Emergency Childcare

We all seem to agree on one thing here: it's tough to work and take care of kids, especially sick ones, at exactly the same time.

What we disagree about on this blog, and in this country, are the best solutions, and the degree to which companies should help employees balance work and childcare.

In a bit of good news on the childcare front, last month The Portland Oregonian ran an encouraging article about firms who offer emergency childcare.

"We're just hearing more and more interest about backup offerings," Sheila Niehaus said in the article. Niehaus is vice president for Knowledge Learning, one of the country's largest childcare providers with over 2,000 centers nationwide, based in Portland, Oregon. Employers need workers at work, regardless of whether their kids are sick or their childcare has fallen through. To offer solutions, Knowledge Learning has teamed up with Westport, Conn.-based LifeCare Inc. to dedicate space at its centers, most of which are operated as KinderCare Learning Centers, to employers willing to provide emergency child care when normal arrangements fall through. Companies subsidize the backup care, charging employees a daily or hourly fee.

The article cites a growing demand by employers -- particularly law, finance and accounting firms -- to provide childcare services that allow employees to keep working no matter what's going on at home. According to a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, 14% of 373 employers offered emergency or sick-child care services in 2006, up from 6% the year before. Offering backup care makes sense for the childcare providers, too, because they can charge more for backup care than regular childcare.

One of the backup care clients, KPMG, says that employees list emergency care as one of their favorites, according to Barbara Wankoff, the firm's national director of workplace solutions. "While the care of their children is important, they feel they can't let down their obligations or responsibilities at work," Wankoff said. "This solves a very real problem for our employees."

According to the article, KPMG offers up to 20 days of free backup child and elder care a year to each of its 20,000 U.S. employees, Wankoff said. The program has grown so popular with some workers that last year KPMG began offering what it calls "backup sharing," allowing employees to donate unused backup "usages" to others who had exceeded their 20-day limit.

Another national childcare company, Bright Horizons Family Solutions, (the company which ran the Johnson & Johnson center my kids used in the late 1990s), launched a backup child- and elder-care program in July 2006 that it says boasts more than 40 corporate clients, including Merrill Lynch and Freddie Mac.

Does your company offer backup care? Have you used it? Done well, this is a great benefit to parents with young children. How can we get more companies -- large and small -- to consider this employee benefit? And what are the downsides, in terms of creating resentment among employees without kids, or other opportunity costs?

By Leslie Morgan Steiner |  April 4, 2007; 6:00 AM ET  | Category:  Childcare
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Comments

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Ha! First!

(BTW, the title says this was put up yesterday at 10:30 am. Huh?)

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 6:44 AM

Let's re-read this sentence: "While the care of their children is important, they feel they can't let down their obligations and responsibilities at work." So instead you leave a sick child with strangers. Just doesn't seem like a good idea to me.

Mommy War Vet

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 7:03 AM

I agree with Mommy War Vetwho wouldn't put a sick child with strangers. But this could work very well for those with school age children who need care when schools are closed and school based child care is also closed.

Posted by: lmn | April 4, 2007 7:17 AM

This sounds like a fantastic resource for parents who are in a bind. An important meeting that has to be attended for instance. The KPMG childcare/eldercare situation sounds odd though, are the kids and the older folks resting in the same facility? Seems like an untenuous situation for an elderly person who is feeling poorly.

Posted by: Jack-in-the-Pulpit | April 4, 2007 7:24 AM

Emergency care doesn't solve every problem for every person. I can think of many times when the solution, for me, has been to take a sick day, vacation day, or telecommute so I could be the one taking care of my child (or parent, a few years ago when my mom faced a crisis). But company-provided emergency care offers another good option for employees, whether we use it every time or not.

Posted by: Leslie | April 4, 2007 7:32 AM

Seems to me that children are more resilient than MWV thinks and can handle strangers in an emergency, of for 20 out of 365 days when the familiar care isnt available. If your kids cant handle strangers or are contagious sick, you or dh should decline to use the service and take a vacation day.

If the illness is communicable or the child has had a fever w/in 24hours I would think the emergency care center may have rules like our schools have to disallow the drop off.

Drives me nuts when families break those difficult to enforce rules and everybody gets sick - but that is for another blog I guess. How can kids be quarantined when they are sick at day care or school so their parents can work?

Some businesses clearly have their priorities in place, and if they seek to demand performance from employees, they support those employees.

Posted by: Fo3 | April 4, 2007 7:34 AM

Since when was work more important than taking care of your sick children?

Nice benefit for those who have it, but my boss knows that if my kids are sick, they are my first priority, and fortunately, my boss agrees.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 7:38 AM

My guess is that Imn has it right, it's more for the days when school is closed, but work isn't. Not when kids are sick and can spread it around.

Fo3 I'm with you on the spreading of diseases. If one of us kids didn't bring something home, my teacher father did and it'd bounce around. Never fun.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 7:53 AM

Yuck. This would work well for snow days etc. But why would you want to drag a sick kid into work/day care or whatever. They need to stay home and rest..not be around other sick kids...especially when their immunity is low.

Posted by: susan | April 4, 2007 7:57 AM

My agency just started offering this. I am disappointed to be leaving here but I hope my other agency will pick it up. It would be great for snow days, teacher work days, and a school aged sick child. I don't think I would leave my young child (under 5) with strangers. But that is me. But it sounds like good tools for older kids. I also don't bring DD to day care when she is sick.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 8:07 AM

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Posted by: Legal Eagle | April 4, 2007 8:14 AM

Fatally flawed:

It's "versus," not "verses"; "nauseam," not "nauseum"; "45.3," not "45. 3"; and, G) needs a period at the end, following the word "clique."

Posted by: To Legal Eagle | April 4, 2007 8:29 AM

8:29,

Thank you! I will refrain from reposting with your corrections!

Posted by: Legal Eagle | April 4, 2007 8:31 AM

Guess what? That's right kids ANOTHER daycare blog!
"Offering backup care makes sense for the childcare providers, too, because they can charge more for backup care than regular childcare." Greedy bass turds. Right up there with corrupt oil executives...

Childcare is already costing people a significant sum. At what point does one parent decide that it is better to stay home (and bake pies) than bring home an extra $25/month that doesn't go to childcare? That time could go to the kid, who would have less chance of becomming a deranged psychopath (referencing previous study that concluded that 4 out of 5 children in daycare grow up to file their teeth into points and chew on shopping cart tires so they wobble and squeak) and besides, you would save on gas...

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 8:36 AM

"Any posting with more than 3 fatal errors is judged void..."

I reread the case law and this should read "more than 6 fatal errors..."

Posted by: Legal Eagle | April 4, 2007 8:36 AM

I think people need to remember that this is EMERGENCY care. And I think it's great. Most of us cube dwellers simply don't have enough sick and vacation days each year. And if I use most of them to take care of myself when I'm sick or my sick child, where does that leave me when the home day-care provider I use has a stomach virus go through her home for 48 hours? Or when the nanny's grandmother dies and she has to take a couple unexpected days off for her funeral? Those are the situations that emergency care is made for, and if a company is offering this as a benefit/perk, I think it's a great step forward.

Posted by: k | April 4, 2007 8:36 AM

foamgnome- I agree. Your kid would no doubt receive better care with one of the many homeless or jobless vets. At least you know any money you paid them would be for a good cause (booze money notwithstanding). :)

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 8:39 AM

This disturbs me--not for the snow days, etc., but a sick kid needs a parent. Period.

Posted by: ptjobftmom | April 4, 2007 8:42 AM

For most mid level employees and senior employees, it still makes a lot more sense (financially) to continue working. My take home pay is still 4X the cost of day care. And that does not include, employer contributions to health care, other benefits and retirement. For low level professionals, the hope is that they don't stay at that level. Even for young teachers, who will eventually move up, it is still cost effective with one or two kids. Usually it is salary plus how many kids in day care that tips the scale. I do think some people short change themselves when they don't factor in future promotions and retirement. But staying home is certainly worth the financial sacrifices to some.

Posted by: To Chris | April 4, 2007 8:42 AM

Is anyone familiar with the guidelines the emergency care facilities use for sick children? It does sound like potential for a germ-fest. I can't imagine they could take a child with much more than a common cold. How do the staff segregate ill children?

K makes a good point though. For people using a babysitter or home daycare provider, this kind of backup could spare everyone a lot of angst. With a run of bad luck, this kind of "emergency" could add up in days missed at work.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 8:44 AM

This certainly sounds like it's better than nothing at all, and from the business' standpoint they get a worker back to work while the child has a responsible provider watching over them. I agree using this emergency system as a way to drop off sick children just so the parents can get back to work is a bad idea, and I wonder why the EDC provider would accept them in the first place anyway.

Of course, what would be even better would be to have in-office daycare facilities, included as part of the benefits package offered by the company to the employees.

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 8:44 AM

More errors, rendering "Statement of Disclaimer, Warranty and Performance Guarantee for this Blog" null and void:

Under "Warranty," there needs to be a comma following "especially those offered as 'facts'"; "Some one" is incorrectly used twice in lieu of "Someone"; and, the number of permissible fatal errors is incorrectly listed as 3, when it is supposed to be six.

Posted by: To Legal Eagle | April 4, 2007 8:45 AM

My company offers this benefit, and though I haven't used it yet, it is good for the DC snow-days-that-aren't-really-snow-days. I can't see leaving a sick kid with people they don't know though...

Posted by: CE | April 4, 2007 8:45 AM

My husband's work provides 20 days per child for free using Bright Horizons in DC. We use this for days when the school is closed/nanny on vacation. The center does a great job with our girls (1 and 3).

My work provides up to 100 hours of center or at home care for a small co-pay. We use the at home care when the girls are recovering from illness - when they are really sick one of us will stay home, but on the 2nd or 3rd day we have someone watch them - we can get a RN for a slightly larger co-pay if we request it.

These services are vital to our sanity and peace of mind.

Posted by: drmommy | April 4, 2007 8:46 AM

To Chris, if that IS your real name, good for you. I hope all that extra money you line your pockets with is worth all the squeaky-wheeled shopping carts you are burdoning society with. You're creating a monster I hope you know...

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 8:46 AM

For the emergency care program provided by my agency, the worker comes to your home. You pay $4/hour and the agency pays them $26/hour. You do pay the taxes on the $16/hour fee. So it would not be a germ fest. You would have to trust a stranger in your own home with your child. I really don't see most parents doing this a lot. The few that have used it gave it rave reviews. But it was all with older kids (3 or 4 grade and up). By 7 and 8 th grade, most parents would leave their child alone for a random snow or sick day. I personally, can't see using this much till my child was a lot older and I could request a worker that someone else I knew have already used.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 8:49 AM

I meant to say the agency pays $16/hour. So the emergency care company is making a total of $20/hour.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 8:50 AM

Right up there with corrupt oil executives...

Chris,

Make sure you say honest corrupt oil executives. Our prices are posted for everyone in the world to see before you buy our product. Ther are no hidden charges unlike banks, attys, drs, and accountants.

Posted by: Big Oil Worker | April 4, 2007 8:57 AM

During the Influenza Pandemic of 1918, Grandma contracted the flu, and was so ill she was unable to care for her small child (my (future) mother, then 5yo, who did not have the flu) for three weeks. Grandpa had to keep working to support them, and it was all he could do to take care of my grandmother while not at work, so my mother was farmed out to an elderly widow around the corner. They didn't know this old lady all that well, but it was considered part of doing your civic duty to care for your neighbors during that health emergency. I don't know if they gave the old lady any money for her labors (or my mother's room/board).

Posted by: History lesson. | April 4, 2007 8:57 AM

I think this is a great idea! :-) Not everyone can just take off at the drop of a hat, and I am glad it includes elder care. Those taking care of their elders have just as much of a burden as those taking care of children, and it's nice that companies are finally taking that into consideration. If children are our future, then elders are our past, and they should not be neglected. Sorry, I know that's off topic, but I felt it was worth mentioning.

I feel for the young Barbara Wankoff--if that is her maiden name--can you imagine the teasing? If it's her married name, then I have sympathy for the young Mr. Wankoff.

Posted by: Mona | April 4, 2007 8:57 AM

Marc's job offers about 12 or so of these days per year - they are 'free' but when we actually used them to cover our daycare provider's vacation time, we were amazed at the taxes we had to pay. Back up childcare ended up costing us more than our regular daycare!

We only used it for one month-long period, when our daughter was quite young (and NOT for days she was sick), but I wasn't entirely comfortable leaving her in a strange environment. Since we needed it for a full month, she did get comfortable with it and enjoyed it, but I can't bring myself to use it for one day here and there. It was about a block from Marc's work, though, so he could have lunch with her.

I agree that this is not a good option for sick kids unless the backup daycare is done in your own home.

Posted by: equal | April 4, 2007 8:58 AM

dr mommy and foamgnome--

Thanks for the details. I had no idea that part of the service could be providing in-home care. Emergency care was something that was very new when I left the corporate world. I just couldn't imagine what the practical setup would be for sick children in a center. Would it look like a school nurses office?

I do think it's great that companies offer backup care. The more solutions out there for working parents, the better. The center my former company used for backup care was very close to the office, so I imagined this helped as far as the kids going to a less familiar place. They didn't have to be there for the parents' commuting time on top of the workday.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 8:58 AM

I used emergency sick-child care as a graduate student at a University in a NorthEast city. I was an instructor during a summer session. Each class was 3 hours long. If I cancelled a session the students missed out on the equivalent to a week's worth of material.

My husband was abroad, I had no relatives in the city, my friends had toddlers too and I couldn't expose them to a very sick child. My son was just 3 years old and suffered from ear infections and the flu that summer. There was an emergency sick kid center at the local women's hospital. It cost me a week's salary to leave him there for 4 hours.

He was separated from other kids by a little glass divide but he could see them and knew he was not alone. They had tv and quiet toys for each child. Mainly he just wanted to sleep and listen to music. A fully qualified nurse monitored his condition and gave him medicine at the appropriate time. Since it was before the time of cell phones she had my signed approval for emergency care. One of the three times I left him there that summer he started to seize from a fever spike. He was given ibuprofen (back then only available to small children via prescription or at an emergency room) and cooling baths. Thank god he wasn't at home alone with me in an airless and hot (no airconditioning) house with no car. He may have died.


Did I put my career ahead of my child? No, I fufilled a professional commitment to my students (other people's children albeit young adults) and left my child in excellent care. Every parent should have access to this option.

Posted by: relativelynew to blog | April 4, 2007 9:01 AM

Oh yeah, it is only for a total of 100 hours/year. I do think there are some service centers and they were not located near our agency. So it would take some logistics to get them to the center and back. But you could not bring a sick child to a center. But the price was the same for the center or in home care. So everyone I know used the in home care option.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 9:04 AM

One thing to take into account here is that sometimes, when your child is considered too "sick" to come to day care, the people who define "sick" are the day care staff (who are generally going by day care guidelines.) So "sick" could mean conjunctivitis, for example- a contagious disease, no doubt, but not something that the child needs extra care to recover from (other than periodic eye drops.) Or, for example, at my day care, a child who has a fever is not supposed to come back until she has had a normal temp for 24 hours. Well, my kids are usually back up to their normal energy levels within 10 minutes of the fever going away - but they're still excluded from day care, even though they're not what I consider to be sick. And so on.

What a day care center considers to be "sick" and what a doctor (or parent) considers to be "sick" are very different things- I think that someone brought up that topic on this blog recently, after the WSJ work-family columnist referred to a study that showed just that.

Posted by: randommom | April 4, 2007 9:07 AM

"...a week's salary to leave him there for 4 hours."
"He was separated from other kids by a little glass divide but he could see them and knew he was not alone."

A week's salary to stick him in a glass cage? Gosh, and you could have just gone to the gas station and left him in the ice cream freezer (it has a glass divide too), and then he would have had ice cream. It would have cost less too!

Refrain (from yesterday):
Baby in a trashcan
Go to work and don't come back again...

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 9:09 AM

I'll bet that hospital-based center was really state-of-the-art at the time. I imagine that quality of care is difficult to find outside of a city center. Ideally, a person wouldn't have to leave a child there for a full day. I can really see using this kind of care to allow a working parent to teach a class or attend a crucial meeting though.

I went to the Bright Horizons website. For some information, BH required name/address, etc. From what I saw on the website, they don't seem to provide in-center sick childcare. They list the following uses for back-up care:

"What is Back-Up Child Care?
Back-up child care is available when a working parents' primary child care breaks down or is unavailable, including:

-Family child care providers, nannies, and grandparents get sick or go on vacation
-School is unexpectedly closed due to inclement weather
-Scheduled school vacations
-Maternity transition/return to work periods
-When parents are in between child care arrangements

Seems like this could solve a lot of problems.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 9:13 AM

While I think this is a great idea, I would have some reservations. Unless I could check out the center and meet the staff ahead of time I would not leave my child there. Additionally, I would make every effort to make my child feel comfortable and well-adjusted before I left her somewhere new. But I would not take her anywhere while sick or without a doctor's note stating that she was no longer contagious and I felt that she was back to her old self.

All of this being said, I am currently looking for a new job and one of the benefits options that I really like is this one. The fact that work places are noticing the dire need of backup childcare is very impressive. People should not be penalized for having a child; rather, offering to help them out when life throws you a snag is a great proactive step in making an employee feel worthwhile.

Posted by: Nutty Mama | April 4, 2007 9:17 AM

foamgnome, what agency do you work for? My fed agency has no such program.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 9:17 AM

I knew someone would slam relativelynew to blog.

This was a hospital-based center. I'll bet I can guess which hospital (B&W?). The caliber of the pediatric staff in such a hospital is first-rate, and they would only put the most sensitive, well-trained nurses in place to care for children in this situation. They would have understanding and experience in helping children cope.

I think that whoever was behind starting this hospital program was likely very dedicated to women and children and saw the need for this kind of community support.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 9:24 AM

There is a difference between Emergency and Sick child care.

I've never worked anywhere where they offered any help with either. In fact I ended up working part-time because my paltry leave wouldn't cover all the time I needed just to ferry kids to the doctor for endless ear problems.

If your regular provider is sick or closed (say the water isn't on) it's easier to cope with because your child isn't sick. Then we always did the Mom-Dad trade off (unless Dad was out of town).

When your kids are sick it's hard. Take the chickenpox - a disease I'm sure all young children are now immunized for. Some years ago BOTH children had it one after the other. This was nearly three weeks off with sick children who couldn't go anywhere because they were contagious or a big itchy mess.

Of course children are a priority, but if you have a responsible job it is likely that sometime over a three week period they may NEED you to do something that is critical to the mission of the place that sends you money every two weeks. So doing some work can become a priority.

I'm sure care in that situation is expensive. In our case our in-laws, who rarely babysat for us came through. They had a busy evening/weekend schedule so leisure babysitting wasn't an option. But they were retired and able to step up to the challenge in these unusual circumstances.

It was an instance where I don't know that I would have preferred paid care because it who knows what they might have caught from some other sick kid.

Now when I was a girl if I got sick on a tennis or bridge afternoon my Mom had this old woman she'd go get and she'd watch TV on the sofa while I did whatever.....

Posted by: RoseG | April 4, 2007 9:29 AM

9:17: I am not allowed to state which agency I work for on a blog. But I will give you a hint. It is a legislative branch. I found our agency is on the fore front of employee benefits compared to ones that fall under OPM. For example, we had FSAs several years before civil service picked them up.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 9:29 AM

I had a similar experience as relativelynew to blog. While a grad student instructor in the midwest, I used emergency care for a few hours so I could teach my class while my son was sick with an ear infection. In my case a registered nurse came to our home and read him stories while he rested on the couch. Frankly, I think he enjoyed seeing someone new for the first time in three days.

Posted by: Bookworm Mom | April 4, 2007 9:32 AM

Sh*t happens...

Scientology: If sh*t happens, see Dianetics, p. 143.

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 9:35 AM

One of the programs that I used to manage for a relatively large company (offices throughout the US) was our back up childcare program. It was as successful as most incidental benefits programs can be. We actually used Bright Horizons for several years and provided every employee with 20 days per year. While it is not a cheap benefit and I could understand those without children feeling some disgruntlement I think based on some of the comments yesterday - when people felt they were constantly picking up their co-workers slack because of childcare issues - this would make up for those feelings.

We had a pretty simple program where the parent registered their childern at the center once and then called when they needed to use the service. They could even reserve dates in advance for teacher workdays etc.

I think the biggest downside is the simple cost. We all know that daycare is expensive and it is not any cheaper when a company buys so many reserved spots per year - it can add up to several hundred thousand per year based on your employee size.

Posted by: KAD | April 4, 2007 9:35 AM

This is a good thing for most people, especially the backup sharing for extreme situations.

Unfortunately I can see people using this emergency care as a solution in an inappropriate circumstances - socking their kids away and calling it an emergency. Probably not widespread but I'm sure it happens. There are people the think everything is an emergency.

Building a social network and participating in a "community" can fill in many of the gaps the emergency care provides. But for a contagious kid I could call my church, very good friends and neighbors and get help in just about any emergency situation with kids, parents, meals, transportation. Some people are not so lucky.

We had a discussion on this last week. I know someone posted that working on building relationships and helping others comes back to you when you are in need.

Posted by: CMAC | April 4, 2007 9:38 AM

As a newly- divorced mom who recently returned to the work force after being home with my kids for 8 years--and during that time firmly believing that being a SAHM was the best and, in fact, only good choice--I have mixed feelings about this post. On one hand, my beliefs about working while raising kids have changed and I no longer feel that being home with kids full-time is the gold standard to be adhered to at all costs. On the other hand, though, it's a stretch for me to be able to get on board with the idea of leaving sick kids in the care of a stranger.

Even though I now am in the ranks of women who not only choose to but need to work outside the home, my gut reaction when I read this is sadness and disbelief that a woman's career could be that important to her that she'd stop at nothing to make sure she doesn't miss a day of work. I guess I can't say for sure until I walk in the shoes of a woman who has a high-powered career that will apparently be ripped from her if she misses work to care for a sick kid, but my inclination is to feel that a woman who would be ok dumping her sick child on a minimum-wage daycare provider with no personal stake in the comfort or well-being of that child might be the kind of woman Dr. Laura is talking about when she says "Don't have them if you won't raise them." Unless it's an extraordinary circumstance, I honestly can't see being ok leaving my sick kid at a daycare center.

I think there is a difference between using this kind of care on a one-time emergency basis and thinking it's a great solution to the problem of those pesky sick kids derailing a woman's career.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 9:40 AM

Communism: Let's share the sh*t!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 9:42 AM

To the anon poster at 9:40 'when I read this is sadness and disbelief that a woman's career could be that important to her that she'd stop at nothing to make sure she doesn't miss a day of work"

Why is your whole post about having the mom make the choice - no mention of the dad stop at nothing to make sure he doesn't miss a day at work?

Why are you letting the dads off the hook?

Posted by: Divorced mom of 1 | April 4, 2007 9:46 AM

I recall having this kind of program 15-20 years ago in Pittsburgh. It was run by Magee Woman's hospital if I remember correctly. I never had to use it, but a male colleague and his wife (!!) did. It was first rate. I'm glad to hear it may be catching on.

Posted by: dotted | April 4, 2007 9:47 AM

I like the idea of providing emergency daycare. Sure, if my kids are sick enough to be sleeping all day or just lying around, then I would prefer to be home. But if they're medicated, with no fever, and active, then going to daycare is fine. By that point, they should not be contagious.

The going to strangers part is problematic, but if it were offered through my job, I'd either find a way to have my kids meet the staff before they actually needed the care. Or I would stay with them for about 10 minutes or so ro make sure they are comfortable.

BTW, LOL at Legal Eagle. To the poster who is correcting all of Legal Eagle's typos, just stop it, will you?

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 9:47 AM

Further thoughts - Over the years I have worked with people who work for SAS, the statistical software outfit out of North Carolina. They are consistently on the top list of companies offering great benefits.

While that's great for their employees, who tend to be ultra-skilled people, it also makes their rates pretty steep. We don't usually have those people around unless we have serious money or a serious problem. Their "next" project is their problem.

So there is always the trade-off of great benefits and constant employment. All things considered I'd take constant employment.

Posted by: RoseG | April 4, 2007 9:48 AM

Legal Eagle - really really funny. Do you usually post under another name? If so, are you going to reveal it to us (shades of What's my Line)?

Posted by: KLB SS MD | April 4, 2007 9:50 AM

to 9:40:

I think that what is emerging is that sick care is indeed different from back-up care. So far, the sick care mentioned in the blog has been provided at home (and dr mommy mentioned an RN option) or in a health-care setting. I think the cost is prohibitive enough that most parents would use it only to allow them to be at work for something very important, not a run-of-the-mill workday.

For those fortunate to have access to back-up care for school vacations, etc., I can see a child becoming familiar enough with a back-up center to be comfortable. I'm sure it works better at some developmental stages than others.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 9:52 AM

"But if they're medicated, with no fever, and active, then going to daycare is fine. By that point, they should not be contagious."

Then why wouldn't you just send them to their regular school or daycare?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 9:53 AM

Some day cares have rules. Like fever free for 24 hours. The kid is not exactly sick but still does not qualify for day care. Not sure why you wouldn't send them to school if they are fever free. I don't think public schools can tell you that they won't take a fever free kid.

Posted by: to 9:53 | April 4, 2007 9:55 AM

Legal Eagle - really really funny. Do you usually post under another name? If so, are you going to reveal it to us (shades of What's my Line)?

Posted by: KLB SS MD | April 4, 2007 09:50 AM

1) I am taking the Fifth!
2) I am taking the Fifth!

BTW, how do you know that I did nto purposefully put some errors in?

Posted by: Legal Eagle | April 4, 2007 9:58 AM

Our firm works with Bright Horizons. No one uses it for care for sick children. It has been wonderful. Many of us use it for back-up care when parents and grandparents are sick, for school closings, and when private homecare providers go on vacation or are sick.

It might surprise those like MommyWar Vet who have a Pavlovian response and cry foul whenever they hear the words "paid" and "care" in the same sentence, that the most common use of back-up care in my workplace is by stay-at-home spouses are too ill to care for their children, or who don't want their babies/infants to get whatever flu has felled the SAHP. The well parent takes his or her kids to BH for the day, the kids get to play with other kids their age and be cared for by well adults, the SAHP gets well faster, and the whole family is happy. It breaks the cycle of one parent getting sick, passing the germs on to the kids, the other parent gets sick, etc., and meanwhile, the kids are getting sub-standard care by sick parents.

The program also is used by parents who need to make an immediate change in their childcare arrangement (remember Tillman's comments of a couple of weeks ago about inappropriate touching) and need an interim arrangement while they explore alternative permanent arrangements or are on a wait list for their desired provider.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | April 4, 2007 9:58 AM

I would not use such a facility because I would hate for my son to catch a worse germ from others or for him to pass whatever he has on.
Although my employer does have an emergency care facility (mostly used for snow days/nanny vacations), we are also allowed to take 7 days a year, apart from our 26 days of annual leave, 12 days of Federal/other holidays, and 15 days sick leave, to look after a sick family member which usually means children, after which working from home is an option. They also provide other types of "exceptional leave" allowances should the need for them arise, such as for prolonged illness of a family member. I must remember these things when I am tempted to complain about my employers!

Posted by: ladyjanegray | April 4, 2007 9:59 AM

Wow, can I be the only SAHM who could see using emergency childcare from time to time?

Family isn't always available to babysit, and sometimes even SAHMs need to go to an appointment without children. There was also the time dh and I had the same nasty stomach bug that left us bedridden for about 12 hours. Thankfully we were not sick at exactly the same time, but if we had been, we would have needed help.

I agree that a really sick kid probably ought to be taken care of by a parent, but if they're in day 5 of low grade fever and no other symptoms, I don't think its terrible to send them someplace safe and fun, while mom and dad save their sick days.

Posted by: YetAnotherSAHM... | April 4, 2007 10:01 AM

"Some day cares have rules. Like fever free for 24 hours. The kid is not exactly sick but still does not qualify for day care. Not sure why you wouldn't send them to school if they are fever free. I don't think public schools can tell you that they won't take a fever free kid. "

I'm aware of the rules, thanks. But unless your daycare is coming to your home and taking your child's temperature for you there's no way they are going to know your child hasn't been fever free for 24 hours or if they ever had a fever, for that matter. Experienced parents know to use the rules as guidelines and let common sense be their rule.


Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:01 AM

My company doesn't offer it, but what a great idea! Every parent needs this from time to time. If an employer helped out at such a crucial time, it would improve morale, loyalty, and productivity. I love it!

Susan at Working Moms Against Guilt
http://www.workingmomsagainstguilt.com

Posted by: Susan | April 4, 2007 10:01 AM

Personally, I would prefer to be home with my children when they are sick. But I don't have enough sick days and don't get vacation days. I'm a teacher, so I have summers and school holidays off, which is great, but doesn't help for child sickness unless my child happens to be sick on a school holiday. I am lucky to have my parents nearby (well, I moved to be near them). Both are now retired, and I can sometimes leave a sick child with them.

I was previously not a teacher, and made the switch to this job so that I could feel free to use my sick days to take care of my child when I needed to do so. I am so much happier knowing that when I do take time off my bosses and colleagues don't question my work ethic, but understand that my family comes first. I'm glad that emergency child care exists, but I don't think it takes the place of employers who understand that work is not a first priority for a lot of people.

Posted by: single mother by choice | April 4, 2007 10:04 AM

Legal Eagle,
Inquiring minds need to know!

Posted by: KLB SS MD | April 4, 2007 10:05 AM

"Some day cares have rules. Like fever free for 24 hours. The kid is not exactly sick but still does not qualify for day care. Not sure why you wouldn't send them to school if they are fever free. I don't think public schools can tell you that they won't take a fever free kid. "

I'm aware of the rules, thanks. But unless your daycare is coming to your home and taking your child's temperature for you there's no way they are going to know your child hasn't been fever free for 24 hours or if they ever had a fever, for that matter. Experienced parents know to use the rules as guidelines and let common sense be their rule.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 10:01 AM

That doesn't always work. If kid is sent home sick one day for fever, they'll know it hasn't been 24 hours if you try to bring them back the next morning.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:06 AM

"But unless your daycare is coming to your home and taking your child's temperature for you there's no way they are going to know your child hasn't been fever free for 24 hours or if they ever had a fever, for that matter"

If daycare calls you at 1:00 to take your child home because they have a fever, they sure do know at 8:00 am the next day that the child hasn't been fever free for 24 hours.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:06 AM

"Wow, can I be the only SAHM who could see using emergency childcare from time to time?"

Probably not, because a lot of SAHMs do see an appointment (which can be rescheduled) as the same thing as a job where an employer is depending on you to do your work.

But if you're willing to pay the exhorbatant rates charged by these companies ($20/hr. according to FG) then all the power to you.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:06 AM

I would love this. There is a childcare center in our area that offers this but you have to get your employer to sign on

As for the questions regarding sending a sick kid to childcare, I am sure I am not alone in the frustration of having to take a sick day for a kids who is not really sick. Case in point, my kids would get sent home for fevers of 100 but ask any clinic or hospital and they would tell you that temp is not worth bringing your child in for an exam. My first daycare had a policy that kids with diarrea had to stay home until they showed no signs for 24 hours. Made sense when there was rotavirus and cox-sackie running through the center but sometimes (especially when introducing new foods) you one experience one runny diaper and that's it. And, unless I had a doctor sign a form, they daycare would NOT administer OTC meds (like Tylenol for low-grade fevers). Bottom line is that I have spend plenty of time at home for marginally ill children when I could have been at work if the daycare provided some common sense care.

Posted by: LM in WI | April 4, 2007 10:07 AM

I think emergency childcare is a great idea, with the caveat that the childcare only be for situations where the parent's regular childcare fails. I don't like the idea that it would be okay to leave a sick child at a daycare for various reasons. A sick child often needs to rest and sleep. I am not so sure that any daycare setting is conducive to that. Secondly, if I left my child at the emergency daycare because my regular babysitter couldn't make it, I would not want my healthy child exposed to kids who might be contagious. That would just make matters worse in the long run.

I know it sucks that kids get sick a lot and that parents often have to take off to care for them at home. But IMO, that is part and parcel of parenting. You have to be prepared for it and plan for it. I am lucky to have my mom living nearby who is always willing to come over and stay with my son when he is sick. If she could not do it, my husband or I would. I am very careful about using my sick leave. I only use it if I am completely unable to work. Otherwise, I ask to work at home for a day or two until I feel better or am no longer contagious. That way, I have plenty of sick leave saved up for healthcare emergencies, whether mine or my son's.

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 10:07 AM

I just have to say that after spending two weeks solid taking care of a very sick 2 year old (nasty stomach flu followed by pnemonia and croup with a 7lb!! weight loss, hospital visits, dehydration, the list goes on) please PLEASE do NOT bring your sick child to daycare. The person who brought her child to daycare thought she was better even though she was still feverish the night before. As a result, all the children ended up with the flu but mine was hit the worst. He was so ill and two weeks later is just starting to be his usual self. I also missed two weeks of work. Think about the lives of others when you are deciding if your child is well enough to be in care.

Posted by: mountainS | April 4, 2007 10:07 AM

Actually, I assumed you *did* put all those errors in on purpose just to see who was reading it carefully, and so that it wouldn't be binding. I think your offering was very clever.

Posted by: To Legal Eagle | April 4, 2007 10:09 AM

A fully qualified nurse monitored his condition and gave him medicine at the appropriate time.

You missed this bit. I think you may have overlooked the part where she mentioned the nurse probably saved the kid's life, whereas she, the mom, may not have realized just HOW sick the kid was becoming.

Posted by: to Chris | April 4, 2007 10:10 AM

to ladyjanegrey and others,

If you are working somewhere with these benefits, could you please share the names of the employers? If you can't do it on the blog, maybe you could email Leslie from home and she could compile a list. I'm sure there are people here who are looking for workplaces with these benefits.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:11 AM

"Some day cares have rules. Like fever free for 24 hours. The kid is not exactly sick but still does not qualify for day care. Not sure why you wouldn't send them to school if they are fever free. I don't think public schools can tell you that they won't take a fever free kid."

There is actually a very good reason for this rule. I have noticed that when some kids get sick, the fever comes and goes. With my son, the fever typically goes down or goes away during the day, but spikes back up at night. So being fever free for a few hours is no guarantee that the fever is gone for good.

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 10:12 AM

to ladyjanegrey and others,

If you are working somewhere with these benefits, could you please share the names of the employers? If you can't do it on the blog, maybe you could email Leslie from home and she could compile a list. I'm sure there are people here who are looking for workplaces with these benefits.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 10:11 AM
Will do.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 10:12 AM

it's a stretch for me to be able to get on board with the idea of leaving sick kids in the care of a stranger.

We call them doctors, nurses, nurse's aides, phlebotomists, medical technicians, residents, 3rd year medical students.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:12 AM

Have people in this country gone mad? Whats wrong with you people that you would leave your sick child with others because CEO Smith somewhere says work is more important than homelife (CEO Smith says this over his Blackberry while on vacation-AGAIN-in Tahiti)?
Frankly, there are very few positions in this country where this type of childcare is warranted and/or justified. Why do people have kids if all they do with them is shuffle them off to somewhere else? Pretty soon, they'll be in school, and then they may become your priority, but YOU as the parent will not be theirs.
Why do Americans live to work and not work to live?

Posted by: Suzanne | April 4, 2007 10:15 AM

Megan's Neighbor - Your example about the SAHM use of the program is good, except that every illness we get as a family is usually passed during the first 12 hours, we are all unsuspecting victims!

Last year all 4 of us got the stomach flu, about 24 hours apart. If I had sent my daughter to emergency care after I got hit (I was 2nd, she was 3rd) all she would be doing is spreading the vomiting bug.

If a SAHM had unexpected surgery or something non-contagious I think the system works. I know this happens all the time with sending one sibling to school or a parent going to work and "sharing" the bug, but just my 2 cents.

Not being snarky, just commenting!

Posted by: cmac | April 4, 2007 10:16 AM

I'm aware of the rules, thanks. But unless your daycare is coming to your home and taking your child's temperature for you there's no way they are going to know your child hasn't been fever free for 24 hours or if they ever had a fever, for that matter. Experienced parents know to use the rules as guidelines and let common sense be their rule.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 10:01 AM

It's all about you, 10:01, isn't it? Who cares about the other children into which your child comes into contact, or their siblings, their friends, or their parents. Your idea of common sense considers no one but yourself and your convenience.

The 24-hour rule is in place for a reason, both at school and at daycare providers and after-school programs, so that my child doesn't get sick because your common sense is based on what you can get away with. Get over yourself and join the community of parents who try to work together to control the spread of every bug and virus.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:16 AM

"it's a stretch for me to be able to get on board with the idea of leaving sick kids in the care of a stranger.

We call them doctors, nurses, nurse's aides, phlebotomists, medical technicians, residents, 3rd year medical students."

But when they are sick, they want to be comfortable which means they either want to be home, or be with someone they love.

Be honest, how many women have given birth by C-section and wanted to go home before the doctor was ready to discharge them? They are in hospitals with good care, and they are adults, but they still want to be home. Why would you expect a child to feel differently?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:17 AM

To 9:40:

Why is it only the mother who socks away the kid? Doesn't the father have some responsibility? Why is it that it isn't that the father's career is so all important that *he* can't take a day off?

Why only blame mom.

And I'm glad that now, after presumably bashing other people for their choices for 8 years, you now deign to see the other side.

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 10:20 AM

Actually, my child's pediatrician also says stay home for 24 hours after the fever is down without tylenol/ibuprofen. If anything, their guidelines are more restrictive than daycare center rules.

And while centers don't necessarily know when your child's fever broke, they can tell a sick kid from a well one. I've worked in child care centers, and there are many times when you are just waiting for the child to have been at school for 4 hours so you can take their temperature after the tylenol wears off. The first thing the teacher asks a child who seems sick but has no fever is, "did you take medicine this morning?" The children always come clean, and while it *might* have been for a different reason, it not at all uncommon for the fever to go up just about four hours after the child gets to school.

Posted by: daycare center rules | April 4, 2007 10:22 AM

We're talking about emergency at-home care, right?

Here's the deal kids, if you want to continue to HAVE a home, then sometimes mommy & daddy will HAVE TO GO TO WORK. This is made possible by emergency home care. Sounds great.

This is NOT a new concept. My grandparents were immigrants and as they wanted to NOT live in a slum forever, they went to work. My dad had to stay home, alone, while sick periodically.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:22 AM

I see no evidence that backup care providers like Bright Horizons take sick children in centers. Sick child care is something else altogether.

I think the term emergency childcare is confusing definitions. Perhaps short-notice childcare or backup childcare is more accurate.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 10:23 AM

SAHP use of the program - I have no problem with this, but I do have a question. Since there is a SAHP who would most likely handle child care for the sick children, the WOHP would not be taking off as much as if there were 2 WOHPs in the household. So couldn't the WOHP take off work when the SAHP is sick or has appointments or has some other reason they cannot care for the children?

As I said, I have no problem with SAHP using emergency care since the WOHP may be out of town or giving a presentation that would have to be cancelled or any number of things that would make it difficult for the WOHP to adjust schedules.

Posted by: just a question | April 4, 2007 10:23 AM

Back-up child care center are explicitly NOT for sick children. This is NOT A SICK CHILD ISSUE. 'Emergency' covers myriad other scenarios: water main break at regular center, sick nanny, house fires, etc. For backup care purposes, it does not include sick child. Ever. Contractually. Explicitly.

Posted by: clarifier | April 4, 2007 10:24 AM

As a newly- divorced mom who recently returned to the work force

my gut reaction when I read this is sadness and disbelief that a woman's career could be that important to her that she'd stop at nothing to make sure she doesn't miss a day of work.

Not everyone who has a job has a GOOD job. After 8 years out of the work force, you may be one of the very lucky ones to have landed a job that has already given you enough sick leave and annual leave that if your kid were sick, you'd have it to use.

Not all of us are handed that perk, right off the bat.

Not to mention, you may only have your kids under your care 50% of the time now.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:25 AM

"Here's the deal kids, if you want to continue to HAVE a home, then sometimes mommy & daddy will HAVE TO GO TO WORK. This is made possible by emergency home care. Sounds great."

I don't know anyone who got fired because they had an occasional daycare emergency. The only people who got fired are those who miss excessive time. yes, having a job is important, but I think you are being way too dramatic.

Posted by: lmn | April 4, 2007 10:27 AM

Apparently, about 30% of parents report they have sent kids to school or daycare when they were sick. Pretty widespread problem. I don't think parents are doing it because they are lazy or don't want to deal with a sick child -- it's because they fear being penalized for missing work or missing a deadline or meeting or something similar.

Separately, several government agencies, including the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve, offer emergency care. The Office of Thrift and Supervision is where one of my kids went to daycare, and there are several other agencies in DC that offer excellent childcare and emergency care. The Washington Post also has an emergency care provider, although I have not used it.

Posted by: Leslie | April 4, 2007 10:28 AM

Just a comment that, years ago, when I worked in litigation (as a paralegal) I used Harbor Hospital's Sick Child Day care in Baltimore(at a rate of $4/hour, 10 years ago?) when I was working on a trial. Not perfect, but good care with nurses nearby, and I could call on my breaks...and they kept the contagious kiddos separated, a real life-saver when I had no support network as a single parent. I've remarried, have 2 more kids, called Harbor when we thought we had a chicken pox exposure, and the program has been discontinued. I haven't been able to find another program like it in Baltimore. There were 1-2 other kids, so it wasn't a zoo, and the kids slept on real beds and played, and were content. I was pleased with their service, and my happy, healthy 17 y.o. hasn't been scarred for life :)

Posted by: slazar | April 4, 2007 10:29 AM

"Apparently, about 30% of parents report they have sent kids to school or daycare when they were sick"

I always assumed that if my kids were sick the daycare was already infected. Where else did my kids get the germs?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:32 AM

To Dotted..the center I used 12 years ago was in Pittsburgh at Magee Hospital. The nurse at that center possibly saved my son's life and she had a physician provide me with the miracle drug of ibuprofen to treat my tylenol allergic child. The time in that sick-kid center was priceless.

I still miss that city and its sense of community. That same summer I was working on my dissertation and on Sunday the Italian grandmas in the Bloomfield neighborhood would block off the street (very urban area with no yards) and watch the kids while the SAHMs and the struggling grads did the laundry, cleaned house, studied. The grandmas shared tomatoes from their little plots of yard with everyone and dispensed advice and discipline when needed. I did my part as an English speaker with a sense of community and called the city about neighborhood needs (potholes, a gas leak, street lights) and shared tea and companionship with my wonderful neighbors.

It takes a village...and in the case of Pittsburgh it takes a city. It provided me the high-tech hospital care for a sick child along with loving stand-in grandmas. I am glad my kids are still surrounded by people that don't think like Chris. A child's well being is the responsibility of all of society. If a parent has to be all things at all times to their children, we are rejecting the valuble community input and support that can and should be part of raising a child.

Posted by: relativelynewtoblog | April 4, 2007 10:32 AM

"It's all about you, 10:01, isn't it? Who cares about the other children into which your child comes into contact, or their siblings, their friends, or their parents. Your idea of common sense considers no one but yourself and your convenience. "

Blahblahblahblahblah.....my original post was in response to theoriginalmomof2's post that said this: "But if they're medicated, with no fever, and active, then going to daycare is fine. By that point, they should not be contagious."

I'm not advocating sending a contagious child to daycare or school, but why would you use emergency childcare for a non-contagious child who feels fine?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:34 AM

Judaism: Why does sh*t always happen to us!

Orthodox Judaism: Sh*t happens, already!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 10:34 AM

to 10:01-- what often happens is that the daycare "diagnoses' the fever in the morning on day one-- tells the parent that they have to take the kid out for day one and for at least day two. So the gig is up-- they don't need to come to your house to know your kid had a fever-- they were the ones that spotted it because it didn't start until the kid started at daycare. So even though the fever is gone on the morning of day two, the daycare still won't take them-- so you need to find emergency care. when this happended to us, my husband and I would typically do half day at work each to stay home. Must be very difficult if you are on your own.

Posted by: to 10:01 | April 4, 2007 10:34 AM

"Here's the deal kids, if you want to continue to HAVE a home, then sometimes mommy & daddy will HAVE TO GO TO WORK. This is made possible by emergency home care. Sounds great."

I don't know anyone who got fired because they had an occasional daycare emergency. The only people who got fired are those who miss excessive time. yes, having a job is important, but I think you are being way too dramatic.

Posted by: lmn | April 4, 2007 10:27 AM

Really? Try Merry Maids, for a start. How about Wal-Mart, or TJ Maxx, or Safeway (no longer union!)...

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:35 AM

KPMG and BearingPoint both offer this benefit and have multiple offices in the DC area and around the country.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:36 AM

I'm wondering why there are all of these SAHPs out there who are getting so sick that they can't care for their kids. I can count on one finger the number of times I've been sick enough that I couldn't care for my kids - my husband was sick too and it was on a weekend - emergency care wouldn't have done us a bit of good. So the kids watched a lot of TV for the several hours that we were really bad off - big deal.

If it's happening often, then maybe you need to consider that you have a health problem that should be addressed.

Posted by: healthySAHM | April 4, 2007 10:38 AM

My firm does offer back-up care, but it is for days when a regular care provider is not available (ex: regular provider goes on vacation) - it is NOT for bringing in a sick child. If a child has a fever, vomiting, pink eye, you name it - then that child has to stay at home. Makes a whole lot of sense to me.

Posted by: PLS | April 4, 2007 10:39 AM

I don't know anyone who got fired because they had an occasional daycare emergency. The only people who got fired are those who miss excessive time. yes, having a job is important, but I think you are being way too dramatic.

Posted by: lmn | April 4, 2007 10:27 AM

of course you don't know anyone who got fired because of an occasional daycare emergency. No employer, other than a retailer or restaurant manager, is going to say that an employee is being terminated because of an occasional daycare emergency. You will get fired from a retail or restaurant job, though, if you call in and miss shifts because of a sick child. They need bodies in place and on schedule. In professional jobs, the reason given for termination will be, you missed deadlines. You are unreliable. Your team can't count on you.

Back up a step. Why did the employee miss deadlines? Why was she perceived by colleagues to be unreliable? Not because she took an occasional day off but because, between taking off for her child's sick days, some of which were consecutive days off, and being less effective or absent when she herself was sick, she was perpetually behind. She missed deadlines and created a perception of unreliability. She was that employee MustangII and every other childfree person who ranted yesterday hates to have on their team.

I can stay home with my daughter and either work from home, in the evening, or on the weekend to make sure I don't miss deadlines. The receptionist, the presentation expert at Kinko's, the drycleaner's assistant, can't take off whenever a child is sick and retain their jobs. Unless you are in a job where you can continue to be available and/or produce from home, your performance is unlikely to meet your employer's and your team's needs if you miss a day or two every third week during the winter flu & cold season.

Posted by: anon for Wednesday | April 4, 2007 10:43 AM

"If a child has a fever, vomiting, pink eye, you name it - then that child has to stay at home. Makes a whole lot of sense to me."

Yeah, I never have grasped the concept that if a child is too sick to go to school, why are they taken to work, shopping, etc.?

This has always mystified me. The child is not at home resting, away from others as to not spread germs.

Posted by: JRS | April 4, 2007 10:43 AM

"I'm wondering why there are all of these SAHPs out there who are getting so sick that they can't care for their kids."

I had pneumonia when my child was two. I could barely get out of bed. You can put an older child in front of a tv all day, but not a two year old.

Also, there are reasons other than illness to need emergency care for your children. When my mother was dying, I spent days in the hospital with her. Children under 12 weren't allowed in that section. I actually told DH that I was going to the hospital and he had to deal with childcare. Backup emergency care could be needed for multiple reasons.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:46 AM

"It's all about you, 10:01, isn't it? Who cares about the other children into which your child comes into contact, or their siblings, their friends, or their parents. Your idea of common sense considers no one but yourself and your convenience. "

Blahblahblahblahblah.....my original post was in response to theoriginalmomof2's post that said this: "But if they're medicated, with no fever, and active, then going to daycare is fine. By that point, they should not be contagious."

I'm not advocating sending a contagious child to daycare or school, but why would you use emergency childcare for a non-contagious child who feels fine?

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 10:34 AM

And add to this the anonymous at 10:32 post. As I try not to feel like the living dead AGAIN today because one of my kids caught and brought home some nasty cold AGAIN. Sniff, cough, growl.

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 10:46 AM

Leslie wrote: "I don't think parents are doing it because they are lazy or don't want to deal with a sick child -- it's because they fear being penalized for missing work or missing a deadline or meeting or something similar."

Well, I guess that makes it all right then? Come on. I'd be pretty pissed if someone was worried about missing a deadline and sent their kid to emergency care or daycare knowing they were sick - then my kid ends up sick, in the hospital or worse - dead. The flu and even the common cold can kill - especially young children and the elderly.

Posted by: cmac | April 4, 2007 10:47 AM

"Backup emergency care could be needed for multiple reasons. "

Backup child care and emergency child care are two different things.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:47 AM

A friend of mine has re-entered the work force after being a SAHM for 9 years. She was almost fired because she really HAS HAD family emergencies to deal with and as the new kid on the block, they didn't like it. She wasn't abusing it, she was in the midst of sh*t-storm.

Her STBX has been hoping that she would get fired, would fail, was no help and she has no family in the immediate area.

Darn right it happens, and it happens to people all the time.

Work = keep a roof over the kids heads and feeding them

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:48 AM

http://www.nascd.com/links.htm

Information was posted on OPM website. It is the national association of sick child day care. It lists places where you can bring a sick child. I think OPM is not paying anything extra but it if your willing to pay the price, any fed employee or private employee can be a part of one of these emergency sick care programs.

Posted by: did you know? | April 4, 2007 10:50 AM

http://www.nascd.com/links.htm

Information was posted on OPM website. It is the national association of sick child day care. It lists places where you can bring a sick child. I think OPM is not paying anything extra but it if your willing to pay the price, any fed employee or private employee can be a part of one of these emergency sick care programs.

Posted by: did you know? | April 4, 2007 10:50 AM

To everyone who thinks a sick child needs a parent caring for them:

As a pediatrician in a hospital-based setting, do you really think I should take off to be with my kid who has the sniffles, rather than taking care of other people's dying kids? Or do you believe pediatricians shouldn't have their own kids?

This is one of the reasons we chose a nanny over daycare - neither my husband or I can take two days off every time the kid spikes a fever. And the backup option is great for days the nanny suddenly is unavailable.

Posted by: drmommy | April 4, 2007 10:52 AM

I'm not advocating sending a contagious child to daycare or school, but why would you use emergency childcare for a non-contagious child who feels fine?

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 10:34 AM

If it's "blahblahblah" when anyone but you posts, this is pointless; however, perhaps there's a chance, however small, that you might consider that the 24-hour rule is an objective standard on which many of us rely. When you go by, "I don't think he's contagious, particularly when I Tylenol him up", that lack of objectivity tends to result in kids who are still on the downhill slide into sickness being dropped off to socialize with our formerly well children. Thanks for your consideration.

Posted by: to 10:34 | April 4, 2007 10:52 AM

"Unless you are in a job where you can continue to be available and/or produce from home, your performance is unlikely to meet your employer's and your team's needs if you miss a day or two every third week during the winter flu & cold season."

I don't disagree with your statement. However, the people I know in the non-professional jobs have a backup plan in place for when the children are sick and can't go to school or daycare. They only stay home if the children can't go to school or daycare and the backup plan fails. Therefore, they are not home a day or two every third week during flu season.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:53 AM

"Well, I guess that makes it all right then? Come on. I'd be pretty pissed if someone was worried about missing a deadline and sent their kid to emergency care or daycare knowing they were sick - then my kid ends up sick, in the hospital or worse - dead. The flu and even the common cold can kill - especially young children and the elderly."

No, cmac, it doesn't make it okay. But I can sympathize with those parents who have jobs that just don't give them any flexibility. I used to have a coworker with three little ones. She had just come back from maternity leave, so she had no leave left (of any kind). I work for the government, which is usually pretty flexible, but during that time, I worked in an office with a boss that just had no heart. When my coworker's kids all came down with the flu that winter, our boss told her that she could either come in, or she would be considered AWOL because she did not have any accrued leave. I knew she was in a terrible bind, and felt very bad for her. I can see how people in those circumstances, out of desperation, might break the rules and take their sick kids to daycare, even though I don't like the idea any more than you do.

Accomodating work and sick kids can be a real problem for some people. I imagine that single parents must be under enormous pressure. I just don't know what the answers are.

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 10:55 AM

"When you go by, "I don't think he's contagious, particularly when I Tylenol him up", "

Excuse me, but I was not the one who said "But if they're medicated, with no fever, and active, then going to daycare is fine. By that point, they should not be contagious."

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:55 AM

I have backup child care through my employer (government) under Bright Horizons and it has been great. There is a thorough registration process, you tour the center, their system is really good, and security is very tight. It costs $30 a day and we get 20 days. They only take 8 kids in my son's age group on a given day, which is very manageable but means that you can be waitlisted during peak need (like school holidays). As a previous poster noted - it is ONLY for backup care NOT sick care. We use it when our regular childcare provider is not available. The biggest reason why it works so well for us is that it preserves our already strapped sick leave and annual leave for actual sicknesses and vacations. Any amount of added flexibility and quality coverage is a great benefit.

Posted by: another k | April 4, 2007 10:56 AM

However, the people I know in the non-professional jobs have a backup plan in place for when the children are sick and can't go to school or daycare. They only stay home if the children can't go to school or daycare and the backup plan fails.

Right. And when my buddy's elder child went psychotic and spent a week at Shepard Pratt, and the younger child was pulling shenanigans the likes of which some of you haven't dreamed of (be grateful) and almost landed in the psych ward too--she was told to get to work, stay at work and that they didn't CARE that one was hospitalized and the other one tried to torch the house. Cue STBX who was lapping it all up and envisioning getting custody of his favourite child, all the while telling this kid that mommy was evil for going to work while NOT paying his child support on time and NOT working (seasonal employee).

Be kind to your serving staff, and to those who provide you with wells, homes, roofs, gutters, etc.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:57 AM

Excuse me, but I was not the one who said "But if they're medicated, with no fever, and active, then going to daycare is fine. By that point, they should not be contagious."

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 10:55 AM

Will you acknowledge the irony of chastising a responder for not knowing WHICH anonymous poster you are? The timestamp is all we have for you anons.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 10:58 AM

I work for Freddie Mac, and have used the emergency child care option for my stepdaughter when she has visited us during spring breaks, or in the summer prior to the beginning of summer camp. Our experience has been exemplary, to the point that she didn't want to leave the center at closing time! This is NOT intended for sick children, but is a great resource.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:00 AM

Legal Eagle = Leslie?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:00 AM

Catholicism: If sh*t happens, you deserve it.

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 11:02 AM

I have to ask: STBX means ??

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:04 AM

That is truly an awful experience for your friend. I still believe that it is an exception and not the rule for employees who have proven to be responsible and have not missed excessive time in the past. Or, they were already looking for a reason to get rid of the employee.

Otherwise, I would be completely disheartened that businesses are so thoroughly heartless on a regular basis.

Posted by: to Posted by: | April 4, 2007 10:57 AM | April 4, 2007 11:05 AM

As requested:


Daycare...word

Yo, leave da babbies
Wit da homies
Doncha worry bout tha kiddies
They'll grow up to be like daddy
Bustin caps and shootin' fitties

While momma's shakin' bootie
Kids in daycare sellin doobies
Make em work for their share-
Why should you care?
What is this $h!7, welfare?
Just shove 'em out the door.
Junior, don't forget your hoodie.

Yeah, yeah, wah, wah
Babies gotta fever
Don't worry up and leave her
You gotta earn tha dough
It ain't easy pimpin', ho

If juniors gonna be a winner
He's gotta **** tha sitta
You bloggin' 'bout balance
It's all about tha finance-
You pay her more if he hit her.

Why the f*&^ are you still readin'?
All this $%&# on breast feedin'
While juniors in tha street
All shot up and bleedin'?


Now get in there and bake some pies bee yotch
Ooooh yeah.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 11:06 AM

Excuse me, but can someone provide me with that contact list? Is it Fo4 who's keeping it? Leslie? Fred?

Thanks!

Posted by: Maryland Mother | April 4, 2007 11:07 AM

My dh's new job has this benefit- and I think it is great. We were going to have a gap in care for the kids, and it would have worked out, but now the center where little one is going had a full spot open up.
Depends on the sick kid-but at young ages, my mom would leave me home for a few hours (8 , maybe?) While she went off to play bridge or whatever.

But I think this is more for gaps in care, rather than sick kids, altho that does seem to be available.

And I find it funny that you are all so worried about the kid being in a strange place with strangers. If parent is fine, kid will be fine. Most kids make new friends in seconds, I see it all the time on the playground.

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 11:09 AM

Chris,
Even though I requested the rap, I would like to announce right now that I assume no responsibility for it's content. Yikes!!!

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 11:09 AM

When my coworker's kids all came down with the flu that winter, our boss told her that she could either come in, or she would be considered AWOL because she did not have any accrued leave. I knew she was in a terrible bind, and felt very bad for her. I can see how people in those circumstances, out of desperation, might break the rules and take their sick kids to daycare, even though I don't like the idea any more than you do.


Emily, Where was the daddy of these three little ones? Did she and her spouse / partner not formulate a childcare plan, including sick care, prior to bringing not 1, not 2, but three precious ones into the universe?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:10 AM

Sigh. Heavy sigh. There are plenty of instances when a child can be medicated, have no fever, is acting normally, is not contagious and may return to daycare.

Take fevers, for instance. Although a teething child may run a low-grade fever, that doesn't mean the child must go home. And understanding daycares in such an instance will provide that child with Tylenol with your pediatrician's permission.

I've had a daycare insist that I pick up my daughter and not bring her back without a doctor's note b/c the directors (who are not doctors) thought she had hand, foot and mouth disease. Yes, they were wrong. No, my daughter was fine. Yes, I wasted a day off from work. Yes, I was ticked and my pediatrician was amused and sympathetic. Additionally, by the time one actually sees the symptoms of hand, foot and mouth, the contagion period has already passed. Let's not travel down the "Oh, my God, keep them home!" road of panic.

Kids catch colds and spread germs in daycare no matter what you do. By the time your child catches the germs, it has long since been spread throughout the facility, sometimes before anyone knows it. The solution is for daycares to have sick rooms.

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 11:12 AM

"Emily, Where was the daddy of these three little ones? Did she and her spouse / partner not formulate a childcare plan, including sick care, prior to bringing not 1, not 2, but three precious ones into the universe?"

Daddy was the usual back-up plan because he had a more flexible schedule. Unfortunately, during this exact same time, his father was dying. As they say, when it rains, it pours.

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 11:13 AM

That is truly an awful experience for your friend. I still believe that it is an exception and not the rule for employees who have proven to be responsible and have not missed excessive time in the past. Or, they were already looking for a reason to get rid of the employee.

It was awful and she had been there only two months. She was busting her hump but as I said, the sh*t storm burst.

STBX = soon-to-be-ex.

Who is a drummer in a hair band and at 3_ years of age has decided to "live his dream". Evidently part of that dream means being unencumbered with a spouse.

Funnily enough, she now outearns him AND provides the family (including him, for now) with health care. Something HE couldn't do as an independent (bad) businessman. Plus he never figured out how to stretch the money to cover the winter months when no one needed his services!

But it's still not good. Out of the work force 9 years, now in a so-so job situation, with two kids with BIG problems and a STBX who refuses to participate in their mental health care. She can't go looking for another job NOW, it looks bad. It's hard enough that she doesn't have a HS diploma and hasn't gotten her GED. (I have given up mentioning this to her, she knows already. As her friend I can't brow-beat her. I have offered to get her younger child piano lessons--something the kid has LONG desired.)

*sigh*

So, write letters of appreciation for the housekeeping staff if it applies to you. Tip generously if warranted. Don't change your order 3 times and then get shirty with the waiter/waitress. They may be the "unwashed, uneducated and unworthy" to you, but for some of us they are friends or family.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:14 AM

Well, what did you expect? ROTFLMAO. Rap is awful nasty stuff. I personally do not care for it.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 11:17 AM

"Well, what did you expect? ROTFLMAO. Rap is awful nasty stuff. I personally do not care for it."

Of course, you are right. I just didn't think that you would make it so .....well.....authentic.

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 11:19 AM

They may be the "unwashed, uneducated and unworthy" to you, but for some of us they are friends or family.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 11:14 AM

11:14 - I am sorry if you consider anyone to be worthy or unworthy based on educational attainment. All of your points about your friend have been valid and have probably opened a mind or two; however, you could stop with your invalid assumptions about where other posters come from, the jobs we have, how we might consider persons employed in non-professional jobs, and who OUR friends and family are.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:21 AM

Dog: I just sh*t in your shoe.

Cat: Dogs are sh*t.

Mouse: Oh sh*t! A cat!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 11:22 AM

*gasp* did you honestly think I would cut corners and produce something less than "authentic" quality? ;-P

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 11:22 AM

Maryland Mother,

I do not have any contact list.

Chris,

Song about the creepy van please. Marian really wants one!

Posted by: Fred | April 4, 2007 11:23 AM

"They may be the "unwashed, uneducated and unworthy" to you, but for some of us they are friends or family."

They are friends and family to me as well. Makes it hard to read this blog sometimes when people are so judgmental.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:24 AM

Well, what did you expect? ROTFLMAO. Rap is awful nasty stuff. I personally do not care for it.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 11:17 AM

Chris, I do care for rap. I don't consider it awful nasty stuff. I found your "poem" to be racist and inflammatory. Please return to your customary material. It is generally funny.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:24 AM

to ladyjanegrey and others,

If you are working somewhere with these benefits, could you please share the names of the employers? If you can't do it on the blog, maybe you could email Leslie from home and she could compile a list. I'm sure there are people here who are looking for workplaces with these benefits.


I DEFINITELY WILL. I STAYED HOME FOR TWO YEARS TO BE WITH MY SON BUT DH KICKED ME BACK TO WORK (AND WE DO NEED THE MONEY). IT HAS MADE THE TRANSITION SO MUCH EASIER AND KNOWING THAT MY EMPLOYERS ACTUALLY PROMOTE THE "FAMILY FIRST" PRINCIPLE TAKES AWAY THE ANXIETY OF TAKING TIME OFF WHEN MY SON IS SICK.

Posted by: ladyjanegray | April 4, 2007 11:27 AM

Regarding SAHP's use of emergency daycares:

I don't know many SAHP's who can afford to use this kind of service - it sounds like it's an employer provided benefit and very costly if a parent were to pay for it entirely out of pocket. That's not to say that occasional child care isn't useful to a SAHP (for the above mentioned reasons - the parent is ill themselves, appointments, caring for other ill family members, etc.), and it's one of the reasons I feel it's important to not cut yourself off from the world when you become a SAHP. But most SAHP's I know depend on friends, babysitting co-ops, or perhaps a family home daycare that takes drop-ins.

My "favorite" experience with needing emergency sick child care was when I was working full time and had just started an MBA program. It was during orientation and I had to be at school anywhere from 2-8 hours a day depending on the day, and I was taking vacation time from work to do this. About an hour before I was to leave work to go take a computer competency exam, my kindergarten son's school called and he had thrown up in a garbage can in the cafeteria. Lovely. Obviously his regular after-care daycare (where my daughter was) wouldn't take him (nor did I ask!) - my husband was substitute teaching an hour away - my parents were out of town - my friends all worked. If I had skipped the test I would have had to take some bonehead class in Excel and Word, which would have been an unnecessary drain on my time and finances. So what to do? I ended up calling my old daycare provider (a home daycare) and begging her for mercy - she did, and put him in a bedroom away from the rest of the children and just let him sleep until I was done with my test and could pick him up.

Because of that experience, I might see emergency child care for SAHP's a little different. I can't think of a time since I've been a SAHM that I truly needed emergency child care.

Posted by: momof4 | April 4, 2007 11:27 AM

however, you could stop with your invalid assumptions about where other posters come from, the jobs we have, how we might consider persons employed in non-professional jobs, and who OUR friends and family are.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 11:21 AM

Seeing as how there are those on this blog who have taken pot-shots at SAHM, WOHM, married people who use birth control, single people who use birth control, who have professed disbelief that ANYONE could POSSIBLY have a job that would fire them for next-to-no-reason, I don't feel that my comment is unjustified.

Plenty of people on this blog have said many nasty things about others. Let's not forget the charming individual who felt obliged to point out the "plenty of 22 year olds have masters". Clearly educational attainment and job status is plenty important to many here.

It's been made quite clear.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:28 AM

Congratulations Emily on your upcoming little one.

I don't know about you but I like the 24 hour rule because with my little one it is hard to judge when she is fully over something. Her last illness in January. She was sick for 5 days. 2 1/2 were work days. My husband was out of town, so I stayed home with her. The office gave me a some slack but then after they realized it was no biggie. No real loss. But my daughter was sometimes sick for an hour and then look fine. Then maybe 20 hours later it returned. So with the little ones who can't tell you how they are feeling, it is nice to have the 24 hour rule. But I know it is really hard on parents.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 11:29 AM

"Judaism: Why does sh*t always happen to us!

Orthodox Judaism: Sh*t happens, already!"

Judaism as practiced by my inlaws: Sh*t happens. Let's eat.

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 11:33 AM

I found your "poem" to be racist and inflammatory.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 11:24 AM

Funny, I find rap to be full of misogyny, racism and inflammatory statements.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:34 AM

The only time I could think of is a death or birth of a family member. My friend used emergency care while she stayed in the hospital with their new born and toddler went to day care for 3 days. Also death of a family member or serious sick family member in the hospital, might be another reason.

Posted by: to momof4 | April 4, 2007 11:34 AM

Chris, the anon post to you regarding your rap was actually very well-put. Not all rap is like what you have written. I couldn't even read all of it; it was very offensive to me. Just a word to the wise that you'll likely get some posters jumping all over your arse.

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 11:36 AM

Chris,

I thought it was funny.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:38 AM

Seeing as how there are those on this blog who have taken pot-shots at SAHM, WOHM, married people who use birth control, single people who use birth control, who have professed disbelief that ANYONE could POSSIBLY have a job that would fire them for next-to-no-reason, I don't feel that my comment is unjustified.

Plenty of people on this blog have said many nasty things about others. Let's not forget the charming individual who felt obliged to point out the "plenty of 22 year olds have masters". Clearly educational attainment and job status is plenty important to many here.

It's been made quite clear.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 11:28 AM

What's quite clear is that you are part of the problem if you support your accusatory statements by recalling unrelated pot-shots about birth control. If you don't see that your inaccurate assumptions about everyone on this blog based on the nastiness of a few contributes to a world in which one or more of the wealthy and privileged make inaccurate assumptions about everyone with less education, there's not much I can do.

I have much sympathy for your friend. You are merely self-centered and illogical.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:39 AM

Since yesterday, the words "sick" and "child" show up in conjunction within a single post on the onbalance blog 1099 times.

Our top 5 posters who write about sick children:

15 cmac
20 Father of 4
24 Laura
24 Scarry
25 foamgnome

Other than Father of 4, the top ranking males include Chris, Father of 2, Mr Honda, and John. each tied with 4 submissions and tied for 26th place.

Posted by: Blog Stats | April 4, 2007 11:40 AM

Topic is very timely for me today - my son wasn't feeling well yesterday, so I picked him up from day camp and took him home and then went back to work - I continue to marvel this year about how much easier things are with him old enough to stay home alone. But I remember some of the horrible stories from when he was younger. When I think about it now, I had all kinds of weird emergencies crop up - mostly my own sickness - a back injury and an abscessed tonsil so bad I couldn't open my mouth - but also moving to Maryland and having to take a whole week off because they have different rules about the stupid chickenpox vaccine here and the school wouldn't admit him. I am so fortunate that I have never been in a position where I got fired for missing work - I missed plenty of pay, but never was in danger of losing my job. I think back-up and emergency care is wonderful, but think it is also true that the jobs where this type of care is most "necessary" for keeping your job (i.e. the waitresses and receptionists and laborers and other positions mentioned earlier) are also the jobs that are the least likely to offer this option.

Posted by: TakomaMom | April 4, 2007 11:43 AM

"Why do people have kids if all they do with them is shuffle them off to somewhere else?" Because people don't think beforehand that kids will not always follow their schedules. Kids are not a convenience or even a job, they are a full 24/7 commitment. Why do people not realize this before having them?

Posted by: To Suzanne | April 4, 2007 11:43 AM

I have much sympathy for your friend. You are merely self-centered and illogical.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 11:39 AM

And yet, I am her friend and have been for over 20 years. In fact, I'm godmother to her kids. So you may call me self-centered, but I don't see that you have stepped up to the plate to be warmly welcoming, or part of the solution. Instead, you describe me as part of the problem. Yet I'm the one who is supportive of her efforts, and hoping that people be kind to those they climb over on their way up. You'll be meeting them, or you could BE them, on your slide down.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:44 AM

Mormonism: Excrement happens. (Don't say sh*t).

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 11:49 AM

So you may call me self-centered, but I don't see that you have stepped up to the plate to be warmly welcoming, or part of the solution.

anon at 11:44, let's try this one more time. You don't know me. You may have even met me. I could be your friend. How would you "see" anything about me from reading anonymous messages on a blog? Is it such a difficult concept for you to accept that you are not omniscient? or is your problem that you don't think someone with only a high school education knows how to use a dictionary, thesaurus and spell check? I am home this morning and will work a 9 hour shift as a hostess this evening. You judge strangers based on precious little information, if any.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:51 AM

I HATE the new WP website. HATE IT, HATE IT, HATE IT. Can't find anything that I want.

Rant over.

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 12:01 PM

re: SAHP and emergency child care

DH and I worried about this for the first year of DS#1's life. DH was traveling 4 days/week every week and we had no local family. So we sucked it up, paid $150 just to join an emergency child care service that provides babysitters on an hour's notice at an exorbitant hourly rate. Of course, we never used it, and did not renew the following year. Fast forward 2 years - DS#2 has arrived and DH only travels maybe 10 days a YEAR. So when do I break half a tooth off, tear up my gums in the process, and need immediate root canal? When he's on the west coast, of course. And when all of our friends' kids have the stomach flu, of course. fortunately, one friend's DH actually left work early to watch *my* kids so I could make it to the last dentist appt. of the day. Called the emergency childcare service the next day and re-upped. The annual fee is worth it, if only for the one time we'll ever need it.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 12:01 PM

"The only time I could think of is a death or birth of a family member. My friend used emergency care while she stayed in the hospital with their new born and toddler went to day care for 3 days. Also death of a family member or serious sick family member in the hospital, might be another reason."

There are many reasons that a SAHP might need someone to care for their child. But I was just trying to say that seldom is it really an emergency in the sense of "it's 6:00 a.m. and they just closed the schools due to snow and I have to go to work" or "it's 7:00 a.m. and Benny just barfed and I have to go to work". These kinds of things happen to most working parents several times a year. Your examples are serious situations but most SAHP's I know have someone they could call in those very rare occurrances.

Posted by: momof4 | April 4, 2007 12:05 PM

Emily, congrats! John L., I hope it's the real thing!

I imagine that this type of perk would be very valuable for working parents. It's great that employers want to help with the costs.

As a childless person, I don't think this is an unfair company perk for people with children. It's not a paid day off. In fact, it keeps parents in the office, so we should be thrilled with it.

Posted by: Meesh | April 4, 2007 12:05 PM

Emily - I didn't say I had no sympathy for parents in predicaments with sick kids, but knowingly sending a sick child to daycare is wrong. I don't know the answer either, but to make it sound - like Leslie did - that meeting a deadline was more important then a child's health is also not the answer.

I have many "emergency" sick kid stories from friends, co-workers and family in various situations. All strained finances, jobs and even marriages. Most got by with family, friends and neighbors - support groups save your lives in times of need.

Posted by: cmac | April 4, 2007 12:07 PM

Vegetarianism: If it happens to sh*t, don't eat it.

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 12:08 PM

Funny, I think I have to side with 11:34.

Disclaimer: abvove "rap" was meant as a parody of rap in general, and as a representation of a stereotype (oh my gosh, not one of those things!), and as such was bound to be offensive. I'm sorry, momof2, the I Love You Song just does not qualify as a rap.

Maybe I should stick with Jew bashing as that is more acceptible on the WaPo blogs. My black friend would have been laughing his @$$ off if he read it. I may have to show it to him later. Seriously, some people are too uptight!

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 12:17 PM

oh, and all you need is love love love...
love love love love love love love love love love love love love love lovelove love love love lovel ove love love love love love love love love lovel ove love love love love... all you need is love.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 12:19 PM

relativelnewtoblog:
I can't say I miss Pittsburgh too much (hey, the weather, the streets and the smells are terrible). I second the neighborhood-ism though. I knew Squirrel Hill and Brighton Heights well. For too many years I knew them well.

Didn't Magee Women's have two separate 'emergency' childcare facilities? One staffed by nurses for semi-sick children (ones that were considered too sick for day care, but not sick to need a doctor) and another staffed for well child care for those in a bind. I recall this well child care was recommended for those needing to go to the county family services building nearby.

Posted by: dotted | April 4, 2007 12:19 PM

opps, should read love is all you need. got in a hurry. LOL

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 12:19 PM

I forgot to add:

I do miss how young I was when I lived in Pittsburgh...and I felt so old then too. Little did I know. he he he...

Posted by: dotted | April 4, 2007 12:25 PM

No problem, Chris. I figured it was a paradoy, and that you didn't mean to be offensive. Full disclosure -- I find the "gansta" type rap to be offensive also, so 11:34 has a point too.

No, no Jew bashing either. Although I haven't seen that on the blogs at WaPo.

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 12:25 PM

1. Some of you need to chill and give up some of the self-righteousness regarding what you would do. Never say never. I'm glad your lives has been so fortunate so far. I'm glad you have so many friends handy.

2. We all know there's sick, and sick. I wouldn't send a puking feverish kid to a center, unless I needed to do so for his safety while dealing with my own medical problem.

However, there are other days that are fine ... like the fifth day after that single chickenpock appeared, or a day he's just too tired after having been sick, but otherwise ready to go to school.

It really is ok to have your kid be less than perfectly happy sometimes. It doesn't make you a bad parent or a failure.

Get over yourselves.

3. Back-up care sure would have come in handy when the nanny got sick.

4. Germs - by the time your kids shows signs of illness, they've already infected anyone at daycare. Yeah, your kid has caught things from other children - and infected other children, too.

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 12:25 PM

tick tock. tick tock.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 12:26 PM

"I could be your friend. How would you "see" anything about me from reading anonymous messages on a blog? Is it such a difficult concept for you to accept that you are not omniscient? or is your problem that you don't think someone with only a high school education knows how to use a dictionary, thesaurus and spell check? I am home this morning and will work a 9 hour shift as a hostess this evening."

Based on that information alone, you are not she. Obviously I don't think someone without a high school education is incapable of using a dictionary, spell check or a thesaurus. What I said, once again, is that without a HS diploma or a GED it is harder for my friend to get a good job. She has fewer options due to her not having either of those pieces of paper.

I note that you are not omniscient either.

As for the blog: User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site.

It doesn't look like WaPo has done any of these things, so that sets the tone; there seem to be more unpleasant people who post here than not.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 12:28 PM

a question on apparently sick, but not contagious children:

What is one to do when you DD/S has a chronic, definitely non-contagious condition that mimics a contagious one (e.g. allergies, hives, occasional vomiting resulting from post-nasal drip)?

DS has developed nasty seasonal allergies. We've been working with the doctors to find a good solution, but getting the meds right is taking a bit of time.

Meanwhile, his school keeps insisting on sending him home if his nose runs too much or he has a brief instance of gagging or throwing up mucus as a result of the post-nasal drip. (It's very clear that this is what's causing it because there's a recognizable prelude, as opposed to when he has some stomach bug. And he's always fine immediately afterward. And yes, he goes through a box of Kleenex every other day!)

We've taken in a doctor's note explaining the situation, but the school seems hell-bent on sending him home regardless. This is making DS miserable and, we fear, may start stigmatizing him. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 12:29 PM

We've taken in a doctor's note explaining the situation, but the school seems hell-bent on sending him home regardless. This is making DS miserable and, we fear, may start stigmatizing him. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 12:29 PM

Have you taken the letter directly to the principal? If that doesn't work, how about the assistant superintendent? Yours can't be the only kid with allergies! I bet there are adults at the school suffering too.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 12:31 PM

"Oh come on, he's just got a little leprosy... can't you make an exception just this once? I'm running late for work!"

Seriously, in our over sterilized society children are more apt to get something really nasty because their immune systems are not fully developed by fighting off things.

Also, where there are more and more pollutants in the air, more and more children, and adults, are getting sick and developing allergies. Forget cutting pollution solely for global warming- though that seems to be a good reason. Cut it for the billions who are going to develop asthma!

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 12:39 PM

"What I said, once again, is that without a HS diploma or a GED it is harder for my friend to get a good job. She has fewer options due to her not having either of those pieces of paper."

12:28, actually what you said was:

"I don't see that you have stepped up to the plate to be warmly welcoming, or part of the solution."

As I submitted before, discussing your friends options is educational. making unwarranted assumptions about everyone on the blog stepping over less educated persons on the way up some imaginary ladder, not topping well, referring to the unwashed and uneducated - that's all over the top nastiness. You seem to have caught on by your re-characterization of your earlier posts. Good.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 12:40 PM

Yes, we've taken it directly to the Head of School. Unfortunately, I think what may be happening is that one or another of the parents volunteering sees DS and panics. School then responds to the upset parent who's right there in the office, rather than explain the whole doctor thing. Path of least resistance and all that. No one has actually said this, but it is the vibe I'm getting.

Unfortunately, DS's allergy symptoms are just kinda gross, regardless of how often he blows his nose. (The poor boy's nose looks like santa's and his hands are chapped from all the antibacterial goop they make him use!) One of his friends also has allergies, but the problem is mostly in her chest. I think she sounds like she's dying when she coughs sometimes. She doesn't seem to be getting sent home regularly, but I suspect that's because she has an asthma inhaler - something concrete and easy to understand for other parents.

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 12:43 PM

"there seem to be more unpleasant people who post here than not."

Really, I am quite pleasant, I was just being silly, honest. But PLEASE whatever you do, just do not quote the rules any more. I promise to post something politically correct... eventually!

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 12:45 PM

"Oh come on, he's just got a little leprosy... can't you make an exception just this once? I'm running late for work!"

Actually, Chris, it was just a 24 hour case of ebola :-)

LMAO - thank you Chris - I needed a good laugh this morning.

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 12:46 PM

Blog stats: there is no 'John' any longer. Only 'John L' (me) and 'John Q' (someone else), so your stats are invalid.

Meesh: Thanks! Like I said yesterday, my wife is as regular as a clock, so when she's 'late' by even a day it's a very unusual situation, so every day longer gets my hopes higher and higher. We should be making the ept in another day or so and after that, we'll know whether it's time for a visit to the OB-GYN!

(BTW, if this is TMI for some here I apologize...)

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 12:47 PM

Televangelism: If you don't send $$$, sh*t will happen to you!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 12:48 PM

JohnL:Best wishes for you and your family. Keep us posted.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 12:48 PM

foamgnome, I fear that when we know for certain that my wife is pregnant, I may end up in the local news:

"Today, a man was arrested for disturbing the peace by standing on top of a building and yelling 'we did it! we did it!' repeatedly to everyone walking past..."

I've told my single mom friend she's going to be the first person I tell when we know for certain, but I've got to come up with a way to surprise her with the news. I'm already thinking on it...

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 12:51 PM

To allergymom-seriouslt consider changing your day care situation. Find a place that better meets your needs. If they will not listen to common sense, then it. Might be better to 'fire' them.

I know rhat is not an easy solution, but sometimes it is the best.

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 12:52 PM

You are most welcome. :)

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 12:55 PM

making unwarranted assumptions about everyone on the blog stepping over less educated persons on the way up some imaginary ladder, not topping well, referring to the unwashed and uneducated - that's all over the top nastiness.

As that is EXACTLY what she has been called by those referring to SAHMs as being less-than--I stand by it. Many of the posts here are exactly that nasty and I don't feel bad for drawing attention to the attitude. If it jolts somone out of their reverie and prompts someone to re-think what they wrote, then good.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 12:55 PM

Allergy mom:

Have you tried giving up dairy? Not all drs agree, but for some group of children, that does seem to help with the muccous production.

I do feel for you - I'm sure you are right about the complaining yet ignorant parent. It seems in schools there are parents who get listened to (some of whom are crazy), and some who do not (so if they are crazy, it doesn't matter). I don't know how to get into the former group.

Can you get him an inhaler? Note I didn't say have him use an inhaler if it is inappropriate. Perhaps you folks will get greater understanding if he carries one. It really isn't that hard to get a perscription for one.


Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 12:56 PM

It sounds as though Allergy Mom's son is in school. That is usually more difficult to change than a day care situation. Well, maybe not, but difficult nonetheless.

Posted by: to Atlmom | April 4, 2007 12:57 PM

When I was a kid, it wasn't enough to claim a stomachache to play hookie from school, us kids had to back it up with a fever.

By middle school, my brother and I discovered we could get a fever by rubbing the heat detection end of the thermometer against fabric and warm it up. Remember the old mercury thermometers? My brother broke one by holding it under hot water from the tap. The light bulb from the reading lamp also came in handy as a source of enough heat to generate a fever. I finally got busted when my mom came in my room before I could shake the mercury down as I registered a 106 degree temperature. then the gig was up, my mom was not that dumb.

Got another Kiddie Quote (KQ) today. Spring cleaning, my 4 year old was putting his toys in a box and told his sister, "I'm putting my toys in a box for charity so other kids can play with them." Interesting how kids aren't motivated to put their toys in a box to clean up their own room, but they have no problem giving them away to bring another child happiness.

Posted by: Father of 4 | April 4, 2007 12:57 PM

I just caught up with the end of yesterday's blog, and see I missed all the excitement. Emily, congratulations! John L, hoped-for congratulations! Sending good thoughts in both of your directions.

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 12:58 PM

Gee, you would think the principal would tell Chicken Little to relax already. It is springtime and many people's allergies are in bloom.

Ooh, that's a good idea! Maybe having an inhaler would help calm the adults.

I know it looks and feels icky, but Bag Balm might help his chapped nose. An extra-soft cotton hanky is good too. I hope he makes out okay.

Posted by: MarylandMother | April 4, 2007 1:00 PM

John L -

Perhaps congrats. I hope so.

You may want to think about keeping mum for a while. Would you want to share news of a miscarriage with us in 6-10 weeks time? I truly hope you don't have to, but if you aren't comfortable sharing that, you probably don't want to share your wife's "lateness"

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 1:00 PM

Freudism: Sh*t is a phallic symbol!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 1:01 PM

Oh, my belated congratulations to Emily. JohnL, let me know when I can officially congratulate you and your wife. Until then, I'll cross my fingers.

Posted by: MarylandMother | April 4, 2007 1:02 PM

Everybody Knowsism: I'm running out of Sh*t to say sh*t in!


(we hope)

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 1:04 PM

You may want to think about keeping mum for a while. Would you want to share news of a miscarriage with us in 6-10 weeks time? I truly hope you don't have to, but if you aren't comfortable sharing that, you probably don't want to share your wife's "lateness"

Way to bring us down.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 1:04 PM

John L., I have to chime in with my congrats too - I'll be crossing my fingers for you. In response to the comment from "me," we told quite a few people right away precisely because I would also have wanted those people's support if I had miscarried. Miscarriage is very difficult and private but it should be a source of shame. I have several times seen women discover months or years later that they had both miscarried at at time that they knew each other, and could have supported each other had they known. I'm not saying you should tell all the world or that you want the whole world to know about either event. But families need support and love when they experience miscarriage and it shouldn't be something you feel you cannot talk about with your friends and loved ones.

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 1:07 PM

"Way to bring us down."

It may be a downer, but it is reasonable advice that I wish I had known enough to follow.

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 1:07 PM

Allergymom, you may not want to send your son back to that school next year. It must be hard for him to learn anything if he's constantly being sent home for no good reason.

In the meantime, you could start screening your calls. In other words, if you have a caller ID on your work phone and you recognize the school number, don't answer and let it go to voicemail. If you don't have caller ID, try letting all the calls go to voicemail (unless immediately answering the phone is really integral to your job). Listen to the voicemail immediately to make sure your son is not in a crisis. If the school catches you on the phone, say you have a very important meeting and cannot get away immediately.

While I normally don't condone deception, you are in a tight spot b/c the school is treating your son unfairly, and it's beginning to impact him negatively (and the school won't listen to reason). Just a survival tip until you can either meet and work something out with the school -- or so you can make it until the end of the school year and then transfer him elsewhere. Good luck.

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 1:07 PM

""it should be a source of shame." WHOOPS! Meant "it should NOT be a source of shame."

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 1:08 PM

PC post: Congratulations to everybody regardless of whether or not you have children, are going to have children, can have children, want children, or even have at one point in time thought about having children.

There.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 1:08 PM

John L -

Perhaps congrats. I hope so.

You may want to think about keeping mum for a while. Would you want to share news of a miscarriage with us in 6-10 weeks time? I truly hope you don't have to, but if you aren't comfortable sharing that, you probably don't want to share your wife's "lateness"

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 01:00 PM

"Perhaps congrats"? You can't even offer a sincerely conveyed congratulations to a stranger with good news on a blog? Amazing. 1:00 p.m., I am sure John is quite familiar with the Golden Rule of Don't Tell Anyone For 3 Months. Shake your head in your cubicle by yourself, and let John and others experience true joy without throwing the proverbial wet blanket on happiness.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 1:11 PM

Fatalism: Oh, sh*t! It's going to happen!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 1:13 PM

PS -- of course Megan beat me to it with a much more well-reasoned comment.

I don't want to imply that I was ashamed, and there are some people I would have told in any event. But we were on that "tell the whole world" side of things -- and my in-laws went out and told their whole circle of friends, too. Circulating the bad news, and feeling like I had let everyone down, was an added burden just when I didn't need it. On the plus side, I did get a tremendous amount of support from people who practically came out of the woodwork telling me they had had the same thing happen.

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 1:13 PM

As that is EXACTLY what she has been called by those referring to SAHMs as being less-than--I stand by it. Many of the posts here are exactly that nasty and I don't feel bad for drawing attention to the attitude. If it jolts somone out of their reverie and prompts someone to re-think what they wrote, then good.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 12:55 PM

*sound of head smacking forehead* Now I get it, re-thinking is for everyone ELSE - not you. Nice to meet you, Jesus.

Posted by: to 12:55 | April 4, 2007 1:16 PM

Oops - I must have signed off yesterday in between Emily and John L - congrats to John L also!

Unfortunately, I must admit I agree with originalmomof2 on trying to ignore the calls from the school when you can. It's so much easier to rush in and apologize when you get there, that you "just now got your message because I was in meetings all day" than to explain for the thousandth time that this is the same allergy situation that continues to re-occur. Yeah, I am not the voice of moral reason here :)

Posted by: TakomaMom | April 4, 2007 1:16 PM

Ummm, 1:11, are we reading the same blog? I believe John L's good news is suspected but not yet confirmed, which is why we are all being a little circumspect about the congrats.

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 1:16 PM

I do wonder at times if all these anonymous posters are just the same person arguing with themselves in some sort of sadomasochistic delusion.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 1:16 PM

To 1:11

If he announced a pregnancy, I'd have typed "congrats," but he didn't. He announced his wife was a few days late.


John, I do wish and your wife well, which I thought was obvious from my comment.

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 1:17 PM

No, Mr. sadomasochistic delusion is not here today. But it would make a good rap song!

Posted by: 11:34 | April 4, 2007 1:21 PM

She can ignore the calls from the school all she wants, they are probably just going to stick the kid in the nurse's office or somewhere out of the way like a sweaty gym locker. Not like he would still be in class learning or anything...

I wonder how many parents are going to be sending their sick kids in to school when the bird flu or whatever impending pandemic hits us. Now THAT is a depressing subject to think about.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 1:23 PM

Ummm, 1:11, are we reading the same blog? I believe John L's good news is suspected but not yet confirmed, which is why we are all being a little circumspect about the congrats.

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 01:16 PM

Laura, We aren't all being a little circumspect. You and "Me" are.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 1:24 PM

Marian,

Are you around?

Posted by: Fred | April 4, 2007 1:28 PM

"Circulating the bad news, and feeling like I had let everyone down, was an added burden just when I didn't need it."

Laura, that is such a good point not only with miscarriages but with other types of bad news. I've recently had several friends go through divorce and death of family members and have ended up being the person to spread the news for them (at their request). It seems like getting the word around is one of the hardest things in a situation like that - as my friend who is getting divorced now put it, she wants people to know but she just doesn't want to see their faces when they find out.

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 1:30 PM

I do wonder at times if all these anonymous posters are just the same person arguing with themselves in some sort of sadomasochistic delusion.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 01:16 PM

I like this idea, Chris, because that would mean there's only one person out there obsessed with screaming anonymously at strangers, but, alas, I fear there are a number of them. Let's hope they continue to limit themselves to arguing with each other, and the regular identifying him- or her-self as Blog Stats.

In the interest of Emily, who also has been there, maybe we can turn the topic away from less-than-happy pregnancy outcomes?

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | April 4, 2007 1:30 PM

Back in the early 1950s, when I was in third grade, I got the mumps. My Mother was a school teacher, and her work ethic demanded that she go to work, no matter what. She left me home alone, which was fine with me. I had plenty of books to read, didn't really feel that sick and enjoyed the peace and quiet. My Father was a farmer, but it was spring, so he was busy in the fields. I was just fine, but somehow one of our busybody neighbors who lived about a mile away, learned I was home alone and was horrified. She came and "kidnapped" me. Although a SAHM, as were most moms in those days, she had something to do that day and couldn't take care of me herself. So she dumped me at her mother-in-law's house. Her mother-in-law was an old woman I barely knew and I was extrememly uncomfortable spending the day at her house. Of course, my Mother was furious with the neighbor when she learned what had happened. Times have changed and I wouldn't recommend leaving a third grader alone, but I really didn't need a parent to hold my hand and stroke my brow.

Posted by: carrot | April 4, 2007 1:31 PM

Thanks to all for your congratulations and support.

A good friend of my wife's got pregnant shortly after remarrying, which was totally a surprise for her (but not unwelcome). However, she miscarried shortly after telling me and my wife, so I'm well aware of the possibility. Isn't the rule of thumb that roughly 50% of all pregnancies miscarry?

Neither of us have told a lot of people that we're actually trying to start a family, and I suspect once we know for sure she's pregnant we'll tell even fewer until everything's going well. The ones we tell initially will be those friends of ours who we can trust not to tell the whole world...

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 1:42 PM

Fred,

I'm here for a little bit longer. A neighbor is coming over with her kids in a little while.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 1:42 PM

Thanks, Megan's Neighbor, but it's fine. No one is saying anything about miscarriages that I don't think about 10 times a day. I actually like the fact that it has become less taboo as a topic of conversation. Apparently, it happens so frequently, but is mentioned so rarely. Some of us who have gone thru it appreciate being able to talk about it openly and without shame.

But I do appreciate your kind sentiments.

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 1:42 PM

She can ignore the calls from the school all she wants, they are probably just going to stick the kid in the nurse's office or somewhere out of the way like a sweaty gym locker. Not like he would still be in class learning or anything...

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 01:23 PM

Perhaps. The parents have to work, and this child has to be educated. If the school is refusing to educate the child out of some unreasonable fear of contagious illness (even after a doctor's note), then that's discriminatory. A note stating the previous sentence may change the school's mind.

I wonder if Allergymom's child attends a private or a public school.

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 1:44 PM

Megan,

I actually had to call everyone to inform them that my mother had died in a car crash that afternoon. My father was still at the out of town hospital they had sent her to, but she died on the way there. He didn't arrive home until after midnight.

I had to call her parents, my dad's three brothers, my grandmother, and my two older siblings.

I was 16 years old.

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 1:45 PM

To allergymom: We went through something similar with my oldest when he started pre-school. He has eczema and kids with rashes are not allowed in school. I explained multiple times that it wasn't a rash. I brought notes from his allergist and pediatrician. Finally, I found out that they were letting him help feed the school rabbit. Something about the rabbit or his cage triggers his eczema. No rabbit feeding, no eczema.

As for dealing with the school, I would ask for specific criteria on what they send kids home for. At our school, a runny nose is not enough. I would also ask them what kind of information do they need to assure them that this is a seasonal allergy issue and not a serious contagious disease.

My sons both have seasonal allergies and their noses run like faucets if we don't keep the dosing right with their meds. Both of them take 2 meds year round and add a nasal spray for the peak allergy times.

Posted by: MOMto3 | April 4, 2007 1:45 PM

Lawyers: For a lot of money, I can get you out of sh*t.

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 1:45 PM

"Chris, I do care for rap. I don't consider it awful nasty stuff. I found your "poem" to be racist and inflammatory. Please return to your customary material. It is generally funny."

I didn't see one mention of race at all in his entire rap. What was racist about it? And rap itself is inflammatory by nature. When did you ever hear a rap song about everyone loving each other and respecting women? If you did, was it a popular song?

Two that I'd like to permanently delete from BF-ish's playlist: Akon's "I Wanna Love (different four-letter word used in the original song) You" : "Gotta get you up out this club, if it means spendin' a couple dubs." Translation: I like cheap prostitutes, so I'll expect you to have sex with me for $200. Also, TI/Nelly: "Get Loose." "No Grey Goose if you don't get loose, get up out the coupe if you don't get loose...**** in the face, yeah I like it like that..." Translation: I expect you to have kinky sex with me for a shot of vodka and a ride home.

I find Chris's rap complimentary by comparison.

Everyone knows, got one for atheists? Or Pagans?

Posted by: Mona | April 4, 2007 1:55 PM

Megan:

Reminds me of the time my coworker was talking about stuff around the house that needed to get done and another (male) coworker talking about helping her out when I said- hey, wait a second, don't you have a husband to do that? (Or something like that). And everyone just looked away and I think it was sais coworker who said: they got a divorce.

I mean, how was I supposed to know? That's not something people send out in an email. It was just kinda awkward for a bit, tho.

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 1:56 PM

Marian,

Did you catch the end of yesterday's discussion? Yet another poor verse was posted!

Still hoping that Chris will sing about the creepy van.

Posted by: Fred | April 4, 2007 1:57 PM

**For Mona**

Atheism: I don't believe this sh*t!

Agnosticism: Can you prove sh*t happens?

Paganism and/or Wiccan: You can make sh*t happen, but sh*t will happen to you three times.

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 2:01 PM

atlmom,

I actually was requested by our Big Boss to go around the office and ask everyone's marital status, as the Personnel department wanted the information.

Just asking if they were married or not wasn't so bad (since all of us knew who was or wasn't married), but they also wanted to know who was:

Divorced
Widowed, or
Separated

in addition to married/single.

I told him I was uncomfortable asking people to tell me if they were in one of those categories, and said if they didn't want to tell (with their permission) I'd put them down as married/single, their preference, since I figured it wasn't Personnel's business.

As it turned out, one of my coworkers had just separated with his wife, but told me he was married.

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 2:01 PM

John L.

As usual, those personnel (HR) weenies do nothing, not even their work!

Posted by: Fred | April 4, 2007 2:05 PM

John L,
Instead ask for an emergency contact name, number and maybe relationship.

Posted by: KLB SS MD | April 4, 2007 2:05 PM

back to balance....

So, if your child is well enough for you to do double duty telecommuting and taking care of the poor sick munchkin, wouldn't that kid also be well enough for some sort of emergency child care situation?

And carrot - thanks for the nice (on-topic) post.

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 2:07 PM

It seems like getting the word around is one of the hardest things in a situation like that - as my friend who is getting divorced now put it, she wants people to know but she just doesn't want to see their faces when they find out.

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 01:30 PM

Megan, you are a true friend. Having others spread the news so that you aren't keeping a secret, and so that you spare folks like atlmom from inadvertently blundering into someone else's pain, is a vital service to the world.

Emily - Oddly enough, I turn to this blog for escapism as often as for any other reason and had this image of you possibly seeking escape as well and being hit, repeatedly with life. I know you're not me, LOL, and I'm glad you're not uncomfortable with it.

Mona, gotta disagree with you that one has to mention race in order to promote racist views. If you don't think that non-African-American folks who joke /speak in an exaggerated form of Ebonics are spreading racism, we will just have to agree to disagree. Chris - I am not targetting you with these comments, only responding to Mona's initial two queries.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | April 4, 2007 2:08 PM

a few clarifications - yes, DS is in school. Unfortunately/fortunately, it is one of the most awesome schools in the world (by our extremely subjective measure anyway). DS loves the school, loves his teachers, loves the other kids and is learning in leaps and bounds. DH and I love the pedagogical approach and the strong sense of community. this is the only problem we've ever had (DS has been there 3 yrs), so it's hard to consider changing schools over something this stupid.

one of the reasons i think it's the other parents is that, while 99% of the faculty is intelligent, reasonable, kind and compassionate, the director is in desperate need of one of dogbert's "strap-on spines". I don't like the thought of being a bully, but I fear that the only solution is to be more "vehement" than the other parents. next time this happens, i think i'll have to staple a copy of the doctor's note to his forehead.

I think the call screening idea would be a good interim solution, especially as the allergies are *seasonal*; too bad i'm a SAHM and probably couldn't get away with it. I'm also the mom who actually follows the 24 hour rule, even though DS has the distressing habit of acting normal until his fever hits 103. this, of course, is one of the reasons i'm so frustrated.

bitter rant to follow:

so many other parents send their kids in with everything under the sun, take hours to pick their poor fever-ridden kids up, but i'm getting nailed because my kid has allergies???? ARGH!!!!!

end of bitter rant - sorry

anyway, thanks for your advice and support. guess i really just needed to hear that i'm not crazy before i have a "come to jesus meeting" with the director.

Me - have thought about cutting out dairy. will definitely give it a shot now. thanks.

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 2:09 PM

To HealthySAHM,

I don't get sick very often, but when we had that nasty stomach flu, we had 2 kids under 2. They couldn't be parked in front of the tv, and they were sick too. If you haven't been really ill with little ones, be grateful.

Momof4,

I'm glad you haven't ever needed emergency care. We have had situations once or twice when dh and I needed to meet with a professional during the day, and didn't have a friend who could babysit. In that case we took advantage of a center that offered drop-in care, but it was hard to find. Thankfully, it didn't cost $20/hour.

I may be more reluctant than some to ask my friends to babysit.

Posted by: YetAnotherSAHM... | April 4, 2007 2:13 PM

allergy mom -

what's a "come to jesus meeting?"

good luck with the dairy. Note that this means whey, too. Dairy shows up in all sorts of places you wouldn't expect - like in margarine of all things.

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 2:14 PM

"If you don't think that non-African-American folks who joke /speak in an exaggerated form of Ebonics are spreading racism, we will just have to agree to disagree."

MN, you definitely have a point, and I'm cool with agreeing to disagree (I definitely do not want to go up against you in a battle of wits!). However, suppose one were to parodize a white rapper; is that racism as well?

Posted by: Mona | April 4, 2007 2:14 PM

The work of a great bard, Fred!

I'm still in shock that the creepy van is a minivan though. I pictured an Econoline with small spade-shaped window and a few PBR cans rolling around the back.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 2:15 PM

This is a song about Fred's van
It's as creepy as the man
He started driving it to frighten little girls
and he'll continue driving it
in circles till he hurls
This is a song about Fred's van...

:-)

At first I was afraid I was petrified
About Fred's van and then I stepped inside
But then he turned off all the lights
And he burst out into song
And it was wrong
But I had to sing along!
Then I reached back and grabbed my mace
He just started screaming there as sprayed it in his face.

I should have stayed out of the blog
I should have not taken the candy
If I had known for just one second how creepy the van would be.

Go anonymous now, go, throw the keyboard on the floor!
Just turn off the screen now,
cause we've hit a brand new low.
Weren't you the one who tried to leave so many times?

Did you go yet?
Was it just another lie?

Oh yeah, Freds van! Is creepy!
He'll drive up to your sidewalk and offer you candy.
He's got lots of types to give, if you'll step inside a bit...
Just step inside!
Don't go inside! Hey, hey kids!

It's a rusty off white color about to fall apart
You'll hear it coming down the road; exhaust sounds like a fart!
And he's got those white wall tires
just worn of all the tread. They used to shine!
But now they're blackened by road-grime!

I'm not that anonymous little poster throwing panties at you
But you feel like drivin' by
And just expect me to chip in
Now I'm saving all my money because the gas it isn't free!

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 2:16 PM

"come to jesus meeting"

A direct, non-confrontational but clear communication of an ongoing problem that must cease immediately. You get the other person's attention in an environment in which she can focus, make eye contact, and say, something akin to, "Joe, You've been doing X and it has to stop because . . . ".

It's the conversation you've needed to have for some time, but have been avoiding. Team members love when managers finally develop a spine and conduct one.

Example: Someone provided a great script last week for a "come to Jesus meeting" Marion might have had with the principal.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | April 4, 2007 2:17 PM

Protestantism: Sh*t happens, Amen to that!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 2:19 PM

the director is in desperate need of one of dogbert's "strap-on spines".

Impalement may work faster. Who knows? Maybe he will then generate his own spine and will remove the stake!

Any chance of you going into the school once or twice, and telling Chicken Little exactly what you think of her medical degree, via a box of Cracker Jacks?

Posted by: MarylandMother | April 4, 2007 2:20 PM

You get the blog Grammy of the day, Chris! You really captured the creepiness.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 2:20 PM

from jargondatabade.com:

Come To Jesus Meeting - A time when a polite ultimatum is given, generally followed by a less polite ultimatum, then a threat. Drug and alcohol "interventions" are often referred to as "Come to Jesus Meetings".

never really thought about the literal phrase. it's just one of those things we used to say when trying to get unreasonable clients to see reason, or at least shut the h*ll up and let us do our jobs.

thanks for the tip on whey.

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 2:20 PM

Chris,
What tune do we sing the song to?

Posted by: KLB SS MD | April 4, 2007 2:20 PM

Sorry, I forgot to mention that if the director ever does remove the stake, that would be recycling too. Always a lesson to be learned by the kiddies, right?

Posted by: Maryland Mother | April 4, 2007 2:22 PM

I may have to have a come to Jesus meeting with the creepy van after Chris explained it to me!

Posted by: Fred | April 4, 2007 2:22 PM

Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive."

ROTFLMAO

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2007 2:22 PM

To allergymom: oh , I thought it was a preschool-dont know why. I would definitely do more(arrgghh) if I were you. Good luck.

Emily-congrats.

John L.- thinking good thoughts.

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 2:22 PM

The song that does not end...
and

I will survive.

*gasp* I thought that was apparent. ;-P

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 2:22 PM

megan's neighbor--

Maybe if my faith in Jesus was stronger, I wouldn't be such chicken sh*t re: the principal. ;-)

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 2:23 PM

marylandmother - impalement? afraid the stick up his @ss might get in the way...

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 2:24 PM

That's a really colorful expression. Thanks.

Jesus doesn't get mentioned much in my circle, but I've got some good unprintable words for your director.

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 2:24 PM

Maryland Mother, your post is creepily reminiscent of a scene in "Dead Silence." ::shudder::

Posted by: Mona | April 4, 2007 2:25 PM

oh it's just a minivan? oh well... there goes that image. I was thinking panel van! oh well...

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 2:27 PM

Yea, a 1996 Plymouth Grand Voyager painted dark green (I think, it has not been washed in a while) with 170,000 miles.

No beer cans as we recycle down here!

Posted by: Fred | April 4, 2007 2:29 PM

"Jesus doesn't get mentioned much in my circle..."

oddly enough, i think the person who first introduced me to the phrase was my Hindu boss. i've always used the phrase as sort of all one word, rather than as each word holding its own separate meaning, if that makes any sense...

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 2:29 PM

Chris - I will survive was the perfect song, I had tears in my puffy, seasonal allergy eyes.

Posted by: cmac | April 4, 2007 2:32 PM

marylandmother - impalement? afraid the stick up his @ss might get in the way...

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 02:24 PM

I wasn't clear. Rather than a strap-on spine, let's make it internal. Now, if he can eventually grow his own spine, he will learn how to be FLEXIBLE. At which point he can remove the stake and still be able to stand on his own two feet!

And of course, recycling is important.

Mona,

I've never seen the movie. I'm afraid to ask (I hate horror flicks).

Let me see if I can find the parable about the man without a spine. It's wonderful. I wish I had written it!

Posted by: MarylandMother | April 4, 2007 2:32 PM

change "It's a rusty off white color about to fall apart" to

"It's a shady dark green color..."

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 2:35 PM

Mona, If you write a parody of an Eminem song and adjust the slag so it makes sense, it likely would be homophobic and sexist, but not racist. The listener is unlikely to deem him representative of Caucasians, generally. nice try, though:>)

Marian, Take 10 minutes to imagine you've attended a revival meeting, assuming that's in your experience, LOL, and your faith will last long enough to get through the meeting. Come to Jesus Meetings, though, are usually reserved for conversations you absolutely must have because the result of not having them has become too untenable - conversations with spouses, employees, managers and clients often fit the bill. The principal conversation is one you can skip, IMHO. It's not your job to make every corner of the world a better place. Now it the principal starts messing with your son, you might need to have a Come to Jesus Meeting.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | April 4, 2007 2:36 PM

"She can ignore the calls from the school all she wants, they are probably just going to stick the kid in the nurse's office or somewhere out of the way like a sweaty gym locker. Not like he would still be in class learning or anything..."

Ignoring the calls wouldn't work for my child's school. They would go to the next name on the emergency card and call that person to come and pick up the child.

Posted by: anon | April 4, 2007 2:36 PM

Excuse me, but can someone provide me with that contact list? Is it Fo4 who's keeping it? Leslie? Fred?

Thanks!

Posted by: Maryland Mother | April 4, 2007 11:07 AM

If you mean the list where some people talk to each other in even more detail about blog subjects, you can write me at

Fred_and_Frieda@hotmail.com

Posted by: Fred | April 4, 2007 2:41 PM

Yes, it is SO frustrating that margarine has whey in it!

When I want to make a non-dairy(meat) meal, it is about impossible to find non dairy margarine!!!! How annoying...

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 2:42 PM

Disneyism: Bad sh*t doesn't happen here!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 2:43 PM

Mona, If you write a parody of an Eminem song and adjust the slag so it makes sense, it likely would be homophobic and sexist, but not racist. The listener is unlikely to deem him representative of Caucasians, generally. nice try, though:>)

Do black people really think that the rappers singing about beating their wives and getting it on with eveyone is representative of their race?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 2:45 PM

Megan's neighbor--

Definitely not feeling like a CTJ meeting with the principal. The sting of that morning passed by the next. Will work to champion libraries as I have more time. It's not a productive fight in the short term.

The closest I've ever been to a revival was a mandatory anti-union meeting when I was employed by Wal-mart back when I was in college. It was even in a tent!

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 2:46 PM

Disneyism: Bad sh*t doesn't happen here!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 02:43 PM

Except to mothers.

Posted by: Maryland Mother | April 4, 2007 2:47 PM

Do black people really think that the rappers singing about beating their wives and getting it on with eveyone is representative of their race?

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 02:45 PM

African-Americans do not, but many white folks to believe that African-American rappers represent their race.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 2:47 PM

When did you ever hear a rap song about everyone loving each other and respecting women? If you did, was it a popular song?


One of the first, most popular rap songs. LL Cool J "I Need Love"

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 2:48 PM

Atlmom -

There is whey free margarine around - it is hard to find. You need to shop where there are observant Jews living nearby. It will be marked with the word "Parve" on it somewhere.

There's also whey in a lot of the soymilk products.

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 2:48 PM

"Ignoring the calls wouldn't work for my child's school. They would go to the next name on the emergency card and call that person to come and pick up the child."

oooohhh, tempting! if both DH and I screened calls, then they'd get my dad, who, shall we say, doesn't suffer fools gladly :-)

too bad i'm too old, and too much of a feminist to let my dad read them the riot act. i could probably sell tickets, though...

seriously - have any of you agreed to be a friend's go-to guy for emergency child pickup and had that friend abuse the privilege? DH's admin is getting calls for a friend's kids fairly frequently. it's tough to penalize her for being a good friend, but it's becoming obvious she's being taken advantage of and it also starting to affect her work. suggestions/war stories anyone?

Posted by: allergymom | April 4, 2007 2:48 PM

allergy mom:

If your child is on whatever meds the doctor thinks he should be on, the doctor has written a note saying the child is not ill/contagious/does not need to be at home, and the school cannot handle this problem, if I were you, I would be finding another school--I'm assuming your child is in a child care center or private school based on your comment about going to the "Head of School."

Children age 2 and up can take Claritin and Zyrtec at least (my daughter was on both at various times). At least by six you can take Nasonex (she was on that, too).

Also, as a public school teacher, I know that there are pretty clear guidelines about when a child can be sent home sick. Pretty much it is that the child must have a fever of 100+, or the child can stay at school. Sometimes the nurse's aide will call a parent to inform him/her of the child's symptoms (especially when the aide knows the parent will want to know), but as a parent, I know that the aide has always been careful to tell me that I don't have to pick my child up, she is just informing me of the symptoms. If the child isn't sick enough to go home, it is seldom that the child stays in the clinic for long.

More about daycare: when my daughter was 4, she ran a slight fever. The center called me and I had my dad go pick her up. The next day she stayed home with him, but did not have a fever. Then over the weekend, she seemed fine except for a little rash around her mouth, but her sister got sick. I put hydrocortisone on her face and the rash cleared up, so I sent her to school. Her sister stayed home with my dad all week (thank goodness for retired parents!). Then the 4 yo complained that her bottom hurt and the other one began to get a rash around her mouth (and she was still feeling sick), so I took them both to the doctor. The doctor took one look at the 4 yo's bottom and diagnosed strep throat (well rectal strep). I had been taking her to daycare all week (she was symptomless except for the sore rear end). I was mortified that she had been exposing the other children and the teachers all week!

Posted by: single mother | April 4, 2007 2:51 PM

I had to conduct a CTJ meeting with one of my employees last week. Man, I hate these annual performance reviews; her work had not improved past a certain plateau of barely average, and subtle hints of what she needed to do for improvement weren't working.

Thus the CTJ meeting. I guess it went as well as could be expected; the usual "I need more time" and "I learn at my own pace" excuses (been here three years; that's not enough time?) but despite multiple attempts by more capable workers to show her how to improve, she's just not getting it.

She's got six months to improve, or the dreaded "work plan" gets added to her performance evaluation. All that means is I've got to do more paperwork...

(rant mode off...)

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 2:51 PM

and john L I think asking people their marital status in a work setting is illegal.

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 2:55 PM

However, suppose one were to parodize a white rapper; is that racism as well?

Posted by: Mona | April 4, 2007 02:14 PM

Well, if the white rapper is parodying a black rapper, and then someone else decides to parody the white rapper, we could lose track of who's being insulted...

Just joking. It could be racist. It depends on what is being done and how. Mainly how.

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 2:58 PM

Hedonism: I love it when sh*t happens.

Tantrism: F**k this sh*t!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 3:00 PM

"I may be more reluctant than some to ask my friends to babysit."

Why is that? I think a good support system of friends who can help each other out in emergencies and non-emergencies is very important. It's not like I'm suggesting that you ask friends to babysit on a regular basis without the understanding that you will reciprocate.


Posted by: momof4 | April 4, 2007 3:01 PM

Wait, is parodize a word? Isn't it still parody?

Grammar self-policing.

Posted by: Mona | April 4, 2007 3:01 PM

"Then the 4 yo complained that her bottom hurt and the other one began to get a rash around her mouth "

I'm sorry, but something here just does not sound kosher.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 3:01 PM

atlmom,

While I don't think it is outright illegal (our personnel files all have marital status on them for contact purposes), asking if someone is widowed/divorced/separated certainly falls under none of your business, IMO. What's wrong with just saying married/single? I couldn't see why the HR people had to know more detailed info than that, and I told our Big Boss that as well.

Posted by: John L | April 4, 2007 3:02 PM

wait a minute... is the other one in management training?

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 3:04 PM

African-Americans do not, but many white folks to believe that African-American rappers represent their race

You all are African-Americans but the white folks are white folks.

Nice

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 3:11 PM

"Then the 4 yo complained that her bottom hurt and the other one began to get a rash around her mouth "

I'm sorry, but something here just does not sound kosher.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 03:01 PM

No, it sounds like the little kids weren't washing their hands. Or weren't washing them well.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 3:13 PM

Jehova's Witness: Knock, knock! Sh*t happens!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 3:19 PM

3:13, you obviously never had any management training.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 3:20 PM

Kids are pretty gross, John L. Get yourself prepared. You will be wiping bottoms (and checking up on self-wiped bottoms) for years more than you would ever have imagined.

As for single mom - don't beat yourself up. We've ALL participated in infecting other people's children. We've all infected coworkers.

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 3:20 PM

"Her sister stayed home with my dad all week (thank goodness for retired parents!). Then the 4 yo complained that her bottom hurt and the other one began to get a rash around her mouth (and she was still feeling sick), so I took them both to the doctor."

Well, if you really think that Single Mom's father is a pedophile, why not just say it already? Otherwise, it is likely a case of the kids not washing their hands well. It happens all the time. Why do you think pinworms are so common in little kids? Both pre-schoolers and elementary-age?

Posted by: 3:13 | April 4, 2007 3:22 PM

Kids are pretty gross, John L. Get yourself prepared. You will be wiping bottoms (and checking up on self-wiped bottoms) for years more than you would ever have imagined.

Me: Ain't that the truth. I keep wondering when I will be free of the butt check.

Posted by: anon for several reasons | April 4, 2007 3:28 PM

John L.,

I just came back from a meeting and saw your post about having to make those calls - I am so sorry. I cannot imagine what that was like for you, especially at that age.

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 3:28 PM

OMG, I never even thought of it like that! I was nowhere near that gutter! Holy crap!

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 3:29 PM

To 3:13: Geez, Chris' comments were a joke...as in a little butt kissing going on.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 3:30 PM

Good News and in the spirit of the blog at this time...

With great priveledge and honor I would like to announce the arrival of our newest blog baby!

On March 16, Niner, a regular contributer to this blog, gave birth to a healthy baby boy. He weighed in at
8 pounds 1.4 ounces, and he was 20.5 inches long.

In the past few weeks, as you can imagine, she has been a little to busy to participate, but the next time she arrives, I would like to encourage everybody to give her a nice warm congratulations!

Posted by: Father of 4 | April 4, 2007 3:32 PM

Chris,

I'm with you. I thought something sounded unusual because I have never heard of strep causing a sore bottom.

Disclaimer: I do realize that just because I haven't heard of it doesn't make it impossible.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 3:36 PM

Allergies -

DD was similar for us.

We had a perpetual low level cycle of sinus infections, post nasal drip, head/chest congestion that we couldnt break.

Alergist wanted to do bi-weekly alergen shots - we did the bed of nails tests - and yet she didnt show up abnormally allergic to anything except cat dander - and we dont have a cat. So we said no to the expensive and IMHO inappropriate shots. Boy was that doctor pushy!

Dietician who gave us a huge list of things not to eat - btw high fructose corn syrup is a big nono for the ear/sinus/nose afflicted. Blood sugar gets so freakin high that microbes get it on! Learned alot about diet - no change to perpetual sniffles, post nasal drip.

Taking anti-biotics way too much was a baddie to, never cleared up really. Always on nasanex, claritin whatever - not that effective.

We finally succumbed to adnoid surgery and it seems to have worked: Adnoids/Tonsils removed and normal physical growth has cleared the drainage issues and perpetual congestion and its side effects.

For the second full winter almost a clean slate, and the decongestants and anti-histamines are now effective.

Just one case, but much better now. Kids can be so mean - she was always teased for the pocket full of tissues.

Posted by: Fo3 | April 4, 2007 3:38 PM

"Yes, it is SO frustrating that margarine has whey in it!

When I want to make a non-dairy(meat) meal, it is about impossible to find non dairy margarine!!!! How annoying...

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 02:42 PM"

Ok, I'm still behind on messages, but atlmom and allergy mom, the best dairy-free margarine I have found is called Soy Garden, and it is made by Earth Balance. I have seen it in the "naturals" section of some regular grocery stores, but you can definitely get it at whole foods/wild oats type places. It really tastes good, I love it.

Also, allergymom, I don't know if this is something you would be interested in but we had a great experience treating our 2 year old's food and seasonal allergies through acupressure.

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 3:38 PM

Hi Allergy Mom - Wondering if you've checked out DC Urban Moms before? THey run a listserve and a forum/bulletin board that are full of resources and advice. Your issue sounds like one that some of the other parents in the group (more than 7000) may be able to help with. I've found a lot of advice from them very valuable (and dare I say a bit more valuable that comments on this blog?) The listserve is more helpful than the forum - I think becuase it is Not anonymous.
Good luck to you.
Our little one seems to be starting to get allergies and I can only imagine how hard this must be on you.
www.dcurbanmom.com

Posted by: To Allergy Mom | April 4, 2007 3:42 PM

Nation of Islam: Don't take no sh*t!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 3:43 PM

Nation of Islam: Don't take no sh*t!

They don't promote peace either.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 3:44 PM

Fo4: what great news. If you talk to niner, send our regards.

Posted by: foamgnome | April 4, 2007 3:44 PM

I guess in my case the case wasnt Allergies, it was misdiagnosed allergies...so sorry if I was off-topic - Again.

The healthier diet helped the whole house, but finding food that was on the dietician's list was a total pain and didnt do anything dramatic for my DS's condition.

Partially Hydrogenated anything aint good for ya! The organic and whole foods we still buy taste much better than the processed stuff - you just have to eat it before its shelf life is over.

Posted by: Fo3 | April 4, 2007 3:45 PM

New Age: Visualize sh*t happening.

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 3:48 PM

Off-topic warning on old topic:

Mona, since you asked, if you still remember asking:

Grandmaster Flash & The Furious 5 - The Message

The Sugarhill Gang - Rapper's Delight

Public Enemy - Fight The Power

all are in the generally accepted top 10 rap songs no matter who is making the list, assuming they like rap, generally. Yes, there are others and more recent, but I don't have time today to research it. Is there a lot of crap, sure, but that's true of all music forms.

Rant over. Thanks for tolerating. Carry on.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | April 4, 2007 3:51 PM

Voodooism: Sh*t doesn't just happen, we make sh*t happen!

Posted by: Everybody knows... | April 4, 2007 3:54 PM

Fight The Power

I thought that was a rallying call against white America

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 3:55 PM

Thank you, megan.

Being a vegetarian, I don't make meat often (it is for guests or my darling boys), but since we keep a kosher home, when I do make dishes to serve with a meat meal, it is a struggle when margarine is called for.

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 3:57 PM

Thanks, Megan's Neighbor. Others who are more positive are Queen Latifah, Kurtis Blow, Run DMC, LL Cool J. Will Smith (Fresh Prince) too. I think the more positive modern rap is probably underground.

I remember memorizing Rapper's Delight when it came out. I'm sounding like an old fogey right about now...

Posted by: theoriginalmomof2 | April 4, 2007 4:02 PM

"Disclaimer: I do realize that just because I haven't heard of it doesn't make it impossible."

Hah! Had that when DD was 3. Fever and cough, we go to after-hours doc to rule out bronchitis/pneumonia. He says she's fine, maybe asthma, but no ear, throat, lungs, anything; runs the basic tests just to be safe. Meanwhile, she's literally bouncing off the walls, while all the other kids there are barely moving, looking like death warmed over. I start to think what the [bleep] was I thinking wasting everyone's time?

So guess whose kid had strep?

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 4:13 PM

Nation of Islam: Don't take no sh*t!

They don't promote peace either.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 03:44 PM

and that's not its goal. Self-suffiency is.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | April 4, 2007 4:14 PM

Fight The Power

I thought that was a rallying call against white America

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 03:55 PM

I have not heard anyone characterize it that way before. The fight was against the powers that be, whether they be corporate, executive branch, police authority, and whether or not those in power were white, green or purple. It was a song that people of all races, if not all backgrounds, related to at the time, and some of us still relate. If you are interested, the following link is to a great Salon article about a song that was highly influential on other musicians and on the industry.

This commercial for Public Enemy is now over:>)

http://dir.salon.com/story/ent/masterpiece/2002/06/03/fight_the_power/index.html

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | April 4, 2007 4:18 PM

"The doctor took one look at the 4 yo's bottom and diagnosed strep throat (well rectal strep)."

"Disclaimer: I do realize that just because I haven't heard of it doesn't make it impossible."

laura, I was referring to sore bottom/rectal strep, not the fact that a child who has strep can still be active. My daughter was one strep throat away from having tonsils removed and I never knew that there was any possiblity of rectal strep.

Posted by: to Laura | April 4, 2007 4:30 PM

"The doctor took one look at the 4 yo's bottom and diagnosed strep throat (well rectal strep)."

wow - even the thought makes me cringe for this poor child.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 4:31 PM

my employer offers on-site EC w/Bright Horizons. I couldn't be more happy about bringing DS here when his regular place is closed for "whatever". The caregivers do not cycle through this place and I have no qualms whatsoever in bringing him in. They love and adore him and really keep him busy. They also provide snacks, drinks, breakfast & lunch. What more could I ask for?

The only thing that is/was annoying is that since I live in MD I still had to comply with DC health requirements which meant that I had to get a lead test before he was able to attend. Another day for a Dr. appointment.....annoying!!!

I think that employers aren't necessarily of the mindset that the work is more important than family, but rather assisting me in being able to work without worrying about care for my children. I would hope that any employer worth their weight can understand that there are times that sick children is unavoidable and a parent must make them a priority.

Employees who get contagious sickness (strep for example) who take a couple of antibiotics and come back to work because they think the world will stop turning if they're not here are infecting everyone else. They are selfish and inconsiderate. I actually met with an employer's boss about this. I don't have time to be out sick or home with a sick kid because an adult can't stay home!!!! Most of the professionals can work from home anyway. That's not an option for secretaries who don't have endless buckets of time.

Posted by: cj | April 4, 2007 4:33 PM

and that's not its goal. Self-suffiency is

Is that the same as racism?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 4:40 PM

I work in a hospital clinic. Patients frequently bring their children with them to appointments. Not only is it distracting but sometimes the kids are sick. A couple of weeks ago a woman brought her two kids to her appt because they were too sick to go to school.

Posted by: KLB SS MD | April 4, 2007 4:42 PM

Greatest exposing everyone else's kids story:

My brother broke out with chickenpox the day they brought my sister home from the hospital. Since we'd been to "see the new baby" a couple times, and chickenpox is actually most contagious before the rash breaks out, my mom had to call the hospital and tell them we'd exposed their entire newborn nursery!

Posted by: Kathrina | April 4, 2007 4:49 PM

If one kid in the neighborhood got the measles or mumps our mothers would troop all of the kids over to visit so we could get it too!

Posted by: KLB SS MD | April 4, 2007 4:51 PM

Yes, I know of a lot of "chicken pox parties" for the same reason. But I'm not so sure even those families would have wanted exposure for a newborn - that's a pretty crazy story, Kathrina!

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 4:53 PM

to To Laura: I got that, wasn't criticizing, was just laughing because it struck home. I mean strep = bad throat and fever, right? And when my daughter had had it before, it was classic symptoms -- 103 fever, really painful to swallow, etc. So when the doc examined my daughter's throat and told me no strep, it was a big shock to everyone to get the lab results back an hour later saying it was strep -- especially the doc, who had just diagnosed her with asthma and was in the middle of administering a treatment! But apparently with little kids, strep can look just like a respiratory virus. Or, umm, diaper rash (that was a new one on me, too).

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 4:58 PM

Haven't had the time today to read the topic or replies, but thought y'all might enjoy this:

HOW TO PROPERLY PLACE NEW EMPLOYEES

1. Put 400 bricks in a closed room. Put your new hires in the room and close the door. Leave them alone and come back after 6 hours.

2. Then analyze the situation:

a. If they are counting the bricks, put them in the Accounting Department.

b. If they are recounting them, put them in Auditing.

c. If they intricately building something with the bricks, put them in Engineering.

d. If they are arranging the bricks in some strange order, put them in Planning.

e. If they are throwing the bricks at each other, put them in Operations (or legal).

f. If they are sleeping, put them in Security.

g. If they have broken the bricks into pieces, put them in Information Technology.

h. If they are sitting idle, put them in Human Resources.

i. If they say they have tried different combinations, they are looking for more, yet not a brick has been moved, put them in Sales.

j. If they have already left for the day, put them in Marketing.

k. If they are staring out of the window, put them in Strategic Planning.

l. If they are talking to each other, and not a single brick has been moved, congratulate them and put them in Top Management.

Posted by: Texas Dad of 2 | April 4, 2007 5:01 PM

Klb:

When I was about 6 mos. Old my 2 sisters got chicken pox. My mom talked to the dr and he said it was ok for me to get it. She said it was adorable since I couldn't scratch and so I'd just be wriggling around.

Posted by: atlmom | April 4, 2007 5:02 PM

Strep can kill you too in its most scary form. If it gets into your blood, it can cause septic shock (organ failure). Not what you normally think of when you think of strep.

My friend had to have his leg amputated (source of the strep infection) to save his life. His kidneys had shut down, liver, heart, and lungs compromised. He has since (except for losing the leg) made a full recovery.

Posted by: strep | April 4, 2007 5:04 PM

""While the care of their children is important, they feel they can't let down their obligations or responsibilities at work," "

Ummm ... no. Work is important, but NOTHING is as important of an obligation and responsibility as care for one's own child.

Posted by: StudentMom | April 4, 2007 5:07 PM

Nutty Mama, I'm with you: I'd have trouble leaving a sick child at an unknown place.

But I think that it raises people's comfort level when other employees have used the back-up care with good results.

I recently spoke with moms at the consulting firm, Accenture, which offers emergency childcare. Many of the moms had used it (Accenture uses a firm that sends a certified childcare provider to your house). Because so many parents used the service, there was a high level of comfort with it. It cost something like $5 per hour for the first 20 hours (subsidized by Accenture), and then you could use the same service at the firm's regular rate, which was around $15-$20 per hour. Each time you get a different childcare provider, but there was general agreement that the childcare providers were excellent. I would use something that my friends and colleagues agreed was safe, good care.

Posted by: Leslie | April 4, 2007 5:10 PM

"Work is important, but NOTHING is as important of an obligation and responsibility as care for one's own child."

StudentMom, I understand where you are coming from, and reading the lines about being able to work no matter what is happening at home does make me cringe a bit. But it seems to me that there will always be situations that don't fall into the cut and dried dichotomy your describing. Is it worth it to risk losing your job to be home every time your kid is sick? Taking care of your children means more than just being physically present when they are ill. I think it sucks that anyone would be in a situation to have to make those choices, but I have no doubt that some parents are.

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 5:19 PM

tickles

Posted by: test | April 4, 2007 5:42 PM

and that's not its goal. Self-suffiency is

Is that the same as racism?

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 04:40 PM

Ignoring the fundamental issue that racism requires institutional power, how is encouraging self-sufficiency "the same as" racism? More words please, if you have a point to make.

Posted by: MN | April 4, 2007 5:42 PM

"Work is important, but NOTHING is as important of an obligation and responsibility as care for one's own child."

Megan, nice response to the above -- I am working to control my innate snark on this one. I think life does a lot to challenge that kind of black and white worldview. Yes, if I have to choose whether to throw my child or my work under the bus, that would be work, no questions asked. But if the boy has a sniffle and the client has a major filing deadline, then choosing to blow off work in favor of my child could cost the client several millions of dollars, get me fired, and possibly lead to a malpractice suit against my firm and/or even get me disbarred.

It's not just a good/evil, black/white, responsibility/selfishness thing. Yes, I have a moral responsibility to take care of my children when they are sick. But I also have a legal and ethical responsibility to my clients. I have a moral, legal, and ethical responsibility to my partners, who will be left cleaning up my mess -- not to mention the associates and support staff who rely on those clients to provide them with work. And I also have a moral responsibility to support my family (and thank God I don't have to choose between medical care and putting food on the table). And sometimes those conflict.

You do your best to minimize that conflict. I've chosen NOT to be a trial lawyer; I've chosen to work part-time; I've chosen a firm that doesn't give a crap about face time; I have multiple layers of backup plans in effect. But sometimes, sh*t still happens, and you have to make a judgment call, based on who needs you more at that particular moment. And it really belittles the efforts of the many women who face those tough choices to just blithely opine that NOTHING is as important as taking care of your own child.

Posted by: Laura | April 4, 2007 5:57 PM

I try to be open minded but this sounds pretty creepy to me. If you have a job that requires you to be there no matter, then that's what nannies are for. Who would leave a sick kid in a strange place with strangers? Well, in a hospital, but wouldn't the parents stick around for that?

I had to give up a night out that I had planned for months recently when my youngest came down with the flu. I have family and neighbors who help out in emergencies but they all have the rule that it doesn't count for a sick kid. Besides, our first pediatrician always used to tell us that a sick kid would be an attached kid and that was the truth. I didn't get my night out but I was there to give both comfort and care -- it's in the job description.

Really, if you are that important to your job then you have the money and the brains to get a nanny or caretaker who can be in your home and who is known to your kid.

Posted by: soccermom | April 4, 2007 5:59 PM

Hey, MN, I'm not the original poster and I'm very ignorant on this subject, but as I'm bored with what I'm doing your post triggered two thoughts. One is that my understanding is that in many countries Islam does have enormous institutional power. The other is that the concept of separateness, which could be one way of interpreting self-sufficiency, can easily blend into racism or some other -ism. THink of apartheid in South Africa where the idea was essentially separate development for each race. Imposed by a white minority on other races we can easily see the horribly racist implications. Maybe what the poster was getting at is when an ethnic or cultural group attempts to contain and/or promote development within itself in a separationist way does it have the same implications?

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 6:02 PM

Actually, soccermom, I think often it's the people with the lowest pay who have the least ability to not show up without risking being fired. Giving up a night out with your friends simply is not the same as not showing up to your shift at work where there's nobody to cover you, no sick days, and no flexibility, which describes an awful lot of low-wage workers.

Posted by: Megan | April 4, 2007 6:05 PM

I believe it was one of the franchised housecleaning services that had a policy of reducing an hourly workers rate of pay for two weeks following an unscheduled absence for any reason including illness or child's illness.

Posted by: Marian | April 4, 2007 6:26 PM

you said...

Ummm ... no. Work is important, but NOTHING is as important of an obligation and responsibility as care for one's own child.

if you have a chance go reread the post from the hospital pediatrician.

I am really glad my Dad's top heart surgeon didn't send in a sub because his kid had the sniffles.

soccermom is right that a top surgeon has a nanny, but that doesn't mean the nanny never has a spouse die a kid in the hospita l or gets the flue herself. Rarer than a toddler getting a fever, but not out of the question. The companies listed are probably providing this to keep high-rollers convenienced and happy. I think some of these wall street places also offer many conveniences / amenities (as does google).

Posted by: to studentmom (& soccermom) | April 4, 2007 6:46 PM

Laura,
Are you Legal Eagle?

Posted by: KLB SS MD | April 4, 2007 7:11 PM

Soccermom and Studentmom -

1. Don't be so judgemental.

2. Schoolage don't need a parent's full attention every single minute - even when a little sick. Yeah, very sick is different, but there are plenty of days when back-up care is plenty good enough. If the kid takes a turn for the worse, the back-up folks will call you. If you think a school-age child can't manage for five hours without mommy (even when not feeling his or her best), you are terribly underestimating children, and overestimating your own importance.

3. Did I say don't be so judgemental?

4. Nannies get (and take) sick leave, just like many other working people. Then what should a person do?

Posted by: me | April 4, 2007 7:20 PM

Megan, thank you for the thoughtful and polite response. You bring up a good - although unfortunate - point.

To the others, yes I am blithely opining that caring for the children that are legally, ethically AND morally within your care is more important than making a conference call. Don't like my opinion? Well, I am glad you were not my mom, and I'm glad to be able to provide better care than that to my daughter as well.

Posted by: StudentMom | April 4, 2007 7:37 PM

I still wonder who porn star is?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 7:46 PM

FWIW StudentMom, I agree with you.

Posted by: opinionated not judgmental | April 4, 2007 7:49 PM

FWIW, I am not sure that I agree with anything.

Posted by: oxy but not moron | April 4, 2007 7:52 PM

***I still wonder who porn star is?

My guess would be Emily.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 9:39 PM

To the others, yes I am blithely opining that caring for the children that are legally, ethically AND morally within your care is more important than making a conference call. Don't like my opinion? Well, I am glad you were not my mom, and I'm glad to be able to provide better care than that to my daughter as well.

Posted by: StudentMom | April 4, 2007 07:37 PM

Well, I am glad you are not my daughter because I'd be embarrassed about your narrow-minded, privileged view of the world. Your hubris about the quality fo care you think you are providing may do your daughter more harm than good in the end.

Posted by: anon for today | April 4, 2007 9:45 PM

I hardly think it's hubris to ascertain that the love and comfort that a mom can provide to the child who was comforted in her womb for 9 months is the gold standard (... unless your name is Susan Smith or Andrea Yates, but I digress).

I already agreed with Megan that yes, it is unfortunate that SOME people work for Simon Legree, and for them, finding an emergency backup might be necessary to keep them from living in a cardboard box. But today's blog was not written to bemoan those poor workers - rather, it caters to the same upper-middle-class that nearly all of Leslie's blogs cater to. This set is faaar more likely to have the flexibility to A) get time off as needed or B) tell their unflexible boss where to stick it and find a new job.

Whatever ... to most of the folks here who are striving in vain against 10,000 years of biology where a parent actually cares for their own young, I am sure that I reek of an outdated mode of thought. Or rather, a "1950s" mode of thought, as that seems to be a favorite insult here. Either way, I take it as a compliment, because it means that I am treating my child with the same love and tender devotion that I was raised with, and that has made my family into the cohesive, loving and strong unit that it is. Snipe at that all you want, it doesn't make it any less true! :)

Posted by: StudentMom | April 4, 2007 10:06 PM

No, my dad is not a pedophile. And the 7 yo was not kissing the butt of the 4 yo--she professes to hate the younger one's guts. If anything, it would be the other way around.

And now, for the rest of the story: Since the younger's infection had lasted longer, the dr put her on Augmentin immediately (it's stronger than some other antibiotics), and she had to be on it for two weeks instead of 10 days. He put the older one on something not so strong, for 10 days. Augmentin tastes horrible, a factor I hadn't considered when filling the first half of the prescription (must be tossed 10 days after prescription is filled, so for two weeks you have to get it in two batches). So when we filled the second half of the prescription, we asked the pharmacy to flavor it strawberry. The 4 yo actually rubbed her hands with delight at the prospect of taking that strawberry medicine--what a let down it was for her to actually taste it and find that it isn't much better with flavoring.

The older one got marginally better on her antibiotic, but within a day of going off it, white spots appeared on her throat, so she had to go on Augmentin also--so she was on antibiotic basically for three weeks. I was too, as I came down with a bad ear infection that didn't get better with the first antibiotic, so I had to go on Biaxin for 2 weeks. A lot of yogurt drinks were consumed in our house that month!

Posted by: single mother | April 4, 2007 10:55 PM

Whatever ... to most of the folks here who are striving in vain against 10,000 years of biology where a parent actually cares for their own young, I am sure that I reek of an outdated mode of thought. Or rather, a "1950s" mode of thought, as that seems to be a favorite insult here. Either way, I take it as a compliment, because it means that I am treating my child with the same love and tender devotion that I was raised with, and that has made my family into the cohesive, loving and strong unit that it is. Snipe at that all you want, it doesn't make it any less true! :)

Posted by: StudentMom | April 4, 2007 10:06 PM

blah, blah, blah, I love me! I am wonderful ! blah, blah, blah, to all of the little people, look how wonderful, loving and biologically attuned I am to my utter self-righteousness. blah, blah, blah, wonderful me. bad you. bye now.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 4, 2007 11:32 PM

"I am sure that I reek of an outdated mode of thought."

you do reek, but not of an outdated mode of thought, only of arrogance.

Posted by: anon for now | April 4, 2007 11:34 PM

*you do reek, but not of an outdated mode of thought, only of arrogance'

While you may or may not agree with studentmom, she is entitled to her opinion just as much as anyone else on this blog. Being firm and steadfast in her opinions doesn't make her arrogant. I happen to agree that I think my place is with my child when she is sick. The reality is that work interferes with this, so that I sometimes use other care for my sick child, but this is extremely rare, such as when I was in training that was paid for by my company and could not be rescheduled. Any other day, I would miss work. Other people can fill you in on missed meetings, or in-house meetings can be rescheduled.

It's not that I think that no one else can care for the child as well as me, it's that I WANT to be the one caring for her, and she would prefer it was me or her dad.

I guess it boils down to personal ambitions for a lot of people. I don't LOVE my job. I'm not a doctor, lawyer, or other professional. I am a skilled hourly employer who willing chose not to pursue other employment avenues because work has never been, nor will it ever be, much more than a means to support my life.

I also made a conscious choice to use less than my allotted vacation time for vacation, so that I will always be able to take off when my child is sick. I have never taken more than one week vacation, evn though I earn four. While I may be off more than others to be with my children, you can bet that I will be at work during spring break, July 4th week, and Christmas week, and the day after Thanksgiving unless the children are sick during those times. That's my trade-off. I give up prime time vacation in order to keep the flexibility of being off when my children are sick.

I also have daycare arrangements, extended family backup, and DH to cover any scheduled days off from school or daycare.

I know many people don't have these options, but they do exist. I care more about being with my family than pursuing a professional career. If the professional career is an integral part of you and who you are, I am not saying that is wrong. Not everyone is the same and not everyone gets the same things from their careers.

I just wish that everyone would stop implying that other people's opinions and choices are wrong just because you would choose differently.

Posted by: ???? | April 5, 2007 7:29 AM

I would also like to say that my extended family is local. We can see each other on holidays and weekends with no travel involved other than 45 minute car ride. For those who have family in other places, I understand that only having a one-week vacation may not be realistic if you would like to have a vacation with spouse and children that doesn't always involve extended family. YMMV

Posted by: ???? | April 5, 2007 7:34 AM

To the others, yes I am blithely opining that caring for the children that are legally, ethically AND morally within your care is more important than making a conference call.

------------------------------------
-------------------------------------

I love how you turn questions that talked about heart surgeons into people making conference calls.

Historically it took a village... women worked with kids by their side, extended families nearby, etc. The vanity that mom, mom, mom, mom is the only caring adult in the world humanly capable of showing needed love and care to a child is indeed a very recent vanity.

now for the snark... what are you studying? I am guessing not math and hoping not history.

Posted by: to studentmom | April 5, 2007 9:17 AM

"I love how you turn questions that talked about heart surgeons into people making conference calls. "

Funny, I thought the majority of the comments were from lawyers and their all-important, matter-of-life-or-death work. Perhaps that's where the conference call mention came from.


Posted by: Anonymous | April 5, 2007 10:46 AM

and that's not its goal. Self-suffiency is

Is that the same as racism?

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 04:40 PM

Ignoring the fundamental issue that racism requires institutional power, how is encouraging self-sufficiency "the same as" racism? More words please, if you have a point to make.

Nation of Islam is a racist organization. Go look it up for yourself.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 5, 2007 11:03 AM

Child care centers should not be taking sick children. If the kid is sick, they should be home with a parent taking care of them, not in a room full of other kids. What idiot would drag a sick child out of bed, through traffic or on public transportation, and plop them in a room with other kids. BAAAAADDDDD MOMS.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 5, 2007 3:02 PM

Child care centers should not be taking sick children. If the kid is sick, they should be home with a parent taking care of them, not in a room full of other kids. What idiot would drag a sick child out of bed, through traffic or on public transportation, and plop them in a room with other kids. BAAAAADDDDD MOMS.

Posted by: | April 5, 2007 03:02 PM

Yeah, for evidently marrying BAAAAADDDD DADS.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 5, 2007 6:09 PM

While you may or may not agree with studentmom, she is entitled to her opinion just as much as anyone else on this blog. Being firm and steadfast in her opinions doesn't make her arrogant. . . .
I just wish that everyone would stop implying that other people's opinions and choices are wrong just because you would choose differently.

Posted by: ???? | April 5, 2007 07:29 AM

To the others, yes I am blithely opining that caring for the children that are legally, ethically AND morally within your care is more important than making a conference call. Don't like my opinion? Well, I am glad you were not my mom, and I'm glad to be able to provide better care than that to my daughter as well.

Posted by: StudentMom | April 4, 2007 07:37 PM

?????, it's not StudentMom's professed firmness and steadfastness that indicate her arrogance, it's her belittling statement that, when other parents do not care for their children in the identical manner as studentmom, they are prioritizing conference calls over the children who are "legally, ethically AND morally within your care". Perhaps you missed StudentMom's comment and its implications for others who choose differently than StudentMom. Oddly, it's the exact behavior you rightly condemn in your last sentence above.

Everyone has an opinion. No one is entitled to belittle the love and care others give to their children, as though she and those who choose identically are the only ones trodding the straight and narrow path to sainthood.

Posted by: anon for today | April 5, 2007 6:19 PM

To anon for today: honestly, your statement about "the love and care others give to their children" is kinda the point I'm making. I --LOVE-- to see people give love and care to their children, it's heartwarming and really what the circle of life is all about, imo. What I'm commenting on is those who seem to not want to give that love and care if it is at odds with and/or inconvenient to their personal ambition. Personally, I think that is a disservice. You think different? Fine. No skin off my nose, no impact on my family.

Posted by: StudentMom | April 5, 2007 7:22 PM

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