Visit with Gramma ends with trip to ER

United States
October 28, 2009 1:17pm CST
Over this past weekend, my 4 YO son ended up in the ER! I'll say right away, he's okay now, but OMG - was I scared! Now that I'm not scared anymore, I find that I can't stop thinking about it and I'm getting ANGRY about it... I'll tell you what happened - you share your thoughts... please. Day was planned that my son would spend the day with Gramma (MIL) and her husband and 3 other grandchildren. My MIL calls me and says "we had a casualty and I'm bringing him home." I can hear him crying in the background, she briefly tells me he fell at the playground, hit his head and he won't stop crying. She "can't tell if he's really hurt" and wants me to see him. About 30 minutes later, they pull up and I go out and I can hear him still crying... she says "he needs to be seen tonight." So in the house we go, all I can think about is "What happened to my baby??" Quick, in the truck, going to the ER... on the way, she's explaining to me what happened. You know those huge community plagrounds, that have the fire-house style ladders and poles that go from the ground up to/thru the high platforms??? He fell thru one of those holes! 10 FEET! Banged his head on the metal platform on the way thru the hole and bounced off the ladder rungs all the way down. HUGE goose-egg on his little noggin and massive brusing down his back to his butt. Long story short, he was x-rayed, no fractures. TG... But bruised up and very sore. The part I'm angry about is that MIL admitted to the ER doc that "she looked up, saw him at the top of the ladder, LOOKED AWAY for a second, and the next thing she knew, he was on the ground." That's pretty much word for word... But she didn't admit this to DH... or to me... just to ER doc. So naturally, I am angry that he got hurt, that he got hurt in her care, and that she wasn't immediately forthcoming with what happend... Several issues: she wasn't watching him - at the very least, SPOTTING him on a 10 foot high ladder... she obviously can't handle keeping up with 4 grandchildren at once... she was very obviously nonchalant and defensive about it... I know it was an accident. But I'm still angry... I don't trust her... and I now shoulder the burden of her confession of "looking away" (this will drive DH over the edge and it could mean trouble in the family... again! ) Thoughts?? Advice??
2 people like this
10 responses
@lelin1123 (15647)
• Puerto Rico
29 Oct 09
How does a grandma see her grandchild on top of a ladder and look away. I would have been running over to him OMG. How heartless and cruel. I would be quite upset with this information. What was she thinking I guess she wasn't. Does she feel any guilt over this. What your child is going thru now. I'm so upset with this story. I have a 3 year old granddaughter and I'm always watching every move she makes for fear she may get hurt. I'm so angry and this is not even my child.
• United States
29 Oct 09
Good morning, Lelin, thank you for the response... and thank you for your anger! Yes, normally, we are always within easy reach of him - he has NO fear and we know he can easily be hurt because he is so adventurous... I can't say this happened because MIL is "heartless and cruel" - that would imply that she intentionally allowed him to fall, that she wanted him to get hurt... I don't think that. I think that with 3 other children to look after that she bit off more than she could chew and couldn't keep an eye on all of them at once. Could have easily been me (if I had more than one child)... It doesn't make it okay, but realistically, it was an accident... But I can safely say that we will be restricting her visits with him if she's going to have more than 2 children with her, unless she has another adult (Papa) with her to help... I'm sure she feels terrible that it happened - she went with me to the ER, she called the next 2 days to check on him... she's probably guilt ridden, which is not a totally bad thing - maybe she'll think more carefully about her actions next time! Thanks again!
@lelin1123 (15647)
• Puerto Rico
29 Oct 09
I'm sorry maybe I was a bit harsh with saying "heartless and cruel". I think I have heard to many stories of parents and grandparents harming their kids and your killing them. So I'm just a bit angered at what is going on in the world today when it comes to our precious children. However, if you glance and see where he's at and not respond to the situation and look away I have a problem with that. I agree she should not be taking care of more kids then she can handle but I would have been running to him as fast as I could. I hope he is doing better. Take care!
• United States
30 Oct 09
Good morning, Lelin, no worries, I don't think you were too harsh - passionate, yes, but not harsh! LOL I understand though, you are completely correct - there are just TOO many incidents of abuse, injury, neglect and poor parenting/supervision and it's an absolute heart breaking reality. Nothing gets to me more than when I hear about children or animals being mistreated. Even though I was furious with MIL, I know in my heart this wasn't intentional... It was careless and it could have been avoided if she heeded our warnings... As a result, there is just one more rule to be applied when it comes to her taking our son - she'll take offense, she'll think we're being unreasonable - but she'll either adhere or she'll not be allowed to take him without us. PERIOD. And in the end, we'll be more secure in knowing that he is getting the proper supervision.
@dorannmwin (36609)
• United States
28 Oct 09
First off, you really need to admit that no one is perfect all of the time. I feel bad that your little guy ended up bruised up and beat up, but it could have just as easily have happened with him in your care were you to have four children with you at the same time. I frequently babysit my two nieces leaving me with a three-year-old (my son), a two-year-old and a one-year-old. And yes, I have taken them to the park at times while all three are in my care. With three children this small you have to occasionally take your eyes off of one to make sure that the others aren't in trouble as well. I really hate to have played the part of devil's advocate but it is true.
• United States
28 Oct 09
Hi there, thanks for the response... Let me tell you - honest to GOD - I said the EXACT SAME thing to DH - when I was trying to talk him down from HIS anger! REALLY, REALLY... It's nice to know that - at least intellectually - I'm sane... but emontionally, I'm still angry... I guess maybe I can see that I'm not necessarily angry at HER, but angry that it happened. PERIOD. I just can't shake the whole 'shakiness' of it...
@dorannmwin (36609)
• United States
28 Oct 09
When my daughter was just over three years old, she was spending the weekend with her grandparents (my in-laws) and about 7:00 in the evening we got a call that we had to come take her to the emergency room. The next door neighbor's dog had bitten her in the face. We took her to the ER just to have it checked, and yes it got very swollen, but she was alright. I was very mad at them for a while for leaving her unattended for just a minute with the dog, but I eventually realized that it could just have easily been myself caring for her when something like that happened. I'm thankful that she was okay in the long run and it didn't cause her to develop a fear of dogs.
• United States
29 Oct 09
Yes, I am mostly past the anger and blame stage of this whole incident! Thank you! The most important thing is that he's okay and that it could have been so much worse... and knowing him, there will be lots more! I'm glad your daughter was okay.
@amijor (234)
• Philippines
29 Oct 09
Accidents are a big part of child development but what happened to your son is not considered as one of those "necessary accidents for a child's development". I completely understand your feeling of mistrust to your MIL especially with what happened to your son. I also understand your feeling when your MIL didn't directly tell you what exactly happened but told the doctor instead. This may be usual for aged people; they tend to maneuver away from anything that might cause them to be reprimanded and "disrespected". Your MIL reaction (looked away) got her out of the sense to run and at least lessen the injury to your son. Avoidance is not a good thing to do after what happened to your son. Adult talk would be a good thing to do. You can talk about how you felt upon seeing your son that way, how you felt when you knew the reason why the accident happened to your son, and how you felt after all that "rush". Blaming is not also a good thing to talk about. Is your MIL old (50 onwards)? Then you might want to consider the things that makes it difficult for her to watch over kids. If neither you nor your husband can be with your kid when he visits granny then have someone responsible and able-bodied to watch over the child with his granny in case anything like this might happen again (which I hope not).
• United States
30 Oct 09
Good morning, thank you for the response... Yes, I know accidents are a part of growing and developing, and trust me, my son is ALL BOY and has plenty of accidents... but you're right, this was totally avoidable and should never have happened and up until now, none have landed him in the hospital! Usually, it's a bump, scrap, cut and it's easily fixed with kisses and hugs... It really was just a matter of time before he got hurt because he really has no fear... and as diligent as his dad and I are about always trying to keep him from harm, it can't be expected that everyone will automatically KNOW that he's especially fearless and needs more than the normal amount of 'spotting'. His grandmother just took on more than she was capable of - she's not the type to admit when she's wrong or that she can't handle something... She's also opinionated and thinks we smother and over protect him... But maybe now she'll come to realize that our intentions and actions are only to be what we are - PARENTS! We just know him - and we do what needs to be done to make sure he has fun, but at the same time, to make sure he doesn't get hurt! Well, I'm over the anger now, but I will continue to be leary of MIL... She is over 55, but still able-bodied, working, active... and like I said, she's not the type to admit that she can't handle something... SO, as a result, she'll be allowed to take him but not if she's going to have all the children at the same time. It's unfortunate, and I'm sure she'll see this as yet another attempt at us trying to be controlling, but as his parents, we can't let him be where he won't be properly supervised! She'll have to realize that, accept that and adhere to that. This is just one more rule that has to be respected and followed...or she won't be allowed to take him at all! Thanks for letting me VENT - she's a very difficult person to deal with...
@sky886 (16)
• China
29 Oct 09
Hi. your baby is now all right ,and this is really great...............
• United States
30 Oct 09
Good morning. Yes, he is all right now... thanks for the response.
@junmae (1590)
• Philippines
29 Oct 09
Hi raven! im glad that your baby is ok right now. if I am in your situation i will also get mad at my mother in law and i would definitely not trust her anymore. She lied to you first because she was afraid that she is the one to blame but i dont think it is right.
• United States
29 Oct 09
Good morning, thank you for the response. Yes, she lied to us at first about the situation, but did the right thing in the end... and that was admit what really happened so that my son could get the approriate attention and care... I am angry about the accident, but can admit now that it's mostly about it happening in the first place, not that it happened with her... It's irrational but ....
@Hatley (140142)
• Garden Grove, California
29 Oct 09
hi oh my God. a ten foot tall thing for a little four year old that is crazy. she should never have let him go up there in the first place.much too high and probably that contraption was meant for older sturdier children. he probably got dizzy from the height which would seem a lot for a little guy of that age. but unless your mil was up that ladder next to him what on earth do you think she could have done? sprouted wings and caught him before he fell? give her a break,she was just as helpless as you were. My thoughts are you do not like mil very much.This could have happened to anyone,I do fault her and anyone else allowing a little four year old to climb up ten feet that is the real point.
• United States
29 Oct 09
Good morning, Hatley, thank you for the response... LOL - 'sprout wings' - that's funny... You made me laugh at myself, and see that I was being somewhat irrational... I know it could have just as easily have happened with me - but it didn't... so it's easy to get angry with someone who was entrusted to care for my baby... and he was returned to me hurt and afraid... But, you're right... helplessness sometimes is all we have in certain circumstances. As far as LIKING my MIL; we do have issues, but they are borne from DH and I am caught in the middle. It's a long story... MIL and I were once extremely close, but DH and her got into a fight that lasted just about 2 years and in the process, MIL was denied access to me and son... it was terrible... now, the rift has narrowed, but not closed and the whole visitation issue is very difficult.
@dmrone (751)
• United States
28 Oct 09
Hi, Raven! I am glad your son is okay. I can understand how you are feeling. If you don't trust your mil, then don't let your son go visit without you or your spouse. Accidents do happen and they really don't stop as the child gets older. The accidents just become different. I would talk this over with your spouse and tell what you know. I can understand the anger, and not wanting to cause trouble in the family. Maybe you both could sit down with your mil and tell her how you both feel, and what you both have decided on how to deal with your sons visits with her.
• United States
29 Oct 09
Good morning, thank you for the response.... Well, the trust issue is hazy... I know that she would never purposely hurt my son, that she would never hurt him herself or allow anyone else to hurt him... but the trust is that I know she's not always completely honest with us when he's visiting her... She knows that we wouldn't hesitate to limit her visits with him so she isn't honest about things that would possibly jeopordize that... I'm not going to tell DH what she admitted. I think enough damage has been done... and DH already suspects it, so it wouldn't do any good to deny or affirm it. However, as you suggested, we do plan to discuss with MIL issues that concern us and we'll go from there. She's not the kind of person who gives us respect in regards to our feelings; we have to handle her like a child. RULES THAT APPLY and are NOT NEGOTIABLE... that sort of thing... Thanks for your response - you helped!
@Chey1970 (1193)
• United States
28 Oct 09
I can understand you being upset with you MIL, and that your child got hurt. However, accidents do happen. I can see that she would be at fault cause your child was in her care. I'm sure though that when she seen him up there, that he was ok, cause as you stated he was with 3 other grand children. I am sure she thought one of them would watch out for him. And having had kids( grown now, and a grand daughter), a child will follow the rest regardless. I am not saying her choice might have been the best one, but I don't think you should be too harsh on her. Being a parent, we can't keep our eyes on our kids 24/7. Things will happen.
• United States
29 Oct 09
Good morning, Chey, thank you for the response... Yeah, I know it was an accident... I guess I just really needed to get the whole incident off my chest... One thing though, you said, I can't accept as okay: "i'm sure she thought one of them would watch out for him" - if this was ever a thought in her mind, she would not be trusted EVER with my son... It' not the other grandchildren's job to watch out for my son - it's HERS. Besides, the other grandchildren are all within a year of my son anyway... so it's not as if she should/could expect anyone to watch him other than herself... Thanks for talking me down, it's mostly what I needed...
@magrylouyu (1633)
• United States
6 Nov 09
I am glad to hear your son is okay. Accidents happen and having 4 children at home under the age of 6, it is hard to keep an eye on all the children at one time. All my children have gotten hurt in my own care and I felt so bad but things happen. Just last week my 4 year old was on a chair trying to get crayons and fell and went face first into my floor and knocked our her 2 front teeth. I cried the whole way to the ER and she stopped crying because she saw me crying and realized I was hurting. I know the trust issue with your MIL may be a little shakey but just give her a break. Your son shouldnt have been up that high in the first place unless she was right there. Just dont take him away from her over an accident. It probably wont wont help the family matters any.
@alem433 (60)
• China
29 Oct 09
haha,I don't understand the meaning !