NR 394 Reflection on Cultural Perspective

NR 394 Reflection on Cultural Perspective

NR 394 Reflection on Cultural Perspective

I grew up in a traditional American family.  I am the youngest of 9: 5 boys and 4 girls.  Both of my parents worked outside of the home, and the older kids often took care of the younger kids.  My parents made sure there was a meal on the table every night.  Most nights we would all eat together but as we got older, we were often going in different directions.  Regardless dinner was made and most of us ate together most nights.  My parents have fairly conservative views despite my mother being the only religious one of the two.  So looking back, it was no surprise to me that my parents did not take it well when one of my brothers came out as gay and another one came out as transgender.  They were not accepting of either one of my brother’s lifestyles.  This caused a lot of heartache and sadness in the family.

I do not see things the same way as my parents.  My husband and I have a family motto, “you be you”.  My kids make fun of us for it because we are always saying it, but I know they appreciate knowing we will support them no matter what choices they make in life.  It is far more important to me that my kids have healthy happy lives than to worry about what someone else may think.  In today’s society, there is greater acceptance of the LGBTQ communities, but society is still not where it needs to be.

I think seeing all the conflict and pain in my family growing up has helped me embrace a true appreciation for allowing each individual to be uniquely themselves.  Our reading this week stated that self-reflection and self-awareness may be the first step to acceptance for healthcare providers (Chamberlain College of Nursing, n.d.).  Over the years I have learned it is not my place to judge any patient for their life choices.  It is my duty to be accepting of those I care for and try to understand what is important to them in their care.  Just as each culture is unique so is each individual within their culture.  The healthcare system can be stressful for patients to navigate on its own and patients should not have the additional stress of worrying if their choices will be judged and their wishes honored.


Chamberlain College of Nursing. (n.d.). The changing family [Lecture notes]. Chamberlain University.

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I absolutely love your motto of “you be you”. I think this the world has changed soo much in regards to LGBTQ. Its

NR 394 Reflection on Cultural Perspective
NR 394 Reflection on Cultural Perspective

an awful feeling knowing that your family wont accept you, and that seems to be the case for your brother unfortunately. I love that this made you grow as a person though. It is great to see how that one topic can help change your life and perspective. Great post! Thank you for sharing about your personal life.

Very cool motto!  Glad you had a very nice up bringing even thought your parents may not see the larger picture at that time.  It was very difficult for individuals to express themselves w/o much support.  Must have been difficult for your siblings to hold back from telling family members their true selves.  Lots of times we follow in our family footsteps and it’s difficult to break the cycle whether it be verbal abuse, alcoholism or close mindedness.  We all have some of our parents in us but it’s ups to us to pick and choose the best parts of them.  Bringing your life experiences to the nursing platform only makes us as nurses look better.  Thank you for the share!!!

  • Think of a change in your cultural perspective that is different now from when you were a child.
    • I can honestly say that I do not recall my cultural perspective from when I was a child compared to now. When it comes to thinking back to my past experiences growing up, I don’t really recall many things. So, I am unsure what the difference between then and now would be for me, unfortunately.
  • What influenced you to change your thinking?
    • As I get older, learning more about cultures opens my eyes to different beliefs of cultures. I feel like I have grown more culturally than I use to be, but I am unsure what may or may not have changed.
  • How can you use this information in clinical practice?
    • Clinically, I believe I understand more cultures beliefs. When I am unsure of something, I either ask the patient or ask others. I believe everyone grows in their clinical practice culturally as they learn.

I grew up in one of the major cities in Poland. We lived in a small condo in a multigeneration household.  Immediate and extended family were one of the highest priorities. I recall enormous family gatherings where we could meet all cousins, aunts, and unkles. My great-grandma was in a center of events. Our family members were the people that you can turn to to support each other. We cultivated all Polish traditions and holidays.  I was taught respect and kindness towards others especially to the elderly and people with disabilities. Roman Catholic church and communism played an important role in the culture when I was growing up.

When I was 20 I moved to the United States. I knew the country from family and friends’ reports, various documentaries, and TV shows, however, upon arrival I experienced a cultural shock. I arrived at the busy Chicago area where one can meet everyone from everywhere. Walking down the street you could meet multiple people talking different languages, different ethnic backgrounds, races, and sizes, wearing different outfits. Walking into Chinatown or other countries’ villages was like traveling to a different continent. I was amazed by the availability of foods and other goods from all over the world.  I am respectful and always work towards being culturally competent.  I am very open-minded and nonjudgemental. I love to observe and learn about people’s traditions, language, and food. Going to college helped me even more with getting to know other cultures. I took an anthropology class which was a great introduction to learning about traditions other than mine. I love to travel and instead of sitting on the beach, I want to learn about the place and its people. Cultural sensitivity and competency help me to build a healing and trusting relationship with my patients and families to provide the best patient-centered care.

I grew up in the Chicago suburbs in an area with a very large Polish population.  I married into a Polish family, but they were third generation in the U.S. Nonetheless, they were very conservative Catholics.  It was hard for them to accept me since I had a child from a previous relationship.  They eventually came to accept me and my child, but it was a long road.  It was difficult to get them to accept me due to their deep Catholic beliefs.  I was with my ex-husband for 18 years and we had 2 children.   During those years his siblings found inspiration in my ability to change their family’s traditional beliefs and find acceptance in things different than what they knew.  I was a bit of a trailblazer in the family and they learned a lot about acceptance from me and my oldest son.