To the Editor:
I was appalled at the cover photograph on the March 1986 issue of the Journal of Gerontological Nursing, and the picture on page eight which accompanies the lead article was just about as bad. In both pictures the nurse is making it very difficult for herself and the client to make eye contact with one another, and good eye contact is a major principle underlying good communication. The nurse is demonstrating a most condescending demeanor and a dominance in her physical positioning in both pictures. She also shows terrible posture. On the cover, the client has no control over whether she is touched by the nurse or not. On page eight, the client is demonstrating at least partial control over who touches whom. The pictures themselves were bad enough, but to have such poor examples accompany an article on communication was terrible. I strongly believe in the appropriate use of touch, but in my opinion, the touching in those pictures is inappropriate and only demonstrates what NOT to do when communicating with an older adult. I would hope the Journal would screen its photographs more carefully so that good teaching might be done through pictures as well as words.