Guilt — The Bump
LGBT Parenting

Guilt

I definitely am not looking for an "it's okay, this kind of stuff always happens." I am looking to see (if you care to share) how much guilt you feel when your LO gets hurt.

Three times my Peanut has fallen in my care (C was around, but I was the one with Peanut). The first time we were on the plane and I sat Peanut down in the seat and reached up to put my backpack in the bin. WTF was I thinking?! My Peanut fell off the seat and hit her head on the metal foot of the seat in front of her. We watched her and immediately called the pediatrician. Granted Peanut was fine, but still, my stupidity could have caused some serious damage. The second time Peanut was laying in bed with us. I used to cup her in my arm to the inside of the bed. I had never let go of her. One night I turned over, her cupped in my other arm facing the outside of the bed. I thought no problem, I have never let go of her...well that night I did. It was HORRIBLE! I mean HORRIBLE! I can still hear her head hitting the floor! Then there was last night. The Kiddos have learned to crawl on and off the couch pretty easy now. They back right down like they should. Well, Peanut was playing and I was watching her, and she turned and her hand caught the part of the cushion that overlaps the base of the couch, BOOM, she fell right off hitting landing on the left side of her head. I totally lost it...I was so frightened!

I feel so guilty when the Kiddos get hurt, even when I am not around, especially when it comes to them hitting their head. Do any of you feel a "gut wrenching" guilt when your LO gets hurt?

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Re: Guilt

  • Oh yes. Henry has gotten hurt a couple of times that were "my fault" and I felt HORRENDOUS.  It is such a terrible feeling to see your LO hurt and to know that you contributed to it (by not intervening in time or what have you).  You are not alone, n2a!!

    Mrs._F
    sahm ~ toddler breastfeeder ~ cloth diaperer ~ baby wearer

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  • Apparently I'm heartless because I don't feel *that* bad when LO gets hurt.  Kids will get hurt and I'm not going to hover over her every minute of the day to make sure she never falls down.  Of course I don't want to see my baby cry or be in pain, but bumps here and there happen and if there is no lasting scar (emotional or physical) I'm not going to beat myself up about it.

    Of course if I'm plain negligent I'm going to feel guilt.  But for example one time she walked over to the oven door, hung on the handle and of course it opened and she flew straight back onto the ground.  I felt AWFUL that she was hurt but I can't say I felt GUILT.  It was when she first started walking and I know there was no way for me to have prepared for that or known that was what she was going to do at that moment (FWIW, the oven door now stays locked).

    Maybe I just define feeling bad and feeling guilt differently.

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  • image Two*True:

    Apparently I'm heartless because I don't feel *that* bad when LO gets hurt.  Kids will get hurt and I'm not going to hover over her every minute of the day to make sure she never falls down.  Of course I don't want to see my baby cry or be in pain, but bumps here and there happen and if there is no lasting scar (emotional or physical) I'm not going to beat myself up about it.

    Of course if I'm plain negligent I'm going to feel guilt.  But for example one time she walked over to the oven door, hung on the handle and of course it opened and she flew straight back onto the ground.  I felt AWFUL that she was hurt but I can't say I felt GUILT.  It was when she first started walking and I know there was no way for me to have prepared for that or known that was what she was going to do at that moment (FWIW, the oven door now stays locked).

    Maybe I just define feeling bad and feeling guilt differently.

    I'm more in Two's camp. I feel bad, but I don't feel guilty unless it was something distinctly my fault. Babes fall, then take tumbles, and of course you want to prevent them when possible (I would do anything to protect Gwen from pain!), but they learn from them too.

     

    ETA: I wanted to add that while I feel that way, your feelings are totally normal too. I think I used to feel your way more... before I realize that Gwen is just a bit rough and tumble!! Girl runs headlong into everything, so there isn't anyway for me to prevent her from getting hurt sometimes without preventing her from getting to learn how to do new things. Know what I mean? 

    But, that dang Mama-guilt manifests itself in so many ways. They are such a big part of you, you want to protect them. Please don't beat yourself up too much though. 


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  • I think for me my guilt and fear stem from the death of my cousin. When I was 5 (she was 6) she passed away. We lived in the same small area (an Army base). She ran in from playing outdoors and slipped on spilled water (around the dog's bowl) hitting the back of her head on the floor. My aunt and uncle thought that she was fine. She took a nap, but never woke up. My aunt meant to wipe up the spilled water, but got distracted (though she was still in the kitchen...i.e. she had just spilled it). I remember when my dad told us (the kids) and I thought...I was just playing with her, she has to be okay.

    Maybe I need some therapy to overcome that incident (classic PTSD?), I don't know. The one thing I do know is that when either one of the Kiddos get hurt (especially when they hit their head) I feel like I should have protected them better.

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  • image nevr2amazin:

    I think for me my guilt and fear stem from the death of my cousin. When I was 5 (she was 6) she passed away. We lived in the same small area (an Army base). She ran in from playing outdoors and slipped on spilled water (around the dog's bowl) hitting the back of her head on the floor. My aunt and uncle thought that she was fine. She took a nap, but never woke up. My aunt meant to wipe up the spilled water, but got distracted (though she was still in the kitchen...i.e. she had just spilled it). I remember when my dad told us (the kids) and I thought...I was just playing with her, she has to be okay.

    Maybe I need some therapy to overcome that incident (classic PTSD?), I don't know. The one thing I do know is that when either one of the Kiddos get hurt (especially when they hit their head) I feel like I should have protected them better.

    With this additional information I can definitely see how you would have such strong reactions to the kiddos getting hurt.  Luckily DD has not fallen from the bed but I'm certain I'd feel like an awful mom and cry too.  The couch...well that's a shorter fall.  And after making sure she is okay I probably wouldn't beat myself up.

    I would guess that in time you will find (or will need to find) a balance between being being a helicopter mom and a free-range mom that is comfortable for you.

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  • I guess I should clarify that I don't feel guilty or upset about the (several) daily bumps, bonks, and falls that are totally par for the course of toddlerville.  I always dust Henry off with a smile and assure him cheerfully that he's fine to help him understand that these little ouchies are not a big deal.

    But I can relate to the feeling n2a describes when it's something that you feel responsible for - especially when it's something that you know could have been worse, like a head injury.  I think it is only natural to feel guilty in those instances.  And of course, inevitable that these types of accidents will happen.

    Mrs._F
    sahm ~ toddler breastfeeder ~ cloth diaperer ~ baby wearer

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