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Would you tell your child about this? And When?

My oldest was born with a birth defect called Poland's Syndrome - incomplete hand, missing pec muscle and his arm will not grow the same as his other. I suspect it was due to me taking anti depressants when I became pregnant but there is no proof. He's only 6 but I have been thinking a lot of if I should ever tell him that I am the cause of it or if not, and if so, what age? Periodically he gets sad about his hand and arm being different but overall he is positive and upbeat and knows that God made him different. My husband doesn't agree that the medication caused it, he just believes it happened and therefore doesn't think our son really needs to know about the medication. But I have such guilt. Do you think telling him would be more to relieve my guilt or to inform my son?


Asked by Anonymous at 12:11 PM on Nov. 17, 2010 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (5)
  • You don't know that what you did is the cause of his birth defect. I wouldn't tell him unless you have medical proof. Otherwise you're taking on a burden that you don't need to.

    Answer by ballewal at 12:12 PM on Nov. 17, 2010

  • I agree with ballewal. Unless you have medical proof I would not tell him.

    Answer by Soniam301 at 12:14 PM on Nov. 17, 2010

  • I agree he doesn't need to know anything that isn't helpful,useful or proven

    Answer by raisingmen at 12:17 PM on Nov. 17, 2010

  • i understand why u feel this way. if my son was born with a birth deffec i would try to think of all the reason why what wud have caused this i also would feel i was the blame. but u have NO proof. i would just tell him sometimes these things happen god made him diff and he is special. bc if u tell him u are the reason he may hate u for it

    Answer by BellaDiamond at 12:21 PM on Nov. 17, 2010

  • I agree with posters who say that you have no real proof that the meds caused it. And whatever caused it, it wasn't like you did it intentionally. I don't see why telling your son your feelings would be of any help especially at this young age. I don't think you should have to feel guilt and I am sorry that you do. It is hard dealing with depression. I think you should just work toward helping your son learn to accept and love himself for who he is.

    Answer by sue118 at 12:25 PM on Nov. 17, 2010