She LOST her epipen bag!!!!

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 11:31am
Corvallis Mom's picture
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Aghhhhhhhh!!!! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/mad.gif[/img]

Unrepentent DD set her epipens down at a beach restroom and walked away (into our car) without them... over an hour later (at home) we discovered their loss.

DH immediately drove another hour back (though I told him not to bother...) to search for them but found no trace. Nothing in garbage cans, nothing. My husband ransacked a park ladies' room and every diaper-filled trashcan in the park. (sigh) [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/frown.gif[/img]

I am absolutely enraged at my daughter's irresponsibility right now. Not only does she not seem to care about the fact that hundreds of dollars worth of medications must be replaced, but now also all her insurance information, etc....

We have ONE spare epipen at home right now (the one I usually carry in my purse) but given her Hx, we really, and I mean [i]really[/i] shouldn't be without two or more.

I am trying to recall if enough personal information was in her bag to worry about identity theft... and worrying about whether we'll get sued if someone accidentally injects themselves in a hand.

And worst of all-- how do I convince DH that she [i]still[/i] really really needs to be carrying them herself??? He is in a mood to "lay down the law" about her being too young. Nevermind that she's 7 and has been carrying them for almost five years-- with this being the first actual loss.

Arrrggghhhhh.

And then there's my frustration because we have a laminated card inside that bag that clearly states our phone numbers, that the contents can be dangerous if misused, and that a child could DIE without what's in it. Not that this evidently matters to my delightful fellow (wo)man. It has been about four hours now with not a word. And we have FOUR phone numbers on that card. FOUR.

So now I get to spend tomorrow replacing everything in the bag- inhaler, epipens, all the phone-time to replace insurance information.... loverly.

I could quite cheerfully throttle her right now. I just want her to "get" why this may just be the single worst thing that she has ever done....particularly if a young child finds that bag. I just can't imagine that an adult wouldn't have either searched it and tossed the contents or called...

Well, thanks for letting me vent my anger and panic.

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 11:50am
Corvallis Mom's picture
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... [i]and as she hit "submit", her cell phone rang![/i]
(And it wasn't the angry DH... [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] )
It was the ranger's station at the State Park!!!!
Evidently the cleaning crew went through the restrooms about ten minutes before DH's whirlwind tour of the park garbage facilities... finding DD's black satin Tinkerbell bag (with the star-of-life pin)
and returned it to the state park tollbooth a few miles up Hwy 101.
Can you say "Three trips to Newport in one day?" (sigh).... but I am just so relieved that some little child didn't find them. Whew!!!
I think DH intends to ride over with us... the better to lecture DD where she can't get away, I think. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img]

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 11:51am
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Ugh, how disappointing that she lost it!
There must be a typo in your post...it indicates she is seven and has been carrying her epi's for 5 years, which would mean since she was 2??? Did I read that correctly? Or do you you mean 17 and she has been carrying them since she was 12?
I have a 2 year old, 4 year old and 9 year old, and I could not imagine ANY of them having the responsibility for carrying an epi. My nine year old is close..and he is very cautious...but personally, it would be unrealistic for me to think any of my children should be responsible for something like that at their current ages!
You must mean 17, b/c it sounds like she left it in a public rest room while in there without you?
I would say if she is 17, then she does need to be spoken to about being more responsible,and I would make her pay for some of the replacement cost.
If she is 7, then I think perhaps your expectations are high for her age....just my opinion.
Also, I had my ped right the prescription so I could get a couple filled at once, one for school and one for home...then a couple of months later I had it refilled again,then a couple of months later again...so I right now have 8 kicking around. 4 packages of 2 in various stages of experation (four in the house, four in the diaper bag/purse)...plus two brand new ones at ds's school.
Fortunately my insurance covers all but a small percentage of the cost.

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 11:55am
3xy1PAinNH's picture
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Phew! just saw that you found it! I meant to also post about how torn up I would be about all that personal info being out there...AND the worries of some small child finding them and 'playing' with them! You must be so relieved!!!!!!!!
[This message has been edited by 3xy1PAinNH (edited September 10, 2006).]

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 11:59am
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I know what it's like to have a very gifted child. We expect so much of them. Your DD is far beyond her age in so many areas.
But I've gotta say it . . . I think this should be expected at age 7.
DS lost his school epibag twice last year (it was left in his specials classroom). And the first day of school this year he left it in another classroom.
We are terrified that this behavior will result in his (very necessary) privelege of having it with him at all times revoked.
It should be passed to the teacher once he arrives in class, but this sometimes doesn't happen apparently.
Stern talking to--yes. Trying to get him to understand the possible consequences--yes.
But he's 8. And a bit of an absentminded professor at times.
How wonderful your DD's epipen bag wasn't found by a child. Or her identity stolen.
But I would ease up a bit. I bet she won't misplace it again anytime soon.
[This message has been edited by McCobbre (edited September 10, 2006).]

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 12:19pm
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I can see how this would be very frustrating---but as someone who tends to be forgetful and absentminded, I can sympathize with your daughter. Since it is the first time she left her epipens behind, I'd say she has shown quite a lot of maturity for her age, and I agree with you--she is responsible enough to carry the epipens herself.
Glad that it all ended happily!

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 12:58pm
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Anonymous (not verified)

Corvallis Mom, your second post made me laugh. I'm glad to hear you got everything back.
3xy1PAinNH, my son has been responsible for carrying his epi-pen since he was 3. Even when he is with me or his dad, he wears it on his belt. There have been occasions when we forget -- and he remembers. He also knows how to administer an epi-pen (although I do NOT expect him to self-administer). We made a game of it and he learned how to give me an epi-pen, himself an epi-pen, and Elmo an epi-pen. (Who knew? Elmo has allergies to, at least the one in our home does. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] )

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 2:08pm
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I hear ya! My dd, now 11.5, has been carrying her epis since around age 3. A couple of times (both in the past 4 years) dd has left her epi kit somewhere. Once on the bus and another time in a restaurant. I really made a big deal about it to impress upon her the gravity of the situation. I told her that she could forget her coat, her shoes, her schoolbag....anything and I wouldn't care. But if you forget the epi it is very serious.
I found out that she wasn't comfortable with the waist pouch ("It makes me look fat" and this from a kid who is on the low end for weight for her age) so she would take it off. We found a cute little purse that she can wear over her shoulder and it sits on her opposite hip and it is much better. She loves it so she doesn't take it off.
I'm glad you got it back in the end. What a relief, I'm sure!

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 3:27pm
Corvallis Mom's picture
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Ahhhhh.... my backside may not be the same, but we are finally back. WITH the epipens.
She seems suitably chastened now-- the earlier attitude vanished in the face of understanding that this cost about five hours in the car and about 40 buck of gas. (yowza)
Thanks everyone! (I know we do expect a lot, but I so dearly want her to feel naked without those epipens!) That way this won't ever happen when she's 17. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] We hope.
Her punishment is that she may not go anywhere without DH or I being able to physically [i]see[/i] her for a month. Not even to her neighborhood haunts. Not until we can trust her to be responsible enough to [i]not take them off.[/i] The old rule got laid down again-- she can only take them off to [i]hand them to one of us or hang them on the coat closet doorknob (where they stay at home).[/i] We're also instituting a check system in the car-- we ask before releasing the emergency brake from now on! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img]
[This message has been edited by Corvallis Mom (edited September 11, 2006).]

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 3:46pm
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Wow that's a big punishment. I think 7 is young to really grasp the situation. Kids lose stuff every single day but unfortunately our kids have responsibility for SO MUCH MORE than the kid who loses something trivial.
At 7 they are socializing with friends and doing other stuff at the same time and it is easy to forget to pick up that Tinkerbell bag. Which might be better if it were attached to her body in some way, belt loop etc.
I know you gotta do what you gotta do but maybe I'd rather find a better way for her to carry her epis. You seem to be the ones to let the rules relax when in fact they should be stricter as she gets older.
Poor kid, poor us. Darned if you do darned if you don't.
Good luck.
Peg

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 4:18pm
Corvallis Mom's picture
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Yes- I should clarify a couple of things, I can see. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
She wears (and has always done so) a bag messenger-style, over one shoulder so that it is hands-free and can't come off unless she deliberately removes it. It is a small bag that she chooses so that it is comfortable to wear and has a strap short enough that it doesn't get in her way.
Yes- I forgot to look for the bag when we got back into the car. I didn't realize that she had taken them off in the restroom because there was no reason for her to (really).
She really prefers to be the one who handles them-- truly. And we want them to be on her as well-- that way we don't ever miscommunicate about which parent has them, etc.
We also feel very strongly that we want her to feel a bit panicky without them. That instinct is one of fundamental self-preservation-- her life is in that bag, more or less. (JMO)
Our system failed us for a couple of reasons-- she failed to follow the rule about not taking them off. We failed to check to see that they were in the car. Both serious. I think she deserves punishment for breaking one of the biggest rules in her life (which she has done on a few occasions recently-- this was just the first time it had such consequences...).
So her one month punishment means that she can't go next door to play with our next-door neighbor's little boy or down the street to play with the two older children she knows. She can't grab her epipens and just go, in other words. She has to play where we can see her until she earns our trust back. (So it isn't exactly like being "grounded.") We also talked to her about the possibility for harm to a child who accidentally injects themselves into a hand. This seemed to matter a great deal to her-- one of her friends is a 3yo neighbor.
What I couldn't quite fathom is why the notion of harm to [i]her[/i] didn't seem to faze her much during this.... [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/confused.gif[/img]
Anyway-- would I treat the average 7yo this way? No way. My daughter? Absolutely. She's a fourth grader who intends to finish fifth grade by June. She is super-responsible about her allergy (and everything else, for that matter) and has a self-awareness that frequently makes [i]everyone[/i] around her forget that she is 7. (Soooo, not typical.) We don't expect her to be older than 7, but we do expect her to be [i]herself[/i] if that makes sense. (sigh) It probably doesn't without knowing her...
But I think McCobbre's point is well-taken. It is very easy to wonder how she could have been so foolish, but in the context of being 7, good judgement isn't all it appears to be at 40. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/rolleyes.gif[/img]
Just clarifying so that nobody thinks I might really be an ogre...

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 4:39pm
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[b]Yes- I forgot to look for the bag when we got back into the car. I didn't realize that she had taken them off in the restroom because there was no reason for her to (really).[/b]
Couldn't you call it a 'wash' then? She did something that she wasn't supposed to -- but you also forgot part of your bargain. As grown up as she may be, she is still a 7 year old little girl. For some strange reason -- I would say it was her being 7 -- she took off her bag. Why? Who knows -- little kids do all sorts of things for odd reasons. You acknowledge that you forgot to check. If you forgot something -- because, you are her parent and bear some responsibility -- what is your punishment?
Isn't there a way for a lesson to be learned, without it being unfair? Both of her parents were with her -- yet you expect her to hold the entire burden for the loss.
Couldn't all of you talk about what happened, and go over the mistakes that all of you made? You could talk about what the rules are for her wearing her bag, what you expect of her, and also what she should be able to expect from you, as parents. She has a responsibility to herself -- yes -- but at 7, something like this, in my opinion, doesn't rest the bulk of the responsibility on her.
BTW, if you were able to look through the screen at me, I'm not saying this with a wagging finger at you -- my tone is truly coming from me thinking about how upset my own son would be (he will be 7 in 1 month). As mature as he is about some things - this boy who brought me a drawing the other day of a strand of DNA - I couldn't not check,and double check, if he were to carry his Epi-pens. I wouldn't want him to feel as though that weight rested all on him, because I would feel equally responsible.

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 9:25pm
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One thing I've learned being a mom...every child is different and every family's situation is unique. I can't fathom a mature 7 year old because I don't have one...I have a somewhat immature just turned 6 year old.
I have yet to let him go anywhere out of my sight (or his father's or grandmother's). Nonetheless I find he is more responsible about making sure his epi is on his body after 3 weeks of practice than his dad is!
It's amazing how our kids rise to the occasion and take on more than anyone else would have thought possible, isn't it?
Luvmyboys

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 10:14pm
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Well, I must say I am relieved that a "mature" 7 year-old lost her epi-pen. My "immature" 7 year-old lost his twice in the last few weeks. The first time I am still a little angry at. We were out running errands, and when we got home, I asked where his epi-pen was. He said in the closet (where it stays when we're home). He even looked to double-check, and said he put it away. About 10 minutes later, I got a call from one of the stores we'd gone to (our phone number is on it, but not my first name, but the owner knows me, and knew who lost it, and did call me by name). So anyway, he was in very big trouble for lying about it.
Then last week, we were in Massachusetts. He took it off in a men's room, simply because how it fits with the waist of that pair of pants makes it very difficult to do what needs to be done. He forgot it there. The problem is, none of us realized it until we were back in CT. His father was still in MA, though, only two miles from where he left it, so he went to pick it up. And in the meantime, I had the one I carry in my purse.

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 10:24pm
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SO glad you have the epi's back! I ran here this morning to check the post, b/c I was direct last night. I didn't realize your daughter is gifted academically! That does make it tougher on you, b/c she often probably seems older than she is. We have a neighbor's son who is gifted and skipped a couple of grades (although it turned around and bit him in the butt in HS, and he they just paid $35K for a year of prep school before he was ready for University!) [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] and he is also physically BIG...she said they often times had to remind themselves consciously of his age b/c his behaviors wouldn't match what they expected...but then again...he was a boy! I have three boys, and I see that they just aren't wired the same way as girls.
I guess I am saying do what you need to do for your family...I think a couple of us just can't fathom ANY 3, 4 or 7 year old being that responsible, no matter what their IQ...but you know your situation better than ANY of us do! I tell you, it is my nearly 4 yo that has the PA....he is academically slightly above average...and I could NEVER imagine him carrying his epis!

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 10:47pm
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Corvallis Mom -
Glad to hear everything turned out OK. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 11:39pm
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Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
[b]What I couldn't quite fathom is why the notion of harm to [i]her[/i] didn't seem to faze her much during this.... [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/confused.gif[/img]
Anyway-- would I treat the average 7yo this way? No way. My daughter? Absolutely. She's a fourth grader who intends to finish fifth grade by June. She is super-responsible about her allergy (and everything else, for that matter) and has a self-awareness that frequently makes [i]everyone[/i] around her forget that she is 7. (Soooo, not typical.) We don't expect her to be older than 7, but we do expect her to be [i]herself[/i] if that makes sense. (sigh) It probably doesn't without knowing her...
[/b]
Would she be finishing fourth grade by June if she weren't homeschooled? This is not an academic question. Merely a [i]life/self care[/i] type of question. Because your expectations of her are based on a small part of a sheltered home environment. It's part of the reason I no longer exclusively "homeschool" my child. He needed some [i]real life[/i] experience.
*I* needed to know what he was *really* capable of.
He needed to adapt to a [i]changing environment[/i]. An [i]artificial one[/i] if you may point out. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
What my child is capable at [i]home[/i] might be very different from what he is capable in that [i]artificial environment[/i] called "The Public". [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img]
Lots of stressors, a new environment everytime you walk out the door.......
But, as "mature" as folk thought I was as a child...........getting out "on my own" was a [i]major overhaul[/i]. I still have my mother living with me. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img]
I was very academically advanced, but [i]socially[/i] (including adapting to my environment)--------[i]a flop[/i].
Everything sent me into a tailspin......
I also didn't realize for a long time, what consequenses existed in the [i]public[/i], outside the shelter of my family environment. Probably well into my late twenties, I was still on the "naivete'" scale of a 15 or 16 year old. With an incredible IQ.
[i]Very dangerous combination[/i], if you ask me.
I'm kind of a sassy *** now, since I'm *just* comming into my own. (I think)
I'm just beginning to see the [i]Forest[/i].
I think that "backlog" is *still* causing me clashes. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] Might just be my lot in life. You know, the price of tunnel vision---- of that imbalance. I mean, socially, I'm still playing "catchup". It's just not knowledge that enrolling me in park district programs could teach me. It's something I probably should have learned, or been exposed to earlier on. Just last week, one of my coworkers, a woman in her early fifties, told me in a joking fashion (I think): "You're not one of us, but we love you anyway."
I'm still odd man out. Guess I'll *never* catchup.
But it struck me. I thought "the older crowd" were my cohorts. It used to be that way. I mean, I always gravitated to persons older than myself....they always identified with me. I'm suddenly finding myself more [i]alone[/i].
It's not like I'm not used to it.
But IQ and life skills. I wouldn't be so quick to expect they matchup. Ya know?
~no advice, just speaking personally.
[This message has been edited by MommaBear (edited September 11, 2006).]
[This message has been edited by MommaBear (edited September 11, 2006).]

Posted on: Sun, 09/10/2006 - 11:43pm
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I have handled this situation very badly in the past. I admit it, I do forget he is only a small boy. And as a parent I forget to look at things from his point of view.
I see missing epi pens as an accident waiting to happen.
For some time I didnt tell my son that I had spare antihistamine and epi pens in my own bag. I let him think that his bag was all we have to help him.
and on occasions he still has forgot.
However , we do stick to the non eating outside the home or going straight home rules until we get the epi pens.
William sees his bags as a bloody pain in the backside, a bag that interfers with his life and fun.
Football cant be played with your mates down the park if there is a bag on your back.
I do regret being so harsh with him. I bent down looked him in the eye and asked him what were we supposed to do if he has a reaction? who ? was going to need the meds more? , him or mummy?
Mummy's cant make things better if you dont look after yourself a little bit.
The last time he lost his bag was when he was 8, so far , at 10 1/2 he still remembers his meds.
There is no doubt in my mind that children bearing this kind of responsibility have a part of their childhood taken away.
Worse still, it seems that its our duty as parents to do this to them.
sarah ( mrs grumpy today)

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 12:07am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
[b]What I couldn't quite fathom is why the notion of harm to [i]her[/i] didn't seem to faze her much during this.... [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/confused.gif[/img]
[/b]
That doesn't really surprise me much. Most young people don't seem to think anything can actually happen to them. Apparently even kids with pa can feel this way.
It's part of why young people with cars or motorcycles whip in and out of traffic, drag race, etc. They really think nothing can actually happen to them -- it's always the other guy.
Big difference here is that your daughter cares about about the *other guy* and doesn't want to cause harm to them. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] Sounds to me like you're doing a great job. I also don't think your punishment sounds extreme. Sounds serious, yes -- but not extreme.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 12:21am
Peg541's picture
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I agree with MB. Your daughter is smart but endowed with life skills is another story.
Yes also mature in some ways but her little body and brain are only seven years old and there is a physical/mental maturation process we all go through that does not involve our intellect.
My children are in their 20's now. This is one thing I would change if I had the opportunity to.....
No matter how old they were I always thought they, or at least my daughter, was as old and as mature as they were going to get. I just felt they were so ready for what I threw at them. It wasn't much but sometimes it failed miserably.
I guess I should take my son out of this equation because he was off the charts with not ready. But my daughter was brilliant from day one. I did not know that because she was my first. But I treated her that way. I equated brilliant with ready to face the world.
Now I look back and I see the few videos we have and I say to myself "I sent that BABY to school? How could I?"
When back then she seemed so ready to take on the world. K at just the beginning of five, cried every day on the way to school and for the first hour of school. I just thought it was her way and the school was happy to get my tuition check so they clammed up too. Thank goodness the next school kept her in K!
She was not ready and I may have pushed her into situations where she was so not ready.
That's why I agree seven is young, really young and to ask a seven year old to have to save her own life (like we all have to do) carries some special considerations with it.
One of those considerations is we all learned a lesson today about carrying the epi pens. Lets forgive each other and move on.
Sorry to belabor this point I feel pretty passionate about this.
Peg

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 12:35am
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Corvalis Mom,
Glad things worked out and you did find the bag. Wow, what a day.
Interesting because I have been speaking with my DH about having DS carry his epi pen. He is against it. He says that he's a kid and shouldn't be burdened with that right now. That right now as his parents, we are responsible for his safety. That he has enough burden in dealing with the day to day rules he follows on eating etc. We are with him for the most part, DH coaches his sports activities, is the den leader for boy scouts. If he's on a playdate, the parent has the epi pen. While he's at school, the nurse has it etc.
I understand what he's saying, but I want him having his epi pens to become a habit for him, a part of his normal routine. He is 8 and is very responsible with his food allergies and follows the rules we've laid out for keeping safe. I am ready to add the epi pen to the mix.
DH says no, so I am going to compromise for one more year and then have him start to carry it.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 12:59am
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Interesting thought just occurred to me. The most responsible and "mature" people I have met probably have had "average" or below average IQ's.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 1:17am
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Well, I'm ready to be flamed for being too lax in expectations for my son!
My guy is almost 10, and every school morning I ask him if he has his Epibelt on before he puts his shoes on, and whenever his dad or I go out anywhere "in public" with him, WE carry the "pack" with his meds in it. I remind him from time to time to "help me remember" to get the pack, but I haven't turned over that full responsibility to him yet.
He has just started to take on some responsibility for his allergy at school - wiping down desks before he sits at them. (He has carried his epi in his belt since K.) And this new responsibility has already caused an emotional adjustment. I've posted about it elsewhere. I think, for my kid, a slow turn over is the best route to take.
Everyone handles this differently. (It's beginning to be a mantra...)
[This message has been edited by Lam (edited September 11, 2006).]

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 1:32am
Corvallis Mom's picture
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LOL! My goodness! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
Thanks, everyone!
-- What about our punishment? Is there anything more punishing than contemplating what could happen if a toddler found that bag and their parents sued us? [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] Well certainly. The thought of what could have happened to DD without them. Not to mention the two additional trips over a winding two lane hwy loaded with deer and drunks in trucks and SUVs.... We have definitely admitted our part in this to DD-- family discussion was certainly happening on that drive. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] Both her father and I discussed some of the terrible mistakes each of us made as children-- and their consequences.
-- I would have to say that my own experience is not unlike yours, MB. But I don't think being sheltered (or not, in my case) matters all that much-- being gifted means your perspective is different from most of your peers well into early adulthood. I didn't begin meeting a lot of other people like me until grad school.(shrug) And based upon DD's experiences with us [i]not[/i] immediately nearby, I think she'd be fine in a fourth grade classroom. (Well-- aside from the allergy issues which have proven to just be too daunting in our opinion.) We do allow "real world" experience. HSing is more about dual exceptionality now, and less about FA. We do consciously allow her many opportunities to make those social mistakes and bear the consequences. It hurts, but we know why it is necessary for a friend to snub you when you say something thoughtless. Thus far? She has little trouble navigating unstructured time with her peers (ages 3 to 14). She is forced to adapt to different environments with that age range-- and I think that adaptability is the important thing. Thanks for the thoughts, MB-- it is good to know that my mind isn't just working OT when I consider those things. I don't think we "push" her into things so much as she seizes them.
-- We are certainly guilty of forgetting how little she is. (As I can see Williamsmummy and McCobbre both understand...) And as a parent, of course kids do things that just seem, well-- for lack of a better term; [i]bizarre[/i]. Maddening. But understandable-- if you are (fill in age under 20). I might have [i]wanted[/i] to behave terribly yesterday afternoon and evening, but I don't think that I did. (I came to you instead. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] ) It is just so surprising when she uses (age-appropriate) poor judgement-- because she is definitely NOT your stereotypical bright kid with no common sense. She is one of the most sensible [i]people[/i] I have ever known. Very pragmatic and no-nonsense.
Her punishment reflects our desire for her to remake a habit that she has recently been breaking. She has often taken the bag off while at neighborhood friends' houses in the last few months. We are probably guilty of not recognizing how terrible the consequences could be if we were too distracted to notice right away.
In other words-- we neglected to nip this in the bud two months ago... (sigh) But I think "adult" punishments and kids' don't need to seem fairly divided to kids, any more than responsibilities do. (Somehow my 7yo doesn't see "paying the mortgage" as being quite as onerous as "putting away the dishes," if you KWIM!)
It makes me very sad to have my daughter robbed of a "normal" childhood by her FA. So sad that it is very difficult for me to talk about. Suffice it to say that if anything in my life has been a disappointment-- that is it. I had great plans to give my daughter the childhood I didn't have. But "normal" is relative, isn't it? And I have to say that that childhood has made me a very tough and resiliant person.
Thanks again, everyone!! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
[This message has been edited by Corvallis Mom (edited September 11, 2006).]

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 1:37am
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Lam, I don't see why anyone would flame you. Different strokes for different folks, right?
I have three children, and my expectations of each was completely different -- because they were and are very different people.
Even with homework.
The first, if I left him alone (not even a reminder) he would do it all and do it properly.
The second, I had to hound, ground, and anything else I could think of.
The third, I remind. He's eight and I do have to put him *back on track* every now and then -- he tends to to breaks.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 1:38am
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Heh, I'm 23 and I *still* occasionally leave my purse (with epi's) in the fitting room after trying on clothes.
And I'm pretty smart. Straight A's in HS, mostly A's in college (I would have had straight A's if I had actually cared about learning at that point).
Absent-minded professor. I usually have too much on my mind to remember absolutely everything. Like today I came thisclose to showering without a towel in the room. I'm surprised she hasn't forgotten it before!

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 4:37am
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[b]-- What about our punishment? Is there anything more punishing than contemplating what could happen if a toddler found that bag and their parents sued us? Well certainly. The thought of what could have happened to DD without them. Not to mention the two additional trips over a winding two lane hwy loaded with deer and drunks in trucks and SUVs.... We have definitely admitted our part in this to DD-- family discussion was certainly happening on that drive. Both her father and I discussed some of the terrible mistakes each of us made as children-- and their consequences.[/b]
I guess you missed my point. Her punishement will last 1 month. She will have to give up something that she finds to be fun -- going out to play.
If you consider the car rides punishment for you and DH, wasn't she on them too? If your discussions about liability associated with losing the bag, and also talking about past mistakes, was your punishment -- she was there for those as well.
I guess my point is, that with a 7 year old, her punishment is going to last well past that day. If you and DH admit to being partially responsible, why doesn't the punishment for the two of you equal that for her? If car rides and discussions were your punishment, she was there for those, so you all should be even.
I'm thinking the possibility exists for a child to come away with the wrong message. "Let the punishment fit the crime" - children do have a sense of fairness. If you don't hold yourself to the same level of accountability, with equal consequences, what will be the lasting lesson? Could she come away with a sense that she got the short end of the stick in all of this? That really, the more important thing, is working on not taking off her Epi-pens. Reminding her how important they are, and also asking for her help to remind you too. She has no power to turn back to you and ground you for not doing what you were supposed to as parents -- no matter how grown up your 7 year old daughter is.
To me, it just seems that the ending to the experience that all of you had, is unfair to your daughter. Children remember when unequities happen to them.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 6:46am
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Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
[b]-- What about our punishment? Is there anything more punishing than contemplating what could happen if a toddler found that bag and their parents sued us? [/b]
I'm still having a problem with this. I fail to see the liability. Is it just me?

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 7:07am
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Wow. It really sounds like you are questioning my parenting. With all due respect, you don't know everything about this situation.
Please re-read my posts more carefully. This IS about retraining her and regaining our trust about [i]not taking them off.[/i]
This was a long-standing rule in our house that she has been lax about recently-- our real mistake was in [i]not laying down the law with her sooner.[/i] Gentle reminders were not working (or yesterday would not have happened at all). More is needed right now or it will be a recurrent problem. That is unacceptable.
This isn't about "punishment" so much as it is about correcting a problem. We are turning back the clock about 18 mo--to a place where she had less personal responsibility, but less autonomy, as well.
It [i]does[/i] seem "fair" to her. She understands why we feel we can't trust her not to take them off. She knows what she needs to do to regain that trust.
We want her to think about her mistake-- the restriction will help her to do that over the next few weeks, and will reinforce the need to follow the rule. Her father and I don't need any help remembering and understanding what we did incorrectly.
[i]I[/i] am not the one who will need to think about those epipens every day for the rest of my life. She will. As harsh as that is, the only thing I can do is to help her be in a place where she has no trouble doing it. I want to teach her [i]not[/i] to rely on anyone else to do it for her. I feel it does her no favors to "share" the blame for her leaving them. Reality may decide to punish her far more harshly-- and permanently-- for the same mistake.
I fear her making such an error with fatal consequences when she's 14 and I'm not with her. In this house we're pretty big on personal responsibility, but we firmly, passionately believe as parents that this is something that you [i]grow[/i] into. Right now she's responsible for [i]not taking off her medications, and for reporting all symptoms immediately.[/i] She isn't responsible for treating a reaction, though she has been taught how, and she isn't responsible for judging whether or not foods are safe. She is being coached to own her allergy, but it is a slow process.
Not that we really owe anyone an explanation for a well-considered decision made in our capacity as "Mom and Dad." We love her and are doing what we know in our hearts is the right thing. For [i]our[/i] daughter.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 7:27am
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Quote:Originally posted by MommaBear:
[b] I'm still having a problem with this. I fail to see the liability. Is it just me?
[/b]
Well-- that was probably my own paranoia about being the victim of spurious litigation.... (you'll recall my mind works OT a lot [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] ) on the other hand, I vaguely recall a case in which a diabetic was sued because a child got stuck with an insulin syringe... don't recall the exact details, though.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 8:41am
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Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
[b]I want to teach her [i]not[/i] to rely on anyone else to do it for her. I feel it does her no favors to "share" the blame for her leaving them. [/b]
I agree with these goals--DD recently forgot to put on her epibelt one morning and I noticed it was missing just before the bell rang for school. I pointed out that she forgot it and she became very upset. Fortunately, she has two spare epipens in the office in case hers was ever lost, etc. DD told me she was afraid to go into her classroom without the epibelt on. I was torn between agreeing with her that she always had to have it and reassuring her. I told her that it would be ok because there were spares in the office and I would go straight home to get the epibelt and bring it to her.
I told her teacher that " *** forgot her epibelt today" and was upset and that I would bring it in as soon as possible. I chose words that said it was DD's responsibility.
Everything is a balancing act! I didn't want her to miss class. Realistically, the risk was small to rely on the office epipens for 20 mins. However, I do want her to feel that she needs to wear the belt at all times at school. I did the best I could to balance these concerns in the seconds I had to decide how to handle the situation.
I did not feel that DD needed punishment because she was so upset. Instead, after school we talked about strategies to prevent ever forgetting the epibelt. Now, when she takes it off after school she clips it to her backpack so it won't be forgotten.
Of course, I am not questioning your handling of your DD's situation. You are the best judge of that. I just wanted to relate a similar experience and let you know I understand how difficult it is to find the right approach to every situation. I would add that now that you have told her what the consequences are, I would not second guess myself and change her punishment. That would certainly be counter-productive.
We are all doing the best we can as parents, we can't expect to be perfect all the time! But I do find that reading about the experiences of others does help me when I end up in a similar situation.
Cathy

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 8:57am
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[b]Wow. It really sounds like you are questioning my parenting. With all due respect, you don't know everything about this situation. [/b]
I am not questioning your parenting. I am commenting on the post you made. Two different things.
[b]Please re-read my posts more carefully. This IS about retraining her and regaining our trust about not taking them off.[/b]
I understand about 'training' a child. But with some things, it isn't always about what they need to do about our trust for them, but their trust for themselves.
[b]This was a long-standing rule in our house that she has been lax about recently-- our real mistake was in not laying down the law with her sooner. Gentle reminders were not working (or yesterday would not have happened at all). More is needed right now or it will be a recurrent problem. That is unacceptable.[/b]
Maybe the rule is one that is too much for her. This really is about her. Those Epi-pens are about her -- not your trust. It could be that what is going on with her has more to do with her being 7, and having a responsibility placed on her that is too much at the moment.
[b]This isn't about "punishment" so much as it is about correcting a problem. We are turning back the clock about 18 mo--to a place where she had less personal responsibility, but less autonomy, as well.[/b]
She is 7. However grown up a child may be, at that age there is a certain amount of automony they should never get and a certain amount of responsibility that is too much. If you are turning back the clock 18 months, look at that for your cue about what is going on with her -- not that she broke a rule.
[b]It does seem "fair" to her. She understands why we feel we can't trust her not to take them off. She knows what she needs to do to regain that trust.[/b]
Again, she is 7. Why is it about your trust? She, as she gets older and more mature, will have to become responsible for her medications, allergy, etc. You may never trust her, though she, one day, will be capable on her own. Why couldn't it just be, that maybe what is going on with her is that she might not be ready for the responsibility of those pens -- instead of her breaking your rules & your trust?

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 9:06am
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One of the reasons we bought an E-Belt is because it's so easy to just put on a keep on. Stephen doesn't need an entire medicine cabinet with him - just the Epipen in my opinion (and inhaler depending on the season!).
I think that sometimes it's hard to "remember" or keep on a bag that isn't just attached to you. If it's something you have to hold onto or pickup or would have to wear like a back pack I can see it being easy to put down and forget. Maybe it's different with a girl, but for our guy he puts it on when he leaves the house, just like he does his shoes. He wouldn't forget those . . .and he doesn't forget his Epi.
For a long time we would ask him "do you have your epi" and there would confirm. Now (he's 14) I still find myself asking him occasionally "do you have your epi" and I get a very annoyed, "YES - eye's rolling".
He has only forgotten once in grade 2 for school and once when we went shopping and we were at a restaurant parking lot and had to go without supper cause he forgot it . . .that's it. I guess we're pretty lucky. My biggest worry now is the independence thing where he thinks he's invincible and doesn't need it . . .we're not there now and hope we never get there.
As for repercussions for their actions - to each their own [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 9:06am
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Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
she failed to follow the rule about not taking them off.
Oh, I see now---a sin of comission rather than of omission. It sounds like for some reason she is finding it awkward or uncomfortable sometimes to wear her epis since she takes them off from time to time . . .

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 9:23am
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I didn't get to read the whole thread - only the first two posts, so forgive any repetition.
I think the fact that she made it this far without losing it is pretty miraculous! I know she is a highly unusual kid, but she [i]is[/i] still only 7. I don't think putting it down and forgetting it is so unusual for that age. Heck, it may be even more common at my age! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/biggrin.gif[/img]
My son has (twice!) left it overnight in the car - once in ridiculously hot conditions, the other time in below freezing temps. I was livid - that cost me $50 each time to replace them. To add insult to injury the second time it happened they were only a week old.
Now for the tricky part. I was hard-pressed to come up with an appropriate punishment, because I don't want him to afraid to let me know if it happens again. I'd rather shell out the $50 than have him walk around with ruined epipens, KWIM? It's a tightrope, to be sure.
Did anyone turn them in to the lost & found?
Amy

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 10:06am
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Hmmmm. We're not remotely in a position for ds to carry his own epipens. I wish we were though, because I think it's an important habit to get into when the time is right. He's still at the point where he likes to pretend he can eat peanuts [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/rolleyes.gif[/img] Don't get me started!
Well, from reading Corvallis Mom's posts, it sounds like she's been wearing the epis for a LONG time now, and has done well with this. Since that's the case, I think it's pretty safe to say that Corvallis Mom knows she's capable of carrying her own epipens.
I can't think of a parent who would strap them onto a child who's screaming bloody murder they don't want them or showing obvious signs of stress over wearing them.
I have no idea what I'd do in this situation, since like I said, we've ummmmm got a ways to go maturity and understanding wise.
My only question is this: Could it be possible that social pressures/desires to fit in are becoming more important and distracting her? Or even making her wish she didn't need the epis so she puts them down more?
Based on some of your descriptions of reactions Corvallis Mom, I completely understand how you want her to KNOW the necessity of the epi.
Best of luck on the latest roller coaster ride of allergy management! Meg

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 10:32am
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Anonymous (not verified)

Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
[b]This isn't about "punishment" so much as it is about correcting a problem.[/b]
If I may be so bold as to say, it doesn't actually sound like a "punishment" to me. Not in the traditional sense. It sounds more like "logical consequences".
[i]You forgot your epi-pens. Therefore, the logical consequence is that you must stay where I can see you until I know you will remember them.[/i]
It doesn't sound (to me) like you are saying she can't do [i]something[/i]. You are just saying where she can do it.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 10:32am
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Thanks, mattsmommy and Going Nuts...
As LisaM pointed out, I immediately suspected the bag (which is relatively new) but she vehemently denies that it was uncomfortable in any way...
[img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/confused.gif[/img] So I think it is probably just that she is distracted and in the course of fidgeting (or whatever you call it when 7 yo)... she takes them off-- then she gets distracted and totally spaces on putting them back on. She knows that she can ALWAYS choose any carrier she chooses. It has always been her choice. And we will ALWAYS carry them for her if she asks. Always-- but she knows that comes with a 50 yd leash tying her to them.
This is why we want her to [i]really[/i] reform her ways about taking them off to begin with. If we can just get her into the habit of following a "rule" about that, all should be well again. This is because she so rarely makes this mistake in restaurants or in leaving the house-- there's a rule.
FWIW, we [i]all[/i] feel that we got off relatively easy. Including the driving, the gas, and DD's monthlong retraining regimen. (Since some people objected to "punishment" if I didn't get any either...)
And I think it is worth noting that I have let other incidents go without any punishment-- this was a judgement call. I have in the past cases also been torn between "reassuring" and "letting her stew." But there is a reason that I used to term "unrepentent" in my original post. And I stand by it. If she had freaked out and been suitably remorseful, that would have been a different situation, but she didn't. And yet I definitely don't sense rebellion at the root of it. If I did, we wouldn't be handling it this way. It was an honest mistake-- made by someone who was being a bit careless and distracted. She can be that way about anything else... forget your shoes, forget your coat, forget your pants, even, but not that. KWIM?
ETA: Yes, Annamarie, this is exactly what we decided and why. DH initially wanted her to share the costs of replacing the bag and its contents, and later I talked him out of making her pay for half the gasoline expense... (which I thought was too harsh, even as mad as I was). We discussed this at some length last night in the car while DD was sleeping on the way home.
On a lighter note, a whiny DH is now claiming that his severely sunburnt feet might really be [i]my fault[/i] as well. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/rolleyes.gif[/img] After all, I didn't remind him to use sunscreen.... (sigh)
[This message has been edited by Corvallis Mom (edited September 11, 2006).]

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 11:51am
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On another note, you mentioned your daughter had been in a beach bathroom.
Here in CA and other places there is an alarming increase in the number of child molestations occuring in park, lake and beach bathrooms. They are open to everyone and dangerous places for bad people to lurk.
A number of children have been assaulted while their mothers stood outside of the bathrooms waiting for their child to come out.
Just information.
peg

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 11:59am
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I have been thoughtfully thinking about your situation all day today...
I agree with the post that stated that "no matter what, at this point, don't change the consequences of her actions." Stick by your parenting choice. No one knows better than you.
BUT, having said that, I have just read the whole thread, and you keep commenting about her doing things like this a lot in the last few weeks, and then 18 montha ago...nearly every post mentions how she has been forgetful with the Epi's.
I am new here and don't know a lot about you and your daughter (ie her rxns)...but I did catch that she is gifted.
Have you considered sitting down with her in a 'family meeting' and asking her point blank. "We would like you think about this and get back to us tommorrow morning...Do you think you are ready and willing to carry your epipens? Or is there a concern or issue you have with doing so?"
I would imagine there could be emotional damage done to a child that might feel insecure about her ability to play a substantial role in the saving of her own life? KWIM?
I come to you with this b/c I was a gifted child. I had a very controlling mother who kept me quite close to the apron strings. I was terrified of her, and thus NEVER wanted to disappoint her. I did everything she asked me to. TO her, I seemed very mature. Yet in reality, I was socially VERY niave. I would even say immature for my age. Unfortunately my mother didn't find the 'balance' to allow me to excel in a gifted program (she just didn't know any better). Kinda shocking to get to late high school and start blowing away tests and find out jsut how stinkin' high my IQ was. My point is, there is a balance. I used to think about things like my purpose on the universe and the meaning of life at the age of 6! But I had such a controlling mother I never got to make any decisions.
Maybe your daughter feels out of control too (lord knows PA can do that)...and maybe by having a heart to heart with her you can give her a little control.
I understand you want her to be responsible...and as a parent.. you won't find another mom more on the 'responsibility' bandwagon...but maybe the responsibility can wait. Tell her you can revisit her medical action plan every 3 months, with the expectation that if she doesn't want to carry the epi now, she can again in 3 or 6 months, or a year. And also with teh understanding that if she doesn't carry it, she can't go roaming the neighbhorhood without you in tow! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img]
Good luck...sorry for such a long post!
Edited to add...I think you think you are giving her control and responsibility by making her carry the epis. In fact she might not be ready, and the control she needs is to be able to say, "Not yet".
[This message has been edited by 3xy1PAinNH (edited September 11, 2006).]

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 1:14pm
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OMG!!!! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/eek.gif[/img] Peg-- I just realized that you must have thought I let her go alone. OMG NOOOOOOO. Trust me-- I am nowhere near that naive-- and I won't say why, but [i]I know better.[/i]
So no, she was with me (and our dog, who had followed us in.) It had been so windy that I knelt down and was gently removing the sand from our dog's nose and eyes with a damp paper towel while DD washed her hands. This is why I didn't notice that she didn't have them on-- when we walked out the door, she was walking slightly behind me and the dog (who was off-leash, so I needed to keep up with her in the parking lot). DD was never actually out of my sight, but I was not looking [i]at[/i] her, if that makes sense.
(NO wonder you thought I was negligent.) Holy cow.
And my thanks also for the perspective about my daughter perhaps being a bit intimidated to say anything to us. Knowing her, I strongly doubt it-- but a household full of type A people, you never know, right? Communication isn't a problem for her... LOL!! She certainly tells me [i]exactly[/i] what she thinks. Come to think of it, she only holds back with people she doesn't know and trust.
I would also anticipate that if she were uncomfortable with the idea of carrying them, she would hand them off to one of us all the time. And she definitely doesn't-- not even if we ask if she would like to. She knows that just carrying them doesn't mean we expect her to know how to use them. We've absolutely covered that-- she knows that eventually, yes, that will belong to her as well, but not now. Not until SHE is ready. We actually took that sort of approach to her carrying them in the first place, as bizarre as that sounds. She WANTED to.
What worries me most about this pattern (and her response yesterday) is that I suspect that the memory of her last anaphylactic reaction is finally beginning to fade. I talked to her about that yesterday and was deeply distressed to realize that she doesn't recall it well enough now for it to feel frightening. (She was 2, and for years, this was very clear in her mind... at least the parts where her BP was high enough to be powering her brain sufficiently.) So I am wondering if we are now battling [i]that[/i]... It never even dawned on me that she might eventually forget even a near-death experience. It was so clear for so long that I truly just assumed she would always recall it. Much of her handling of her allergy has hinged on it.
That makes me more afraid than I can put into words.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 1:34pm
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[b]So I think it is probably just that she is distracted and in the course of fidgeting (or whatever you call it when 7 yo)... she takes them off-- then she gets distracted and totally spaces on putting them back on. She knows that she can ALWAYS choose any carrier she chooses. It has always been her choice. And we will ALWAYS carry them for her if she asks. Always-- but she knows that comes with a 50 yd leash tying her to them.[/b]
Right. She is 7. Maybe the problem I am having is that I don't equate my son's intelligence, with his readiness to carry his Epi-pens. I make that judgement for him, because he is only 7. And that, right now, regardless of his PA/TNA, he will have that '50 yard leash' tied to him -- because he is 7. Right now, I feel both my children are too young to be anywhere without DH or I, or a combo of the two -- and when he is at school there are adults that are responsible for him (with his medication in class with him).
I'm trying to find the right analogy to get across what I mean. All I can think of is that when I was in my teens I was allowed to do a lot of things because I was smart and responsible -- or so my parents thought. Now, looking back, there were many things they should have said 'No' to because I was only a teenager -- regardless of my maturity.
[b]This is why we want her to really reform her ways about taking them off to begin with. If we can just get her into the habit of following a "rule" about that, all should be well again. This is because she so rarely makes this mistake in restaurants or in leaving the house-- there's a rule.[/b]
Again, for me, punishment for something that you are establishing as a habit, and viewed as a mistake if she forgets, doesn't seem fair to me. She is 7 -- making a mistake, as opposed to willful disobedience, are two different things to me. You trying to instill good habits in her is a good thing - but if she doesn't get punished for forgetting other things, and what she gets is a reminder, well, to me I think that the response to forgetting Epi-pens should be along the same lines -- because she is 7.
[b]On another note, you mentioned your daughter had been in a beach bathroom.
Here in CA and other places there is an alarming increase in the number of child molestations occuring in park, lake and beach bathrooms. They are open to everyone and dangerous places for bad people to lurk.
A number of children have been assaulted while their mothers stood outside of the bathrooms waiting for their child to come out.
Just information.
peg [/b]
Peg -- I hear you on this. Everytime I think about the age when people will start to look strangly at me if I'm taking my boys into the bathroom with me, I think about that case a few years back in So. CA where the little boy was murdered in a beach bathroom while a family member stood outside and waited for him. I think the boy was about 9 -- was brutally murdered. Very scary. I really don't know at what age I'll feel like they can go into a men's room by themselves --

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 2:29pm
Corvallis Mom's picture
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gvmom, I hear what you are saying loud and clear. I just don't agree with you. I think you are well-intended, but I would never dream of telling YOU that I think you are doing your 7 yo a disservice by not getting him used to wearing the epipens he'll need to carry for a lifetime. Not my decision. (shrug)
This is a PA management decision that we made years ago-- with our allergist and our daughter. Her Hx means it would be catastrophic for her to ever be without them-- even "just next door" or "in the car."
I don't trust a school to be able to do it right-- and I know plenty of teachers. But I don't criticize those who send their kids for that basic decision when they run into trouble with the situation. Different strokes for different folks.
The bottom line is that I just disagree with you on this one [i]regarding my daughter[/i], and so does her allergist. He knows her, and has substantial experience with children like her-- and your son, I might add. He freely admits that this isn't for all PA kids at this age-- but it IS for ours.
As MB would say-- unique situation, IMMV.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 3:41pm
gvmom's picture
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[b]gvmom, I hear what you are saying loud and clear. I just don't agree with you. I think you are well-intended, but I would never dream of telling YOU that I think you are doing your 7 yo a disservice by not getting him used to wearing the epipens he'll need to carry for a lifetime. Not my decision. (shrug)[/b]
I'm glad you are hearing me. I just want you to know that it is my viewpoint. I don't expect agreement -- and I'm cool with agreeing to disagree. I just placed my opinion -- and kept feeling like I wasn't able to really clearly explain what I meant and how I meant it -- and also wanting you to take it in the way it was put.
I also wouldn't take offense to you telling me I was doing a disservice to my son, with respect to anything you might say to me. I respect your opinion -- and many of those you have placed on these boards. I would guess that you do think parents that don't begin getting their child accustomed to wearing their Epi-pens early on are doing a disservice to their children. I'm fine with your opinion being that, if it is. I also can hear it, and not agree with it.
I will say, that if our allergist felt it was in our son's best interest to be wearing his Epi-pen on him, I would be the one deciding what mechanism he would be carrying it in. There would have to be many criteria a carrier would have to fulfill for me to let him wear one, not the least of which is ensuring the carrier wouldn't be easily removed.
As for the school, trusting them to do it right -- well, who says I do? For me, I do my best to put measures in place that are as close to fail-safe as I can make them. I spent my time last year driving to and from school picking up my son everyday for lunch because things weren't in place that I was comfortable with. I don't have a problem pulling him from the school if we encounter problems again. I know it, and so do they.

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 4:05pm
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while it was not in your post I felt sure you did not let her go in the bathroom alone, I just took advantage of the situation.
Peg

Posted on: Mon, 09/11/2006 - 4:50pm
Flounder's picture
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.
[This message has been edited by Flounder (edited January 08, 2007).]

Posted on: Tue, 09/12/2006 - 1:25am
ajas_folks's picture
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Lurking, listening, learning.
I've found this is to be a great thread with good food for thought in all directions -- will be sure to share it with DH.
Our PA son is 7 1/2, in formal school for the first time ever this year & we are working hard to find the balance for our family & son as to meds responsibility & ownership.
~Elizabeth

Posted on: Tue, 09/12/2006 - 2:12am
Corvallis Mom's picture
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Quote:Originally posted by Peg541:
[b]while it was not in your post I felt sure you did not let her go in the bathroom alone, I just took advantage of the situation.
Peg[/b]
And good advice it was-- excellent, in fact.
We tend to encourage the use of "family" restrooms which have individual locking doors for that reason. But I still check them first before I allow DD to go in, even if she wants to go alone. And I tell her to lock the door, and then I stand by the door. (This is obviously a subject I also have strong feelings about, huh?)
DH and I have asked DD some very pointed questions about [i]what[/i] exactly she can recall from her last major reaction. Unfortunately, she just doesn't. I simply don't know where the memory has gone, but she is no longer able to recall how frightening it felt. We are going to discuss this with allergist on Th at our appointment, that's for sure.
I certainly didn't intend for this to turn into a debate about how young is too young to self-carry-- but it seems to have.
So let me say for the record what my opinion is on that subject--in a [i]general[/i] way. I think that you should do it as soon as [i]your child[/i] is developmentally ready to. This may not be when [i]you[/i] are ready to let go. (And I think it is also very smart to carry a back-up just in case... DH and I both carry extra scrips as well, JUST IN CASE.) Built-in redundancy, you know?
I have NEVER regretted following our old allergist's advice. Even though (like others) we've had to replace a few epipens when they got too hot in the car...Even though I wondered what he was thinking when he told us to put them on her if she'd allow it. (This when she was 3.) His reasoning was much like Flounder's. Her reactions have not allowed enough time to [i]think[/i] about what to do. You have to set yourself up so that following your instincts will lead you in the right direction. My instincts tell me to [i]GO TO MY CHILD[/i] when something is terribly wrong. My first impulse is to drop everything and run to her. If her meds are [i]on her body[/i] then that saves time.
I also want to point out something that I don't think has been spelled out very well. Those who [i]have not put epipens on thier kids at 3,4,5 yrs old[/i] may not recognize this as an issue. There is a [i]HUGE[/i] difference between expecting them to [b]self-carry[/b] and expecting them to [b]self-administer[/b]. And I also think that this is why it is so important to get them wearing them early. If you wait until your child is eight to put epipens on, he or she may (rightly) be wondering if you are really telling him/her that you expect them to self-administer. Nothing you can say is likely to dispel that notion once it occurs to them. My daughter does NOT think that-- because she has the experience of me or her dad reaching into that pack and pulling out her inhaler or Benadryl. She knows we don't expect her to do it herself just because she has them on. She has asked us (in the last couple of years) when she will be expected to, and we've told her that if she feels she wants to do her inhaler herself, she can do that. We've shown her [i]how[/i] to administer an epipen. She's done this herself with an expired one. We've told her that she doesn't need to worry that she'll need to do this herself. But if we had just recently put them on her? She [i]would[/i] think it-- and no amount of us telling her otherwise would discourage her. It would be cemented in her mind that the one who carries is the one who controls the contents. KWIM?
And as for the notion that kids who are young will play with them or something, umm, when DD was young enough that this was a worry, she was [i]never out of direct adult supervision.[/i] Ever. If you look at the threads on this subject, it is a [i]non-issue.[/i]
Current allergist is delighted with how we are handing over our daughter's allergy to her-- a little at a time, but with the clear understanding that SHE owns it.
We are definitely going to have to re-evaluate the carrier she uses to make [i]certain[/i] that it is ergonomically more suitable. I am still suspicious that some aspect of the one she was wearing was just not quite right-- and that maybe this is why she took it off. I already know that a belt-carrier won't work, and she nixed DH's suggestion of a fanny pack immediately. (The little fashionista that she is.) Trouble is that it needs to carry her inhaler and liquid meds too. (sigh) So it needs to be washable, indestructable, just the right size, and "pretty."
Of course, she and I both disagreed with DH's suggestions for either duct tape or stapling as a means of keeping them where they belong. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] [i]I think he was kidding....[/i]

Posted on: Tue, 09/12/2006 - 4:25am
cynde's picture
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Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
[b]
Of course, she and I both disagreed with DH's suggestions for either duct tape or stapling as a means of keeping them where they belong. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] [i]I think he was kidding....[/i] [/b]
LOL, DS left his epi belt in a washroom one time and we didn't realize it until the next day as we were hunting for it to go to school. I phoned his school to tell them that he was not wearing it and to possibly duct tape or staple his back-up epi's to his forehead until I could go retrieve his belt and drop it off at the school. Apparently I'm not the only one who thinks this may solve the problem.
He doesn't take it off when out of the house, but had had a tummy ache and the belt was hurting him while he was going to the bathroom (I won't go into any more gory detail here)
[This message has been edited by cynde (edited September 12, 2006).]

Posted on: Tue, 09/12/2006 - 7:20am
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Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
[b] Of course, she and I both disagreed with DH's suggestions for either duct tape or stapling as a means of keeping them where they belong. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img] [i]I think he was kidding....[/i] [/b]
ooo. this reminds me of when my husband took a look at an abscessed abrasion on my knuckles when we were dating. (washed my hand momentarily with a pressure washer---no. never, again)
He said, "It should be broke open and cleaned out with a copper wire brush."
I cheerfully followed him thinking he had some Neosporin and was speaking metaphorically...
It was about as bad as the time I allowed him to remove a treble hook (embedded x2) from my wrist. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/eek.gif[/img]
no advice, none at all, just thankfull I've kept my tetanus shot up to date. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/tongue.gif[/img]

Posted on: Tue, 09/12/2006 - 3:23pm
katjam99's picture
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mommabear!! - Ow! Ow! pressure washer - hook! men - yikes!!!!

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