General — TransplantLyfe

General

Children and transplant

KarinTransplant Patient
June 8, 2021 in General

How do you tell your child that your have a chronic condition that 1) may affect the way you take care of them 2) they may develop something similar 3) how they can be helpful to you - ie switching parent child roles a bit

1 - 8 of 8 Replies

  • ChefAmandaTransplant Patient

    I do not have children and I made decisions medically to make sure I can’t. The three questions you asked are the 3 reasons I didn’t want children. I didn’t want my health to affect them, I didn’t want to pass it on and I didn’t want them to become my care partner.

    June 8, 2021
  • KarinTransplant Patient

    @ChefAmanda I understand and I apologize for bringing up a sensitive topic but I can tell you that after having a child - I am less concerned about 1 and 3 and I believe 2 is a concern any parent will have!

    your child will be more compassionate and caring if you raise them correctly and for sure stronger and more of a fighter than those who have never faced adversity.

    think about how great you are :-) who would not want you as a mamma

    June 8, 2021
  • ChefAmandaTransplant Patient

    Thank you for the kind words. I can say it is not a sensitive subject for me. I am thankful for my transplant team who was very honest about this situation pre-transplant. Even before my health declined and I needed a transplant as a teenager I didn’t want kids. I always say I’m an awesome aunt!

    I can’t wait to see what others who have kids feel about this. Maybe @Denise_R has some insight?

    June 8, 2021
  • Denise_RTransplant Patient

    Great question @Karin! My baby is now in his 20's, but he's grown up with a mama who has been chronically ill. I can tell you as they grow up that including them in open and honest conversations is the best policy always. When he was in middle school, I kept some distressing health news from him once and when he learned about it by overhearing a phone conversation with a doctor he was so frustrated that he actually put a hole in my wall (yes, we have always been in some form of family counseling). Once we kept him in the loop in an age appropriate manner, he felt a part of all of the decisions. It also helped him as he grew older to get an annual physical, and advocate for himself to get ECG's and Echo's. With this knowledge, he stepped in voluntarily to help, and he has grown up to be a smart, caring helpful, competent and capable young man. Can you tell I'm a proud mama? You are doing a great job with your little and she will grow up with a good working knowledge of what chronic illness looks like and how to be the best advocate.

    June 8, 2021
  • AliEm14Transplant Patient

    We’re starting the adoption process when I hit my one year in august so we don’t have to worry about the genetic piece. I feel like I’ll just be really open and honest with them, about why they have a different skin color than mommy and daddy, that they grew in another mommy’s tummy, that I have a chronic condition. We’re all different and that’s what makes us special, no one is less than! And also I plan to start with age appropriate chores the entire time so helping out will just be normal! The plan now from what I’ve learned health wise and adoption wise is to take a very trauma oriented approach to parenting

    June 9, 2021
  • DebTransplant Patient

    Sounds like you’ve thought it through and your plan sounds perfect. Best of luck to you.

    June 9, 2021
  • AliEm14Transplant Patient

    @Deb going through adoption you have to have a plan for everything even if it will never happen! At the end of this we’ll actually have a license to parent, which sounds insane! But so much of this is what a judge will ask us before even considering us to raise a child.

    June 10, 2021
  • DebTransplant Patient

    My husband i and started the process but by the grace of God I got pregnant. It was so much paper work and hoops to jump through it was mind blowing and that was 25 years ago. I do wish you the best of luck and I know you’ll be great parents!!

    June 10, 2021
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