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To ask you to help me pull myself together- toddler serious fall overseas

132 replies

Chattycat78 · 24/06/2017 19:27

Just that. In Majorca. Now sitting in a foreign hospital where I can't speak the language and have been for 2 days. Toddler ds (2.5) fell from a wall- 3 metres- 2 days ago. He has fractured his skull.

Wall was very shallow on One side and then dropped away on the other. No signs or railings or anything and it was a deep wall so wasn't obvious there was any kind of drop on the other side. DS ran over, was able to jump onto the wall as it was his height and I couldn't grab him quick enough before he fell. In all honestly it wasn't apparent to me the depth of the drop until it was too late.

He was in intensive care following a terrible and scary first night. He seems to be improving now though and scans and his behaviour show no brain damage thank god.

It's all my fault. Why didn't I get him off the wall fast enough? I can't stop replying it in my mind and it will haunt me forever. I feel like an unfit mother and that I should have protected him and failed. I'm also doing the classic "if only" - if only we hadn't gone there, if only the walk had been too high to climb- and so on. I'm sure the rest of the family and Dh blame me too.

I'm of course incredibly grateful with the care we've received and that it hasn't been worse but I just can't see how we are all going to get past this or how I'm going to be able to leave him ever again in fear of what might happen.

What do I do to pull myself together?

OP posts:
Creampastry · 24/06/2017 20:29

It was an accidents.... and boys have many!!! My ds caused me several near miss heart attacks, and have visited a&e several times! These things happen sadly. Feeling guilty is normal... and a sign of a good mum. Regretably there are many who wouldn't give a toss.

Chattycat78 · 24/06/2017 20:38

Thanks everyone. It means a lot.

Hopefully flying home around wed all being well.

Hospital have translators but obvs you have to call to request them and they aren't always here.

OP posts:
RubyRoseRing · 24/06/2017 20:39

I'm so sorry this has happened but glad to read he is progressing towards recovery. As others say, it was an accident. Was someone else on holiday with you? Can't they come in and chat to you or give you occasional breaks? Meantime you have Mumsnet of course!

Stuffofawesome · 24/06/2017 20:42

Sorry this has happened and hope he gets well soon. Can you use a translation app when no translator available? The staff can talk/type into it and it will translate for you and vice versa

Lindy2 · 24/06/2017 20:44

Sometimes accidents happen. It's awful when your child gets hurt but it doesn't mean you are to blame. You didn't do anything deliberately that you believed would cause him to get injured and you didn't leave him unattended. It's not your fault. You weren't to know.
I'm glad you are being well looked after and your little boy is improving. It will get easier but it will take time. Be kind to yourself.

LumelaMme · 24/06/2017 20:51

Chatty, these things happen.
We almost had this happen to us on holiday with one of our DC, who hopped up onto a low wall. DH was nearby and grabbed her, but I was too far away so had he not been where he was, she'd probably have plummeted off the other side.

Don't crucify yourself. Flowers

tropicalfish · 24/06/2017 20:53

my dd fell off a wall of our hotel 'infinity edge' swimming pool in Majorca. The drop on the other side was about 1.5 m but was effectively a trough. Afterwards she was holding her mouth, I think she banged her teeth. It was horrible but in the end she was ok. It was a scary experience. Hope your son gets better soon.

RiversrunWoodville · 24/06/2017 20:58

Can't add anything more helpful than pps have but just wanted to reiterate it's really not your fault Flowers

TheAtlanticWatch · 24/06/2017 21:04

Poor poor you OP. Heart goes out to you. I am sure we have all been there in some capacity or another. Must have been so scary but please take on board all the comments that it is an accident and not your fault. You can't always prevent these things happening, but the important thing is that you are there to look after him when they do - as you are right now, which makes you a great mum. Hope your son continues to make a good recovery Flowers

IrritatedUser1960 · 24/06/2017 21:09

Seriously accidents happen, you can't watch them every second.
I feel so sorry for you, you must be feeling awful.
My son had his face smashed in with a football and his nose was broken, he had black eyes and his lips were swollen like balloons. We were on holiday in Germany similar scenario, this was 30 years ago and I still have a little cry even now about it becasue he was so little and defenceless and so brave.
This kind of pain is called being a mum. I hope he gets better soon xxxx

Pigface1 · 24/06/2017 21:58

You poor poor thing - just have to add my voice to the chorus of 'it was an accident!' Don't blame yourself, you are a great mum, but kids are hellbent on self-destruction sometimes.

The Spanish healthcare system is great - you're in very safe hands.

Glad that he is doing ok and that you can hopefully come home soon.

All the best.

JessieMcJessie · 24/06/2017 22:40

So sorry that this has happened, a rotten accident for which you are not to blame and sounds like he'll recover just fine so no long term harm done. I'm concerned though that you say that you think your DH blames you. Is he there and being supportive, and you are just imagining him to be blaming you silently (in which case I am sure he is not) or is he actually being funny with you about it? It's important that you are being supported by him.

My 10 month old son fell off our bed the other day. My DH had left me with him and I had said I was awake, but I wasn't properly awake and fell back asleep, to be woken by a bang as he fell on to the wooden floor. Heart stopping and I am still replaying it now and again (he was fine but I spent the whole day terrified he had concussion, we had no idea what part of himself he landed on). That was nothing compared to what you are going through, so can fully imagine how your mind must be spinning.

stopfuckingshoutingatme · 24/06/2017 22:42

Oh honey ! Toddlers fall . That's their job
You just lucked out twice as abroad and he landed badly

So sorry hope you get out soon

Don't beat yourself up

Chattycat78 · 25/06/2017 03:27

Thanks again all.

DH hasn't exactly said he blames me as such, but there's a few hints I think. I was nearest to ds when it happened - dh was a way away.

I dunno, maybe because I blame myself I think everyone else does too. I'm also imagining the in laws talking about me and saying how it's all my fault, possibly even confronting me at a later stage (how could I have allowed him to get on the wall type stuff).

I know it's in no way what I should be focussing on and it isn't, but i guess it's adding to the agony of seeing ds like that.

OP posts:
BouleBaker · 25/06/2017 03:43

It wasn't your fault. 3 year olds are quick and you can't be right beside them every moment. It's not practical or good for them.

I have relatives that would probably blame me if something happened. But it's not really about blaming me, it's about shock and the fact that they are so upset it happened and, fundamentally, wanting to keep the blame as far away from them as possible. And as a mum it's assumed I have an infinite capacity to soak up blame and be fine. Fuck 'em. This was an accident. They happen. Your DH and other relatives need to recognise that you need support too.

Leilaniii · 25/06/2017 03:48

This reminds me of a few years ago, me and a boyfriend were staying in my dad's house in Spain. His house is in a small village in the mountains. We went to the pub, got a couple of drinks and went to sit down on a small wall outside. That is until we saw that there was a massive drop down the mountain the other side! There were no signs, nothing.

My point is that you weren't to know. And if anyone blames you, especially given what you are going through, then they are beyond cruel.

Mummyoflittledragon · 25/06/2017 03:48

Flowers. Totally not your fault.

Foniks · 25/06/2017 03:49

Another one saying it's not your fault.
I think with kids, you can be the most careful and watchful parent, but unless they're in a straight jacket and tied down, they're going to get hurt at some point. They just do things and have no sense of danger sometimes. It happens. It's not your fault.

1forAll74 · 25/06/2017 04:45

oh,,poor little one,,but all seems to be going well now.. Nothing is your fault at all, little ones jumping on walls or whatever are what little ones tend to do.. Its quite impossible to watch everything a kiddie might do, so always there will be accidents at times.. hope you feel a little better now, after this shock on you hols.

vikingprincess81 · 25/06/2017 05:14

Aww sweetheart, it's not your fault, and you don't need the extra stress of being 'confronted' later on - concentrate on your wee one just now Flowers
Could you ask the docs to type into google translate when the translators aren't around? Not perfect, but you'd get the gist? Brew cuppa from home along with a virtual hug xxx

sykadelic · 25/06/2017 05:20

It's easy to blame someone when they weren't there. It's easy to say that I've X had been there, or Y had been there but they weren't. And wondering "what if" doesn't help because it just ties you up in knots.

I'm sure your DH does blame you a little, like I said it'd be hard not to, but that's out of concern and grief, it's the immediate reaction and the need to find someone to blame... but I highly doubt he could make you feel worse than you already do, or more guilty than you already do.

What's important is that you know you did the very best you could. He will be okay. He is okay. Focus on all the things you're doing right. You're there with him. You're there holding his hand. You got good insurance. You have doctors who are doing the best for him. You got help to him quickly.

When he starts to feel better you will start to feel a little less guilt.

TVWife · 25/06/2017 06:14

Google translate??

BertrandRussell · 25/06/2017 07:03

My ds had a horrible accident when he was in dp's care when he was 4. Dp blamed himself and was convinced everyone else blamed him too. We really really didn't, not for a second, but I think it was a couple of months before dp started to really believe us. I think ds recovered (he was absolutely fine, by the way) before dp did. He had flashbacks and nightmares, and I think that if he thought about it too hard even now 12 years later he would cry. So be gentle with yourself- try and talk about it if you can, accept that everyone else is shocked and worried and may not be thinking too careful about what they are saying, so may hurt you unknowingly-you are ready to hear the slightest nuance of blame even if it is not meant. For example, on the day of ds's accident he and dp were going to either go cycling or go to the beach and I said "What a shame you didn't decide to go to the beach instead!" and dp took that as me blaming him when I really, really wasn't.

SomewhatIdiosyncratic · 25/06/2017 07:28

All toddlers have their moments. DS1 was pretty sensible as they go, but his moment came during the shopping trolley rebellion phase. He was in the Costco trolley and threw himself out onto the concrete floor with a big splat and lots of tears. He was on a mission, and things like the little seatbelt would not stop him.

I hope he makes a full recovery and you get back home soon. A return to normality will make you feel much better Flowers

Crunchymum · 25/06/2017 07:42

It was a terrible accident OP, but not your fault.

If it makes you feel any better both my kids have had injuries that were my fault.
One got burnt with an iron and the other went down concrete steps in pram as I didn't put break on properly. Both involved trips to A&E and shitloads of guilt.

It took me a while to come to terms with both incidents (years apart) and the guilt was overwhelming - thankfully neither incident caused any lasting damage.

I just learnt to concentrate on all the many, many days my kids have been / are safe in my soul care.

Be kind to yourself OP.

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