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Telling Your Children You Have Multiple Sclerosis

Vicki Health Guide June 07, 2010
  • Am I the only one? When I first learned I had MS, my thoughts went so many places it was almost like a kaleidoscope. What did this mean for my future? How can I handle my condition's development? Exactly what is MS anyway? What will my kids think? How will they feel? All I knew for sure was th...

12 Comments
  • Vicki
    Health Guide
    Jun. 08, 2010

    Hi Dan,

    You have such a nice story, and I can relate to it. I used my cane for a year before I was diagnosed and the boys were always respectful and courteous. They were older and more responsible than when they played with my crutches.


    My boys were with my with me throughout the search for a reason for the curious symptoms. When I was diagnosed, I waited...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Hi Dan,

    You have such a nice story, and I can relate to it. I used my cane for a year before I was diagnosed and the boys were always respectful and courteous. They were older and more responsible than when they played with my crutches.


    My boys were with my with me throughout the search for a reason for the curious symptoms. When I was diagnosed, I waited a couple of days to tell them so I could read a little about the condition.


    When I had some answers, which were mostly questions because it was more tham 20 years ago, I told the boys I had MS.  I don't know why I even thought of worrying, but I did.



  • myboysmom
    Jul. 16, 2010

    Today I finally told my boys I have MS.  It was very emotional for me and for them.  I have 11 year old twins and one of them, my younger twin, started talking about how he wish I could walk.  He was telling me if I would just get up and start exercising, my legs would get stronger and I could walk.  He told me how he sometimes wish he had...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Today I finally told my boys I have MS.  It was very emotional for me and for them.  I have 11 year old twins and one of them, my younger twin, started talking about how he wish I could walk.  He was telling me if I would just get up and start exercising, my legs would get stronger and I could walk.  He told me how he sometimes wish he had another family so we could do more things together like go to the fair or on vacation.  He also said he is sometimes embarrassed when his friends ask so many questions about me being in a wheelchair.  I told my boys many years ago I had fallen down some stairs and injured my back and that's why I'm in a wheelchair.  I knew this day would come when I would have to tell my boys the truth but this was not what I imagined.  They were mad at me for not telling them sooner.  My oldest son shut down and wouldn't talk to me.  He cried and went to bed not talking at all.  My youngest was quite inquisitive.  He wanted to know more about the disease.  I can tell he's trying to think of a way to fix it.  I love my boys so much and I hope this day does not change them in a negative way where they start rebelling or acting out.  All I can do is continue to give them love and an open dialogue.  I'm sure there will be lots of questions and fears but I'm glad my MS is finally out in the open.

     

    Thanks,

     

    My boys mom

    • Vicki
      Health Guide
      Jul. 16, 2010

      Hi myboysmom,

      Boys - I have two as well - are so like their older counterparts (these are the boys who call themselves men). They want to fix things. My grandchildren think I need to practice, or at least try to take a step or two. This is a hard thing for kids to understand. And it's a hard thing for us to explain.


      I was a single parent of two boys (I wasn't...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      Hi myboysmom,

      Boys - I have two as well - are so like their older counterparts (these are the boys who call themselves men). They want to fix things. My grandchildren think I need to practice, or at least try to take a step or two. This is a hard thing for kids to understand. And it's a hard thing for us to explain.


      I was a single parent of two boys (I wasn't in a wheelchair yet) since my boys were practically babies. There must be something about 11 year olds. One of mine told me he was tired of being in a sissy family. They come around eventually, maybe when they realize life is not easy for you either.


      The kids do want to know what is happening, but you have to be comfortable telling them. It will work out. Your plan of love and open dialogue sounds good.


      Good luck with your boys. You'll do fine.

    • myboysmom
      Jul. 16, 2010

      Thanks for letting me vent.  I hadn't realized how much I still need to work on.  I guess I locked all of my emotions in a closet and now their banging on the door to get out.Smile  Thanks again for a shoulder to cry on! 

  • djax59
    Jun. 08, 2010

    my oldest was 11mos old when i was diagnosed the youngest not born for another 18mos so they grew up with my ms. i didn't know anything about it except somedays everything worked and somedays not. all i could tell them on those days is mommy doesn't feel good. after 10 yrs or so i got but you never feel good--now that they are in their 30's aand eveybody knows...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    my oldest was 11mos old when i was diagnosed the youngest not born for another 18mos so they grew up with my ms. i didn't know anything about it except somedays everything worked and somedays not. all i could tell them on those days is mommy doesn't feel good. after 10 yrs or so i got but you never feel good--now that they are in their 30's aand eveybody knows more-if i walk more than 30ft i get i'm impressed mom-but i'm still not allowed to hold babies unless i'm sitting down-lol

    • Vicki
      Health Guide
      Jun. 09, 2010

      Hi djax59,


      I was able to hold and carry my first grandchild only. For the rest, I had to be seated and someone else had to place the baby on my lap or near me on the couch. It bothered me then, but as the kids grew older, I was able to build a relationship with each of them.


      My next post talks about relationships with grandchildren.

    • djax59
      Jun. 10, 2010

      it's funny how your kids remember how wobbly we walked and how much stuff we dropped when they were young but not all that good advice we gave them. they had to figure  out that we were right on their own. looking forward to your article on g'children.

    • Vicki
      Health Guide
      Jun. 10, 2010

      I saw my kids remember my advice when they were in their thirties and they were parents themselves. I'm not sure if they attributed any advice to me, or if they thought they were just good parents. Sometimes they did.


      My grandkids story actually turned out to be little stories rather than advice. Look for it tomorrow.

  • Vicki
    Health Guide
    Jun. 08, 2010

    Hi Dan,

    You have such a nice story, and I can relate to it. I used my cane for a year before I was diagnosed and the boys were always respectful and courteous. They were older and more responsible than when they played with my crutches.


    My boys were with my with me throughout the search for a reason for the curious symptoms. When I was diagnosed, I waited a couple...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Hi Dan,

    You have such a nice story, and I can relate to it. I used my cane for a year before I was diagnosed and the boys were always respectful and courteous. They were older and more responsible than when they played with my crutches.


    My boys were with my with me throughout the search for a reason for the curious symptoms. When I was diagnosed, I waited a couple of days to tell them so I could read a little about the condition.


    When I had some answers, which were mostly questions because it was more tham 20 years ago, I told the boys I had MS.  I don't know why I even thought of worrying, but I did.



  • Michaelbgerber
    Jun. 07, 2010

    What is more important than what we teach our children? In my opinion, not much. That is how we (my incredible wife Gail and I) decided to approach my MS. In time our children no longer saw the wheelchairs or walkers, just their dad. They learned to see a person and not a disability and that is another reason for me to be proud of them.

     

    Children will...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    What is more important than what we teach our children? In my opinion, not much. That is how we (my incredible wife Gail and I) decided to approach my MS. In time our children no longer saw the wheelchairs or walkers, just their dad. They learned to see a person and not a disability and that is another reason for me to be proud of them.

     

    Children will react as we do. I am sure that your children learned many great things from you. I know that I always do.

     

    Michael

    • Vicki
      Health Guide
      Jun. 08, 2010

      Ah, Michael, teaching the children. And the best way to teach them is through our own actions.


      I hope my children have learned to live life as it is given to them, and to live it with a smile. It looks as if they have.

  • Dan
    Dan
    Jun. 07, 2010

    It is very coincidental that you posted this. I am still not dxed yet even though the doctor is positive it is ppms. I have had to use a cane for the past 3 months. I even have to use a scooter in the stores. My 2 older children in their 20's have been open and great with everything. They have been going the extra mile to help out. My 13 year old has been very...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    It is very coincidental that you posted this. I am still not dxed yet even though the doctor is positive it is ppms. I have had to use a cane for the past 3 months. I even have to use a scooter in the stores. My 2 older children in their 20's have been open and great with everything. They have been going the extra mile to help out. My 13 year old has been very quiet though. I have been wanting to talk with her about it but figured she would open up soon.

    This past Saturday my family went to a concert in the city. I had to walk a long way from the car so I told the others to go ahead. My youngest wanted to walk with me. That made me happy!Smile During one of my many walking breaks she started asking questions about M.S. I knew she would. They were all the normal questions you would expect...."what is MS." and so on. The last on was " Dad will MS kill you?" She was obviously very pleased with the answer as I got a bug hug and a kiss. It doesn't get any better then that!!!!