What were your rules? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 08-22-2009, 11:16 PM - Thread Starter
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When you had your preemie, what were your rules to family and friends?

Hand washing? No holding? No visiting?

Did you have different rules for the NICU time?

How did you communicate these rules?

Were you met with any resistance?

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#2 of 7 Old 08-22-2009, 11:23 PM
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I had everyone wash their hands before holding him and asked for no visitors for the first week we were home (so that we could get settled in). We sequestered ourselves a bit more during RSV season, but still ventured out.

My only rule during our NICU time was no photos or video. I had a MIL that was crossing major boundaries, so I had to put the kabosh on that. Otherwise our rules were set up by the hospital (no more than 2 at the bedside, wash your hands before coming in, etc).

I wasn't really met with too much resistence. My mom did think I was being a bit overprotective, but she still did what I asked her to do (even if she did roll her eyes in the process).

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#3 of 7 Old 08-24-2009, 04:13 PM
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The NICU pretty much set the rules for us while we were there.

When we got home, we didn't have any visitors during RSV season.

We didn't have any resistance because I didn't care what anyone else thought.

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#4 of 7 Old 08-24-2009, 04:14 PM
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We've had the hand washing rule in place for all babies - preemie or full term. The only resistance I had was with my in-laws, and they decided that they would rather not hold their grandchild. Fine by me.

With our current 34 weeker, we enforce hand washing, limited visitors and we haven't gone to many places where there are a lot of people. We don't play Pass-The-Baby anywhere. We will probably limit our outings during RSV season, although here in Hawaii, I'm not exactly sure when it begins and ends!

We simply told people what the rules were, and other than my in-laws, we met no resistance. For the most part, I think people are pretty understanding of preemie concerns.
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#5 of 7 Old 08-26-2009, 02:30 AM
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When you had your preemie, what were your rules to family and friends?

While we were in the NICU, our family visited but only a few people held our son (grandma, grandpa, one aunt). We only had a few visitors who were friends and they did not touch the baby. Our kids also visited and held our son's hands in the isolette or touched him gently. The NICU had a strict policy regarding illness and screened all visitors. And then they enforced handwashing...so we just went with these guidelines.

Once we were home, we allowed visitors in our home and went out to go shopping or to other's houses, however we basically held Zeph in our arms, often in a moby wrap, almost all the time when we were out of the house until we were well past his due date. When people came to our house, we asked them to wash hands and remove shoes. When our kids left places like school or church, we had them wash/sanitize hands.

I'm not sure you will really have much of an RSV season in Hawaii?
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#6 of 7 Old 09-13-2009, 11:16 AM
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In NICU we only allowed grandparents - most of the aunts and uncles had young kids of their own, and our twins came in November - height of cold and flu and RSV!
Once home we didn't allow visitors, and with family, we didn't allow kids 10 and under. Handwashing was a must, and if anyone was coughing or sniffling, they weren't allowed to hold the babies.
We tried to be gentle about communicating the rules, and explained how dangerous RSV is, yet we did meet with a good bit of resistance from family. My MIL's sister was the worst, she kept wanting to kiss the babies on the lips, and I would ask her not to, and she would berate me for not knowing what I was tallking about - after all she had raised 3 kids no problems... :

I now have little patience for those who don't respect the parents' wishes. Until you have been through NICU, no opinion, sorry.
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#7 of 7 Old 09-17-2009, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by sbrinton View Post
I'm not sure you will really have much of an RSV season in Hawaii?
RSV is actually prevalent year-round in Hawaii (and some other warmer climates), though it does peak in the winter months.

In the NICU, no one held them but us for most of their stay. By the last week or so my parents had held each of them for a very short time, but mostly they were too anxious to do so and that was fine by me. No one else even considered holding or touching them, but everyone scrubbed in just the same.

At home, everyone washed their hands or Purelled when they came in, and for the first 2 years, anyone with the slightest hint of a cold pretty much stayed away. We didn't really have to communicate this - everyone who was close enough to us to want to come and see the babies was educated enough to understand the risks. We got no pushback at all, and after reading some of the stories on this forum, I am very grateful for this.

Betsy, mama to beautiful, strong MZ twins Lillian and Kate, born 11 weeks early on January 10, 2006.
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