'Don't Come Over if You're Sick' Rule Will Always Apply in My House

Rant 16

sick childWhile I was preparing for my twins' third birthday party, my sister called to let me know her daughter came down with the pukes. T had been throwing up for a few days, but on that day hadn't thrown up at all. She was leaving it up to me if I thought it would be okay for her to attend either with both her daughters or to leave the little sick one at home with dad and take the younger one, who hadn't yet thrown up. This was a no-win situation. My kids were so excited that their cousins were coming so I was either going to break the news they couldn't make it or I let them come, potentially infecting the 20 kids (plus parents) who would be attending. The doctor did tell them it was highly contagious.

In this situation, if it was a cold, a runny nose, even a sore throat on the mend, I would tell them to come. But vomiting for days straight with only one day with no symptoms? Too risky. Of course, my mom made me feel guilty for saying no.

My mom reminded me that it was her job to make me feel guilty, so I understood. I really wanted to see my sister and her family -- I missed them. But I had flashbacks to when we were all inflicted with the pukes.

I remember the very first time. We were in New Orleans visiting my in-laws and my kids were just 13 months old at the time. We were in a hotel -- all of us sleeping -- when I heard it. That unmistakable sound of someone throwing up. My daughter had thrown up all over herself and just looked confused. It was really scary and the first time either of my kids was sick like that. I took her to the bathroom to clean her up and put on fresh PJs, and just as I calmed down and sat with her to try to rock her back to sleep, she puked again. I remember crying. Me. I felt totally helpless. My husband, the ever-calm one, reminded me that kids get sick, this won't be the first time, and I had to chill out. About an hour later my son started puking. Both kids continued to throw up for the three days we were there. Thankfully the plane ride home was vomit-free.

It was the worst.

About a year later, the three-day pukes started with my son, spread to my daughter, then my husband got it, and then me. Then my son got it again. It was about two weeks of puking and I'm not sure I've ever used as many cleaning supplies in that short amount of time in my life.

So welcoming some potential puke sick into my house was not the kind of gift I wanted for my twins' third birthday. No amount of my mother's guilt was going to change that. I also really appreciate that my sister told me what was going on and left it up to me. She said she didn't want to be the reason a bunch of kids got sick just to let her little ones come to the party. Parents shouldn't let their sick kids play with other kids. Why spread the sick around? And wouldn't a sick kid be happier staying home cozied up in their PJs being spoiled with mommy and daddy snuggles?

My sister's younger daughter did end up throwing up the next day, so it was the right decision. And we're having a make-up party with just them this weekend. Now that's a win-win.

Do you have a 'don't come over if you're sick rule' in your house?


Image hypergogue/Flickr

toddler health


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javak... javakitty2011

I agree with you, you did the right thing. I would never take my kids somewhere sick and knowingly spread it to others.

fave82 fave82

Totally agree! This year on thanksgiving my husbands cousins kids were playing with our daughter when she casually says "oh yeah he woke up yesterday throwing up.. But he's fine now!" ... Ummmmm thanks! Of course 2 days later my daughters barfing.. Then me, then my husband. So obnoxious!!!

Megan... MeganJune03

I HATE it when people bring around their sick kids! My husbands cousin and his girlfriend brought their 1 1/2 year old and 1 month old to Thanksgiving where they were lots of kids and elderly..... both of the boys had double ear infections and RSV! My daughter has had it twice in her short 2 1/2 years on this earth, every time she gets some kind of respiratory issue it gets worse and worse.  I was so pissed when my daughter started coughing after a couple of days. I had her tested for RSV, came back negative! I posted that on facebook then the girlfriend proceeds to put "I was gonna say she wasn't around my kids" Well first off that is the only way she could of gotten sick being that at the rest of the family Thanksgiving events we went to she was the only person under the age of 20. She deleted her comment before I could say something back, but that pissed me off! My daughter and I missed Christmas with my husbands family last year because she was sick. Some moms just don't think.

CaliG... CaliGirl925

AMEN! Totally agree w/everybody else : )

Caera Caera

What's wrong with your family's immune systems? Geez. I guess we were lucky...for about three years, my cousins lived with us - so we had four adults and five kids under one roof - and none of us have ever been sick like that.

SuzyB... SuzyBarno

One of my husbands aunts cooked thanksgiving one year and when we all arrived at her house she tells us that she has the flu and has been throwing up all day, eat up! We were like "ew, yuck!" We starved that thanksgiving and we will never eat her food. People in the family get sick way too often from her food. Lol!

zandh... zandhmom2

I don't ever take my kids somewhere in public (esp. school) when they are sick except the doctors if needed.  It's just common sense!

nonmember avatar kristi

Ugh!! My SIL never lets us know when her kids are sick. She just shows up with them hacking and fevering over everyone! This just happened a couple weeks ago and then I was the **tch who cut the get together short by leaving early with my kids. Sorry but it isn't exactly okay with me to have your 5 year old coughing in my 7 month olds face......some people!!!

Fondue Fondue

Your sister shouldn't have put it in your lap to decide if her daughter should go or not.  She should have enough spine to tell her daughter that she couldn't go because she was sick.  She was setting you up to be the bad guy if her daughter didn't get to attend, which is apparently what happened when your mother heard you put the kibosh on your niece coming to the party.

Pinkmani Pinkmani

Don't come over sick. Don't send your kid to school/daycare sick. (Unless your daycare has a sick room that the kids can stay in...) 

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