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I was born with a birth defect. AMA

34 replies

Borntomakeit · 21/02/2023 18:53

Cleft lip and palate. Now middle aged. Wondered what questions people had as children often have loads but are too shy to ask and also wondered if it may help new parents or expecting parents of babies with clefts.

OP posts:

Borntomakeit · 22/02/2023 22:00

@elliejjtiny Sometimes it will hurt him but he has you to help him and you sound great. I find that children are nowhere near as cruel as they were, and wonky smiles are the best. All my partners have loved my wonky little smile. He will do just fine.
Hearing problems and ear infections were the worst thing. It was almost constant when I was his age. The only thing that ever clears it is Otomize spray. Oral antibiotics don't touch it.

OP posts:

FrostyBits · 22/02/2023 22:00

I'm not sure I have a question but it's very interesting reading about your experience and others. I'm sorry you have had such a tough time and your mum sounds rather heartless though I guess it's hard when things are different from the 'dream'.

What causes a cleft palate? Are there known risk factors?

I will admit that I have been very naive and assumed that this is a very rare occurrence these days and in this country, and could be corrected by a simple surgery so your post has been an eye opener and I'm ashamed I've been so unaware.


dotty12345 · 22/02/2023 22:05

@Borntomakeit I'm so sorry for the way your mum treated you.


Itgoesalittlesomethinglikethis · 22/02/2023 22:05

Just wanted to say thank you for educating me and I've found this so interesting. I did feel a tear in my eye when I read about your mum. Heart breaking that she said that. I once met a guy with cleft lip and palate (my friend was dating him). He was one of the loveliest people I have ever met. My friend was so rude about him in private, commenting on his eating and saying he was clingy. She dumped him a week later. I certainly saw my friend in a different light and I'm no longer friends with her. She chewed people up and spat them out. I hope he went on to find happiness. I wish you happiness too 💐


Borntomakeit · 22/02/2023 22:07

Oh my goodness, @dotty12345 you made me well up at how much you did for your DS. I'm not sure if I had a plate. I must have but I've never dared to ask. I find my experiences made me lack confidence and even five years ago, I'd never dream of starting this thread. Your DS sounds so strong in refusing any cosmetic surgery. I have cheek fillers and marionette fillers to even things up and after much pestering they cleft team are planning to even my lip up. I'd love to be able to wear lipstick. It just doesn't do on properly and if I mess with it, it wears off and I look like the joker!

My parents were told that about my teeth too. I had displacement and have quite few missing at the back due to the size of my mouth but I do have all my own teeth. I am so grateful for the orthodontics I had. I too have lovely straight teeth with one cap on one that didn't grow in properly.

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Borntomakeit · 22/02/2023 22:16

@FrostyBits I think some of the parents of children with clefts may be better placed to answer about causes. There isn't really one. It can be heredity and I was scanned every few weeks during pregnancy. Clefts happen when development of the mouth and nose pauses. Those parts develop very very early, and the only thing that my parents can think of is that my mother fell down the stairs just before she found she was expecting me. I have siblings without clefts and genetic testing found nothing.

I think your comments re the dream are perfectly valid. I would do anything not to have a cleft. I am unsure if I could have put any of my own through what I went through, but then I think no if even if they had have had a cleft it would be so much different for them. I'd have made sure of it.

No, it isn't a simple sew up. I think it is very important to make this known. It makes life incredibly hard for all involved at times. Yet the good times are so so good. My little dad when I got married was SO proud. I was grateful for that.

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Borntomakeit · 22/02/2023 22:19

@Itgoesalittlesomethinglikethis Yeh, she sounds vile. I rarely eat in public due to past stares and comments. I can't bite into anything bigger than a chicken nugget without cutting it. He was probably clingy due to self confidence problems. I am clingy, I need lots of reassurance but I'm working really hard on it.

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FrostyBits · 22/02/2023 22:25

Thank you for answering @Borntomakeit I have learned so much on your thread, thank you for taking the time to answer and I wish you and your family well x


dotty12345 · 22/02/2023 22:38

@Borntomakeit I am proud and have always been proud of him, I never tried to hide him away and we took him out and about with pride. Yes there are ignorant people out there and we had some stares and unkind comments (I would sometimes cry in private) but there were many more people that were genuinely interested and lovely. I so wish your mum had been more supportive to you and cannot imagine the loneliness you must have felt. Hold your head up girl, you rock.

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