Women make approximately 80 percent of health care decisions for their families and are more likely to be the care-givers when a family member falls ill. (Department of Labor Statistics)
As moms, we know how heartbreaking it is to watch a helpless child who is ill but cannot articulate where it hurts, or how much it hurts. We just cradle that child in our arms and pray without ceasing. We lose sleep, we are stressed and we can’t wait until their little eyes are cleared and they can become that tiny terror of energy again.
We agonize when we bring our child to the doctor again and again, only to learn that “this must run its course,” and “go home and give him Tylenol.” We can’t understand how they can create computer watches and a car that needs no driver--but they can’t find a way to make my child feel better or get better!
It is only after those endless hours of rocking, crying and finding no relief from the conventional medical approaches, that we continue to seek out other areas that might give our child the relief he so desperately needs. We are accused of more easily falling for “pseudoscience” or even “anecdotal medicine.” We have been known to go to “alternative means” more easily because we prefer “stories” rather than “data.”
The truth is, we run to the doctor because our parents taught us to “trust” the doctor. But when we find no relief and we have run to the doctor numerous times, we can no longer claim that trust anymore.
It is through pure despair and a sense of urgency that we search for other means. We usually start by asking our own mothers what they did in these cases. Oftentimes, mothers can easily remember and their experiences have been extremely beneficial for younger mothers to learn from.
Chances are pretty strong, that most moms have looked at their children’s diet and will begin making changes since there doesn’t seem to be any other place to look. It is less likely that they will learn this from their doctor visit and more likely their own moms will lead them to this conclusion.
Recently, my own daughter who was agonizing over nearly two weeks of diarrhea with her 7 month old, and found no solace in conventional approaches actually took my advice, and wondered out loud why she didn't hear it from her doctor? I just said, I am a grandma with age and hopefully now, some wisdom.
Most of us moms know better than anyone why our child has had more dirty diapers recently, why their whining has taken a different sound and even, when they need a hug. It doesn’t take scientific data to know what your child needs on a day-to-day basis. It takes time, commitment and love.
Women make the vast majority of health care decisions for their children. They are also the ones in the family who generally determine what will be on the supper table. We know the strong correlation between nutrition and long-term health. We may look on Facebook for a new recipe, but it is in our genetic make-up as nurturing beings that tells us how valuable the meals are for our family. It is an insult to us when we are portrayed as social media shoppers of healthcare.
As this Mother’s Day approaches, give your mom an honorable MD degree. It can easily be called a Medical Doctor, or you can give her a Mother’s Devotion degree. Because, there is no other person on this earth that will care for you like your mom.
Happy Mother’s Day to all of you moms and Mr. Moms. You deserve a special day!