I can write a book on this one.
I have a child who has had two brain surgeries, and I thank God and anybody else who intervened and allowed my husband and I to be the only entourage he had at the hospital.
Other people were kind enough to know that this was a very frightening and difficult experience, and I didn't want to be "ON." I have never cried more or been more vulnerable than when he was taken away for the bigger of the two surgeries. It is just not a moment I wanted others to see.
Don't get me wrong, I TOTALLY appreciated the emotional support. I loved the calls, I appreciated the little things people did for us and the little things they sent. I *felt* people's prayers on our behalf. I really, really did.
But, I just was not in a place where I wanted or needed company. I can't even begin to tell you how grateful I am that I could go two days without a shower without worrying about visitors. I'm even more grateful that I didn't have a whole lot of people playing doctor and giving advice, because the medical issues were very, very complex and I didn't need them further confused by people who saw something on ER once.
I would beg you (generic) for all it's worth, if you are anyone other than parents or siblings of the sick child -- please choose some other form of support than going to the hospital or to their home unless you are specifically asked. I do recognize that other people may feel differently and that some people may very well enjoy having an entourage. So, I think there is nothing wrong with asking if your help is needed, but please, please either read between the lines of their comments (I know that I was trying very hard to be polite to people who only wanted to be of help) and/or respect their wishes.