When is it too much information?


New member
I have a three year old with CF. She is an active, happy girl. I am very involved with the CF Foundation and make speeches. I also am fundraising constantly on the phone and in person. My daughter is with me on all of these outings. I am starting to get worried she is hearing too much about the disease she has and will start getting stressed about it. I know she is three, but is this too much for her? Am I causing her to be worried about her disease too soon?


New member
This is a great question- one I am concerned about with my own two kids with CF as I am also "out there" talking with people, doing presentations which my kids sometimes attend, writing, doing videos, etc.

And here's what I know (as a parenting professional):

1. At age three, she can understand alot more than what you think. A child's receptive language develops much earlier that what they can speak. So yes, she can understand what you are saying.

2. That being said- she doesn't fully "get" it. What she will pick up on, perhaps more than the words you say, are your tone of voice, emotions and body language vibes. So if you are talking with people and are upset about CF, that is more likely what she will pick up on and will internalize it.

3. It depends on what you are talking about. If it's just the matter of fact, nuts and bolts details of CF, then it's ok. She'll learn about CF and she should. But if it's discussing "scary" stuff (life expectency, health decline, etc.)then you should not allow her to hear it.

Note: We should also watch what we are saying when talking to the CF clinic. Kids can definitely pick up on alot and again, can internalize it. This goes for siblings, too.

4. Our children do need to learn the honest facts about CF but it needs to be done thoughtfully, carefully and at their level of understanding.

I would open up the dialogue with her and make sure that you are teaching her about CF in a way that she understands by using age-appropriate teaching tools.

My website has some video links that will help alot. Go to: www.TipsForCFParents.com under "Teaching Children About CF."

Also, I recommend the book "Cadberry's Letters" (amazon) and "Mallory's 65 Roses" from your CF clinic.

So, we do need to be careful what we say to others. Our kids are ALWAYS listening and do not have the mental capacity to sort things out. That's why we need to guide and teach them- always with honesty, a can-do message, and HOPE.

My website at www.TipsForCFparents.com gives you articles for HOW to do this properly under: "Talking with Your Child About CF"

Feel free to call me or write if you need more help.