So, Addy has been saying (for a long time, definitely weeks if not months) "I'm sick" or now "I'm really sick" nearly every day, many times a day. When I ask her what's wrong or what hurts, she says "I'm starting to throw up" and kind of force-gags herself a little, or just the past couple of days "I have a stomachache". She has never actually thrown up, has no other signs or symptoms of illness, eats well, and once I distract her in some way she always stops saying it, so frankly I've kind of been ignoring it as toddler weirdness/inability to correctly identify normal feelings like hunger or needing to poop. And yes sometimes those things seem to help but not always. Sometimes she says it before eating, sometimes after. It's just....that she is saying it SO MUCH, there's that nagging feeling of "Well what if something IS wrong and I was ignoring her?" I mean, I don't think there's anything horrible going on, but maybe some kind of reflux or something?
Thing is, I feel really dumb making a whole doctor's appointment just to say that my 2 year old says she has a tummy ache a lot, with nothing else to go on. My doctor is really laid back and non-alarmist, and I don't know that they'd want to run a bunch of tests on her for something so vague (or that I would want that either). And I've found no real pattern to help narrow it down beyond what I've said here. So it feels like it would be a waste of time. Still...completely ignoring her doesn't exactly feel right either!
IDK...what do you guys think? I know you're not doctors, but...any momtuition? Experience with this sort of thing?
I might be extra worrywart-ish about this because for years and years and years (until she was in her 20s) my cousin was kind of known in the family as a hypochondriac, always whining about her stomach hurting. Turned out eventually that she had terrible endometriosis and was in legitimate, excruciating pain all that time--she lost an ovary. (Don't worry, she has a beautiful little girl now anyway ) I don't think THAT'S what's going on here, of course, but I'm a little sensitive to ignoring medical complaints now...
Just wanted to say that when my son was two, we went through the same sort of thing, except with him, it was "My teeth hurt." Day after day, week after week, he said that his teeth hurt. So I took him to both his doctor and his dentist, and neither one could find a single thing wrong with him. He had already cut his 2 year molars (and all of the rest of his teeth) so it wasn't teething, he didn't have cavities, anything like that. But still he complained. Like your DD he didn't seem sick in any other way, ate well, played well, didn't have a fever, totally normal.
My theory is that when he was cutting his 2 year molars and his teeth really did hurt, he saw that he got attention (and some baby Tylenol, which he loves for some reason) so he decided that when he wants attention and/or Tylenol, saying "My teeth hurt" was the way to go. Has your DD had a stomach bug or something like that in the last little while where she got a lot of loving attention lavished on her?
After seeing both the doctor and the dentist and no one being able to find anything wrong, everytime he said "My teeth hurt" I would talk to him about how we can't say things that aren't true, and then ask "Do your teeth really hurt?" And he would say no. But then he'd do the same thing the next day.... This went on for probably another week, and then he stopped saying it, and no complaints about his teeth since.
So, I obviously don't know whether or not your DD really is getting daily stomaches, but I can tell you that I have experienced a two year old claiming an ailment that seems to have been fake.
Last edited by Alissa_Sal; 11-30-2012 at 07:02 PM.
-Alissa, mom to Tristan (5) and Reid (the baby!)
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Not quite the same thing, but Isabelle constantly tells me she needs to go potty. We have not started PT at all yet so I know she picked up this phrase from daycare. She thinks it is fun to sit on the potty if I will let her, but she has never actually gone on the potty. I haven't noticed any great connection between her saying this and her actually going in her diaper either, she just wants me to let her sit on the potty. So kind of along with what Alissa said, maybe Addy feels that saying that will get her something she wants or some kind of treatment she wants?
If you've ruled out her saying it for attention and it's been going on a while I might call up the pediatrician (can you talk to your ped on the phone directly?) and get his/her take on it. Maybe in the interest of being cautious get her looked over just to make sure there's nothing overt going on. . . I'd be wondering too if it were the same complaint about nausea/tummy ache constantly.
Yeah...I thought of the attention thing too, but honestly she says it at such weird times where it WOULDN'T get her a good result (like on the way to a playground??? or when we're already in the middle of giving her attention) and she hasn't had a real stomach ailment in months. But still...toddlers are weird, and I guess it's possible. She also does LOVE medicine (chewable pink Tylenol) and sometimes she brings me the bottle and says she needs medicine, so at first I thought it was a ploy for "candy". But I have always explained that that kind of medicine is not even FOR stomachaches, and never given it to her. Hm.
Maybe just giving the doctor a call to ask for an opinion without an appointment would be good. I haven't tried that before but I'm sure they must have a way to field questions....right?
Make an appointment. I know how non-alarmist you are and you know I'm the same way but I also know how precocious Adair is and her squishy poops have me thinking that maybe there is something to it. I also know that the Drs. Callie will look her over, say she's fine, and send you on your way unless they actually suspect something is wrong. Perhaps they see it all the time. Perhaps they'll palpate her stomach, feel something a little off, and then suggest a test. They definitely won't run her through a gauntlet of tests "just because".
I think its worth it to make a little trip to the doc.
If mommy intuition is telling you not to ignore it, I think it's worth having a look.
This age is hard, because you don't know if you can trust what they tell you. For what it's worth, I still can't trust my 5yo when she says she's sick. Sometimes she just says it because she's heard kids at school say it, sometimes she just wants to see if she can get me to give her medicine (which she hates and I rarely give her, so I don't know why this is a goal).
I totally forgot about her pooping issue! Yup, get her checked out. Mention the poop issue and her complaints. Better safe than sorry for sure.
Yeah, if she is also having some poop issues, I would go ahead and get it checked out. It never hurts to check.