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3 Tips for Co-Parenting a Child with Eczema

3 Tips for Co-Parenting a Child with Eczema

What if you didn’t have your child every day? That’s my reality. Although I wrote “child”, in my case it’s children. All my kids have eczema to varying degrees; but my oldest daughter, Catherine, has it the worst of all of them. Relieving Catherine of itchiness and discomfort is challenging enough when she’s with me, but how can I do that when I’m not with her every day. Parenting a child with eczema is difficult enough, but co-parenting has its own challenges. I’ll do what I can to make their skin feel more comfortable while juggling the difficulties of co-parenting. So what have I done?

1. Communicate with the other parent

Co-parenting is no fun. I have no statistics for this, but I’m going to take a guess and say that the majority of divorces are not amicable. In a co-parenting situation, “talking” to the other parent is necessary about child-related matters, particularly medical issues.  Yup, those are quotes around the word talking. Communicating can be done in the traditional way or electronically through texts and emails. Whatever method it is, the message must be clear. Here is what I did. I sent my children’s father an email about their flare ups and the need to apply their prescription eczema lotion on their dry skin patches twice a day. This is a method of communication that works for us.

2. Supply treatment lotions, ointments, etc to the other parent

Make sure both parents have access to the treatments necessary to relieve flare ups. Here’s what I did. To avoid any excuse for not having the appropriate treatment for her eczema, I was sure to provide her father with a tube of his own to keep. On it, I included a handwritten note of instructions on where to apply the lotion.

3. Working with your doctor

Having a doctor say how bad the flare-ups are and emphasizing the need for treatment would hopefully make a parent realize the importance of managing their child’s eczema. A doctor’s recommendation bears more weight than words from the other parent. Here’s what I did. Every time the children had an appointment for a skin-related issue, I emphasized with the doctor the need to treat their skin condition and relieve their itchiness. At my oldest daughter’s annual physical, I made sure to bring up the topic of her eczema. In the presence of both parents, the doctor said eczema should be treated and provided us with a new prescription.

Working collaboratively

It is difficult to be a single-parent. And I’m not perfect at it. I try my best to make sure that all the kids get their treatment, as needed, on the days that they spend with me. After Catherine’s been under treatment for a stretch of time, her eczema is under control. But I get so frustrated when she returns, after a few days away, with red and itchy eczema patches. If the other parent is not cooperating, even if only because they may be forgetful, what are my next steps? I’m left with two other possible methods. Catherine is starting to be a little more independent and can possibly apply the lotion herself, but I would need her to practice under my supervision. Due to our co-parenting schedule and the children’s extracurricular activities, I see Catherine for a limited time on a day or two during the days she’s with her father. I can use those times as an opportunity to quickly apply treatment to her affected areas. I’m still learning about the co-parenting process, so if you have tips on co-parenting a child or children with eczema, please share them with us!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.