The Five Worst Types of Hospital Visitors

Categories: Advice

We've all been laid up in a hospital at one time or another, some more seriously than others.

While stuck there, being greeted by visitors can certainly bring you comfort--at least if they act friendly, interested, and not too challenging.

But if they don't, visitors can make you wish you were dying.

The five worst types are:

(5) The ones who come without warning.

These narcissists couldn't be bothered to call ahead and see if you felt like having visitors, or if maybe you were going to be busy getting a CAT scan, a blood test, or a bedpan change. They just breeze in unannounced and expect you to jump out of your coma to attention. If you're sleeping for the first time in days, they want you to perk up and entertain them. They're basically doing this for themselves. They suck!

(4) The ones who make it known how miserable they are having to be there.

They bitch about how they hate hospitals, sit there squirming and texting, then roll their eyes and leave after 10 minutes. Finally! These visitors actually make you feel worse. As a hospital visitor, you need to subvert your own agenda and try to show a little sincerity for that chunk of time. Fake it if need be!

(3) The ones who can't help but relate your experience to theirs.

"You think you've got problems with your final-stage terminal illness? Well, when I was a kid, I came to this very hospital and got my tonsils taken out! It was terrifying! They almost lost the pincers! Years later, I had a nose job done down the street, and that was scary too! It hurt like hell and it didn't heal and look gorgeous for weeks! So don't complain, bubbie!"

(2) The ones who come with wilted black roses and a look of dire concern, tsk-tsking as if you were already three feet under.

You want to shriek, "I'm just here for laryngitis!"

(1) The one who know exactly what you need to do, which first of all involves leaving that very hospital.

"I read in such-and-such magazine that there are better neurological centers out there. You'd better get yourself out of here and go to one of those places immediately. This one doesn't have a high rating! If it were a restaurant, it would be 'Grade Pending'! And speaking of which, the food looks like bird crap!"

This even though you're laying there hooked to hundreds of tubes and not exactly in any position to jump up and change courses!

But of course you do still have the power to say, "Would you mind leaving me alone? I really need to rest, darling."

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#3 is the worst whether or not you're in a hospital. If you're just having a bad day and need to purge some frustration, you don't need someone dismissing your thoughts as trivial. I'm alive and well, so I realize that there will always be someone who has it rougher than me. Constant whining is annoying, but I reserve the right to wallow in self pity once or twice a year.


(6) The folks who come in groups and do numbers 1-5...not involving you (as if you could be bothered)...HEY!! I'm the sick one here! if you were throwing a "theme" party at [fill-in-the-blank] hospital.And the "I hate hospitals" folks...yes, I'm here 'cause the Waldorf is sooo over-rated.And yes, SouthernDave, if you're not "too" sick, make hay where you can...back in the day when we gay folk became regulars at know why,[be it patient or visitor] we learned how to do this with aplomb...everyone knew the "good" nurses and they enjoyed our visits as much as the patient...and you got away with much more and got loads more help.


With MY friends -- both patients and visitors -- we all get to laughing and, on occasion, singing and the nurse comes round to scold, "This is no way to behave on the ICU floor!"


Incidentally, I'm a devout coward and when they draw blood, I have to sing, usually "Get Happy." The last time this happened, I got a request!  And it wasn't to shut up, either. A lady who seemed to be having half her blood drained away asked if I knew  "When the Red, Red Robin Comes Bob-Bob-Bobbin' Along." I was happy to oblige and even got her laughing with some Jolson and Susan Hayward gestures.


Brilliantly put, though I've been guilty of a few of these.


P.S. - I did make paragraphs in the above post but it didn't post that way.


 @SouthernDave I've enjoyed giving blood since I was a little kid :)

I woke up 3 days after a car wreck. The next day my best friend snuck in a joint (before all hospitals went smokeless). That felt SO GOOD.