The heartbreaking reason this doctor checks dead patients' Facebook profiles before notifying their parents

Narjas Zatat@Narjas_Zatat
Wednesday 24 October 2018 14:15
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Picture:(iStock/Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

A doctor in America shared the reason why he always tries to find the Facebook profile of a recently deceased patient - and it'll pluck at your heartstrings.

Doctor Louis M Profeta, an emergency physician at St Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis, says he checks the profiles of those who have died so he can remain compassionate when he breaks the devastating news to their loved ones.

He took to LinkedIn, where he admitted that checking “kind of keeps me human".

The doctor explained that he feels it is his duty to "peek inside" their "once-living world".

He writes:

It kind of keeps me human. You see, I’m about to change their lives — your mom and dad, that is. In about five minutes, they will never be the same, they will never be happy again.

Right now, to be honest, you’re just a nameless dead body that feels like a wet bag of newspapers that we have been pounding on, sticking IV lines and tubes and needles in, trying desperately to save you. There’s no motion, no life, nothing to tell me you once had dreams or aspirations. I owe it to them to learn just a bit about you before I go in.

He lists the possible ways somebody could have lost their life, from “texting instead of watching the road” to snorting drugs for the first time. Whatever the reason, chances are “it wasn’t [their time to die]".

So I pick up your faded picture of your driver’s license and click on my iPhone, flip to Facebook and search your name. Chances are we’ll have one mutual friend somewhere. I know a lot of people.

He adds that the victim is “lucky” not to see how their loved ones take the news of their death – “Dad screaming your name over and over, mom [sic] pulling her hair out, curled on the floor...”

I check your Facebook page before I tell them you’re dead because it reminds me that I am talking about a person, someone they love — it quiets the voice in my head that is screaming at you right now shouting: 'You mother f****r, how could you do this to them, to people you are supposed to love!'

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