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To think this is a breach of confidentiality

(68 Posts)
DefinitelyNotMe Wed 13-Jul-16 06:22:34

DP and I are atheist. BIL is a vicar. Normally, it's all fine, we get on very well, often look after the other's DC etc.

I have MH issues, and recently had an episode while the DC and I were on holiday with MIL. Nothing major, the DC would not have been aware but I know MIL was worried about it.

BIL recently mentioned in passing to DP that he had discussed the episode with MIL and asked people to pray for us. DP was a bit hmm but I am really upset. Is it really ok to share my medical history with people I don't know without asking me?

I don't know what he's told these people or who they are, but I thought he would have some kind of ethic around confidentiality and he knows if he had asked me I would probably have said no angry

If he was a health care professional or social worker I wouldn't expect him discussing my "case". If he wants to pray for me, fine, but him asking others makes me really uncomfortable, especially as he wasn't even there when the episode happened. I'm worried about going to see him now as people drop in all the time and I don't know what they think they know about me sad. Am I over reacting? Or was this really out of order?

msrisotto Wed 13-Jul-16 06:27:18

I don't think you're over reacting but you need to know specifics. Did he say your name and MH history in front of a congregation? Because that would be beyond the pale. What people is sure referring to? Even saying his SIL is still v identifiable. Is there a chance it was more anonymous?

msrisotto Wed 13-Jul-16 06:27:53

She not sure, stupid phone...

DefinitelyNotMe Wed 13-Jul-16 06:29:45

I don't know what was said to who. I want DP to ask but he doesn't think it's a big deal and I should let it go...

branofthemist Wed 13-Jul-16 06:32:42

I think before you get upset, you need to know what he said.

When I used to go to church they asked people to pray for people. Something there would be detail. Sometimes not, would usually depend on the person and what they said.

It could have been 'my relative is ill at the moment, please remember them in your orayers' or 'my sil 'insert name' had a mental health breakdown' followed with loads of detail.

I don't think (but happy to be corrected) that vicars are held to the same confidentiality laws as a HCP. But I would be uncomfortable if he had given detail. If he hadn't (as someone who is not religious and left the church), him asking people to pray for me wouldn't bother me at all.

mumtomaxwell Wed 13-Jul-16 06:35:15

I would be very surprised if he'd shared the details. At our church there is a list of people in the notice sheet who we pray for but there is no indication why, just a list of names. And at the home group I attend we pray for each other's friends and family if they need extra support but again it'll be something like "please can we pray for my SIL" and that's it - no details. We believe that God knows what people need from Him.

You're not BU to be concerned but perhaps find out exactly what details he did share if any.

NeckguardUnbespoke Wed 13-Jul-16 07:10:30

We believe that God knows what people need from Him.

So why does he need you praying for them, then? Are you saying that your God will look at a child in pain and say "well, sucks to be them, she's not on anyone's list so she can just keep screaming?"

Bearsinmotion Wed 13-Jul-16 07:13:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DefinitelyNotMe Wed 13-Jul-16 07:14:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DefinitelyNotMe Wed 13-Jul-16 07:15:35

I really wanted DP to ask but it looks like I will have to. Not wanting to go into details, but BIL said he asked them to pray for " Definitely and the situation", then we had good news and he told DP it was because of the prayer hmm confused

bloodymaria Wed 13-Jul-16 07:17:23

YANBU. I wouldn't be happy at all. Why not just ask MIL and BIL to please not discuss your health issues?

DefinitelyNotMe Wed 13-Jul-16 07:21:50

Neck, I am quite cynical about religion, and I have had a similar conversation with BIL, although very good natured. I am worried if I say something he is going to think it's about religion and it's really not, it's discussing it behind my back. I hope, as others have suggested, it was all very vague, but I don't think it was.

DefinitelyNotMe Wed 13-Jul-16 07:27:34

That crossed my mind too Maria, but I figured I can't dictate what they talk to each other about (although am a bit hurt that they never asked me how I was sad). But I think I do have the right to not have my situation shared with (literally!) God knows who else!

I would be upset with mil too. Bil wasn't there so she must have told him - why? That would piss me off.

FinallyHere Wed 13-Jul-16 07:31:21

Goodness, I feel for you and do hope it was kept very vague.

When I attended church, there was often a part in prayers when we 'remembered all those struggling' or something like that. I remember people attributing all sorts of outcomes to those prayers, but feeling 'whatever works for you'. I see that you need to know how specific the details were, but i would expect it to be anonymous enough that everyone could apply it to their own cases...

Hope you get to talk to me the vicar and find out, and feel at peace with it.

WiMoChi Wed 13-Jul-16 07:33:50

Go to the bottom of your garden and talk to the fairies about your problem with BIL. Really go to town. Slag him right off. Also though ask them to cast a spell to help him keep confidentiality.

Then tell him. In front of his congregation. And film it?

EreniTheFrog Wed 13-Jul-16 07:53:49

In my experience, the vicar's view of confidentiality is really not that of a healthcare professional... whereas, say, a CPN has a professional code of conduct mandating specific responsibilities, the Church of England's rules are far less prescriptive, stating basically that a vicar should use his/her tactful judgment, common sense, decency etc. As a practicing Christian with numerous health issues, I always make sure that I specify to the vicar what is and isn't OK to share. It is always always respected - it's just that the automatic assumption of confidentiality isn't there.

But that said, your BIL should know you well enough to realise that you don't want your MH details spread around people you don't know (would anyone want that?!) So I think you are entitled to challenge him, and to demand that he doesn't ever ever do that again. YANBU.

StarryIllusion Wed 13-Jul-16 07:54:16

It was probably more along the lines of can we pray for my sil who is unwell/going through a difficult time rather than any detail. I wouldn't worry tbh

shinynewusername Wed 13-Jul-16 08:04:57

the vicar's view of confidentiality is really not that of a healthcare professional

But the BIL isn't the OP's vicar. She is an atheist. It may not have breached his official code of conduct but it is presumptuous to invite people to pray for her in the first place, let alone to share details of her illness.

Vicar or not, he is a twat.

DefinitelyNotMe Wed 13-Jul-16 08:14:16

That's helpful Ereni. You are all right, even for my own piece of mind I need to know what was said and to who, and if DP won't ask I'll have to.

We have been together 8 years, it just makes me wonder what else has been prayed for without me knowing sad

stopfuckingshoutingatme Wed 13-Jul-16 08:35:58

I think it was well meant and insensitive. Just tell him! ask him to respect your [privacy and you would prefer if he did not pray for you

that said, this shows sadly the stigmas there are about MH- as if you had been in a car crash/had cancer/were held hostage (and I hope this never happens) I don't think you would mind so much if people prayed for you

hope you can get through this

ohtheholidays Wed 13-Jul-16 08:36:24

I was going to say if it was can we pray for someone that's struggling then not a big deal but him saying his SIL and what had actually happened that's well out of order.

And for what it's worth I'm a Christian and I would never share someone else's private buisness in that way.He's overstepped the mark and if it was me I'd probably talk to him and let him know it.

iseenodust Wed 13-Jul-16 08:38:34

Do you live in the community in which your BIL is the vicar? I wouldn't want to think people were going to come up to me and asking if I was getting help for my health.

DefinitelyNotMe Wed 13-Jul-16 08:42:56

Stop, I do agree with that. I think people are more likely to make judgements when there is an MH issue. Also I am a very private person anyway - before this I only told one person what happened, and that was because she has a DC with a similar condition.

mumtomaxwell Wed 13-Jul-16 08:45:01

Neckguard that is definitely not what I'm saying. I didn't word it particularly well, I was just trying to make the point that praying for people doesn't mean having to share loads of details about the situation. And you certainly don't have to be on a list to get help from God!!!!

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