Family Impact, Awareness Week 2023

Mitchell has found it hard being an older child with reflux and not being understood by those around him. For the sibling of a child with reflux it meant that Victoria lost her sense of security. We would be having a normal day and then a bout of pain would lead to a trip to the emergency department and the whole family routine was thrown out. During COVID Victoria couldn’t travel to Christchurch for Mitchells surgeries and procedures, and we didn’t realise the impact on the child left behind until after it all. Reflux doesn’t just affect the one person but the entire family. We as parents have had to accept that it is a lifelong condition for Mitchell to manage and he will always have extra challenges. This is an invisible condition and it can be heartbreaking watching your child struggle and know others do not see or understand what they are going through.

© Katrina, Mitchell, Victoria and Crying Over Spilt Milk Gastric Reflux Support Network New Zealand May 2023.