Gransnet forums


Grandchildren illness

(91 Posts)
carolclark Sat 09-Dec-17 09:38:10

Do you think it is unreasonable to refuse to look after grandchildren when they are ill, especially when all they really want isMummy.
I am paranoid about catching the illness from them, especially sickness bugs and am not happy being exposed. I love them to bits and really enjoy looking after them & spending time them but not always when they are ill. What are others thoughts?

Bathsheba Sat 09-Dec-17 09:47:10

For me it would depend on the circumstances. If I was asked to look after my GC because my DD or DS had work commitments that they simply could not get out of, then I would step in and help. After all, I looked after them when they were little and unwell. On the other hand, if it was simply so that they could go out in the evening and socialise I think I would say no.
Of course, if you have a compromised immune system, then you really should not be expected to look after sick children - it would be completely unreasonable of your DD/DS to ask you.

Luckygirl Sat 09-Dec-17 09:48:06

From the child's point of view it depends how well they know you and whether they might be happy with you as a mother substitute.

From your point of view, it depends how concerned you are. I think I would draw the line at a sickness bug, but colds and coughs are part of the stuff of winter and most of my GC are dripping snot for the whole season.

We do try and take sensible precautions against catching stuff as if OH were to get pneumonia it could be fatal. But we cannot cocoon ourselves from all bugs.

Bathsheba Sat 09-Dec-17 09:51:46

Incidentally, I hope your username is not your real name? This is a public forum - anyone can read the threads, even if they haven't joined GN. Also, many threads are put on Facebook and Twitter - there has been much discussion on here about this and the resulting risks of family members or friends seeing your posts.

SusieB50 Sat 09-Dec-17 10:03:18

Just getting over a virulent vomiting and diahorrea bug probably courtesy of my DDand family ! They all had it but thought they were over it .... Ha !

GrannyA11i Sat 09-Dec-17 10:13:24

I’ve just looked after my DGD with high temp all day as she became ill while already here. I don’t like looking after them when they are ill if I know in advance as I catch things very easily, am ill longer than the children were and then can’t do my caring the next week as I’m too ill! I don’t know the answer but I do wash my hands a lot when looking after them generally and try not to touch my eyes or let them feed me their food!!

BlueBelle Sat 09-Dec-17 10:29:01

I ve always looked after my grandkids if and when they are ill if their parents couldn’t I wouldn’t think twice about it unless I had some major illness that meant I couldn’t be in public picking up infections I would see it as a perfectly normal part of family life Let’s be honest if you avoided grandkids every time they are ill you ll never see them as they are always bringing something home
My Nan nursed me through scarlet fever when my mum was on her one and only holiday during my childhood I nursed one of my little ones through throat and ear infections while her parents had a belated honeymoon I see it as all part of normal family life
Last year I gave five members of my family including three kids a bad sickness bug, it’s swings and roundabouts
Unless you are ill yourself with an immune problems yes I think it’s a bit of an over reaction but each has to make their own decisions about things like this

trisher Sat 09-Dec-17 10:45:15

Just spent a day looking after GD who was too ill for school. I loved the fact that she wanted cuddles and chats and fell asleep sitting next to me. She's had a rotten cough and I will probably get it as well, but she's growing up so fast and one day she'll just hide under her duvet and won't want me, so I'm making the most of it now. If you are. ill yourself and afraid of catching anything it must be awful. Mind you if you have regular contact by the time they show any symptoms you've probably already got it!

loopyloo Sat 09-Dec-17 12:03:40

Yes, but wash your hands well and buy dual defence from boots. And take vit d.

Seaside22 Sat 09-Dec-17 14:33:16

I'm the same love my grandson dearly, but have a phobia of vomiting , which I find difficult when looking after them, the only time he has been ill my husband was there, so could take over.If you don't feel happy looking after them with sickness bugs I think you should say, and maybe put up with everything else.I buy germstar hand gel from Amazon, it's the only one that protects againsthe norovirus.

CJWoo Sat 09-Dec-17 21:24:40

Thank you. Good advise. I have the same problem. Coughs & colds I have no problem with and am happy to administer to but also have a phobia of vomiting.

Seaside22 Sat 09-Dec-17 21:40:27

Hi Cjwoo.Do you still look after your grandchildren when they are sick, how do you get around it, I'm finding it's making me anxious looking after them incase they are ill, I hope I would be able to look after them, if needed ( I sincerely hope so anyway ) it's such a horrible phobia to have.

Friday Sat 09-Dec-17 22:36:32

Often called upon to look after sick grandchildren, or pick them up from school if they’ve become ill during the school day.

It’s just as easy to pick bugs up from the person serving you at the till, or standing next to you in a cue or dirty handles on shopping baskets or doors.

No point in worrying, just wear disposable gloves, face masks and barrier nurse the grandkids.

Friday Sat 09-Dec-17 22:37:15

Queue - blasted predicable text.

Nelliemoser Sat 09-Dec-17 22:51:01

My littlest DGS now 2.5yrs gets a lot of colds etc. DD works nursing shifts and it is very difficult for her to take time out if they are short staffed.

I don't really mind spending time cuddling a little child with a temperature, if that is what's needed.
(My problem came when I could not find DGS2 a device with Peppa pig on it.)
They do really need their Mummies or Daddies when they are poorly though.

BlueBelle Sat 09-Dec-17 23:22:07

What did you do with your own children then Carol ? Didn’t you nurse them through illnesses if so what’s the difference
If you have a phobia about vomiting the only way to get over it is to get through it and put them first. Bite the bullet in other words

MawBroon Sun 10-Dec-17 05:04:39

Unless you have a compromised immune system as paw had or are in the throes of chemo, this does seem a bit precious. Normal precautions such as handwashing are generally perfectly adequate, along with common sense. Nobody likes dealing with vomit, but paranoid about catching the illness, especially sickness bugs - really?
And they call Millennials “snowflakes”!!

Willow500 Sun 10-Dec-17 06:04:38

Must admit I am also in this category. Colds and coughs I can cope with but when my own children were small if they were sick it was over to dad to deal with them. I've been known to run half way down a plane to avoid someone throwing up in front of me! My grandson's are coming for 6 weeks on Fri having flown from the other side of the world so I'm dreading one of them getting a bug but will just have to deal with it. I'm off to Amazon to look for that hand gel Seaside grin

BlueBelle Sun 10-Dec-17 06:53:05

Oh dear there’s some precious folks on here I can’t believe you even think about it let alone worrying about something that hasn’t even happened. Let’s hope you never have an ill loved one, you have to stop thinking about yourself and think of them
If there’s a bug around a bit of Amazon sanitizer isn’t going to help much and a bit of sick isn’t going to kill you

mumofmadboys Sun 10-Dec-17 07:26:55

I think children may be a bit horrified to be looked after by a GM in disposable gloves and a face mask. I would be concerned that the child would develop an OTT attitude to infections. Washing hands regularly is a sensible precaution

Seaside22 Sun 10-Dec-17 07:27:38

Emetophobia is a very real doesn't help to be called precious and to been told to get on with it , no more than it would help someone suffering with depression told to pull their socks up.Willow500 I have also run away from sick, and can't help anyone that's feeling ill even my husband, I just pray I could help my grandchildren if and when it happens.It's such a debilitating phobia and you can't stop thinking about it no matter how hard you try.

BlueBelle Sun 10-Dec-17 08:38:10

Seaside you have to forget yourself and think only of the ill person and get on with it (with you’re eyes closed if needs be) I m not unsympathetic I ve had ( have) phobias but you HAVE to do what ever it is you are phobic of and not shie away from it
Every time you run from a phobia it has won and you reestablish that the fear is valid and harmful to you you have to do it whatever it is and not give it the chance to rule your life you have to be brave enough to fight it whatever it is vomit, heights, planes, snakes, it is only your mind playing tricks with you and each time you run you have given it the opportuning to do it again and again until the day you are prepared to challenge yourself you will live in fear of this unfounded fear No one likes cleaning d and v but it needs doing so we have to just get on with it

LJP1 Sun 10-Dec-17 09:53:26

You are probably immune to most things already - one of the benefits of having lived a long time!

I wouldn't worry about bugs - see it as a time to ginger up your immune system!

harrigran Sun 10-Dec-17 09:59:56

It is not irrational to fear the norovirus, it is so virulent that you just have to be in a room and not even touch the sufferer.
Since my op my stomach muscles can't tolerate the heaving so tend to stay clear of GC when they are sick. DIL has never asked us to babysit for poorly children, I guess she takes unpaid leave.

Seaside22 Sun 10-Dec-17 10:01:53

Yes I hear what your saying, and I do try very hard .I have two close relatives at the moment with long term medical conditions,that I have to take to hospital appointments they can feel ill on the way home, I hate the stress and panic it puts me through, but I do it because I love them and have to help.I think I'm worse at the moment because I am very tired and stressed.