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When should you tell a child they're sick?

Posted by Anonymous   + Show Post
Before I start, THIS IS NOT MY CHILD I HAVE NO INTENTIONS OF TELLING HIM ANYTHING, ITS HIS PARENTS DECISION, BUT THIS IS MY OPINION ONLY! I wrote that in caps because some people lack reading comprehension and I don't want judgmental bitchiness, just honest opinions.
My nephew (sisters child) is 9, and has Muscular Dystrophy. Our brother had it, and died when he was 19. This disease is progressive and terminal. My sister and her (ex) husband were told he would likely be in a wheelchair by age 5. So far, he hasn't and that's amazing. However, the past year he has declined, from running and playing, he now spends more time sitting and playing with legos or reading, lots of pain in his legs, tires very easily, and his growth has slowed considerably. It hurts my heart, but he is getting worse at an alarming rate.
Heres the thing, they have never told him hes sick. I don't think thats wrong per say, however now that he is older, he recognizes something isn't right and has started asking questions. his parents refuse to tell him the truth. he's within months of needing a wheelchair, and will continue to get worse. I can't imagine how I would handle this, but hiding the truth seems so wrong!!!
How would you handle this?????
Posted by Anonymous on Oct. 28, 2017 at 9:13 PM
Replies (31-40):
by Anonymous 2 on Oct. 28, 2017 at 10:20 PM
1 mom liked this

Their child deserves to know what is going on. To keep it from him is disgusting. There are age appropriate ways to explain this to children. I have been there. 

I know I am not perfect but these parents are horrible. The child deserves better

Quoting eviesmom453: You don't even know them. How can you make such a statement without being in their shoes? Surely you're not perfect yourself.
Quoting Anonymous 2:

They are shitty parents

by Anonymous 9 on Oct. 28, 2017 at 10:22 PM
That's a good question. If my child had no symptoms its not something I'd want to tell them, but with him starting to they really need to.
by Anonymous 10 on Oct. 28, 2017 at 10:25 PM

I would have told him as he grew, as he began to learn to speak and ask questions I would have explained things in an age appropriate way.  How is he going to doctors appointments and not having any idea he has a problem?

by Gold Member on Oct. 28, 2017 at 10:26 PM
If it is started to affect his life now is the time to start telling him. He knows something is wrong with him and is asking questions. He deserves answers.
by Anonymous 11 on Oct. 28, 2017 at 11:00 PM
2 moms liked this
My son was diagnosed with cancer when he was 5. We never hid it, we told him he was very sick and that we would be going to the doctor a lot to get him medicine so he could get better. When it waa final that he was not going to get better, we talked with him about his sickness and that it had gotten very bad and he was going to go visit grandma up in heaven.

Knowing allowed him to start enjoying the present a lot more, he never stopped living his life not even during his last moment.

One should always be honest with the kids, telling them in simple terms age appropiate but always honest.
by Ruby Member on Oct. 28, 2017 at 11:09 PM
If he’s 9 and not cognitively delayed, he knows he’s sick. He’s been going to doctors all his life and unless there is a big consipiracy he has heard what is going on. My 3 year old knows she has a condition. She may not know all the details or understand it in full, but she knows she has it. My 7yo was educating all the nurses who came in about her sisters condition. At 7 she has a pretty good comprehension healthy/sick and normal/abnormal.
by Ruby Member on Oct. 28, 2017 at 11:14 PM
1 mom liked this
I would tell my kid, truthful and let him ask the doctors all the hard questions. But hiding it will not make anything better.

But I’m baffled how this has been hidden from him. Doctor appointments, meds, etc.
by Platinum Member on Oct. 29, 2017 at 2:31 PM
1 mom liked this

Wow, that is wrong. Why do that to a kid? They can know, but only in age appropriate ways.

by Anonymous 12 on Oct. 29, 2017 at 2:35 PM
1 mom liked this

We were upfront with DS, there was no point in hiding it.  The frequent visits to DRs, MRIs, CT Scans, Lumbar Punctures, etc.  Weekly blood draws.  He was aware and we did our best to help him understand it.

by on Oct. 29, 2017 at 2:55 PM
It is beyond unethical to not tell a child that he has a serious illness.

He will eventually figure it out, but he will also ask them why didn't they tell him?

It reminds me of parents not telling their kid they are adopted.
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