Get me away from here, I'm dying : LUSENET : ER Discussions : One Thread

I hope everyone isn't already sick of this topic, BUT... I keep giving thought to David Greene. I think it's interesting that he wants to be in a hospice but hates the idea of Mark's apartment being turned into a hospital room. What little I know of hospices is that everyone (nurses, etc) is specially trained in helping people die. There is no false hope, only a frank atttitude that the patient is going to die. It seems that David would be perfectly suited for this environment. He didn't want to get treatment, because he didn't want everyone looking at him thinking, "The poor bastard..." But people who are in the process of getting healthy again aren't really thought of this way...I think it was more the falseness of the idea of trying to fight his illness that he was reacting against. If you end up stuck in bed with tubes and machines and horribleness anyway, what's the point in fooling yourself?

The other point about hospices is that the staff isn't fooling itself either...Mark is trained to fix people up, and while his inability to let go is understandable, he is ultimately hindering the process his dad needs to go through. And I think I've said elsewhere that while children often feel indebted to parents and want to care for them, it's not always the most natural way to repay that David is experiencing, it can be humiliating. While being cared for by strangers may sound cruel or harsh, in reality (I feel, anyway) it allows the patient more dignity.

So I guess what I'm trying to say is that David deserves to be heard, and whatever Mark's intentions are (good or otherwise), if he can't do his dad that simple favor, the results are going to really screw him up...I so badly hope that Mark comes to his senses before it's too late. David needs help going through this process, and right now Mark is failing him. Thoughts, anyone?

-- nancy (, April 20, 2000


you have really good points nancy. david should be allowed to make his own request. elizabeth was just *trying* to make mark understand that. but, i can see that mark perhaps does'nt want his father to be away from him. may be he thinks that he is obligated to take care of his father

-- rachel (, April 20, 2000.

I truly believe that Mark's failure to understand and do what his father wants is going to be what drives David to ending it all. He is not going to want to continue to be a "burden" to his son; he is not going to be able to tolerate the sympathy he sees in Marks eyes; and, he is not going to allow himself to continue to be "humiliated" by not being able to tend to his own personal needs. David is strong enough to take action. I don't think that Mark is strong enough to handle it though.

I hope that should this be the direction this story takes that Mark & Elizabeth will be able to come together and she will be a source of comfort and strength for him. Lizzie has a loving, maternal, compassionate side to her - remember the lengths she went to for the families of the rape victims and the surgery for Alison Beaumont. This could be the turning point for her relationship with Mark and finally be the kick in the pants he needs to be the kind of man we all want him to be.

-- Linda (, April 20, 2000.

The mother of a good friend of mine died several years ago, and she spent her last several weeks in a hospice. The family said it was the most wonderful, humanizing place to be. Even though everyone there knew that the majority of the people were going to die (although some do surprise you against all odds and survive)they were very supportive to the patient, doing everything they possibly could for them. So I do not agree with the earlier poster who said that Mark would not have enough time to spend with his father if he put him in a hospice. Hospices are not 8-5 places. They are open 24 hours and if you want to be with someone, you can. They have cots if you want to stay, and they are much warmer, home-like atmospheres than hospitals. They also offer the patient so much more dignity. The patient is allowed to make their own choices until they are no longer mentally capable. This way they can still be in control of their own lives.

My friend said that his mother was better cared for than his family could have, and that she didn't want her family doing those things for her, no matter how much they wanted to. Since it was her decision, they followed her wishes.

I think Mark is turning his father into a child and I think it is sad and wrong. Just because a person is elderly and needs care of some sort does not mean that they are incompetent or incapable. Since Mark is only able to be there in his off hours, why would it matter? Mark's house is not David's house.

Just my thoughts. Laura

-- Laura (, April 20, 2000.

I completely disagree with the way Mark is handling (or not handling) his father's wishes. I also disagree that Mark wants to care for David at home so they can spend more time together. When David and Mark were in a doctor's waiting room one or two episodes ago, Mark couldn't tear himself away from a magazine he was reading and told David that he didn't want to have a conversation. That is hardly quality time! David Green might as well have been sitting in that room by himself.

Mark seems to want his father physically near him, but this closeness has not brought them intellectually or emotionally closer and that is so sad. Before Mark knew about David's cancer, they seemed to be getting along better and relating to one another more easily. Now they can't even carry on a meaningful conversation over the dinner table and it is the knowledge of David's impending death that has made communication difficult; and especially Mark's reaction to the news. David was right not to want anyone to know of his cancer, it has even changed his own son's perception of the father. The whole thing is very sad and I just hope Mark will realize he needs to honor his father's wishes before it is too late. Otherwise the resulting guilt after David is gone could last the rest of his life.

-- Annie (, April 21, 2000.

One more quick was interesting how last night in "Humpty Dumpty" Mark's initial reaction to his father's coming was "Ah, here comes the guilt" (or whatever his exact words were to Elizabeth as they snuggled...) It was like a knee-jerk response, to me. Mark's all prepared to play the martyr son without taking the time to stop and listen...(again later, when David arrived and Mark immediately said he could have paid for his airline ticket without considering how David might have taken the comment)

Also, Mark's conversation to Dr. Lawrence was so revealing... Mark thinks grown kids should care for aging parents, no matter what the circumstances. He seemed unable to hear Dr. L saying that it might be more complicated than that...very interesting.

Thanks, everyone for your comments.

-- nancy (, April 21, 2000.

Nancy, your thoughts on the comparison between Dr. Lawrence and his son and David & Mark Green echoed mine. Even though this was a bad episode, it was definetely worth re-watching only to compare it between the two sets of characters. And Kerry, as Gabe's surrogate daughter could show Mark on how to gently handle letting go and doing what's best for the parent, not the child.

-- AmyE (, April 21, 2000.

Something that's confused me is I thought some hospice care can be done in the patient's home. In fact, I'm almost positive of that. Mark's dad isn't being allowed to die with the dignity with which he's lived. He's a strong-willed man and it won't surprise me one bit that he doesn't just end it when the humiliation becomes more than he can take.

-- Diana (, April 22, 2000.

My great-grandmother died from cancer in 1986. She had help from hospice and it wonderful. They came directly to her house. They arranged for my great-grandfather to get some help during the day, but my grandmother could still sleep in her own house at night. Her bedroom was set up with a hospital bed that she slept in, but was situated right next to the bed that my grandfather slept in. It was "hospital like", but very warm at the same time. Hospice workers are angels.

-- Carin (, April 22, 2000.

Nancy, this is precisely why I'm getting so frustrated with Mark and what I've been hollering about for several weeks now. Mark seems to be in denial still and if he doesn't come out of it, it could destroy him after his father is gone.

Another thought regarding the relationship. Mark & David's relationship had never been close. When Mark saw him in San Diego the strain was evident. The incident with the plane ticket. And the conversation at the dinner table, now that really brought back some bad memories. Poor Mark was pleased that he could remember something his mother had made and all David could say was that "wheres the egg?" and "your Mother used to serve this with peas, not string beans." It was like, "no, son, you couldn't even get this right." And you could Mark trying to hide his hurt. I think that has been the relationship all along and is a big factor in why Mark is acting the way he is. Parents (and children, for that matter) often don't realize the immense capacity they have to hurt us with such seemmingly insignificant words.

-- (, April 22, 2000.

David did try to take it back when he said that he never cared much for the egg anyway. I think that was his way of saying thanks for the hard work, Mark.

-- Diana (, April 22, 2000.

Nancy - Mark probably just feels like Benton did with his mother re: the nursing home in the first season - that sending David to the hospice would be a cop-out, and that because he loves his father he can provide better care at home. Not sure how other countries view dying, but in the U.S. great value is placed on the notion of being allowed to die at home, surrounded by loved ones (remember Choosing Joi?). Granted, Mark isn't listeneing to what David wants, but it's probably out of misguided love and loyalty, and he may think that David is only saying he wants to go to a hospice so that he won't be a problem for Mark. You know, when a loved one is seriously ill, you want to do everything you can for them. It's hard to leave their care to someone else, especially when you know there's not much time left...

-- Beth (, April 23, 2000.

Answer to Diana,

Still, a day late and a dollar short. (Bad, bad memories) It just struck me, the similarities in Marks and my life. Both "onlies", both raised in California. Both with hypercritical parents. Yipes!

-- (, April 25, 2000.

I forgot this tidbit. In season 1 epi after "Loves Labor Lost" as he's talking to Jenn at the El station; she tells him "nobody's perfect" and he says "I'm supposed to be." Now I know why!

-- (, April 25, 2000.

Trelles, I agree. It wasn't much, but probably the most he could give. And that's heartwrenching.

-- Diana (, April 26, 2000.

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