difficult child's and antibiotics

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Nancy, Jan 13, 2011.

  1. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    difficult child is on antibiotics for a bacterial sinus infection. I finally relented and took her to the doctor last week when she was coughing up green stuff and her nose was completely swollen and blocked. She took the antibiotic for two days and as soon as she felt better she stopped. Within days she was feeling horrible again and I explained about the antibiotics and how if you don't take them for the entire time the infection will come back worse. She knows all this but apparently doesn't care. So she started taking it again and lo and behold she stopped again after two days. I now told her that I would not take her to the doctor anymore no matter how sick she was.

    She has always been medication non compliant but obviously this is the best example of not learning from consequences that I can think of. Who would not take the medicine that makes them feel better? Even after many times with the same thing happening she doesn't learn.

    I was brought up respecting antibiotics and never abusing them. I would never have dreamed of stopping them before it was finished. I'm wondering if our difficult child's are so much more casual with antibiotics because of the wide availability of illegal drugs. They don't respect antibiotics, or any other legal medications for that matter.

    I'm waiting to see how long it takes for her to start feeling miserable again.

  2. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip


    The kids' BM has always been rather cavalier about antibiotics, as well. She'll give them to the kids until they get better, and then stop... Never mind if there's some left over.

    Onyxx and I are about the same on this one (for once, the kid gets it here). We'll get a 10-day course and it takes us 11 days because we miss a couple of doses here and there/ But there are never any left over.

    Now with Jett? He will take them - but we have to pretty much threaten him. After about 3 days, he'll whine and say that BM wouldn't make him take them. (Never mind that she had him convinced that he could not function without Concerta... Very obviously, he can, has been off it (around us) for 2 years.)

    husband? Always has some left over. I can't seem to convince him he has to take the full course.

    I think you made the right call in telling her you won't take her to the doctor anymore. If she can't be responsible in this... You don't need to be. Technically, she's an adult now.
  3. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I confess, I'm not great at finishing my antibiotics, either. I usually have a few left over. But, I do take them longer than just 2-3 days. I just stop short of the last couple days of doses. Bad Crazy, I know.

    For your difficult child, I think this is where logical consequences take over. If she doesn't finish them, she gets sick again. You really don't need to do anything about it. I would just shrug my shoulders and say "well, I took you to the doctor, you've got antibiotics. Nothing more I can do for you." Hopefully she'll understand cause and effect and will change the habit, eventually.
  4. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    But see she doesn't learn by natural consequences. This has happened time and time again. It would only take me one time to feel horrible by stopping my antibiotic to learn I shouldn't do it. She makes the same mistake over and over and never changes.

  5. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    No, she may not change. But she'll still suffer consequences. And you can change by giving her zero sympathy, zero care when she's sick, and suggesting that she find another way to ger herself to the doctor, since your efforts seem to be in vain. The other thing is to try your hardest not to get stuck in the "how can she do this? I would never do this!" thinking.. because the bottom line is, you're not her, and she's not going to react as you would. These are her lessons to learn, even if it takes her years to learn them. I've had a hard time with that myself... but when I'm spending more energy worrying about my child's problems than she is, I know it's time to back off and work on my detachment skills. As my therapist likes to say to me, "you're working harder than she is."

    That doesn't meant it's easy ... :(
  6. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    You can spoonfeed info to her, but you cannot make her use it. Just like iwth all the tools she has learned in the therapy you provided/took her to/participated in, you simply cannot force her to use them. This is a battle that just isn't worth your time, energy or money. She is a prime cause of the reason so many antibiotics just don't work. Bacteria LOVE LOVE LOVE her - she gives them enough antibiotics to make THEM die off, but only the weakest ones. Those that survive are becoming immune to the medications and each time she stops she makes them stronger and shares the stronger bacteria with YOU and everyone else around her.

    Next time hand her an onion and a head of garlic. Both will help the infection if eaten and they cost you one heck of a lot less. Just remember this and next time your mommy heart sees her sick remind it that taking her to the doctor is a futile effort because she won't do what he says to do. (you can put the garlic/onion in water to make a broth or tea type thing and have ehr drink it. It really does help, though you have awful breath. Great for scaring away vampires though. and if she has a boyfriend you don't like, lolol).

    I confess to having a medication drawer with several vials of antibiotics. In our case thank you could not take liquid antibiotics as they are all either strawberry or orange flavored and have artificial sweeteners that he is allergic to. Even finding liquid OTC medications was a challenge. So the docs would give us adult capsules and tell us to break them open and give him 1/2 or 1/3 of the powder for each dose. We mixed this in chocolate syrup (about 1/2 tsp) and gave him about 1 tsp as a chaser to get rid of the taste. The docs usually either miscalculated the amount we would need and told us to stop after X days, finished or not, or we were changed to another antibiotic when the first was not effective. Like Step, we often missed a dose and went a day or 2 longer to get the right number of doses given. It was an interesting way to figure out how to get the medications down him because a mouth full of nasty tasting powder is even harder to get a kid to take than a pill, at least if thank you is the kid. Hershey's choc syrup is one of a VERY few products that I am brand loyal with. Other brands simply don't have enough flavor to handle the taste of the medications, not on a consistent basis.

    Next time she is sick explain that the doctor visit is pointless because she won't follow instructions and let her go to the free clinic if she wants help. If you don't know of one, a call to the ER should help you find one. I am sorry she wasted your time and money on a doctor visit and medications she simply refuses to fully utilize. I bet her disrespect for other drugs (medications) is part of the reason why she is this way.
  7. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Susie that's exactly what I thought, that bacteria loves her and she is partly responsible for antibiotics losing their effectiveness. I just find it interesting that it's just another example of how she doesn't learn like the rest of us. When I am sick it is in my best interest to use the antibiotics as directed. But she has never done what is in her best interest so I shouldn't be surprised. And yes I do believe her disrespect for other drugs has a lot to do with it.

  8. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    THIS type of fooling with antibiotics is what led to MRSA and several ugly other infections that are resistant to many, if not all, antibiotics out there.

    Years back, parents would insist a pediatrician prescribe antibiotics for non-bacterial infections like colds and some ear infections, and that got the whole resistance thing started in the Western World
  9. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I know and understand about antibiotic resistance organisms and it is a very serious problem. That's one of the reasons I am so cautious about antibiotics. On a side note my easy child was not prescribed antibiotics for her ear infection when she was very young and it resulted in a perforated eardrum and subsequent cholesteotoma in her middle ear which then resulted in her hearing bones having to be removed and several further surgeries to reconstruct the ear. She now has permanent hearing loss. Ear infections and not an easy call.

  10. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry Nancy. In my family I have always had to remind them to take it...and then hand it to them with a glass of something that they would find appealing. It's not how it should be. It is how it is around here. Instead of being defiant they were/are either too lazy to take it or too confused to realize that medications need to be taken in a timely fashion. The lack of maturity shows up in many ways...some more frustrating than others. Sending hugs. DDD