Wednesday 7 April 2010

Does wrapping kids in cotton wool help them or us?

I have 5 kids (3 boys my own and 2 step children) who I have raised collectively since October 1999 aged 17-28.

There have been many 'bullying' incidents where my kids have been either the instigators or the receivers. Which I have been involved with sorting out. Traipsing to schools and knocking on parents doors of which I'll tell you about another time. I thought for now I'd concentrate on the incidents that have involved trips to the hospital and/or GP.

The fractured skull - didn't take the portable high chair to mums - result one child aged 2, one breakfast stool, one concrete floor, several trips to hospital.

The stickle brick incident - 2am dash to hospital as middle son then aged 2, swallowed a piece, a barium meal showed a void in his stomach and there it remains to this day. After 19 years it has caused no problems so surgery has not been an issue. Doctors words of advice...he'll know when he passes it..maybe or never.

The iron incident - phone rings - I leave lounge for 2 mins - result one child, youngest also aged 2, many trips to hospital and Doctors for daily then weekly changes of dressings for 2 months for ironed skin on left hand.

The cement mixer - one child, aged 10, fell off cement mixer, slicing skin on upper right arm - trip to hospital, then antibiotics and months of dressing changes because he picked it and got an infection.

The Broken Nose - one child, middle son aged 12, got into a fight over a pop bottle, phone call from ambulance crew - 5 hours in casualty on a Friday night and two follow up operations with the plastic surgeon.

The Black eye - one child, eldest aged 17, got into a fight over a girl - phone call from Police. One night in hosptial several further visits to drain off excess fluid. Offending child prosecuted.

Heelies and a golf cart. Child then aged 11, tripped over nothing and broke his arm, brought home by friend's father. I could tell straight away his wrist was broken and he'd need surgery. Then the following year he was hanging onto the back of a golf cart, driven by a child the same age, he let go and smacked his face on the ground, resulting in a black eye and some rather impressive swelling and a night in A&E.

And finally, the Rugby and cricket experiences. One child, aged 14 and 16, three separate incidents. Phone call from the rugby coach 'It's OK, son is fine, St Johns are with him, we're waiting for an ambulance'
The second occasion phone call from school 'It's OK, son is fine, the ambulance crew are with him, they are waiting for the air ambulance'
On both occasions every thing was fine with him apart from a few bruises, headache and stiff neck.
The cricket incident involved a ball bouncing under his helmet, hitting him in the neck, causing his lung to collapse

Lessons learnt.
1. Take everything you need for young kids with you
2. Make sure you are always contactable when away from your kids
3. Make sure you have a tank of fuel, a book, change of clothes ready for an
overnight/late hosptial stay
4. A good friend to look after your other kids.
5. Panic is good.
6. Don't let your kids play Rugby
7. Don't leave 2 year old unsupervised or unattended cement mixers
8. Teach your kids to run away and fast from trouble
9. Expect a visit from social workers and/or police at some time in your life
10. Crying is good, very good, especially when anyone from #9 turns up


  1. How scared am I now about the future of my little one?! I love number 10.

  2. wow and I felt bad I tripped and fell while carrying DD (aged 3 months) bashing her head and necessitating hospital overnight stay.

    (oh and last night I encouraged her to spin and get dizzy then close eyes - she fell and hit her head....)

    So I think crash helmets for all kids may be the answer.

  3. So far, daughter did a face plant off a handsit onto a patio. Wouldn't have been bad except it was in front of about 20 people!

    Secondly, daddy had her on his shoulders, she grabbed his glasses, he went to sort them and she fell from about 6 feet up....

    I'm sure we have many more to come! It's amazing how well they bounce though.

    Thanks for the advice.

    Chrissie (