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Should I ask sick grandchildren to stay away?

Hi Everyone. I've struggled with this question for a while. I was diagnosed with RRMS in late 2019 at 39 years old. Prior to this, for my whole life I have been very susceptible to colds, especially chest colds. I have been taking Ocrevus for just over 2 years now.

Back in Oct 2021 my son and his family were over for a visit and my grandson was sick with a cold. After they left I sanitized every surface I could, even lightly sprayed my couch with Lysol but sure enough, I caught it and now I haven't been able to shake the cough for three months and I seem to be having cold like symptoms that come and go every few weeks. I'm seeing my doctor about the cold/cough issue next week.

But my question is, do I ask my family to not visit me if they are sick? And my main concern is my grandson since small children are just not as good at covering coughs and sneezes and not touching their face then touching other surfaces. But the thought of asking my son to keep my grandson away makes me feel like the world's worst grandma.

Does anyone else have any experience with a similar situation and if so how did you handle it?

Thank you all 😀

  1. Hi jenmae80. That is a very good question and a legitimate concern. The good news is that Covid has made all of us more aware of hygiene, the ways germs spread and of impact of viruses on people whose immune systems are suppressed. If ever you were going to bring something like this up with your family, now would be the time. I have never been in your position, so I cannot give you advice from my own experience, but I know that I would be understanding if you were my mother and you respectfully asked me not to bring the kids around when they are sick. Your grandson is likely too young to form an opinion about you based on this request. It is more likely that he will follow the lead of his parents. If they are compassionate and understanding, he will be as well. I hope you get some good input from the community. Thinking of you. - Lori (Team Member)

    1. , I agree with what Lori shared. If you were my family member, I would not be offended by your very realistic request.


      If you state that keeping your grandson away while he's sick actually allows you MORE quality time with him and your family because you wouldn't have to stay away for weeks when you get sick from his (or someone else's) germs, if that makes sense.


      And, if you are comfortable using technology, you can always Facetime or Zoom the grandkids for a quick virtual visit. I know it's not the same and after 2 years of pandemic living, we all my be a little burned out on Zoom meetings and the like, but it's a possible option.


      Your health comes first. The best way for you to be the Grandma you want to be is by being as healthy as you can.


      You are definitely NOT a bad grandma for wanting to safeguard your health.


      Best, Erin, MultipleSclerosis.net Team Member.

      1. I agree with Lori and Erin, and they have given excellent suggestions for how to frame the conversation. I am 64 and have no kids or grands, but I know plenty of people with compromised immune systems who have no qualms about telling their loved ones to stay home if they are sick. We have to do what we can to survive these times. Insisting on distancing now can, as Erin and Lori suggested, go a long way to ensure your survival for future in-person visits. Thank you SO much for bringing up this important challenge. Take good care of you! Warmly, Kim, moderator


        1. one of my wife's relatives had MS and a very compromised immune system. It was normal to visit wearing a facemask, keep some distance and ventilate the room.


          Don't be afraid to explain the problem.

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