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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Because I'm the mom.....

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Nope not a post about the kids asking me why they have to do things. A totally different topic completely.

So this weekend I was at a Womens retreat they did here in Ketchikan. It was a Christian womens conference type of thing. Which was really good actually.

The problem I had didn't really have to do with the retreat but something I overheard a couple of women talking about. We were standing in line and one of the women is teaching at a local private school to preschoolers and kindergarteners and she was discussing the kids behavior and when some have difficulties with learning or behavior. She was laughing with her friend talking about how she picks and chooses what she tells parents. "because you know how parents are, they don't want to hear when their child is having problems" yeah thats what she said.

This totally cought my ear and I wanted to to butt in but didn't. I was trying to be nice and pretend I wasn't listening in. The problem in my opinion with this train of thought is. How do you know that is not something the parent is noticing and wondering if anyone else sees it or are they just being over concerned, or whatever?

This is something I get frustrated about. One for Izzak because I really needed his teachers to tell me more when he was in earlier grades in school but apparently they didn't feel I needed to know it. I find this out from going over his old school records since I am able to look at those, something I've done recently. I have the same issue with Joshua and his behavior issues. Really I needed to know things sooner sometimes so that I could try to help the situation before it got out of control.

I find that doctors do this also. It makes no sense to me. They have an xray or some other test done on a child and they don't think something is important to what they are being seen for so they just don't mention it.

I just found out this last week when we started Izzak in physical therapy for the tight hamstrings the orthopedist noticed when he was seen for his pain he was having earlier this year. First off it wasn't just his hamstrings but also his thighs and calf muscles as well. I feel like a great parent. How do I not notice this stuff? I get so fucused on his learning issues somehow I let something slide or get by unnoticed or I just didn't think he was very flexible and didn't really think anything of it.

Anyway the thing I found out at his physical therapy appointment was that the xrays the doctor did showed he has Spina Bifida Occulta (the occulta means it's closed, so not open to the outside of his skin). The problem is the doctor didn't think that it was important to tell me that the xray showed that since it is usually symptomless. Althought some of the symptoms can include constipation issues, problems with the muscles in the legs and oddly shapped feet to name a few that Izzak actually has. It seems to me that with that showing on the xray even if normally considered harmless unless showing symptoms wouldn't some of the symptoms he has make it worth mentioning or having checked out? Also they had decided that the stomach pain he was having at the time was coming from his back and just radiating. So wouldn't this have been something to check into a little more? So now I am waiting for an upcoming appointment with his ped to see what he thinks but for now I'm just a little frustrated with all these people who think that some things aren't worth telling the parents.

Okay I'm going to end the post now. I just needed to get something off my chest for the moment. I just don't like it when someone else chooses to tell me what they feel I need to know to "save me from worrying". I worry anyway, it doesn't change anything except give me something to look into and ask about, right?

13 people had something to say:

scottishwriter said...

I found the comments of that particular teacher - to be greatly disturbing and her failings only go to justify the importance of homeschooling.

As to your distress and frustration within the medical profession. One can fully sympathise as you are quite rightly looking after your child's health.

It can often be a fine-line a doctor has to walk - as some parents decline to know more and become too distressed if further discussion is attempted.

Whilst parents like yourself show an eagerness to know and indeed this should be encouraged where ever possible as a parents involvement can most times be the best form of therapy as well as reassurance for a child.

Raise your concerns more fully with your Doctor and hopefully he/she will open up more...

Melenie said...

First, I love the picture of Izzak! He sure looks grown up, huh? It's a good thing you are homeschooling or all the little girls in town would be calling like crazy :)

I think a lot of professionals have taken this attitude because, sadly, lots of parents either refuse to hear when their kids are having a problem or would simply ignore it. I have seen it over and over again when they send their children to school so that their issues become someone else's headache...they just don't want to deal with them. Unfortunately, great kids can get caught in the crossfire when behavior becomes disruptive or bullying. The parents who would want to work with their kids are often told to stay out...ok, not in those words. When my nephew lived with us (he has ADHD and SID and possibly ODD) and could not function in a classroom (not because he was a "bad" kid but simply because of his challenges) when I tried to work with the school to address the problem and come up with a solution, I was told my input was not necessary that they would handle it...their way of handling it? Excluding him from activities, isolating him and punishing him...rather than give him the assistance he needed to learn and function in a classroom setting. This experience had a HUGE impact on why we are homeschooling Kennedy.

I do think it has a lot to do with the fact that some, possibly many, parents just would rather turn the other cheek than put in the effort to help their kids or recognize (with some behavior problems anyway) that the parents may be causing or contributing to the problem. Before you worry, I absolutely do not think that is the case here. You are an excellent advocate for your kids and discussing the issues with you sooner would have helped, not hurt. I am truly saddened to hear that teacher's comments.

ChrisB said...

I think the teacher you overheard talking is not a very good advert for her school!
As for the medical profession I thought they were becoming much more open about sharing all information they hold but maybe your system is different to our in the UK (although I do suspect they don't always put this openness into practice here!) In my opinion as a parent you have every right to know everything about your child so that you can make informed decisions about their wellbeing and to help relieve the worry and stress.

Motherhood for Dummies said...

Oh so sorry that you guys had to go through that. I don't know if this helps, but my friend was born with Spina Bifida, he had it opening outside of his skin and he is completly fine. You would never think he had it. So sorry you had to find out like that too! Please keep us updated :)

Gerbil said...

good grief. why the heck wouldn't the doctor have mentioned this?? i don't even know what to say about either of it.

Emma in Canada said...

I'm surprised it took 12 years for someone to notice it at all, especially if he has some of the physical attributes as you mentioned.

As far as the teacher goes, I do believe they should tell parents what is going on, but I suppose in a class of 25 or so students you could be spending your entire evening talking to parents!

dawn said...

I find the teacher's attitude atrocious, but on the other hand, she likely has some experience behind her on the situation. I know when I would babysit for a friend once in while, I would give full details on things. She would for one of the parents she babysat for, but for the most part the parent just wanted to know things "went okay".

It is horrible the doctor didn't give you that information from the beginning. On one hand it is nice to know that some of the problems have root cause, but it would have been nice to know there were possible symptoms for the situation and when he had those symptoms you could at least consider where they came from. Oh, that was a bit muddled. Anyway, I hope things go well with the ped when he goes.

Steffi said...

I agree with Dawn.

Jettie said...

I too am tired of this!! I once was said by the principale at our school(I think she totally put her foot in her mouth sideway)"man i hate stay at home moms they need something to do other than call here and bitch"!!!!!!!!!! not kidding!! and she was saying this about someone I know!!I was mad!!!!!!!!! And Iam a stay at home mom!!! i get so tired of fighting to find out things to help your child. It's terrible!! Shame on them teachers. I think I'd of said something to them!!

Melanie said...

Wow- that woman shouldn't be teaching if she isn't telling parents what is really go on with their kids. Of course, no parent wants to hear that their child is having problems- that is true. But, you still have to tell them. Since I used to teach I can tell you it is HARD to bring stuff like that up to a parent because you never know how they will react- but you HAVE TO do it anyways. So that the child can get the best services.

Shame on that "teacher."

frannie said...

honey, I'm so sorry about all this. I know how hard you are on yourself regarding the kids and their issues.

They are so very, very lucky to have a mom like you. One that cares and is an advocate for them.

No one is perfect. Please don't beat yourself up when something slips by. You are doing an amazing job raising those 4 bundles of love!!!

elena jane said...

you would think that if a teacher notices something out of the ordinary, it would be brought to the attention of the parent. however i think it's true that no parent wants to hear negative things about their child. sometimes it's in the phrasing of the "comment" too. some people have a better way with words than others.
as for me, i tend to ask the teachers to let me know anything, even if i might not want to know. ;)

Debbie said...

Good Lord. How are we going to help our kids if we don't have all of the information? Sheesh. Maybe there are some parents who don't want to know about their kids but I like to think that they're in the minority.