how do you react to your DC when they're ill?(5 Posts)
Had a childhood where if I was ill, I was told to get over it, ignored or not paid attention from a very young age. I have memories of experiencing bad pain, fevers and being sick alone, where I felt completely helpless.
As such I don't know how to behave around my own DC when they have accidents and illness. I tried to do the opposite of my parents and have made "processing" the illness or the accident with them while it's happening, a priority. However this seems to have made them dwell on it more and have hypochondria, rather than be more relaxed about it.
I want DC who can see illness as part of life, be relaxed about it and know that I am always there for them whenever they need me, but I can't seem to get the balance right.
How do you do it?
Lots of reassurance, cuddles and listening to what they want - whilst keeping one hand on the reins.
Hi, that's a tricky one to explain. I guess you just have to judge everything on it's own merits really.
Tonight my dd (8) began sniffing about 7pm. Bedtime came along and she was obvs beginning to feel a little bunged up and asked for paracetamol. I explained it's for fevers or pains and really what she needs is a good night's sleep (late-ish night last night and early morning this morning). She clearly didn't have a temp, and I'm sure that although there is a tiny bug there, she has not fought it completely because of the slight lack of sleep. But if she did have a temp I would have given her some and re-assessed in the morning if she should go to school.
Ds on the other hand can be a bit more pathetic and so gets even less sympathy! He would try to milk it slightly and get off school for a day if her was bunged up but you just have to work out if they would benefit from a day off or not- or would they be more of a hindrance to the teacher or themselves.
If they are in pain or have a fever, give them paracetamol. If it only slightly lifts it, they are probably well enough to go to school. If it doesn't lift, they need a good dose of vitamins, some good food and rest. If it persists, they might need ibuprofen too. But if they are moving around, eating at the table with you, they should fight it off. You will know what their abilities are and if they cannot function normally then they do need an easier day.
Where I do absolutely acknowledge my dc's illnesses and chat about their symptoms and possible routes to take, I try to make it normal for their day and not ponder to it. If the ill child did not want to finish their dinner for example, that's fine, but if they're asking for crisps and biscuits an hour later it's a definite NO.
I'm not exactly sure what you mean, but does this help? You know your children better than anyone, and you know how you feel when you are unwell. You will also know your dc's abilities and even when they are ill they will be expected to behave similarly but at a more gentle level.
For mine I generally have a "rest and fluids will help" mentality if I feel they are flagging, but sniffles and coughs are "just life, here's a tissue and a glass of water".
The worst we've had was chicken pox in the 5mo and the 3.5yo at the same time. Lots of ice pops, TV, snuggles on the couch and whatever foods the 3.5yo could face (thankfully the 5mo was easy - milk water and lotion).
DD has a tendency to milk it but I'm pretty good at judging whether it's as bad as she's making out. If it is she gets cosseted, plenty of TLC and sympathy, if not I'm fairly brisk and no nonsense and, at nearly 8yo, she's starting to grasp that she doesn't get away with it when she exaggerates. I'm not sure you can necessarily blame DC's response to illness on your parenting style though OP, it could just as easily just be how they are. Your own experiences will naturally make you question yourself more but my DD tends towards hypochondria and I had no issues growing up and think I take a pretty balanced approach to her being ill so it's not always a product of your way of dealing with it. I think as long as you care for them when they need it and don't pander to it when you know it's not genuine you're doing ok, the more you relax and trust your instincts the more likely DC are to take illness in their stride.
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