Author Topic: Angry...upset...need advice on something  (Read 6497 times)


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Angry...upset...need advice on something
« on: May 19, 2012, 09:24:59 PM »
Only my friends here will understand what I'm about to type.  I will try not to make it too long or cumbersome to read, but no promises! :)

I have two little boys - one who's 3 and the other almost 1.  As you can all relate, I worry about their health CONSTANTLY.  I have a lot of guilt over giving them bad genes, even though I know it's not my fault.

My in-laws have a beautiful 66 acre farm. It is nestled in the middle of a big amish community. Gorgeous.  We like to go up there a lot, and our boys LOVE LOVE LOVE it.  This summer the in-laws want to take our boys two days a week and have them go down to part time at daycare.  We said yes, even though it makes me sad because that is one night a week I won't get to see them.  I don't love the idea of that, but I know how much their grandparents love them, and they them. 

The grandparents (my in-laws) want to take them to the farm these two days a week. I didn't really love the idea of that either, for a few reasons.  For one, they are horrible about tick safety and safety in general.  They have a farm dog that runs the whole farm all day and then they let it sleep in bed with them at night.  The dog is on frontline but still brings in ticks - we have found living ones crawling around in their bed where we sometimes try to put the boys down for a nap (and this is also where they sleep when they stay the night). Obviously, having an AI disease, this FREAKS me out.  Lyme disease is said to mimic AI diseases, or sometimes kickstart them.  So NOT a fan. 

However, I know the boys LOVE the farm, so I try to swallow my fear and stomach the whole situation as best I can.

So on to the main reason I'm pissed.  My in-laws lease part of their land to a guy who plants/sells crops from it.  He pays them a use fee, or something to that effect. They have corn and soybeans.  We went to the farm today, and this evening as we're driving home, my husband says that his dad told him that after seeing how 'they' do the corn and soybean crops, it makes him want to eat organic.  So he explains that they first fly a plane over the fields and dowse them with Roundup, and kill everything off.  Then they plant the corn, which is GMO (genetically modified) corn. After planting, they dowse the field one more time with Roundup, but the corn doesn't die because it is the GMO corn that is made to absorb the chemicals and not die.

Enter in my anger.  First off, my husband and I have been trying to live as "green and clean" as we can for our boys (and ourselves).  Second, my husband has sent me article after article on all the GMO seeds stuff, and Roundup, and how horrible they both are. We both have our "green" concerns, and this has been one of his biggest ones over the last year or so. He is CONSTANTLY talking about how horrible it is that they make seeds that are meant to withstand absorbing poison and still live (poison being the herbicide), and then we eat that food.  His parents (my in-laws) also express great interest in being organic. Or so I thought.

So I tell my husband that I am NOT comfortable with that, and that I can swallow the tick issue, and the fact that the in-laws are not very safety conscious (they let my 3 year old sit in the driver's seat of the gator today and steer while grandpa did the gas - UGH)....but this I CANNOT swallow.  Our boys spent 1.5 hours playing in the creek on their property today, which I now know is probably loaded with roundup runoff and God knows what else.  Our boys drink the water there. They play in the dirt there. 

They also, unfortunately, happen to have a mom with an AI disease, and are pre-disposed to the horribleness themselves. 

They do NOT need to be exposed to crap like that right now - or ever.

So my husband tells me I'm overreacting and we get in a big fight. He then starts backpeddling on his position on roundup. I called it a pesticide and he goes "well it's really an herbicide, not a pesticide".  WHAT?!  Now he's DEFENDING it??  So in other words, it's perfectly ok if his parents are doing those things on their property, and our boys are going to be exposed to it.  Plus, I told him that I would love for him to spend one day in my shoes with the awful disease and see how he views the world from that point on.  He is one of those people who think nothing bad will ever happen to him or the people he loves...which is so funny, because his wife has an incurable illness...but, I guess I don't count.

Please help me clear my head.  Am I really overreacting? Would you feel the same?  I am at a point where I do not feel comfortable letting my boys spend half their summer at the farm.  Help! 


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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2012, 10:05:48 PM »
I am a 69 year old grandma with 3 grown sons. Our sons have to live with the fact that both their mom and dad have autoimmune issues. Life isn't fair. Can't change it!!!

Now, I have 4 grandsons and I have been thinking about this. I guess my inclination is to tell the grandparents "no" to the stayover. I would not go into any big explaination cause your in-laws probably won't understand any of it. I would imagine they are nice people, but so many times people just don't understand the cause and effect of certain things.

I guess the underlying issue that would prevent me from my own kids staying with people like your in-laws is the tick issue. The importance of tick control is beyond serious. If they have a dog who is dragging ticks in and there are more ticks around than there should be, I would consider it a health hazard. Period. I worry about my own grandkids just being outside in the grass and always remind my kids to check their kids good when they come in.

I also am going to tell you that I do side with your husband in some things. You are not going to be able to protect your kids from the world. The Roundup is everywhere and I mean everywhere. I doubt that the stream has any more roundup than some of the lakes people swim in. It has absolutely invaded everything and at this point and time we just can't avoid being in contact with it in some way, shape or form.

There are many other chemicals out there also that can cause problems. Your kids are going to play in mud with bacteria and do all sort of things that you are going to think will ultimately kill them. Take heart!!! They will not die. One of the big problems with all the illness kids have these days is because we protect them so much their immune systems don't get a chance to develop antibodies. Get rid of the antibacterial soap cause that is a really big risk nowdays. It is killing so many bacteria that our homes become "too clean".

You will have to learn to pick and choose the things that you want to jump on a soapbox over. Kids are much more resiliant than you can imagine. Your kids may or may not be a risk for autoimmune issues. Don't make them a cripple in their childhood. They aren't sick---it is you who are sick. Hang in there girl. YOu will live through this parenting thing. We all do, but it is the biggest challenge we face and we have to learn to choose wisely. Good luck. Irish


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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2012, 12:03:32 AM »
Irish, always so logical, balanced and wise!  :)

lolo, let me clear your head for you. You have found ticks crawling around in the bed where your inlaws expect you to put your small children to sleep for their nap. Your FIL drives around without putting your child in a booster seat, which is illegal. That's enough of a red flag for me. Honestly, I wouldn't allow these people to even babysit for a few hours.

Your husband is waffling because he senses a potential brewing conflict with his parents and they probably are the types to be offended when they get no for an answer. It's up to him to say no to the parents and deal with them. You can't do it or else your good relationship with them will suffer, so stay out of it and let him handle it.

Hubby doesn't have to give the true reason, as Irish said. He might say that you're a sensitive Mom and would and miss the kids too  much to have them away for over night visits.

Bottom line is that you and your husband have to deal with the consequences if your kids become ill or injured.

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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2012, 12:08:47 AM »
I don't know how I would feel if I were in your shoes and knew all that about the pesticide,etc.  The emphasis here is on "knew/know".  The difference is usually we don't know what is in the creeks and fields we let our children and grandchildren play in.  Had you not been told about the plane spraying the fields, etc. you would be letting your kids go and worrying about the ticks.  Sometimes we just have to let go and let them be kids.  It is so hard though.

Good luck in your decision.


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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2012, 02:10:12 AM »
In my opinion there are two issues here, the ticks is a big no no for me, I would have to sit your in laws down and explain about ticks and what they can do in the long run if one of your children got bitten by one. Get as much info as possible regarding AI issues and explain to them, they should listen and hopefully react in a positive manner.

The other issue regarding roundup etc, I think you are over reacting a little bit with regard to this, as Irish said this stuff is everywhere, kids have been playing in it for years and your body will protect it self.


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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2012, 05:19:38 AM »
I'm probably going to be criticized for my comments, but oh well.  I say let the kids be kids. Sure ticks have the potential to carry disease (a nasty one at that), but you can simple explain your concerns for them to check the boys each evening or something.  Your kids could pick up a tick anywhere, not just their place.

Second, the Round up.  I'm with you on the going green, but you can't change what other people do.  Your boys will be exposed to other chemicals EVERYWHERE.  You'd probably freak out if you know what was on the grocery store floor.  So let the boys have fun.  This is an important part of their life and these experiences will last a lifetime.
52 yr old SjS, APS w/strokes, Autonomic Neuropathy, PN, Nephrogenic DI, (CVID) IgG def., Cushing's, Asthma, Gastroparesis.  Sero-neg w/+ lip biopsy.  Meds: IVIG & pre-meds, Arixtra, Aspirin, Plaquenil, Cardizem, Toprol XL, Domperidone, Nexium, Midodrine, Symbicort, Fentanyl, Percocet, Zofran


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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2012, 05:33:12 AM »
lolo, I have two young kids too (5 and almost 3) so I know exactly where you are coming from. Based on your screen name, I think we're also the same age  :)

First - my girls have NEVER spent the night away from me unless you count the days I was in the hospital with my younger daughter for pre-term labor (2 nights) then my c-section with her (2 nights). My mom and dad came to my town and stayed with my then 2.5 year old, but it was hard for me... in fact, I cried  ;D My kids are too young, IMO, to spend the night away from me. Period. My mom and I are very close and I absolutely trust her; my children absolutely adore her - but that doesn't change that they're very young children and none of us are ready to cut the apron strings just yet  ;)

So... I would absolutely say no to sleepovers.

As for the pesticides... I live in an agricultural state and to make matters worse, we have agriculture with lots of pesticides and chemical industries. That's about it. So there's no way I can even imagine trying to protect them from that - it's in our air, water, dirt, crops, plants, etc.

When I visit my family, I bring my own sunscreen and mosquito repellant for the girls because I know they'll probably forget. It's not intentional (I even forget a lot of times), but ticks aren't something I have to deal with a lot. The ticks in the bed thing would really freak me out!

I also know the guilt and fear of giving your children AI diseases - both of my daughters already have Celiac Disease (not sure who they got it from though) but my five year old already has a positive ANA and even though her anti-dsDNA was negative, some antibodies were found (just not enough to be considered positive). She is SO much like me that I am really worried she will develop SLE at some point  :( But there's nothing I can do to prevent it - I'll just make sure she's followed closely by good doctors.

Good luck and I hope things work out!
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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2012, 08:01:31 AM »
I don't know about you guys but just about every house we have out here has termites.....I'm sure there are different kinds in different climates.  All homes are sprayed once they are built as the initial construction stirs up activity.  Once found to have termites, homes are sprayed extensively every so many years.  Prior to purchasing this older home.....our house was sprayed through holes drilled in the sides and into the concrete "everywhere".  I became ill after we moved into this older home.  Of course I try to blame it on the termite solution but......I also was ending menopause when we moved into this home which could have also triggered my SJS gene!

My point is that kids are exposed to everything and anything around them at a very early age.  We as consumers are told that all is safe but we know that's real bull!  It sounds like a terrific experience for the kids to spend time down on the farm!!!  I would most be concerned about the ticks and the farm vehicles......are your inlaws super attentive watching the boys every move when they are with them they let them run off....they are probably too young to run off on their own.  Perhaps your hubby can go with them for some all day visits and watch how things are handled.  I would mention to the inlaws about the ticks in the bed.  NOT GOOD for humans or dogs!!

I respect your great concerns.  You are a good Mommy. :)   
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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2012, 08:10:58 AM »
I am the complete opposite here. You are 100% right in your fears.

Google Monsanto swinging door. Roundup is an enormous problem. Find out what it is in and avoid it. Educate your in laws, they could farm without it. Sixty acres isn't much.

Ticks--gross. I would not allow them to stay there unless they followed your orotocol.

I have in laws who are farmers too. No roundup here, they know how bad it is . They can be quite relaxed about things but no Sleepovers allowed unless they reslect our wishes.

Be strong! You need your hubby on board though.
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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2012, 08:48:09 AM »
Mom go with your gut and your heart  .....

You know that your boys will be exposed to these types of chemicals and others things in life. But, maybe when they are older their systems can handle it better. Is there a geneticists who can consul you? You don't want to become obsessed with this and have your boys become hypochondriacs and alienate family?  I think instilling good eating and health practices early is the best gift you can give. Have your 3 year old cook(?) with you, wash lettuce and tear it ....basically empower the kids early. 

There must be some confusion somewhere.

There is nothing organic about  Roundup or GMO.
To be Certified an Organic Farm there are very specific guidelines that must be met. Organic farmers have filed lawsuits concerning contamination from over-spray and from GMO seeds invading their crops (water is another matter). Monsanto is a powerful, insidious chemical company with its tentacles everywhere. Growth hormone factor in Milk---> make a choice to go safer with soy, Monsanto covers +90% of those farms with GMO with roundup. Why? Because those farmers get larger subsidies using these products. I lived in an area with small dairy farms and if the farmer refused to use Growth Hormone Factor (estrogen mimicker) / they lost their subsidies (these were small struggling farms, not large corporate own ones (even internationally owned ones get subsidies). These farmers had the family cows drug free.

Ticks: Not every bite results in a bullseye response and so CAN go undetected.

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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2012, 09:18:13 AM »

I looked at your post again:

"We like to go up there a lot, and our boys LOVE LOVE LOVE it"

I have a knee jerk reaction with Monsanto primarily because I believe at  least our milk should be labeled.

So I read your post again. You drove down to grandparents and probably on the ride your children got exposed to more chemicals car/truck exhaust than they will from two days on the farm.   

I know my son loved being with his grandfather, it was wonderful watching them together. Dad passed April 2011 and my son says he can feel Pop-Pop watching over him. My son is now 23.
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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2012, 09:28:53 AM »
Thank you, thank you, thank you all for providing much needed perspective!  You all made such great points, I pretty much agree with them all!

I do want to let my boys be boys, and I don't want my illness to negatively impact them any more than it has to. I've decided that I'm going to try to coax my husband into at least just having a conversation about the way they're farming, and see if they've ever considered the pro's/con's of using GMO seeds and spraying with roundup.  I won't issue ultimatums, as I definitely do not want to alienate our family. They love us and we love them. 

But I also can't just not even try to impact the situation.  That farm is gorgeous and I want it to stay that way. I want my boys to know they have a "clean" space like that available to go to.  So we'll see.

The tick thing - YES! I'm so glad I'm not overreacting on that one.  It sends chills down my spine.  I am going to send bug spray in the boys' bag every time they go and ask that they bathe them and thoroughly check them each night.  But my husband is still going to have to put his foot down and speak up about the dog sleeping with them on the bed.  Spraying the boys and bathing them does no good if you're then putting them in a bed full of ticks to sleep.  UGH!!!

Who knew raising kids would be so hard?  I'm definitely THAT overprotective mom.  I think my sjogrens has everything to do with it.  You live so naively for so long thinking nothing bad will ever happen to you. Then something bad happens (sjogrens!!!) and you start thinking EVERYTHING bad will happen!!!!

I have a rheum appt tomorrow and I'm thinking I should just tell her to cut me a prescription of xanax - and quick!!!!


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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #12 on: May 21, 2012, 12:59:54 PM »

Of course we want to protect our children. Did I post in this thread that I had my daughters' ANA numbers checked? ....and my mother?

I had tested positive for Lyme; then not enough bands on the Western Blot for treatment; then negative for Lyme?....had my daughter tested as well. Our dog had them on him and we had deer all over (and there was one that had lesions). Add on the farm spray, etc, etc, etc, etc. chems in food, chems in imported foods not checked and you could go CRAZY.

Ask grandma and grandpa to please check the boys and not let "darling dog" on the bed. Let them know sometimes a bullseye does not show and why take the risk....kiss,kiss.

Then go out on a date with your
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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2012, 04:17:34 PM »
TICKS ruined my life... they are the reason I am HERE!!

I would be way more afraid of the ticks than the Roundup... but I would be somewhat afraid of it also!! I doubt they would do a thing if one of the kids got a tick bite... and really, WHO WOULD THEY TURN TO FOR HELP? Drs are NOT helpful when it comes to tick bites!

PS... a bullseye shows up MAYBE 40% of the time. I NEVER had one with hundreds of tick bites.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2012, 04:20:03 PM by jazzlover »
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Re: Angry...upset...need advice on something
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2012, 04:33:58 PM »
I will try to make this short and just identify my positions on this stuff quickly, for what they're worth...

Paranoid mom - TOTALLY THERE WITH YOU!!! LOL - my friends make fun of me. I am very protective.

Farms - I am a horse trainer who lives in the city and works in the country. I think farms are the best thing in the world for kids (or anybody!) - family farms are a zillion times better. If our family had a farm like that I would do everything in my power to make sure my kids spent REAL time there growing up. Those experiences are PRICELESS....

Germs - germs are actually GOOD for preventing autoimmune diseases!!! There are clinical trials underway in Europe where they are actually injecting DIRT (good old-fashined dirt - or at least the laboratory-controlled version of it) into people with AI diseases. And there's another trial where they are deliberately giving people intestinal parasites commonly in dirt (they pass through in waves and don't cause illness) because they seem to significantly reduce symptoms of autoimmune-related intestinal illness. People are animals...we're very well-adapted to living and thriving in places like farms - NOT in super-clean, pristine suburban/urban homes. My guess is your kids are LESS likely to develop A-I diseases if they play on the farm.

- VERY SCARY. But so are bug repellants - I'd almost worry more about applying stuff to your kids' skin than the Roundup (more on that below). Personally, I'd go with something herbal - there are citrus/cedar oil blends made from food-grade oils you can try. No, they don't work as well as "Off" - but they're also not POISON. I'd work hard to educate g-parents on how to check for ticks EVERY NIGHT AND EVERY MORNING and make it part of the routine. Also educate the kids how important it is!!!! Give 'em super-short crew cuts all summer so you can see their scalps easily - they'll be cooler in the heat, too. Do remember, though - they CAN treat Lyme's - it's not a life sentence.

Genetics - I hear you there, too. Just had my daughter tested (just the basics) - negative so far. You can't do anything about that. You gave them life - there are no guarantees. You're loving and caring for them. No life is perfect. Enjoy them...the worry will never go away but neither will the joy!!!! It's a package deal....teach them to live life bravely - they will need that at some point, A-I diseases or not.

- is Satan. I'd get that stuff the h*ll OFF THE PROPERTY A.S.A.P. That, for me, is a deal-breaker. Until it's gone, I'd restrict exposure to maybe one day a week - and no playing ANYWHERE NEAR those fields. TONS of hand-washing, and drink lots of water to help flush their systems. And I wouldn't let them anywhere near the property around spraying time, or at least a couple weeks after....preferably after a few good rains. Yuck - what a horrible situation. I think that stuff is the DDT of our generation. And don't even get me started on GMO's....I don't necessarily think they're dangerous to be around as plants in the field, but I don't want to eat them. Partly because of the Round-up and partly because of the GMO factor. Monsanto is a horrible, horrible, money-grubbing company.

Dogs on the bed - Absolutely not. Sorry. Buy a dog bed and put it in the room, but no pups on the bed. And believe me, nobody is more of an animal-lover than me. If they can't stay off the bed, put a baby-gate on the door of the room and the dog bed just outside in the hallway. They'll whine and be a pain in the butt for w ahile and then they'll adapt. That's what dogs do.

It might take a while and lots of negotiation with your family (hubby too), but really if everybody loves and respects each other, you should be able to work together to make all of you at least reasonably comfortable with things. The boys are still very small, and all these things will affect them more than they would an adult. It might take a summer to get things into a new routine - people will make mistakes - keep communication open. It takes a while for new habits to stop feeling strange or like an imposition - but if you're consistent, then eventually it'll just be the new routine and nobody will remember what the fuss was about.

I am really envious that you have this wonderful farm in your is a challenge and an opportunity. Even if you decide the only time you want your boys there is when you can supervise, do try to do it as much as you can. Everything has risk. You just have to figure out how to manage the ones that are particular to your situation!  :)

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