was not going to make it. I did not want this child to die thinking he was unloved and unforgiven. He was so, I donít know - small (not in size, but spirit maybe Ė or just because I flashed to my son when he was a babe and was I dying to get back to him and hug him right then). He was just so pitiful in his worry that it broke my heart and I could not watch him in his fear of no forgiveness.

The lie I told: "Honey, donít worry. It is okay. I love you and always will. We will get through it."

He did not die right there. He was DOA at the hospital. The policeman who came to the scene called me at my friends to deliver the news since I had to give a statement and I had talked to 911. Or, for whatever. Maybe because I was shook up and he did not want me to wonder all my life. I donít know. But, he called to let me know the boy died on the ride to the hospital.

Now, I am sick about this.

I think, maybe I did something nice by easing his fears of dying with his mom upset at him. Had he lived, he would not remember me at all I do not believe.

On the flip side, if I had not said the words, would he have tried to hang on and maybe made it? Willpower is a mighty thing and can overcome much. I have seen people who seemed like they would die a day or two earlier, but they kept waiting and hanging on until their loved ones made it to their side before passing. (I KNOW this does not happen tons, but it DOES happen.)

God, I hope his mom is not upset I did that. I think I am gonna barf again.

Was the lie I told acceptable or not?

Yeshanu
09-20-2008, 09:09 AM
I'm with the others on this. You did the right thing. And writing a note or sending a card to the family also sounds like a good idea to me. It won't ease their grief--nothing can do that, really. But if the mother feels guilty for not being there, or for in any way having unresolved issues with her son, it might help that.

:Hug2:

Give yourself time, too. Holding someone's hand while they're dying is perhaps one of the hardest things one person can do for another.

SouthernFriedJulie
09-20-2008, 04:00 PM
If anything ever happens to one of my children, heaven forbid it does...but IF something does, I want someone just like you to be there if I can't be.

You're wonderful, Willfulone.