Family and organ recipients

29 Jul

I have become aware of the impact of organ donation on the recipients family. We all know it is a small positive for the donor family in their loss but how it extends widely for the recipient side is really something.

I have posted here about my friend whose brother received a kidney transplant and how she and I felt about it. Since then the impact for the family has become obvious.

The brother (I will call him Dan) is a grandfather, the latest child arriving three weeks after the operation. Dan has gained an extension on watching them grow up. As much as he will appreciate this, his children and their spouses are grateful too.

Dan’s parents have been quite emotional, they were caught unawares when the whole thing occurred and are now hopeful that they might actually out live him. It is a new thing for them but everyone is excited that Dan is no longer tied to the dialysis machine every alternate day.

His three siblings have been a bit quieter about the whole thing. One, who was considering a live kidney donation is relieved it won’t be required. The others are just happy Dan has received a life extension and they are no longer carrying the guilt of not wanting to do a live donation.

Dan is a popular member of the community and many people have been visiting him since the operation, so much so that he is struggling to get the rest he requires to recover from the operation. This has practically chased him from his home in an effort to get some peace and quiet. His sister (my friend) is quite angry about this. “Why can’t people have more consideration?” It is like the morbid who visit hospitals and sit bedside of non relatives for hours, leaving the patient exhausted.

His sister is now wondering how to get all these visitors to show more consideration for all he has been through. He needs to toughen up a bit I think. Tell visitors he has had enough please go, or just don’t answer the door. I have approached doors with signs on them, ‘no visitors today’. Anyone who truly cares will respect this and make an appointment.

In this fast pace life of instant gratification, respect for others is becoming lost as everyone want to get the scoop. It leaves me thinking how I enjoy my privacy. I hope Dan will start to get some peace and quiet soon.

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