Sick kids are the WORST. Terrible for the kids, terrible for the parents.
I have two young children – a 2 year old boy and a 4 year old girl (updated for this post) … They are the polar opposite in every single way.
My girl, when sick, screams and cries at everything. If I look at her the wrong way, she will cry. If I breath, she cries. It’s actually ridiculous. She is fiercely independent, and doesn’t like me going near her or touching her when she’s well, imagine what it’s like when she’s sick … “GO AWAY MUM!”.
At times I feel like the most useless parent in the world to her, because she just won’t let me do anything to help. Obviously, I am the boss, so ultimately she does what I say, but there really is a fine line with an emotional child. I don’t want to push my luck and make her upset even more, because more upset = more sick. And really, I just want her to get better.
It takes a lot of patience, counting to 10, and focussing on my breathing to keep calm when dealing with my daughter.
My boy, on the other hand, is a quiet sufferer. He’s cuddly and clingy. Doesn’t scream, sometimes cries (but that’s to be expected) but is so much more chilled than my girl. It’s almost a pleasure to have him sick.
Having polar opposites when it comes to kids, is not a problem, and it’s really great to be able to see both sides of the coin. But it does get difficult when other people come into the picture – most people expect children, when sick, to act like my son. Bit upset, but ultimately quiet and contained.
When they get to my sick daughter, it’s a whole other world. People struggle to deal with her, and to understand that it’s just who she is. I’ve heard people say “Oh it’s because she’s a girl”. Well yes, she is female, but it is who she is at her core. Doesn’t matter that she’s a girl.
I’ve had people yell at her, to get her to stop crying. Yelling doesn’t work with an emotional child, it just upsets them more, which really doesn’t help anything.
Things that I found help:
- Keep your cool
- Remember what it’s like when you are sick
- Listen to them
- Remind them gently that just because they’re sick doesn’t give them the right to be rude (if they are)
Most importantly, it is our job as a parent to look after them and take care of them. Try and imagine what it’s like when you’re sick – you want nothing more than to be taken care of.
I hate having sick kids, it’s not easy on anyone. Thankfully for most of us, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. They do get better.
Every winter I dread it though, because I know more tears are coming …
What is your child like? Are they emotional? Or the quiet, cuddly type?