[Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Infant Deaths
redheadartiste at gmail.com
Fri Sep 21 16:40:37 PDT 2012
I also have been asking these same questions regarding infant/toddler death
for many years. This phenomenon has affected all lines of my heritage,
regardless of geography, and in most cases families were fortunate if five
out of ten children made it to age three.
I have had the pleasure of having this discussion with my now very elderly
aunt, whose father was one of four children who survived out of more than
fourteen births, and lived with her grandmother most of her life. (Not all
of the births were ever even recorded!) She said that back then, in
essence, children died from the effects of dysentery. They would get
diarrhea, and the prevailing medical advice was to "help them get it out of
their systems." So mothers fed them prunes, castor oil, or whatever
laxative they had to encourage more bowel movements, and the poor things
would literally poop themselves to death, as they became dehydrated and
died. Mothers never knew that what they had done contributed to the death.
Hook 'Em Horns!
Researching: Schlender, Zindler, Steinke
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