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Let me know how you have handled this.

 

What age did you stop going into the exam room?  

What age did you start having your teen make their own doc apts?  Was it an issue at all letting them call and make their own apts? 

Do your kids only see same sex doctors for pediatrics or gyno?

What age did your girls start going to the gyno? 

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Whenever they want me to. 

Depends on the practice. 

Depends on who’s taking new patients/ their preferences.

When they have symptoms that need attention or birth control. 

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I think the time to stop going into the exam room is when the teens decide that they want to go in alone. And I think it’s fine if sometimes teens want you there and sometimes they don’t. 

As far as scheduling goes, it was always easier for me to do that, because I was the one driving to the appointment. I don’t think it’s a big deal either way, but my ds never had any problems making his own phone calls for other things, so it’s not like he needed practice with that sort of thing.

Edited to add — I didn’t answer your other questions because I don’t have daughters. 🙂 

Edited by Catwoman
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1 minute ago, Katy said:

Whenever they want me to. 

Depends on the practice. 

Depends on who’s taking new patients/ their preferences.

When they have symptoms that need attention or birth control. 

Same answers for me!  I did try to get same sex doctors for them when they were teens for gyno and family doctors. 

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Whenever they seem to want me to, which was much earlier for my boys than for my girls. The girls still like me to go in usually.

When the boys went to college and had their own schedule (apart from the multiple calendar household schedule when they lived here).

Boys became uncomfortable with female doctors around  age 12/10 and requested a male doctor. Girls see a female NP and only see the male Dr in the practice if their NP isn't available. I'm used to male doctors and obgyns and could care less. I actually liked my old male obgyn tons more than my new female one but he died. Oldest DD, however,  would rather die than get an internal exam from a male and has let me know that unequivocally.

NP told me that DDs don't need an obgyn unless there's a problem or they want bc.

Edited by Momto6inIN
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I stopped going when my kid asked, well technically I would ask if they wanted me to wait for them or go back with them.  I let them decide.  Some appointments my kids prefer me to go with them even now.  I leave it up to them and their comfort level.

My DD started to make her appointments around age 18 when she knew her schedule better than I did.  I still make the appointments for the boys, because they wouldn't do it for themselves and it is just easier for me to do it.  However, I figure it will work itself out over time, and I am not setting some arbitrary age.

As far as sex of the doctor, I left it up to the kids to decide.  They all had the same female doctor for their pediatrician until a couple years ago.  All of them were fine with that.  When we switched insurances and needed new doctors I asked for their preferences.  Only one expressed an opinion.

DD saw a gynecologist when she was 16 because she was having problems, otherwise, I don't think she would ever see one for routine appointments.  All of the gynecological stuff can be handled by a family doctor.

I am big on making sure my kids understand their medical conditions, family history, and being able to speak up at appointments.  This is not something I was taught as a kid/teen, but I very rarely ever saw a doctor unless I was very sick.  Even with that, my middle still has some questions about some of his medical history when he needed to fill out information for the military recruiter.

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I have two boys, now grown. I think I stopped going into the exam room for regular visits when they were around 12 or 13. Whenever the ped's office started encouraging letting them come in alone. It was no big deal. I continued to go in for sick visits if the kid wanted me to.

I made appointments until they were 18/in college and it simply became the sensible thing to do for them to make their own appointments since they were totally in charge of their own schedules.

The only issue we've had is with DS22, who is on the spectrum. He hates talking on the phone, so it was something we had to work on a little more with him than with DS25. Still not a huge deal, and I can't say for sure it's because he's on the spectrum. I'm not, and I hate making calls enough that I'd happily let someone else do it for me if possible.

They had a same sex ped. 

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My pediatrician *wouldn’t let* my daughters in without me. But then of course they had to kick me out for a few minutes.  That’s just one example of why I’ve been shopping peds.  (And it just happens to be a female doctor.)

Meanwhile, I was able to make a gyno appointment for <18 and was told it’d be my child’s choice whether or not to have me.  I never had a set age in mind.  I did seek a female doctor.  As a full-on adult, I don’t care all that much myself, but I do think it’s a better fit for a first visit at the very least. My first visit was with a male doctor and I was pregnant, so the whole thing was stressful to me. I wanted to remove both of those stressors. 😉 

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9 minutes ago, Pawz4me said:

 

The only issue we've had is with DS22, who is on the spectrum. He hates talking on the phone, so it was something we had to work on a little more with him than with DS25. Still not a huge deal, and I can't say for sure it's because he's on the spectrum. I'm not, and I hate making calls enough that I'd happily let someone else do it for me if possible.

 

Same with us and my ds26, who is on the spectrum.  He makes the calls for himself, but prefers to make appts. online if possible.  But, like you, I'm not on the spectrum and also hate making calls and also try to do them online if I can.

 

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The first two questions are "whenever they want me to". Though I probably *should* start pushing the younger one to have more control over making her own appointments.

I asked the kids if they preferred a female gyno, they said yes, I went with that. Our bigger criteria was that their doctors are LGBTQ-friendly. And, of course, competent and take our insurance.... And the older one had to see one due to menstrual issues. The younger hasn't seen one yet, because covid. It's not urgent for most teens to see one, after all.

You didn't ask, but the kids have a slight, though real, preference for doctors of color. I don't blame them! If all else is equal, they'd rather go with a doctor who looks more like them.

Edited by Tanaqui
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I make all appointments for my teens, but have them do almost all the talking upon arrival and at the appointment.

Our pediatricians prefer to go over concerns with me in the room, and then they have me step out for the exam; they come get me while dc gets dressed again, so we can talk privately for a minute, and then we go back in with dc. They started that at around 13.  One of my teens always wanted me to be there the whole time, and the doctors were fine with that.  They've always been very accommodating.

Although we started with a male doctor, after he retired they only saw females.  My female dc preferred that; my male dc didn't care.  

 

Edited by klmama
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1 hour ago, mommyoffive said:

Let me know how you have handled this.

 

What age did you stop going into the exam room?  

What age did you start having your teen make their own doc apts?  Was it an issue at all letting them call and make their own apts? 

Do your kids only see same sex doctors for pediatrics or gyno?

What age did your girls start going to the gyno? 

1.  When they want to go alone.  Ds has been going in alone for a few years, probably starting when he was 12.   13 year old dd still wants me to go in.  27 year old dd wanted me to go in with her until she was 17 or so, and anytime there was anything serious even since then.

2.  I made appointments until they could drive themselves.  If they can't get themselves there and their schedule is easier than mine, it makes sense for me to make them.

3.  We have a female ped and my kids are a boy and a girl so they can't both have a same sex doctor.    Gyno for me and oldest is female and younger dd will likely go to the same one when the time comes.

4.  When there's an issue or medication/birth control needed.  17 for oldest.

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1 hour ago, mommyoffive said:

Let me know how you have handled this.

 

What age did you stop going into the exam room?  

What age did you start having your teen make their own doc apts?  Was it an issue at all letting them call and make their own apts? 

Do your kids only see same sex doctors for pediatrics or gyno?

What age did your girls start going to the gyno? 

1) My kids still like me in a doctor's office. They go into therapists' offices by themselves though. I ask starting about age 14-15 if they want me to stay in the car/waiting area at a doctor's appointment.

2) Oldest is 19 and has made her own appointments for a couple of years. I am keeper of the schedule for everybody though, so it's just easier for me to do it for the younger ones.

3) All of mine chose same-sex doctors about age 13 - the family practitioner retired when oldest was 13, so she chose a female. The other two went on to see FP's male replacement, middle wanted a female about age 12 1/2. Youngest changed when replacement FP left the practice right around her 13th birthday.

4) Oldest has seen an OB-GYN for some problems about age 16, but her general practitioner handles it for her. Neither of my others have seen one. So, 18ish?

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There was not any specific age at which these things occurred.  It depended upon the child, their desires, and the specific medical issue.  By the time they were a teen I started asking what their preference was.  I continued to make most of the appointments for DD through high school simply because she was in brick & mortar school and wasn't available for return calls, etc. during the day; she did not drive until college so she also knew she was dependent on DH or me and our schedules to drive her to an appointment.  

We used a pediatric practice that happened to be all female when our children were young.  When our pediatrician retired, Dd was in middle school and DS was late elementary.  We moved practices that happened to have a male and a female pediatrician.  DD chose to see the female pediatrician at that point; and DS saw the male pediatrician.  DD did have an issue in late high school for which the pediatrician referred her to an adolescent gynocologist.  

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My youngest is 18 and hadn't been to the doctor in years when we scheduled her most recent exam for college vaccinations. The doctor's office prefers that at this age kids handle it on their own. I gave dd a list of reminders (what time appt was, what time to get there to check in, sign the paperwork that allows me to make appointments for her, which vaccinations she needs, get a printout of her vaccine record, make next appt for 2nd meningitis B shot), and she took care of everything while I was at work. It worked out great.

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When my boys had their recent annual exam, I really pushed them to go in on their own.  One would have done it, the other was adamant that I go in with them.  They are both at ages where they really should go in on their own, especially my older son (let's just say he's almost aged out of the pediatrician).  But he has ADHD, and he didn't want to, so I agreed to go one more time.  While my boys went with the nurse to get their hearing checked, I quickly stepped into the docs office and explained that I really tried NOT to go with them this year, but that there were protests.  Their doc, who has been their doc since they were infants, told me not to worry, that many kids still want their parents to go in with them well beyond age 18.  He said there is nothing wrong with it, and it's not unusual.  So I just thought I'd share that.  I was kind of feeling embarrassed about the situation. 

Edited by Serenade
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My 19 year old still often has me go in with them. They also are autistic though and absolutely hate the way doctor’s talk to them. They look to me in almost every appointment wanting me to clarify what is being asked.

Oldest wanted me to stop going in around 17 and it was never an issue with doctors. Neither of my dc ever allowed the changing into gowns type of exams though unless there was an actual need. Fortunately, their doctors didn’t push them to do something they weren’t comfortable with.

They can both make their own appointments easily online but hate to actually call. They do fine confirming the appointment via phone but hate making it that way.

ETA: Neither of mine care about the sex of the doctor. I’m one who only wants male gyns anyway as I’ve never had a female one that didn’t cause me awful pain. 

Edited by Joker2
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What age did you stop going into the exam room?  - When my older son turned 13 or 14 or so?  Generally what we do is go with him if he wants us and then leave the exam room for the last part of the visit.  Sometimes the reason for the visit is something that he would prefer to have a parent there for.  

What age did you start having your teen make their own doc apts?  Was it an issue at all letting them call and make their own apts? - My sons are both autistic.  At this point, my 17 year old is working on being in charge of calling and making his own appointments but he still needs help with it at times.  He's been clumsy with it at times (for instance the other day when he left a message with the orthodontist, he forgot to say his last name and he didn't leave his phone number) but I am of the mind that you learn by doing.  

Do your kids only see same sex doctors for pediatrics or gyno? My kids have had the same, male pediatrician since my oldest was tiny and my younger son was born.  This wasn't intentional but we wouldn't switch now.  This pediatrician is fantastic and also sees my younger nieces.  If I had daughters, they would see him unless the daughter wanted to see a female provider.  I do have a strong preference for female providers for my own care so I think getting the kids input if they have a preference is important.  

What age did your girls start going to the gyno? While I don't have daughters, I do have three nieces I take care of a lot.  So far only my older niece has been to a NP for reproductive health matters.  Unless there is a medical indication for one, it is my understanding that the age for first PAP smear and exam is now early 20s and every 3 years after that rather than annually.  It probably varies a lot.  

Edited by LucyStoner
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8 minutes ago, bibiche said:

Our pediatrician doesn’t let parents in after age 13, I think. It might be 12. The doctors talk to us before and after, but the exam and their conversation is private. 

Is that true even if the kid wants a parent in the room?

I would find a different doctor if the parents were expressly forbidden from being in the exam room.

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Let me know how you have handled this.

 

What age did you stop going into the exam room?  About 14 I started letting them decide how much I was in the room for. I would talk to the doctor with the teen, then leave for the exam. DDs both wanted me to stay. Ds did not.

What age did you start having your teen make their own doc apts?  Was it an issue at all letting them call and make their own apts? DS-Adult. It when it was going to be just him at the appt.   For dd22 who has a chronic illness, I still make her appointments if I am attending with her. My schedule has many more complexities to schedule around. She has made her own solo appts since she was 18 or so.  For dd14, I still make them.

Do your kids only see same sex doctors for pediatrics or gyno? I let them decide. Both chose girls, but dd22 would have been ok with a man if a female wasn't available. 

What age did your girls start going to the gyno? My youngest had a health issue that needed addressed by a gyno, so she went at 13.  For dd22, it wasn't until she was 18 and got her IUD. Her first female exam, was placing the device. Her PCP managed her basic female care prior (bcp etc). I will add that both girls have had colonoscopies that were preformed by a man. Quiet honestly, GI doctors exams and questions can be just as uncomfortable as gyno. Both are so used to medical exams, the gender of the provider didn't phase them.

Edited by Tap
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My twins (16 this month) have their appointments together.  I do go back with them - they never say anything and the doctor is fine with it (I've asked if I should be in there with them).  We've been with their ped since they were 5 days old though.  He does take them to another room to do a quick lower body check :-).

My guys are not shy around me at home though.  It is just me, DH, and the 2 of them in the house. 

ETA:  Their ped is a male.

Edited by mlktwins
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I suppose around 14 I asked them if they wanted me in the room. They’re 16 and 18 and still do. 🙂

For the 18 yo, his last two visits have been online and have been about talking to the doc about trying out a new ADHD med and getting the dosage right. He wants me to be part of those visits to help him remember what he wants to say (the nature of ADHD can make it tricky to remember all the details, you know?), but they’re not regular checkups. When it’s time for a regular checkup, I probably won’t be part of it anymore.  And he’ll most likely call and make his own appointment, since he’ll be the only one going and will be driving himself and working it in around his schedule.

A few months ago, my ds16 told me he had a “private issue” that he needed to see the doctor for, so I called them and they could see him that day. I told him that if there was a serious problem, I’d need to know, but it turned out to be nothing, so he didn’t tell me what it was. I didn’t mean to, but when I was in the portal on the doctor’s website the other day, I saw the dx, and it was just a normal thing. 

I still make the appointments for my ds16, since I’m the one taking him (not old enough to drive yet) and I have to be sure it works for my schedule.

Once they’re in the office, they sign themselves in and do all the talking. I’m just there for moral support I guess. 🙂

 

Forgot to add: their doctor is a woman. There was a short time from about 10-12 years old where the oldest felt awkward about it, but he doesn’t seem to anymore.

Edited by Garga
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10 minutes ago, Catwoman said:

Is that true even if the kid wants a parent in the room?

I would find a different doctor if the parents were expressly forbidden from being in the exam room.

I imagine if both the patient and the parents absolutely wanted to have the parents in the room it could be arranged, but the doctor thinks it’s important for kids to establish a more responsible and adult relationship with their doctor. In addition, she asks them questions regarding drug and alcohol use and sexual activity that they might not feel comfortable answering honestly in front of their parents.

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52 minutes ago, bibiche said:

I imagine if both the patient and the parents absolutely wanted to have the parents in the room it could be arranged, but the doctor thinks it’s important for kids to establish a more responsible and adult relationship with their doctor. In addition, she asks them questions regarding drug and alcohol use and sexual activity that they might not feel comfortable answering honestly in front of their parents.

I guess that’s fine if the parents are ok with that. 

Personally, I don’t think it’s up to the doctor’s office to make that decision, and I don’t think a 12 or 13yo kid needs to have an “adult relationship” with his or her doctor, so I wouldn’t have chosen that doctor for my own ds when he was that age. 

 

Edited to add:  @bibiche — I hope this post didn’t come across as argumentative. I didn’t mean it that way, but now that I just re-read it, I don’t think it’s coming across the way I intended!

Edited by Catwoman
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My oldest is 13.  So far, we've gone into the room with him, but I think he might be ready to go alone next time.  He'll decide for himself.

I do all the booking, since I'm the one driving and I'm the one with the tricky schedule.

Our family doctor is both sex-matched and race-matched to our kids (well, matched to the POC parent.  The kids are mixed race).  We didn't actively seek this, but I'm glad that's how it's worked out.

Mine are boys.  But, regarding gynaecologists:  they don't do primary care here.  Pap tests, birth control, STD screening and management and other primary female reproductive health care is all done by family doctors here.  Gyne would be by referral only, generally only for issues that require surgical management or complex medical management.

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3 hours ago, mommyoffive said:

Let me know how you have handled this.

 

What age did you stop going into the exam room?  

What age did you start having your teen make their own doc apts?  Was it an issue at all letting them call and make their own apts? 

Do your kids only see same sex doctors for pediatrics or gyno?

What age did your girls start going to the gyno? 

My kids are 13 and 16, both cis girls. I haven't yet stopped going into the exam room. Usually we all have an appointment at the same time and our doctor sees us together -- but there is a point in time where we 'step out' so that each girl (and me) can answer more personal questions.

They don't yet make their own appointments.

Our family doctor is female, and I'm happy about that because it's a bit more comfortable. I wouldn't object to them seeing a male doctor, but, you know, since I'm making the decision, I chose a woman just because I could. (Canadian kids (in my province at least) don't see pediatricians regularly. They are referred to a pediatrician if their family doctor identifies some medical need that is beyond average. We also don't see a gyno unless our family doctor has identified us with a gyno issue of some kind.)

My girls will be referred to a gyno if/when they need one. (If they eventually become pregnant, they will probably begin to see an OBGYN towards the end of pregnancy, at least. If they continue to be reproductively healthy, it's likely that they won't see one before that point in their lives. If they have a midwife attend their pregnancies instead, they may never see a gyno.)

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14 minutes ago, bibiche said:

I imagine if both the patient and the parents absolutely wanted to have the parents in the room it could be arranged, but the doctor thinks it’s important for kids to establish a more responsible and adult relationship with their doctor. In addition, she asks them questions regarding drug and alcohol use and sexual activity that they might not feel comfortable answering honestly in front of their parents.

I think that makes sense.  17 yr old here that still asks for a parent to be present, but he has a complicated medical history so it can just be good to have a second brain.

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5 minutes ago, Spryte said:

I think that makes sense.  17 yr old here that still asks for a parent to be present, but he has a complicated medical history so it can just be good to have a second brain.

I think it’s fine for kids to go in by themselves if that’s what they prefer and when it’s a minor illness or a basic checkup, but many 12yos (and older teens, too, for that matter,) simply won’t be mature enough to be strong advocates for their own health,  and they may not know what kinds of questions to ask or how to accurately interpret what the doctor is telling them, so the idea that a doctor doesn’t want parents in the examining room is very troubling to me. 

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I haven't started sending them into the doctors alone, but I would be fine with it if they wanted to go in alone.  So far, even at 16 and 17, the doctor has wanted to talk to me, and I like to hear the information from the doctor, since my kids aren't the best at remembering things like shots or instructions.  I keep expecting the pediatrician and the psychiatrist to want to talk to the kids without me in the room but that hasn't happened yet.  (Actually, my husband does most psychiatrist appointments with my oldest.  But those are virtual these days.). Only doctor that has ever asked me to step out has been gynecologist, who does NOT do pelvic exams, but to talk to my oldest.  My kids are teens, but they are not good at describing symptoms, especially when they're sick.  My oldest is a bit of a hypochondriac but not specific, and my youngest gets super quiet and shuts down and just says, "I don't feel good," but can't describe in what way they feel bad.  We're working on it.  

I have offered to switch my kids to a female pediatrician/ GP, but they like the male pediatrician, so we have just stuck with him.  The gyn who sees teens is male; we didn't have a choice about that.

My oldest sees a gyn because our pediatrician won't prescribe birth control pills.  We started birth control pills because my oldest was struggling with depression and anxiety, and the pediatrician didn't want to start antidepressants.  We thought it might be hormonal.  It wasn't, but it had the pleasant side effect of clearing up acne.  

My kids have not made their own doctor's appointments, but honestly, I should start getting them to practice that.  Appointment making is an important skill, but since my kids don't know the calendar, it hasn't been super practical yet.  

 

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1 hour ago, Catwoman said:

I guess that’s fine if the parents are ok with that. 

Personally, I don’t think it’s up to the doctor’s office to make that decision, and I don’t think a 12 or 13yo kid needs to have an “adult relationship” with his or her doctor, so I wouldn’t have chosen that doctor for my own ds when he was that age. 

 

Edited to add:  @bibiche — I hope this post didn’t come across as argumentative. I didn’t mean it that way, but now that I just re-read it, I don’t think it’s coming across the way I intended!

Nah, it’s fine. I admit was a little shocked the first time she said the kids were old enough to go in by themselves, but I quickly came to appreciate the policy. I probably chose the wrong word as it isn’t an “adult” relationship with the doctor she is fostering, just trying to respect them as patients in their own right, minus parents. I think the office thinks that babying them at that age is not respectful of them as individuals. I’m perfectly happy with the practice. I might be less happy if our pediatrician were male, but perhaps it’s handled differently with male doctors, maybe there there is always a nurse with them, I don’t know.

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1 hour ago, Catwoman said:

I think it’s fine for kids to go in by themselves if that’s what they prefer and when it’s a minor illness or a basic checkup, but many 12yos (and older teens, too, for that matter,) simply won’t be mature enough to be strong advocates for their own health,  and they may not know what kinds of questions to ask or how to accurately interpret what the doctor is telling them, so the idea that a doctor doesn’t want parents in the examining room is very troubling to me. 

Yeah, just to clarify, parents are still involved and talk to the doctor before and after about any vaccines, medical issues, concerns etc., it’s just that they’re not in the room for the private conversation with the doctor and patient and don’t observe the physical exam. I think it’s good practice for when kids go to the doctor by themselves later. It’s kind of like training wheels. Okay, we never used those… It is kind of like being an apprentice patient. 😜

Edited by bibiche
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I still go in with my almost 13 yo son. It's his preference.  I ask if he wants me to go in, and he still says yes. He still wants me to hold his hand at the dentist and when he gets a shot. ❤️ 

Eventually, he'll decide he doesn't want me to go in with him. I don't think there is a set age where these things happen.  When they're ready, they'll let you know. 

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8 hours ago, mommyoffive said:

Let me know how you have handled this.

 

What age did you stop going into the exam room?  when I asked and they said no

What age did you start having your teen make their own doc apts?  Was it an issue at all letting them call and make their own apts? When they were 18; no problem

Do your kids only see same sex doctors for pediatrics or gyno? both male for pediatrics, D saw male for gyno as well

What age did your girls start going to the gyno? 21; she really had no reason to go after 18 until she needed bc

 

Edited by whitestavern
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Mine are 13 & 15 yr old girls. I still make all the appointments, and I go into the room with them. The pediatrician speaks with them privately in the hall about mental health and if there's any personal questions that they have. They see a female doctor, at their request.  

Neither of mine yet see a gyno. I was thinking it's not necessary until they need birth control. 

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Only my 19yo can drive on her own yet, so I have to take the others.

 

I make appointments for all but the 19yo because I can't legally make hers anymore since the portals kicked her over to her own.  For the most part, she makes her appointments online, same as I do, or the office calls us to make appointments.  The boys are all on my portal, so it's super easy.  I scheduled the 12 and 16yo boys together last time.  We use a family doctor who sees all six kids plus me; she's female, so I've told the boys that at whatever point they feel uncomfortable seeing her, we will ask to switch to the male in the practice (or to the male at a different practice that DH sees).  So far they haven't cared, and they haven't wanted me (or their brother) to leave the room either (but also the doc doesn't do a private area check on them at this stage).  It was completely NBD last time at all.  Actually, I think my 16yo is relieved to have me (and his outgoing younger brother) in there because otherwise he'd have to talk more, LOL.  

 

My 19yo has been to the GYN herself (I did go with her the first time because she was a minor and because I'd met the GYN and liked her, which is why I had DD see her -- but that wasn't an especially sensitive topic, no private area exam needed), but I've also, at her request, been to certain doctors with her.  She's been trying to get some answers about some things (non-GYN/personal related), so I offered to go with her to the specialists as a second set of ears, and she definitely wants me to do that.  I've basically said, "I'm not allowed to make the appointments, but I'm very happy to come along any time you want, but I of course won't be upset if you don't want me there."

 

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9 hours ago, mommyoffive said:

What age did you stop going into the exam room?  

What age did you start having your teen make their own doc apts?  Was it an issue at all letting them call and make their own apts? 

Do your kids only see same sex doctors for pediatrics or gyno?

What age did your girls start going to the gyno? 

When they hit the tween years, they wanted me there but the doctor would generally ask me to step out for a few minutes at each visit so they could ask sensitive questions. I just asked, every time, if they wanted me to go in or wait outside - editing to clarify that I asked this before visits in the tween or teen years; I just exited quickly when the doctor requested it and didn't give them a chance to say no, lol. 

They didn't make their own appointments until they were young adults, because they weren't driving before then. In spite of all my efforts. 

Neither has been bothered much by male vs female doctors. 

They didn't go to the gyno at a certain age, but rather when they had a problem or wanted birth control. If they had been the sort of kids who didn't like to talk about that sort of thing with mom, I would have scheduled an appointment before they left for college or otherwise kind of went more into the world. If they didn't want an exam, it would have been more of an introductory thing and a chance to ask questions. 

Edited by katilac
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It seems like their last well-child visit was around 12, and I went in with them for that.  But I think it was also during that visit with my son when the doctor (male) asked me to step out of the room for a minute -- if it was okay with my ds (which it was) -- so that he could do a quick male-check.

After that, through high school, they really only went to the doctor if they had an injury or were very sick, and I'd make the appointment and go with them.   Oh, they did have quick athletic checks (in order to participate in sports) every couple of years and usually I just waited in the lobby or they drove themselves.

Once in college I'd sometimes make their appointments if it was at our home clinic or dental office for when they'd be home for Christmas break or something.  (They'd make their own appointments if they were seeing a doctor in their college town.)

Our clinic was small with only general practitioners, and they just saw whoever was available, men or women.

The girls started seeing a gynecologist sometime in their 20's.

 

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25 minutes ago, J-rap said:

It seems like their last well-child visit was around 12, and I went in with them for that.  But I think it was also during that visit with my son when the doctor (male) asked me to step out of the room for a minute -- if it was okay with my ds (which it was) -- so that he could do a quick male-check.

After that, through high school, they really only went to the doctor if they had an injury or were very sick, and I'd make the appointment and go with them.   Oh, they did have quick athletic checks (in order to participate in sports) every couple of years and usually I just waited in the lobby or they drove themselves.

Once in college I'd sometimes make their appointments if it was at our home clinic or dental office for when they'd be home for Christmas break or something.  (They'd make their own appointments if they were seeing a doctor in their college town.)

Our clinic was small with only general practitioners, and they just saw whoever was available, men or women.

The girls started seeing a gynecologist sometime in their 20's.

 

Are kids still supposed to go to well child visits in their teens??? No clue on this.   I just assumed you were supposed to be doing this every year.  I haven't taken my kids since 2019 because of Covid, so I feel all out of practice and knowing what I am supposed to do. 

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49 minutes ago, mommyoffive said:

Are kids still supposed to go to well child visits in their teens??? No clue on this.   I just assumed you were supposed to be doing this every year.  I haven't taken my kids since 2019 because of Covid, so I feel all out of practice and knowing what I am supposed to do. 

Ha, I don't know, but this seemed to be typical in our area.  Kids went to their well-child visits through their last childhood vaccination at around age 12, and then most kids only went after that if needed.  I suppose there were some kids that went every year, but we didn't see a need for that ourselves.   Maybe it's different nowadays.  (Our kids are all young adults now.)

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We have had vaccinations in adolescence.  They've had a tetanus booster, HPV vaccines, a meningitis vaccine.  Maybe hepatitis A?  

Our pediatrician does my younger one's mental health and asthma drugs, so we have to go at least twice a year for that.  

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My kids usually prefer for me to be with them, although I have encouraged (and signed waivers) for them to go alone for routine well visits since age 10 or so.

I haven't asked my kids to make their own health appointments to date.  (They are 14.)

I give preference to female (thus same-sex) doctors when practical, especially when it involves anything to do with private areas, but we've had some male doctors when it made more sense.  The chiro we use for sports/camp physicals and sports injuries is a man.

We don't go to a gyno.  I'm 54 and I've only ever been to one once.  I have no plans to take my kids to one. 

 

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9 hours ago, Catwoman said:

I think it’s fine for kids to go in by themselves if that’s what they prefer and when it’s a minor illness or a basic checkup, but many 12yos (and older teens, too, for that matter,) simply won’t be mature enough to be strong advocates for their own health,  and they may not know what kinds of questions to ask or how to accurately interpret what the doctor is telling them, so the idea that a doctor doesn’t want parents in the examining room is very troubling to me. 

Even many adults prefer to have someone in the room with them, to increase the % of information heard and retained, help ask good questions, etc.  It should never be up to the doctor to decide that.

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3 hours ago, mommyoffive said:

Are kids still supposed to go to well child visits in their teens??? No clue on this.   I just assumed you were supposed to be doing this every year.  I haven't taken my kids since 2019 because of Covid, so I feel all out of practice and knowing what I am supposed to do. 

We stopped doing well visits with an MD practice when my kids were 11.  We do go to a chiropractor for health maintenance.  We have to do an annual physical for sports (and some camps also require it).  Our chiro does that also.  If it were not required for activities, we would not do "physicals" / annual exams.

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19 hours ago, Catwoman said:

I think it’s fine for kids to go in by themselves if that’s what they prefer and when it’s a minor illness or a basic checkup, but many 12yos (and older teens, too, for that matter,) simply won’t be mature enough to be strong advocates for their own health,  and they may not know what kinds of questions to ask or how to accurately interpret what the doctor is telling them, so the idea that a doctor doesn’t want parents in the examining room is very troubling to me. 

I've personally never had the experience of a doctor not wanting parents in the examining room at all. Definitely I've had the experience of them asking me to step out for a bit, and I think this is providing great care. This is often when they'll answer questions the kid doesn't want to ask in front of mom, and bring up sensitive topics like mental health, birth control, STIs, drug use, and so on. The doctor can let them know about resources that they may not want to seem interested in when mom is there. 

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3 hours ago, katilac said:

I've personally never had the experience of a doctor not wanting parents in the examining room at all. Definitely I've had the experience of them asking me to step out for a bit, and I think this is providing great care. This is often when they'll answer questions the kid doesn't want to ask in front of mom, and bring up sensitive topics like mental health, birth control, STIs, drug use, and so on. The doctor can let them know about resources that they may not want to seem interested in when mom is there. 

I do understand this, but I still think it's up to the parent and child whether the parent leaves.  Past a certain age (definitely no younger than 13 IMO), I could see the kid's choice having priority, but not the doctor's.

My kids have felt positively violated by medical people (both sexes) who have done things without bothering to warn or explain or ask permission.  And this is with me there.  If they don't want me to leave, I'm staying.

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20 minutes ago, SKL said:

I do understand this, but I still think it's up to the parent and child whether the parent leaves.  Past a certain age (definitely no younger than 13 IMO), I could see the kid's choice having priority, but not the doctor's.

My kids have felt positively violated by medical people (both sexes) who have done things without bothering to warn or explain or ask permission.  And this is with me there.  If they don't want me to leave, I'm staying.

Oh, it's always been a request by the doctor. I've not had the experience like bibiche where parents were discouraged or forbidden altogether, just that they want minors to have the chance to say things or ask questions that they might not if the parent is there. So I would go in with them, the problem would be discussed or the usual checkup done, and then the doctor would ask me to step out so they can talk to X privately for a few minutes. 

I personally would have let my kids' talk to the doctor alone at any age they were willing to do so. There are plenty of private questions and concerns they may have well before 13! The average age for the onset of puberty is 11 for girls and 12 for boys, which means plenty are entering at 9 or 10. Some kids are also just more willing to talk to a doctor about injuries or health concerns in private areas, or perhaps anxieties that they find embarrassing. That doesn't mean the parents never know what is going on, it just means they aren't there when it's discussed. 

Edited by katilac
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We started with the dentist. My DS started going to the dentist on his own at 16 pretty much as soon as he could drive. Before that I would be in the waiting room but he went into the treatment room on his own. However, our dentist requires parental consent signed for every visit. They would print out a copy and let my DS bring it with him. Once my DH had to come over from his work nearby and sign.

He used to go get allergy shots on is own, but a parent attended all medical appointments until age 18. Starting a some time in teenage years, I was always asked to leave at some point during physicals, but I have never been asked to leave the room for a “sick” appointment. 

Starting at 18, my kids start handling making appointments with reminders from Mom. When my DS had his recent physical (first after turning 18) I offered to go if he wanted. He declined, but new I was close by at home if anything came up that he wasn’t sure about. Nothing did.

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22 hours ago, mommyoffive said:

Are kids still supposed to go to well child visits in their teens??? No clue on this.   I just assumed you were supposed to be doing this every year.  I haven't taken my kids since 2019 because of Covid, so I feel all out of practice and knowing what I am supposed to do. 

My kids have continued to have annual well check visits. DD19 went to the pediatrician through age 18, and we will do the same for our other kids. Every year or so, they have some vaccines -- some are required by the school at certain ages. Our pediatrician will only fill out school physical forms, administer vaccines, and sign work permits if they have seen her for an annual check up. When my kids have medical concerns, it's been good to see a doctor who knows them well. And two of them take prescribed medication.

Now that DD19 has aged out of the pediatrician, I plan to register her with my PCP, so that she can establish a relationship there. We'll see what they say about how often they want to see her there. Since she is healthy with no current medical needs, I would say that she could go every 18 months instead of every 12, but I still think it's good for her to have regular health check ups.

So yes, in my experience, teens should still be seeing the doctor every year.

As for the OP question, I still go in to the exam room with my teens. There is a private survey that they fill out before the appointment that asks about things like alcohol use, sex, and smoking that teens might not want to talk about in front of parents, and the doctor asks to speak to them privately about those things at one point. When my kids want privacy for the exam, I also will leave the room. But there are things that I discuss with the doctor, so I do speak with her each time.

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1 hour ago, City Mouse said:

Starting a some time in teenage years, I was always asked to leave at some point during physicals, but I have never been asked to leave the room for a “sick” appointment. 

No, I’ve never been asked to leave for sick visits either, or for vaccines. Just for the conversation and exam at yearly visits.

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