The list of comments is endless, not to mention the stares and suggestions from strangers and well-meaning family and friends. I have put together a list of comments all moms of children with eczema have heard at least once.
Our first son was born with eczema everywhere. I recall being a new mom and crying myself to sleep some nights because I could not make it go away for him. It was in the creases of his ankles, behind his knees, creases of his elbows, his neck, stomach, head and face. Now, at the age of four, he has grown out of it, and his skin is clear.
Yesterday, our third son was diagnosed with eczema, and it’s worse than my first son’s. Luckily this time I was better prepared and already knew what to expect. Unless you have had a child with eczema, you can’t immediately recognize or understand it. When I would take my oldest son out in public and his skin was flaring up, the stares would begin.
I will never forget the day we took him into the shoe store. We were trying on a pair of sandals, we took off his socks and put one of the thin nylon socks that they give you. The shoe store attendant came over asking if everything was going ok. Then suddenly, she said in a hushed tone, “I’m going to need to ask you to put a regular sock on him or another nylon sock to try on those sandals with.” I was confused to why she said that. Then, I realized, his eczema was flaring all over his foot and ankle. I said, “Are you referring to this?” She said, “Yes, you are going to spread that foot fungus everywhere.”
Is that contagious?
No, it is not contagious, you will not get it by holding my child or sitting beside him. Your child will not get it if he plays at the park with my child or comes over to our house. Promise.
Is that a burn?
No, my child does not have first, second, or third degree burns. It does burn him when he is having a flair up.
The doctor is wrong, that is ringworm!
I heard this one all the time from family. They even tried to convince me to find a new pediatrician immediately.
You should try…..
I always appreciated hearing new ideas, always hopeful that something might work. That was until I did my research and realized most of the time this is an internal issue. In which case, each child is different. Temporarily making the eczema go away on the skin was not going to solve the problem. I had to figure out what was causing it on the inside first.
Two out of three of my children have eczema. Before this, I was unaware of this immune and skin issue. As a mom of children with eczema, I need to help educate others. Other moms and family are usually well-meaning but just do not understand. Now, I inform new mom friends from the beginning so they are not worried. I also let them know they are more than welcome to ask any questions.
Also read- ECZEMA: THE “ITCHIES” AT THEIR WORST
Nikki is a stay at home mom to three high spirited boys. Three years ago she became a motherless daughter after losing her own mom to terminal brain cancer. When she is not playing the role of referee for the boys, she spends her days trying to encourage and inspire others that are on the grief journey.