BearsMommy's Journal

I make no promises I can't keep!

What's the deal?

We've had three illnesses this year from our church nursery.  Ben has had a stomach bug, an upper respiratory virus, and now we're dealing with high fevers and waiting to see what rash appears to see if he has Roseola, Fifth Disease or Hand, Foot & Mouth Disease.  The poor kid is miserable, and so are we.  Running a tepid bath and giving a toddler a Feverall suppository at 1am to bring down a fever of 104.4 is NOT my idea of fun at one o'clock in the morning.

We KNOW that he's gotten each of these in the church nursery.  How do we know?  Because people talk.  Because I hear on Wednesday about how glad another mom is that her child is doing better, because they were soooo sick on Sunday, and she was worried that they wouldn't do well in the nursery.

I understand that parents who work need day care.  I understand that for a cold, mild illness or similar that taking a day or three off work is not always an option.  But come on, people, church isn't mandatory!  You're not going to get docked pay because you stay home with a sick child!  And let's be real - not only is it not fair to other parents, is it really fair to your child to take them out when they aren't feeling well?  Is it a good idea to expose them when they are already sick to other germs that could make them more sick?

Don't get me wrong.  My entire family is very active in our church, and my husband is working on his Master of Divinity degree (MDiv) and will be a pastor himself in a few short years.  So I am not insensitive to the strong desire and need to be involved in church and attend services.  But I will not take my child to church when he's sick, no matter what previous committments I have.  In fact, I think that being in ministry makes me MORE sensitive to parents who bring sick kids to church.  When one child comes in with something like roseola, it exposes ALL the kids to it, and that can lead to a lot of sick kids in the following weeks.

I ask that you really think about it.  Before you take your sick child to church this week, ask yourself how you will feel if your healthy child were to pick something up from another child while at church, because their parents decided not to keep a sick child home.

As for us, Ben is staying home this week.  I don't think it's right to expose other kids to his virus, especially while we wait around to see what's causing his high fever.

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May. 31, 2008 at 12:28 AM Most times children are most contagious BEFORE the symptoms. 

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Jun. 1, 2008 at 12:42 AM


Most times children are most contagious BEFORE the symptoms. 


I understand that, and I understand that there is no way to know before your child is going to be sick.  However, I am specifically referring to people who KNOWINGLY bring sick kids into the church nursery.  Last week another mom told me at the end of service that she's glad her child seemed to fine in the nursery as she was worried that the fever and vomiting of that morning (before church) may have been a problem for the volunteers running the nursery.  And this isn't the first time that I've heard moms and dads say things like that.  Maybe it's just our church, but it seems as though no one is willing to stay home with a sick child.  They'd rather expose everyone to whatever their child is sick with.

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Jun. 4, 2008 at 3:17 PM Wow! I don't know what I would have said to that Mom in that situation. I am sorry that has happened. Have you ever spoken to the SS teachers or the minister in charge of the children's SS to let them know of this problem. Maybe a nice little notice needs to go out to all parents as a reminder that if your child has been ill it would be most appreciated that you did not share it with the others.

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Jun. 4, 2008 at 8:26 PM Unfortunately, like so many churches, we're "short staffed" and there's no one formally over the nursery.  It's a rather casual affair, and volunteers sign up on a board outside the room.  There are weeks when there is no one in there to care for the kids.  The hard part is that there's nothing during our second service (when we attend) for the older kids, so if they don't want to stay in the service, they also come to the nursery.  The amazing part is that the pastor has addressed this issue a number of times in the last year, but no one seems to be listening!  What's crazy to me is that DH went to church alone last Sunday, since Ben was still getting over roseola, and he had people ask where Ben and I were.  When he explained, every person thought we should have gone anyway!  One couple with small kids even admitted to DH that they bring their kids sick or not, even when they had chicken pox!  They actually told him that "the kids feel better when they can get out and play with their friends for a while." 

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Jun. 6, 2008 at 9:27 AM Oh I hear ya. Before we swtiched churches, our kids were endlessly sick from the church nursery.  My daugther got Hand, foot and mouth from there when she was 1 and I was preg with my son. Our new church, thankfully, is more strict about not bringing in sick kids to the childrens and infant groups.

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