I've been on holiday, had a great time but start back to work next week. Ah well, it's like I've never been away.
Had an experience which made me think while I was away. I was taking a picture of a pretty village in England and happened to get a couple of kids (about 7 years old) in shot, thought nothing of it until my wife pointed out that it could look very suspicious a fat, bald, middle-aged man taking photos of children but I should be OK as she was with me!! This got me thinking that perhaps in this day and climate of child protection that she was right so I deleted the picture (the joys of digital cameras) and took another picture which had no children in it. But afterwards reflecting on it (see I did learn something at university - how to reflect) I thought back to my student days when I had to work on the paediatric wards. No police checks in those days, I was assumed to be safe with children as I was a nurse.
I recall one instance where I was allocated 3 children to look after in the morning, nothing unusual, happened every day. This day I decided to shower 2 of the kids and wash the other, have no idea of diagnosis and illnesses after all these years but the children were all independently mobile and were looking forward to a shower. My own kids at that time were about 10 and 12 so I was used to dealing with children. Anyway, one of the kids, a little girl of about 8 disappeared and I could not find her, she could not get out of the ward as the handle was too high for her so I was not too worried, but she was holding me up. Found the poor girl in the shower trying desperately to turn it on and shower herself for me, obviously in floods of tears and cold and naked. What did I do, the only thing I could do, I found a big warm towel and wrapped her up in it and gave her a big cuddle, I then washed her under the shower and we carried on with our day. No harm, everybody happy and I did not even think to put the incident in her notes. Would I do the same thing today? Not a chance, I have not changed (apart from getting older) but the world has changed. I could not put myself into a position where I would be alone with an 8 year old girl in a shower. To my mind the way it seems to work is that this would just be an informal way to resign my job. It is not just males, one of my colleagues used to do voluntary work with cubs and beavers but found that what they sometimes needed was a quick cuddle then on they go - she was not allowed to do that.
Nowadays I have an Enhanced Disclosure (Scotland) number and we have had people who came to us for jobs having to be unemployed for a couple of weeks as they had resigned from their last job and their disclosure form was not through.
One of the games I played with my own children and some of the patients at the time was to put your noses together and then you have to try to bite the other persons nose while all the time still touching noses, if the noses came apart you had to stop. Children of a certain age love it because it is totally stupid and impossible to actually bite anyone. But there is no way I could do something like this now.