Accompanying your 15 yo son to a routine physical... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 07-01-2014, 03:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Question Accompanying your 15 yo son to a routine physical...

Our 15 yo son is to have a school physical in a couple of days. He is currently homeschooled, but might attend public high school in the coming fall, so we need to get his vaccination exemption form signed by our doctor.

He has not had a physical for a loooooong time (no reason, and our doc has been fine with it, he's seen him on other occasions).

I assume they will check for hernia (no worries, but I guess they "have" to do this), heart, lungs, height & weight, etc.

I am not comfortable with him being alone for this. Don't ask me why, I just feel funny about it. He doesn't seem to care, one way or the other.

Would you go into the exam with your 15 year old son? Would your husband?

Just wanting some other opinions.
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#2 of 7 Old 07-03-2014, 07:19 AM
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I would go into the room for the routine stuff, but then leave for the exam. I have no issue with my kids being left alone with our family dr, it would depend on how my kid felt. Dh has gone with him for check ups, but it's usually me. If ds had a preference we would go with that. I think it's important for them to take control of their own healthcare as soon as they are able. Since my kids were 5ish when we went to the dr they were responsible for telling the dr why they were there, answering the nurses questions about medication and symptoms etc. Obviously I fill in blanks when necessary, but overall their conversations with their dr are their responsibility. It was especially helpful last year when ds has a concussion. I couldn't explain how he felt, he could barely put it into words. But he knew how to answer the questions to assess how badly he was hurt.

What makes you uncomfortable about your child being alone with his physician?
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#3 of 7 Old 07-03-2014, 08:02 AM
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I think I would send my DS (14) in with DH. My son has not had a physical since he was six - there has been no need - and I think he would need the reassurance of his father's presence.

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#4 of 7 Old 07-03-2014, 08:09 AM
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I would attend the appointment but leave the room during the exam. I think it's very important for adolescents (a) to begin to establish confidence and independence when it comes to their health care and (b) to have the opportunity to ask and be asked health-related questions without their parents present. I too have teens who have been homeschooled and who haven't had routine health exams. I've made a point of creating opportunities for them to visit the doc and be alone in the exam room with the doc from mid-adolescence on. Sometimes kids have worries about their bodies that they would never in a million years ask their parents about, but might mention to a health care practitioner. That possibility is worth making time for, imo.

I'm not sure what it is specifically that you're concerned about, but I'd be careful not to pass your own anxiety on to your ds. Perhaps you could remind the doc that this is the first general physical your son has had in many years, and because of that he doesn't really know what to expect, and ask that the doc explain as s/he goes along what s/he's about to do and why.


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#5 of 7 Old 07-04-2014, 02:30 PM
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I have 2 sons older than that. I always let them go back by themself for the exam at that age. When they physical part of the exam is done the called me back and went over height weight BP BMI etc & any issues or questions we had if we wanted immunizations etc. At 15 I would not feel comfortable being in the room for the physical exam even though my boys ( 22, 19 and I have 10 &5) think nothing of walking around in boxers at home a physical exam is more personal. Mine always tell me what the dr ask.... Were they sexually active did they have any questions on their development when over what was normal for a 14-18 yr old boy to experience I would not have sent their father either.

Jeana Christian momma to 4 sons Logan 18, Connor 15, Nathan 6, and bonus baby Jack 1
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#6 of 7 Old 07-04-2014, 03:58 PM
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I went alone to doctor's appointments after age 12 and never had any problems. I gave my mom the information I wanted to give her afterwards. The office we went to was great about confidentiality. I plan on letting my dd do the same and expect her doctor to respect her confidentiality also.
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#7 of 7 Old 07-06-2014, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
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It went fine. Ds asked me to stay and the whole thing took less than 10 minutes. He won't need another physical for his high school years. Our doctor even signed a permanent vaccination exemption. YEA!!!
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