how do you cope with a child being sick when you have a sickness phobia

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009 ( 35 moms have responded )

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i have a phobia of being sick and am hopeless when my child gets sick. feel guilty because i should be there for her but i cant be. everyday i spend worrying about this and fearing getting sick, any1 else out there with the same phobia and know what is best to do.

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Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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AH ok. Thats different. - If my husband isn't around - I gather up their hair, lay a cold towel on their neck, and turn my head and plug my ears or hum loudly, trying to not breathe. I will drop the hair and run out of the bathroom to get a breath of fresh air if I have to.

I try to have the kids puke in the tub - cleaner air with the shower running - it just works - I can also dump some fragrant bath salts in the tub and that helps mask the smell.

FYI - baby puke is NOTHING like 1yr + puke. Doesn't smell the same at all. I never had an issue with puking babies. Just toddlers up.

Thankfully once they got big enough to tell me "mommy my stomach doesn't feel good" it was much easier to handle. Pretie the hair back - if you need to - set up a bucket for hurling near the bed, and if they don't make it - I use a medical mask sprayed with perfume to gather up the bedding or to clean the carpet.

But yeah just THINKING about the sounds and smells right now is making my stomach turn.

Barbara - posted on 07/21/2009

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for your information, my phobia isnt about my own daughter. it is with vomiting and being sick and if she is then i find it hard to cope. it is easy to pass judgement on if you are not in the same situation so if you have the same phobia then make the comments, because only then will you understand what i am talking about.

User - posted on 07/19/2009

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Moms, never want their kids to be sick. We feel their pain, but as a grandma of three now, I know without a doubt that sickness is the way a human body can develop antibodies and grow strong enough to fight off even bigger stuff down the road. If you never get sick and become strengthened by it, watch out when you're older. A fever is the body's way of fighting off infection. Let the body do it's job, so the body can be strengthened. You are a better mom for making sure your children get through the sickness, but you'll never keep them from it. One other thing to remember. No one likes to get sick, of course, but if you do get sick, it sure is a good way to help set an example for your child and may also create a necessary bonding time for you and your child. It's never fun to be sick alone. Sorry I don't have any better news for you!

Tammy - posted on 07/20/2009

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Thank you Teresa!
I'm sorry if you could not handle my response but it's true. You have no choice but to deal with it cause you are her mom. How can you have a phobia about your own daughter? They don't puke that often, I have 3 kids and all of them have maybe puked once each. You should seek attention from your doctor if it is affecting your quality of life.

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Tania - posted on 11/25/2015

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I know these posts were years ago but I just looked this topic up as I am petrified of vomiting! My three year old has been sick three times tonight and I cannot handle it! I cry, stand back, tell them they will be ok and that I love them but I am shaking and trying not to vomit myself! The fear of them giving me the bug and vomiting is so strong it takes away all rationale and I feel so guilty! If my husband is around he looks after them and I generally clean as it is the less of two evils but he isn't always around! I think my kids are too scared to tell me they feel unwell for fear of my reaction! I have a pretty good gut instinct so generally can see the signs but I end up on the phone to my Mum in tears telling her I am a terrible Mum! Snotty noses, coughs, temps etc I can deal with much better but Vomit cripples me! I wish someone could help me overcome this phobia!!

User - posted on 07/20/2009

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I so have a sickness phobia. I am hopeless when my kids get sick. AND, I am a single Mom so I HAVE to deal with. It gets scary sometimes. My poor kids don't even wanna tell me if they feel bad.

Firebird - posted on 07/20/2009

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You just have to buckle down and take care of it. I have my own phobias and I know it isn't easy but for the sake of my daughter I do what I have to do. I just take a few deep breaths, remind myself that I am stronger than I know and repeat the phrase "everything is going to be alright" lol. The thing about being a parent is that when your child needs you, you can't just run away from everything that scares you or makes you sick to your stomach. Good luck!

Teresa - posted on 07/20/2009

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I'm scared of spiders but if my husband isn't home, I have to deal with it myself. I take a deep breath and just do it. That's just life. You'll learn, as a parent, to do the same with all the issues that pop up. My husband gets totally grossed out by poopy diapers but he changes them anyway, gagging the whole time. I don't really get grossed out that easily (you should see some of the stuff I've dealt with in my lifetime!) It's just a fact of life and I figure things could be worse :) Anyway, they don't get sick that often (I've only seen my older son puke once or twice in his 3.5 year lifetime) but, when they do, you have to be there for them. Have you looked into some kind of therapy to deal with your phobia?

Kate - posted on 07/19/2009

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I sort of felt like that before my daughter was born. I told my husband he would have to deal with it if our daughter got sick (when he is sick I just cannot deal with it). But then she was born and she was sick...(several months later). And it always seemed to happen when it was just me with her! So I had to deal with it. It wasn't fun, still isn't, but I manage, no matter what is going on. Just try to think about how much she needs you and how this child is a part of you and it's not the same as another adult who is sick. Then deal with it because it's part of being a parent.

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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LOL I hate spiders too. scenario - me no glasses or contacts marveling at the special dotted texture hubby gave the ceiling in the shower, looking around to realise only a small area in the shower has those dots, me falling out of a raised tub/shower 3 feet naked, with a shower curtain trailing from my body to fall out in the hallway screaming bloody murder over spiders barely bigger than dust mites. Actually we call them 'dust' spiders here - have no idea what they eat when they're that small....

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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thanks michelle. is hard isnt it when you have a fear or phobia. im ok with spiders but can imagine life with that on a day to day basis must be really hard because thats something you dont have a great deal of control over isnt it. what i mean for example is i have a mate who has a fear of elephants but with that she isnt likely to see one every day or it popping up round every corner in every room so spiders have got to be quite a big one to deal with. thanks for replying

Michelle - posted on 07/19/2009

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This doesn't bother me at all, but I just wanted to tell you I feel for you! I have a very strong stomach for most things:0) Now spiders on the other hand...

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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yeah thats one good thing. that is another thing that i think about though, how it will affect her because i dont want her picking up on my phobia and acting the same way and then her kids and so it goes on. thanks for your reply and suggestion

Stina - posted on 07/19/2009

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my hubby can't stand puke. Understanding this, I tend to clean up after the kids when they are puky. Love the idea about the perfumed mask. We moms have lots of ucky things we have to deal with. As soon as my son began to understand what was going on with him, I taught him to puke into a pan. DD observed my being ill during pregnancy and when she was sick recently actually ran to the toilet like I do. 2 1/2. I was so impressed. So... if you can teach your kids early how to vomit into an easily cleaned receptical (or even maybe line it with a bag to be thrown away w/o needing to touch it) maybe it will help. I know a couple grown guys whose mom didn't do puke and they turned out fine. At least tummy bugs are less frequent than runny noses.

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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i dont know, i would never tell anyone with a fear or phobia to just get over it whatever there fear or phobia was. everyone is different at the end of the day. you cant just get over it just like that. if we could we certainly would cos wouldnt wish this fear on anyone.

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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LOL how come these women don't tell people with a fear of spiders to "get over it"?

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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you know? with everything everyone has wrong with them? I figure our little issue of not like puke or puking - is small. Its not adhd, fibromyalgia or any other algia - we just don't like puke.

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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tammy, it is easy to say get over it, do you have this phobia then because if you do then comment on how you cope in your daily life

Tammy - posted on 07/19/2009

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Get over it! You're a mother you have no choice! You live with her and her germs everyday and your body naturally develops immunities to them so that you can care for your child.

Using antibacterial cleansers all the time is not good either. If you have no germs you're body cannot make the immunities to fight off disease. There is such a thing as too clean of a house. You'll make yourself sicker.

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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exactly right. it is nice to find someone like yourself who understands and can chat to about this cos everyone i know says snap out of it or dont understand cos it isnt their phobia. that is why i have respect for anyone with a phobia cos it may not be the same thing i am fearful of but the fear itself is still there and people have to deal with it in the best way they know how

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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Yeah - well - lol I think any sane person would leave the home of someone with a violent stomach bug anyway! AND!!! What kind of screwball lets a child visit when they have a stomach bug????? Good lord.

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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i am out of control when it happens to me, i cant sit still or stand still, i have to keep walking around, get fresh air, try taking my mind off it, anything. if someone tells me they have had a bug i instantly step away from them and make my excuses and leave pretty sharpish! went round my partners parents and one of them had a stomach bug and didnt tell me until i got round there. as soon as they mentioned it i grabbed my daughter and legged it out of the house and back home again. i never mean to hurt anyones feelings in the process but am in such a panick i just have to get away. i suppose it is like any other real fear, you try your best to avoid having to face the situation you fear the most.

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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oh yeah - I panic. But like I said - hubby steps up to the plate because he needs me better ASAP - he brings the nice smelling stuff - but for me its only happened a few times over the years.

IF I feel nauseated - I try to avoid hurling by smelling light perfume stuff or vanilla, lavendar etc, lay down, eyes closed, and try to envision soft green meadows, clouds, whatever I need to make the nausea go away. I have to calm down to make it go away - oh and warm/hot baths help - not sure why sometimes the shower. But I'm going to be sick because of I'm ill, then the showers and baths help.

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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LOL I agree with everything but overcooking the meat - buy a couple of good meat thermometers (I'm so freaky about it - I never trust just one!)

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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I think my fear comes from hating to puke myself. I'm going to spare you the details of my experience, its a bit graphic!

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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started when i saw a small child throwing up and he wouldnt stop and i thought he was going to die. my mum also had severe travel sickness where she would pass out aswell. whether those things had anything to do with it or not i dont know but what i do know is that i find it hard to cope with on a day to day basis and all the treatments i have been offered dont do anything to cure or even surpress it. can be watching a tv programme and all of a sudden someone chucks so have to turn away or go back to me singing bit again! if my daughter says her tummy hurts or has a temperature i instantly start panicking incase she is sick and start shaking, feeling unwell myself, sweating, palpatations, etc, is horrible

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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OOHHHH I don't know how I survived being nauseated for 9 months 3 times. I rarely puked - I did everything in my power to get over it - mostly laid around for hours feeling hideous. Those anti nausea meds didn't work for me.

I figure I make up for it in other ways. Special soups, all the support care they could want, etc. My kids love it when I make soups from scratch or run to the grocery store for their favorites. My kids - like me - don't lose their appetites just because they're sick.

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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im the same, can handle colds, fevers, feeling crap, all of that, but puke,no way on this earth can i handle that, either for me or for my family. dread it completely. my partner handles it when he is around but when he isnt then i am useless, i have fingers in my ears and sing, well, make a noise cos cant sing but you know what i mean. hate being like this and cant seem to find a cure for it. it is called emetophobia and controls everything. cant take medicines, mixing food incase they dont go, bugs going around, luckily i didnt get morning sickness. could just about handle the baby sick thing cos that was just milk but still struggled with the gagging

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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oh no worries - it doesn't happen that often. I've never tried to get help for this. hubby or my mom or close friends were always helpful. But honestly maybe a dozen times in 14 years with 3 kids - doesn't happen that often. I personally try to NEVER puke myself. I can't stand it. A round of puking for myself - gets worse and worse - hubby intervenes if he wants me better soon!

And I mean a dozen times in 14 years with 3 kids for real. Being sick happens, I can handle fevers, feeling poorly - etc but puking, NO.

Enlist help when its going to be a long thing - like the flu - real flu and set up ahead of time for fast and easy clean up - god I love clorox wipes now...

Barbara - posted on 07/19/2009

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i have had a phobia about sickness, or emotophobia as it is called since childhood and am now 41. have tried several doctors, treatments but none have worked. it is a fear every single day and would love to not have this phobia. i want nothing more than to be with my child when she needs me and feel a total failure to her at a time like that. i cant stand the gagging and the being sick part of it although i can just about cope with cleaning it up. i also think that by being sick you are going to die. strange i know but that is how it is. i have a partner who deals with it all when he is around but when he isnt then i feel i cant cope and panick sets in. i then think i am going to be sick and the whole thing goes in a circle. when she starts to gag, i have to leave the room with my fingers in my ears. i am over the top with anti bacterial things aswell and carefull when taking medicines incase they make you sick. stomach bugs are a nightmare. it is something i try and control but am so out of control with if that makes any sense.

Tashia - posted on 07/19/2009

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do you have a spouse there with you? If not, you are going to have to learn to deal with it. Just tell yourself this is for your daughter and she really need her mom right now by her side because she has nobody else there to help her. Hold your breath and think of something other than getting sick. Before you know it, it would be all over

Chelsie - posted on 07/19/2009

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Are yousingle? Is there anyone who can take care of your baby when their sick?

Sharon - posted on 07/19/2009

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Seek professional help.



The only thing I can't deal with is puking. A child puking will make me puke.



But if you're talking everyday colds and flu's then you're screwed and so is your poor kid. Get help.

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