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2nd child dx'd, husband and I not seeing eye to eye.....

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by HannahB, Apr 14, 2011.

  1. HannahB

    HannahB Approved members

    Jan 4, 2007
    Our youngest son was recently diagnosed. It was, in a way, harder than the first time for me emotionally because I knew exactly what I was getting into even though the "learning curve" was much easier; to say the least. Because our daughter has been pumping for many years our endo suggested starting our son on the pump from the start and he was interested so we agreed. He seems to be coping well as of now.

    My daughter attends diabetes camp in Massachusetts at Clara Barton every summer and has since we lived on the East Coast. I think it's important for my son (he wants to go) to Camp Joslin and meet other kids his age, as diabetes is no longer "just Katie's issue" as he said the other night. However, I am not sure where this came from but my husband is very uncomfortable sending him to a camp with primarily/all male staff. I know there are female nurses and some other members of the staff, but we have had an experience where a family friend's child was inappropriately touched by a much older (50's) camp staff personnel at an 8 week summer long sleepover camp. In what I know from Katie going to, and loving Barton (although quite resistent at first!) besides the administration, most staff are college aged with type 1 themselves. I am trying to respect his concerns but really can't justify them as a reason not to send our child to camp. I think the experience of our friends has a big impact, but unfortunately bad things happen anywhere and we can't keep our kids locked in the house because of them, we can just keep them as safe as possible.

    Does anyone have any advice? Any children around this age who attend Joslin? Especially from the NY area (since I am doubting from California?!) All and any feedback is greatly appreciated.

    I hope I am not raising a controversial topic, I nor my husband are placing judgement on what we feel has been the greatest experience for Katie and he does agree it would be for our son too. I think he just can't get someone else's terrible and unfortunate experience at a totally different place out of the back of his head, which has led him to believe that boys camps are different.

    The new diagnosis has been hard on us, and any feedback would be great.
  2. chbarnes

    chbarnes Approved members

    Jul 5, 2008
    There are questions you can ask. For example, our church requires anyone working with children to undergo a criminal background check, and submit two letters of reference. Rules do not allow any adult to ever be alone with a child. This includes every Sunday School teacher and volunteers. We must also undergo a training session to understand how we are to deal with specific situations. A camp should have vigorous standards in this regard.
  3. Flutterby

    Flutterby Approved members

    Nov 11, 2006
    I'm sorry to hear of your son's diagnoses.. As for camp, there is a daycamp at clara barton that is co-ed. Also, I know at Clara Barton the rule is 3.. there is NEVER just 2 people in a group. It HAS to be at least 3, never two campers, never a camper and 1 counselor, its always 2 campers 1 counselor or 1 camper 2 counselors, safety in numbers.
  4. Amy C.

    Amy C. Approved members

    Oct 22, 2005
    The same could happen at any camp, not just camps for males. Follow the PP advice on checking out steps a camp takes to prevent this sort of this from happening. You aren't the first to be concerned about this.

    You ought to check it out for your daugher as well.

    Also, just because it happened in one place does not necessarily mean it will happen in another.
  5. Stacey Nagel

    Stacey Nagel Approved members

    Oct 23, 2005
    my son attended Joslin for many years, and had no problems.. He loved it..
  6. piratelight

    piratelight Approved members

    Nov 1, 2006
    I'm so sorry for your second dx.

    My son attends Joslin and will go again this summer but for 2 weeks. His cabin last year had a mix of male and female counselors. The nurse for the cabin was also female.

    As a PP suggested, you can check with the camp and see what steps they take to screen the counselors etc.

    Good luck. I hope that your son can attend camp if he truly wants to go.
  7. Stacey Nagel

    Stacey Nagel Approved members

    Oct 23, 2005
    [As a PP suggested, you can check with the camp and see what steps they take to screen the counselors etc.

    Good luck. I hope that your son can attend camp if he truly wants to go.[/QUOTE]

    per my observation- the majority of counselors there were previously campers.....
  8. mocha

    mocha Approved members

    Feb 27, 2011
    I agree with the above--check the screening process for the counselors. More often than not, if they will be working with minors, they have to go through a background check of some sort.

    If there are still concerns, go over some basic safety rules with all of your kids, such as always making sure that there are 3+ people (including themselves), etc. You can spin it in such a way that you wouldn't be focusing on the counselors being perpetrators, but rather on a general safety 101.

    I'd also emphasize that if something were to happen, it is in no way your fault, your husband's fault, or your child's fault. It is the fault of the perpetrator and their fault alone.
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Approved members

    Nov 20, 2007
    I think it is very clear where your husband's fear is coming from, you have stated it above. However, it is not really fair to your child for your husband to project what happend to another child at another camp onto your child and use it as an excuse not to send him now. It is always important to do everything you can to make your child safe at home and out in the world, and I am sure you will do that. Your husband needs to work out his own issues. Good luck and I hope your children have a great time at camp.
  10. selketine

    selketine Approved members

    Jan 4, 2006
    Maybe in the minority here cause I am a camp weenie (boy did I hate going to summer camp) but maybe the compromise would be to wait another year.

    Just from what I can gather, your son is 7 years old - which is fairly young to go away to camp - and was just dx'd. The camp seems to be across the country from where you live. Perhaps your husband is also uncomfortable because your son is so young and new to diabetes. I guess I'd ask him whether he'd be good with it for next year.

    I guess it doesn't quite make sense that he is ok with your daughter going - but not afraid anyone would abuse her - I suppose he thinks she could stand up for herself and get away. However I think abuse (though very unlikely in any case) would be equal towards girls and boys. That's why I thought the issue may be intertwined with concerns over how young he is and newly dx'd.

    How about going to Friends for Life conference this summer? Your son would get to meet lots of kids with type 1 - they have a great kids program - and it is for the whole family.
  11. badshoe

    badshoe Approved members

    Jun 28, 2006
    There is always CWD's FFL. I am a BIG fan.

    There is a lot of interaction with other kids in age group and mom and dad get a D experience too.
  12. 2type1s

    2type1s Approved members

    Nov 23, 2008
    Wow...I could have written the first part of this letter. My second daughter's diagnosis was much harder emotionally than the first, even though the learning curve was easier. We too, got the pump as soon as we could (a few weeks). We too, immediately signed Zoe up for camp. However her sister, Morgan, did not want her to go! It was HER camp....and she didn't want little sis to tag along, diabetes or not! Zoe went, and it was for her, as Morgan, the best thing I did for her.
    As far as inappropriate touching goes, it is a parent's responsibility to ensure that children know about unsafe touching. Most camps, churches, etc. have policies in place to protect adults and children. Safe Sancturaries is one by the Methodist church. I would ask the camp what practices they have in place. For example, one rule is that no child is EVER alone with an adult. Make this a family rule, and it will keep your child safe at camp, church, school, etc.
  13. somanybakers

    somanybakers Approved members

    Dec 24, 2007
    So sorry about your second child's dx. :cwds:

    This is not a popular view but I'll throw it out there anyway. If your dh feels strongly about your son not going I think Iwould support him. Like a PP said, maybe waiting a year would be a good middle ground. Maybe he could agree to a non overnight optio if there was one, or maybe he isn't ready yet.

    Anyway, I hope you can work it out in a way that brings you both peace.
  14. kiwiliz

    kiwiliz Approved members

    Sep 25, 2008
    I am incredibly sorry about your sons diagnosis too! It must have been a terrible shock. I am inclined to agree with your husband. 7 is very young to be heading off - especially a long way away and for some considerable time. Your husband will be feeling upset about your sons diagnosis too and will be wanting to protect him and support him in every way he can. Perhaps the inappropriate worry is only part of his wanting to keep your son close. When a child is diagnosed the whole family is affected - and often in different ways. Could you compromise and send him next year? There will be other ways he can meet young kids with diabetes - and still be sensitive to his Dads needs. Just a thought.
  15. wilf

    wilf Approved members

    Aug 27, 2007
    I agree with your husband, but not for his reasons.

    7 is very young to be going to camp alone - any camp can be a big, lonely, scary place at that age..
  16. CAGrandma

    CAGrandma Approved members

    Mar 14, 2006
    It sounds like your husband's objection to overnight camp really has nothing to do with diabetes or with the age of your child, or his readiness for camp. His objection is focused on a potential danger (sexual abuse) that he does not see a way to protect his son from. People do not always evaluate risks logically - logically there is no reason to think that your son would be in danger of a predator at a legitimate, respected camp (especially at a diabetes camp where I'd bet that people are up and checking on kids and their BG during the night) than he would anywhere else (baseball practice, visiting a friends house, etc.). Statistically abusers (male and female) are usually relatives or family friends, hard as it is to believe.
    But feelings can't just be turned off because they aren't logical. Can you talk to your husband, acknowledge his feelings and find out if there is something that would help him resolve those fears? Does he need to know more about the way staff is screened before hiring? What policies are in place to protect kids? What your son thinks about inappropriate touching? What the real statistics on predators are? Would he feel more relaxed if the camp was geographically closer? (There are some great CA camps as well, you know).

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