HOME   |   ABOUT   |   FORUM  |   BLOG   |   PODCAST   |   DONATE

Let's Talk About Having an Operation

Date: 1976
Company/Organization: Family Communications Inc

Mister Rogers opens by telling viewers that he has had some recent conversations with doctors about what it's like to have an opreation. He clarifies the terms "operation" and "surgeon" ("Sometimes it's the best way that a doctor knows of helping people who are sick on the inside of them. You know, under their skin.") before moving on and sharing what he has learned about having an operation. Mister Rogers narrates a film about a little girl named Laura who has recently had an operation. Showing a picture of Laura, Mister Rogers pointedly mentions that the picture was taken of her after she came home from the hospital (so as to show young viewers that she is okay, even after the operation). Laura's surgery was needed in order to fix a hernia -- likely the inspiration for the surgery needed by Daniel Tiger in Let's Talk About Going to the Hospital.

Mister Rogers walks viewers through Laura's entire experience beginning with the doctor's explanation of the surgery and concluding with her recovery. The film includes specific details such as the anesthetic ("a special medicine to make you sleepy") and the fact that "on her way down the hall [to the operating room], Laura could see the ceiling because she was lying on her back." Mister Rogers, as expected, does a terrific job of providing details on anything that a child might wonder about.

Back at the house, Mister Rogers explains that just like with most "hurt," an operations hurts most at first and then "each day after, you feel a little better until you're well again." He focuses on the importance of asking questions when you are unsure and lets viewers know that grown-ups can help explain things to them. This leads into the song I Like to Be Told.

The video is concluded in typical Mister Rogers fashion: "Some children wonder if they might be a different person after their operation. Well that just doesn't happen. You're the only person in the whole world like you. Only you can have your own special thoughts and feelings. No one can change who you really are. People like you just the way you are and I'm proud of the way you're growing."





A supplemental book was published to go along with this video:

Episode Credits

Supported by Johnson & Johnson Baby Products Company
McFeely-Rogers Foundation - Latrobe, PA

Produced by Family Communications
© 1976 Family Communications, Inc.

Produced in cooperation with the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Hospital Association, and the American Medical Association

This site is best viewed using the most current version of Google Chrome.
Content copyright © The Fred Rogers Company. Used with permission.
Corner image by Spencer Fruhling. Used with permission.
Do not duplicate or distribute any material from this site without the consent of The Fred Rogers Company.