© Helen Lesser 2007
Question: When questioning about a particular incident, I often receive a ‘yes’ when I ask if they were alone at the time. However, on further questioning, it turns out that there was at least one (sometimes more) people present. This is happening more often than not, why?
At the time when a person experiences some sort of upset, no matter how minor or fleeting, they often ‘feel alone’ at that moment; this is more than likely the reason you are getting this response from your patients.
It is possible that some patients might be influencing their answers to some degree, out of concern that after you ask if they were on the own, you will attempt to put their beloved mum (or their adored father or whoever) into the equation.
It also very much depends on how you are phrasing the question itself and also on the patient’s understanding of the question.
I suggest you start this particular line of questioning with:-
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