Friday, February 22, 2013

5 things to *never* say to a reflux mom

Beans, taking the pink goo like a champ!
The Beans, who never does anything halfsies, got sick last week and into this week.  Poor kiddo had horrible chest congestion, the stuffiest/runniest nose in the history of cute little button noses, and not one but two ear infections.

Thusly, I was reminded of the one and only perk I can think of for his earliest days of constant medication needs.

My nearly 2 year old takes drugs like a pro.  Okay, that sounds kinda bad, but it is actually really good.  Well, in context anyway.

Given that Beans had to take meds twice to three times a day from infancy onward he just presumes swallowing nasty goo is part of life.  No fight.  No crying.  No spitting.  No death shriek while writhing on the floor the way Meatball always did.

So I count that as one perk, and likely the only one I could come up with in a pinch.  That said, I don't think I would try to reassure any mama's of babies currently in the midst of GERD that one day they will be able to laugh over being able to dope their kid with ease as a result.  In fact, there are a lot of really stupid things that are said to mamas and dadas of refluxers with the intention of being helpful or soothing that wind up making them want to commit murder ... or aim the fire hose of baby puke their way on the next, inevitable, round.

Five things to NEVER say to a Reflux Mom:

1. Oh its just a little spit up!

Its. Just. A. Little. Spit. Up.  Oooooooh, is that all?  The endless screaming in pain, is that a figment of my imagination?  The refusal to eat OR the constant need to eat, is that also part of me being dramatic?  The contortions my baby puts himself in, the bruises his itty bitty toes give me as he tries to scale me getting away from the horrible burning?  How about the vomit that launches out of him and hits the opposite side of the room?  The constant burping and hiccuping that keeps him awake?  The possible need for surgery, expensive formulas, medication? Go ahead, tell me again how its just a little spit up.

2. Lots of babies have reflux!

Mm-kay.  This may well be true, I honestly don't know the numbers, but I do know that the "reflux" I am talking about isn't standard run of the mill she spits up after every meal kind.  Even if a million other babies are currently cry-puking with their exhausted helpless parents wanting to do anything to make it better right there with me, minimizing how hard this is hardly helps.

3. He/she will grow out of it!

Oh there is a light at the end of the tunnel ... but it can take years.  Even if it takes only a few months, ask yourself this: how much do you actually like sleep?  Ear drums in tact?  And again, it isn't just a baby crying and keeping you up -- your child is suffering.  Yes, I hope the timetable is a short one, but understand the road is a tough one.

4. Do you burp him/her after feeding?

Holy Similac Batman, you mean you are supposed to BURP the baby?!  WTF chapter of What to Expect When You're a Freaking MORON was that part in?!

5. Oh I always had to avoid *insert food here* when I was nursing my baby.

If you are nursing your refluxer, chances are between Google and your doctor you are down to eating saltines and water rations in the hope that it will help.  My elimination diet was exhaustive for my child, and while I happily avoided foods that I knew would make things worse for him it was still challenging as heck to be tired, physically drained, and then to have to watch every single thing that went into my mouth with microscopic intensity.

For formula feeders, this shit be pricey in some cases!  While some babies may drastically improve with the avoidance of certain ingredients or even brands, some need special formulas that one does not get at a regular grocery store.  And the smell?  *shudders*

Bottom line, if you decide to be patronizing, minimizing, or condescending to the parent of a infant/baby/toddler with reflux, you may get shanked with a medicine dropper in the eye.  

No comments:

Post a Comment