Pain thresholds vary among children

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OAKLAND COUNTY, Mich. - With the summer months upon us, parents see many playground injuries and scraped knees.

But, what makes one child better at tolerating pain and illnesses over another?

In my house you might guess it has something to do with "tough" boy and "princess" girl stereotypes, but it goes way beyond that.

The theatrics associated with my daughter when she's sick or hurt would have you thinking she was on her death bed.

No matter how much I try to console her or explain that it's going to be ok, she remains focused on the pain.

My son, on the other hand is super tough, almost to a fault.

He had an ear infection once that we were not even aware of until we found blood on his pillow and dried blood in his ear one morning.

He never said a word about the pain until he could no longer take it.

It's funny how it all works.

I talked to my husband about how he acted growing up.

Neither of us could remember being overly dramatic when it came to our pain threshold when we were little.

Neither of us acted like our son does and neither of us (thankfully) carried on with theatrics like our daughter.

I don't necessarily think we treat them any differently. If anything, we've gone out of our way to make sure our son opens up a little more about his aches and pains and we always seem to be trying to calm our daughter down about hers.

And, I know it's not just my kids.

I once saw a boy who appeared to be writhing in pain.

I went and told his parents who told me not to worry and that their son could possibly win an award for his performances.

On the other end, I've seen other kids fall in front of an entire audience while playing at a sporting event, end up with two skinned knees, and not even flinch.

So where do these behaviors come from? Do they take after their parents in some way or are they more innate? And, how will situations like these transfer into every day life?

I guess I'd like to see both of my kids meet somewhere in the middle, my son to be more expressive when there's something wrong, and my daughter to be more willing to take on the challenge and be strong in knowing that she will get through it.

Lisa LaGrou is the founder of She and her team work to present quality content to their readers. Lisa likes to provide information and options for families about a myriad of topics without preaching or condoning. If she experiences something, she want to share it. If she doesn't know about something, she tries to find information to share. She's delighted when people contact her with suggestions about content and resources. For more information on how to become a member of Oakland County Moms click HERE. 

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