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June 20, 2006 5:19 AM   Subscribe

Is it appropriate to ask out a nurse that was treating you at a hospital?

I took myself to the hospital last night because I thought I was having a heart attack (nope...just a nasty panic attack..phew!)
The attending nurse was simply wonderful. The other nurses were nice, but the main nurse just knocked me off my feet.

Towards the end when I was feeling better, we were chatting a bit, and it -felt- mutually flirtatious. She made a comment about my eyes that I can't quite remember, but I remember it feeling like a compliment. Unfortunately, I'm a really poor judge of whether someone is flirting with me or not (if I think they are, they probably aren't...and I have to be beaten over the head to recognize if they ARE).

It has been a long time since I've been attracted to anyone, much less crushing on (I get stupid giggly when I think about her).

I tend to shy away from asking out people who are in a customer service type position. I always assume that people get asked out so many times with all of the encounters they have with "customers", so why add another annoying flirt to the pile? But she's just wow.

I recognize that this may be a situation where an attraction instantly developed because she was good and kind and soothing during a time of great panic and fear for me. I'm also not dead, so there's a great deal of happiness wrapped up in that. Am I overthinking this? I don't know. Would getting in touch with her to ask her out be creepy? Bad? Innapropriate?
posted by zerokey to Human Relations (34 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
 
1) It was probably nothing.

2) Asking her out couldn't hurt!
posted by Marquis at 5:22 AM on June 20, 2006


All I can tell you is that's how my parents met 45 years ago, so I think it's probably okay.
posted by briank at 5:22 AM on June 20, 2006


If you're having panic attacks so severe they feel like heart attacks, you need to take care of yourself for a little while before you jump into a relationship.
posted by ori at 5:27 AM on June 20, 2006


Why not? What can you lose? I bet that sweet nurses develop a kind and gentle technique for refusing inappropriate advances. Let the decision be hers.

(or what Marquis said).
posted by b33j at 5:38 AM on June 20, 2006


If you remember her name, perhaps the easiest thing to do would be to send a thank-you card (to her at the hospital) expressing your thanks for her wonderful bedside manner, and inviting her out for a cup of coffee. Leaves the ball in her court, and no messy rejections to trigger another panic attack (although you would be in the right place if it did, I guess...).
posted by MrZero at 5:41 AM on June 20, 2006


As long as she's not your nurse anymore, what's the problem? Just ask her out in a way that is respectful and if she says no, accept it graciously. Maybe send flowers thanking her for being so nice and on the card put your number and ask if she'd like to meet for coffee or dinner. That leaves the ball in her court, and she gets very nice positive feedback for doing a good job. She might not call, she might call to thank you but decline the date, or she might call to accept the date. If she declines, just thank her again for being so great and wish her all the best. But I am not a nurse, so there could be things I haven't taken into account.

Oh, MrZero, on preview has gotten there first. Consider me seconding him.
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 5:48 AM on June 20, 2006


At times like this I think of Jenny Agutter in An American Werewolf in London. OK, role reversal and hopefully you haven't joined the blood line of a werewolf so I say go for it.
posted by i_cola at 5:48 AM on June 20, 2006


For her, it probably wouldn't be entirely appropriate to see you. It's worth a shot if you are that desperate but really, the good ones act that way with everyone.
posted by JJ86 at 5:49 AM on June 20, 2006


It probably wouldn't hurt to ask her out in a casual way. A good idea in any case would be to show a token of appreciation to her and the other nurses to let them know they really helped you out. Most nurses feel a little under appreciated at times and a thank you card or small gift is usually welcome. My grandfather used to send his nurses a nice fruit basket and they really seemed to appreciate it. You can drop it off yourself if you need a reason to go back.

On preview, MrZero's suggestion of a thank you note just to her with an offer of coffee might be a good idea.
posted by Yorrick at 5:49 AM on June 20, 2006


Ask her. Take a chance. Coffee or lunch as others suggested. Go for it!
posted by bim at 5:54 AM on June 20, 2006


Do it. My old boss met his wife this way after he was hospitalized (for falling off a drainpipe while climbing out of another girl's window).
posted by amber_dale at 6:03 AM on June 20, 2006 [1 favorite]


Speaking from personal experiences, nurses can be quite the good time. Definitely ask, but be prepared for a ride!
posted by Mr. Gunn at 7:09 AM on June 20, 2006


I think it might be different if she were, say, the nurse at your GP's office, or if you'd been admitted and she treated you for weeks. But an ER nurse you're not all that likely to run into again even if you end up in the ER again? I'd say go ahead and ask her out. If she's super ultra sticky on the ethics subject, she'll might say no, but what do you have to lose, really?
posted by jacquilynne at 7:09 AM on June 20, 2006


Thanks everyone. I'm going to do it!
I think the card and/or flowers idea sounds great. I know her first name (i_cola - her name IS Jenny! She'll be ok as long as we keep away from the moors!), and I know her shifts for the rest of the week.

I'm not afraid of getting rejected (things like that don't set off panic attacks for me).

Thanks for the great suggestions!

One more for good luck: !
posted by zerokey at 7:10 AM on June 20, 2006


Mr. Gunn - my Mom is a nurse. In a decidedly creepy way wrought with freaky memories from growing up, I totally get you.
posted by zerokey at 7:12 AM on June 20, 2006


Are we going to get to find out what happened? Probably the thread will close too quick.
posted by sonofsamiam at 7:22 AM on June 20, 2006


Are we going to get to find out what happened?

Inquiring hive minds want to know. (but I second the call for followup!)
posted by NekulturnY at 7:33 AM on June 20, 2006


Probably the thread will close too quick. - sonofsamiam

AskMe threads are open for a year. That should be long enough for some follow up!
posted by raedyn at 8:36 AM on June 20, 2006


I will definitely post a followup!
posted by zerokey at 9:09 AM on June 20, 2006


Um, the eyes comment is not exactly professional bedside manner stuff. It does confuse things. Of course you were paniking, so who knows.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:12 AM on June 20, 2006


As a nurse I have chatted with people that want to talk and I find interesting. Some patients love to chat, and if I have time I will make small talk. She sounds very friendly, and since she knew you were having a panic attack, she may have wanted to ease your anxiety with nice conversation. I don't know if I would of commented on the appearance of the opposite sex. (I do frequently compliment elderly women on their beautiful skin or hair, and ask them their secret). So she probably found you attractive. Plus, if somebody isn't interesting I probably wouldn't hang at the bedside to make small talk for too long. Nurses are busy people, so she probably found you interesting. Was she checking your pupils at the time of the eye comment? I might say something like, "what beautiful blue eyes", or something along those lines while checking pupillary reactions. Regardless, good luck!
posted by LoriFLA at 10:03 AM on June 20, 2006


To answer your original question. I do think it is appropriate to ask your nurse out. If I were single, and I treated a person I found attractive, I probably would accept a date. Again, good luck!
posted by LoriFLA at 10:06 AM on June 20, 2006


I think that's sweet actually - not inappropriate.

I don't think sending a thankyou card is proactive enough if you really want her to go out with you. If she gets a card with your number on it (for her to call you)- more than likely, she'll probably smile, be flattered, and toss it aside, doing nothing.
posted by delladlux at 11:12 AM on June 20, 2006


I wish you the best of luck! but I did need to second the caution given here.

If you're having panic attacks so severe they feel like heart attacks, you need to take care of yourself for a little while before you jump into a relationship.
posted by ori at 5:27 AM PST on June 20 [+fave] [!]

posted by crewshell at 1:23 PM on June 20, 2006


I did need to second the caution given here.

I thought that sounded like the advice of one who had been weaned on a pickle. Perhaps a good date would make one less anxious.
posted by norm at 9:50 AM on June 21, 2006


Is it too early to expect a follow-up? It's a been a week, so - romantic fool that I am - here I am, checking in for good news!
posted by hot soup girl at 2:26 AM on June 27, 2006


You're not alone! I, too, have been reloading this thread for the past few days to see what happened:-)
posted by invisible ink at 9:50 PM on June 27, 2006


Indeed.

Or, as they would say in phpBB-forum lingo:

*bump*
posted by lodev at 2:21 AM on June 28, 2006


Come on zerokey, enquiring minds and all that!
posted by CunningLinguist at 6:07 AM on June 28, 2006


BUMP haha

I am here for an update as well!!

(and norm, you can go suck a pickle)
posted by crewshell at 10:53 AM on June 28, 2006


Haha! Me too..!

Maybe they got on so well that they haven't left the boudoir since?
posted by i_cola at 5:55 AM on June 29, 2006


Sorry to leave you all hanging.

I sent her a card with my number, email and a Dunks gift card last week (I figured that, even is she wasn't interested, she could still get herself some tasty coffee!)

I haven't heard anything back (yet?). I'm going to call it a wash. Oh well. I may have missed out in the (much craved) romance department, but in an odd way, this whole things has helped me to solidify my idea of dropping out of the technology world and going to nursing school. If I can make sick/injured/distraught people feel half as good as she made me feel, then it's all worth it!
posted by zerokey at 2:15 PM on June 30, 2006


As a nursing student I've followed this thread.... thanks for the update and congrats on the choice to go to nursing school!

Off topic a bit: As you probably already know it's hard to get into the programs but it's a game of persistence really. Don't get discouraged. Just keep working toward that goal and you'll get there. As for the romance, nursing school should be a great way to surround yourself with a number of women. My class is 10% male and they are a loved minority.

Good luck!
posted by dog food sugar at 10:47 AM on July 2, 2006


...this whole things has helped me to solidify my idea of dropping out of the technology world and going to nursing school. If I can make sick/injured/distraught people feel half as good as she made me feel, then it's all worth it!

Well that was an unexpected development. Good luck, brother!
posted by Terminal Verbosity at 7:36 AM on July 7, 2006


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