WITH EVERY life experience, children are in the process of becoming who they are going to be. As they encounter new challenges in health care settings, they feel the impact in many different ways. For children to feel pride rather than shame about who they are, it is essential that they receive aide in coping effectively with those experiences. Memories and responses from childhood become part of self-image and future coping behaviors.1 The subject of the article by Kain et al2 begins to deal with this important issue and stimulates our thinking about how to make those events more meaningful and less traumatic.
It is encouraging to see this article on preoperative and postoperative responses in the Archives as an indicator of our shared concern about the issues of coping with surgery for hospitalized children. The article raises the issue of behavioral preparation and the values and problems