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Questions About Bruises on Toddler-NO BASHING

I watch my best friend's son a regular basis. I know she's a little more strict than I am and she's ok with spanking (and spanks in situations where I necessarily wouldn't) but i've just figured it was different parenting styles. Well, I was getting her son into new clothes bc we were going outside...and I noticed bruises just above his butt-they were pretty bad. I'm really concerned bc I know she's been stressed lately-but still-those bruises are serious! How should I approach it with her? She's like my sister.


Asked by erinwhitt at 5:46 PM on Sep. 17, 2010 in Toddlers (1-2)

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Answers (25)
  • You should talk to your friend about it. If you two are as good of friends as you seem to be you can be honest with her. Tell her you were worried when you saw them, they seem to be bothering him and you just wanted to make sure he was Ok. If she gets offended tell her you aren't trying to accuse her of anything you just want to make sure he's ok. It's a sticky situation, especially since you don't know if something is going on. You need to follow what you feel is the right thing to do and it may not be the easiest thing to do either. When it comes down to it what is more important: the chances that you might be embarrassed by confronting her or making sure that little boy isn't getting hurt at home? Best of luck.

    Answer by ajbrownies at 6:13 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • If it's, as you say, "serious" bruising then you need to call CPS. They'll have the child seen by a pediatrician who is qualified to assess what he's seeing and make recommendations. If the doctor suspects it's a health problem and not abuse, he'll order work such as blood tests to see what's going on and be able to help the child.

    Answer by Gaccck at 5:57 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • So if you're not going to do what is socially and morally responsible for something that you personally chose to describe as serious, then why ask?

    Answer by justnancyb at 6:02 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • Excessive bruising can be a sign of a poorly functioning liver or an elevated anti-thrombin 3 level or other medical issues as well. Reporting it if it's abuse means you can help a parent get support and access to services such as parenting classes that can help a family and a child and potentially save a life. Reporting it if it's not abuse may allow a physician to address a medical problem that requires treatment - which means you can help a child and potentially save a life. And reporting it if it's nothing would mean that you acted in the best interest of the child.

    Answer by caseyandkids at 6:13 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • Think you'll ever know the whole story if it really is abuse? How many times has it been too late? How many times is it after the death of a child that people learn the whole story? How many times have people ignored signs and children suffered or died?

    You might be right. It might not be abuse.

    You might be wrong.

    Answer by missingruth at 6:17 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • As the adoptive mother of two children who were removed from their home due to severe neglect and abuse, I can tell you that the damage done to victims is permanent.

    And the goal of CPS is not the removal of the child - CPS is committed to family preservation whenever possible.

    People are telling you that if you believe this is serious - which is what you have said from the very beginning - then you should report it and let those people trained to assess the situation do their jobs.

    Answer by justnancyb at 6:22 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • If they are serious than a call to dps is required friend or not stressed or not. If she bruised him that bad it needs to be addressed.

    Answer by Alanaplus3 at 5:50 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • I've bruised my arms, my shins, my hips plenty of times - and even my ass. How exactly would one have to fall - or how would one have to be playing - to bruise ABOVE the butt? And to get "serious" bruises above the butt?

    My girls play hard and fall down and get bruised plenty - but never there. That's not even a reasonable line of thought.

    And bruises on a toddler that can be described as "serious" ARE serious, just as anon. stated.

    Answer by snivic at 6:25 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • i would just approach totally innocently and without judgment. kids fall all the time. if you truly suspect something more serious, you are bound to report it.

    Answer by rfurlongg at 5:50 PM on Sep. 17, 2010

  • A bruise, especially on a toddler, is serious. It means actual injury has occured and it sounds like you have a pretty good idea what is going on when you wrote that she has been stressed. You can go about it civilly and not be deceptive by saying he might be anemic which I doubt she'd buy anyway.

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:17 PM on Sep. 17, 2010