Monday, September 24, 2018


It was pick-up time when I found Teddy sitting on the bench in tears. Another child close by with a teacher trying to mitigate the conflict. Initially holding back to let them resolve, I was brought into the situation when the word "bite" was brought up. Years of being in a daycare situation had made me numb to biting incidents, but looking at the almost 8 year old child accused on biting in front of me who was actively justifying why the decision to use teeth was okay immediately made my hair stand on end. Somehow I managed to keep my cool, listening for a few moments before telling this child that what happened was far from okay. All the while feeling guilty about having to reprimand them.

A couple of hours later, we would be in the emergency room. Teddy had spiked a fever and upon hearing that he had been bitten the nurse wasted no time on getting us in. Sitting across from the doctor, I watched as her eyes widened in horror as she examined Teddy's wound, looking even more concerned when told what had happened. Following cleaning, bandaging and giving a prescription of antibiotics, we began a discussion about an early discussion I had had with the triage nurse about how this incident would be reported to the county and that it was likely Child Protective Services would be called to investigate. I was upset as calling the police into this matter is something a parent never wants to encounter, especially when the actions are due to someone else. Yet there's nothing I can do other than to let a potential investigation take its course. As we learned, human bites from older children and adults are very seriously and potentially life-threatening.

One unforeseen side effect of infertility and multiple miscarriages is that I still don't consider myself a true parent. I adore my kids and would do anything for them, but it doesn't take much to make me feel like I'm over-reacting or that I don't have as much authority as someone who could conceive without years of treatment. To this end, I tend to hold back, never really bonding with other mothers as they swap parenting advice (seriously, what advice would I dare to give someone?), shared birth stories (the mere mention of a high-risk pregnancy ending with me going into liver failure tends to kill these conversations) or all things "mom" focused. In an odd way, I don't see myself the same way others do in their role of being a parent, making it not only hard to connect but even harder to confront when conflict does arise.

The problem with all of this is I'm often left feeling like a doormat when situations arise where I need to advocate for Maddy and Teddy. I usually end up beating myself up afterwards, even though I'm often in the right, do so respectfully and only do so to protect them. Days will go by where I'm beating myself up.

Tonight's incident takes all of this to a new level. If Child Protective Services is called in, it's very likely the other family will be investigated. With an 8 year old who is biting where many have commented how unusual that is, one can only speculate what will come out of all of that, but what I do know is Grey and I will likely come under the microscope if there is an investigation, with questions being asked about our role in caring for Maddy and Teddy and whether we are protecting them.

After a long discussion tonight, Grey and I decided to act instead of waiting. An email has gone off the to aftercare center director asking for a meeting to discuss this biting incident and how we can work with them to resolve this issue, protecting both our kids. I've also written to Teddy's Kindergarten teacher, informing her of the incident and asking her to contact me if anything is off with him even though he is cleared for school tomorrow. We figure if we're about to be questioned, we'd like enough evidence to show we not only care about our children, but we are taking steps to protect them. All that while monitoring Teddy, making sure he doesn't develop an infection or contracts a disease due to this incident.

Still, there's guilt with sending these emails. That somehow my actions are meant solely for judging another parent(s) who likely may be struggling. I'm working on putting all of that aside, refocusing my attention and quieting the worthiness doubt infertility created long ago. I can't afford not to.


  1. Oh sweetie! I can't imagine what you are feeling and making that decision. Getting CPS involved in your life is painful and stressful. But protecting your kids is just as stressful. When it comes to being a mom friend, I do consider you one of my closest mom friends. You have offered some of the best mom advice I have ever received and I can't thank you enough for being there for me. You are worthy, you are amazing, you are my mom friend...and you have to be a mom to be a mom friend. HUGS lady I hope you are able to find a resolution to this. I am with you

  2. Oh poor Teddy (and you). There was a child at AJ’s daycare for a while who bit her and others a few times. It never occurred to me that it could escalate like this, but then the child was a toddler and not being particularly malicious or aggressive. It’s disturbing to hear of an older child targeting younger children. Also the health concerns. Good to know if ever skin is broken. Sending you strength as you get through this crisis.

  3. This incident occurred at an aftercare program, so I honestly don’t think CPs is coming after you. The other family is going to have a rough go of it, but honestly if an 8 year old is biting there is a chance something is happening in that house

  4. Holy crap, that is so scary. An 8 year old biting is definitely unusual, and I'm so sorry Teddy was the one bit and he had to go to the hospital, and now you are stuck in a swamp of bureaucracy and feeling like you have to cover your ass somehow. I think calling a meeting is a great idea, and I totally understand why you worry but I don't think that you have to worry about CPS casting judgment on you as a parent. You bend over backwards to make sure that your kids get the care and security they need, especially through all the medical things that have happened lately. I'll be thinking of you -- how awful. And know that I would have loved to get parenting advice from you. :)

  5. It's possible that your report will help this child. It's possible that there is something behind his behavior that needs investigating. You did the right thing, the reasonable thing.

    My thoughts are with Teddy. I hope he heals well and soon. And my wish for you is that you see yourself as the wise, caring, confident mom and woman that I see you as. I would seek and take parenting advice from you, for sure.

  6. An 8 year old boy should not be biting. There is definitely something odd going on there.

    I hope Teddy gets better soon!

    As I was reading this I kept thinking that I wish that you had more confidence in yourself as a mother. Of course you have advice that you could give others because you have been through various phases in your kids life and have stories to tell and possible tips/tricks for others. I obviously don't personally know you but at least through your blogs you are a caring mother who shouldn't have to worry about CPS.


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