Vent. Again. - Mothering Forums
Allergies > Vent. Again.
Missy's Avatar Missy 06:00 PM 03-03-2005

I am so frustrated and so sad right now. We went to our homeschool community center today--the one that had originally established guidelines to keep ds2 and a few others safe. And there was cheese and milk and mac-n-cheese and cheddar cheese goldfish and a JAR of peanut butter. There was no way I could even feed ds2 safely so we left. I didn't want to hang out in the playroom any longer b/c once kids started drifting back in from eating, there would be a huge chance that there would be dairy smears and peanut smears. The really sad thing is that the woman who brought the peanut butter was in our LLL group when ds2 was so sick and we were learning about his allergies and how to effectively eliminate them. She saw how sick he was. And peanut allergies are probably the most common and peanut butter is so freakin' OBVIOUS.

I helped them develop appropriate guidelines and I was very clear about severe ds2's allergies are and I didn't even ask them to avoid the banana and avocado--although the woman who established the group initially said they should. Of course, she brought bananas today. And I wouldn't even consider asking anyone to avoid the foods that aren't dangerous on contact.

I was really hoping to avoid taking it to the next level, which would be either 1. we discontinue contact with our area's homeschool community or 2. I host a mini-seminar to try to raise awareness. My other kids love going and ds2 has just started warming up to everyone. I need some adult contact, but, honestly, it's getting hard to see people as potential friends or at least friendly acquaintances when they seem to have so little regard for my child.

Thanks for listening.

Meiri's Avatar Meiri 06:43 PM 03-03-2005
Perhaps they need a refresher course. I would run the awareness seminar, maybe see if your doc has some informational posters or flyers?

If after that they still disregard matters of life&death, time to see their intent was never to be friends. I hope it's just stupidity rather than heartlessness though.
LaLa's Avatar LaLa 06:59 PM 03-03-2005
if I were you I would be really tempted to start a small unit of your own with children whose parents are also disapointed with the larger scale organizations for whatever reason.

It could be geared on educational beliefs, as well as a common commitment to eat a certain way that would be agreed upon by the members.

I would have been interested in this with bean's allergies just for the sake of having her in a group where they are not living off of goldfish crackers at every snack and then she doesn't have to feel bad for being left out...ykwim?
I would consider posting a flyer at health food stores, in support groups for different illnesses such as celiacs, or allergies awareness groups.

I couldn't trust others enough in that situation, but I know you have to trust others at some point.

Missy's Avatar Missy 11:18 PM 03-03-2005
I guess I'll try first to educate...and see if we can make it through the next few months.

Lala--a friend and I have been discussing starting our own group . Allergies aside, we are getting a little fed up with a lot of the junk. The worst was the cheetos, I think. Then, there's the "juice"...and the lunchables. But, I'd deal with that if my child was safe. We don't live a real crunchy area, and my kids are pretty good about staying away from oddly-colored food and my 5-yr-old ds1 always asks about corn syrup and dyes, etc...My greatest fear is that my friend will succumb to her doubts about hsing and send her son to kindergarten next year and I'll be left all by myself.

I don't really trust anyone except my mom to keep ds2 safe (oh, and dh--he's really great). I'm always right with him so that, if he suddenly decides to grab someone's apple or juice or cracker, I can stop him. But, he's not contact reactive to those foods, whereas, if someone spills their milk, it could splash on him--and the epi might not work. Or if someone has yogurt on their hands and touches him...or if there's a smear of cheddar cheese left on the table...or a piece of it on the chair he sits in...or...or...AUGH!! Too many scenerios. I told the group months ago that if they're dying to have an ice cream party, fine, I'll understand, just let me know and we'll pass. But, do they have to have dairy at EVERY meeting? It's only twice a month! :

LaLa's Avatar LaLa 11:38 PM 03-03-2005
it is so hard for people becuase, as I'm sure you have noticed, children in mainstream america, tend to LIVE off of crackers, cereal, cheese , mac and cheese, and the like.
Those turn into a parents crutches in many ways and it is very hard to know what to do for your child that is different then what you do daily.

My neices, for example, refuse to eat anything but mac and cheese, crackers etc. If they had to spend a week with me, they would either starve, or get used to eating a variety of whole foods!

I know it is frustrating, but it is not going to change.

I was thinking about you the other night when I was watching TV and there was a commercial that sent the message the 9 out of 10 peole weren't getting enough healthy whole grains and that they would essentially be working toward heart attack if they didn't eat cereals like honey combs on a daily basis!
It was an appauling commercial, but probably only appauling to you, me, and a handful of other "weirdos" on the non mainstream path.
I know it is hard!
Especially for his type of reactions.

Chanley's Avatar Chanley 11:56 PM 03-03-2005

I know how you feel. My inlaws brought a loaf (actually 2) of bread in my home. I am sorry but I look at bread as if it is rat poison now. I have such a vendetta against grains. Hehe, I think I have placed all of my anger towards foods we cannot have.

If it makes you feel better, we can have peanut butter but we never ever have anything peanut related outside of our home. I just dont know who is going to be touching the grocery cart or whatever next....

People dont take food allergies seriously.
Missy's Avatar Missy 03:21 PM 03-04-2005
If it makes you feel better, we can have peanut butter but we never ever have anything peanut related outside of our home. I just dont know who is going to be touching the grocery cart or whatever next....
Chanley--it really does make me feel better. Peanut allergies are growing and they are so dangerous. Did you know that the protein left behind from a smear of peanut butter is still present up to six months later? I am so glad that Sterling is not airborne reactive to peanuts; I've heard of kids having an ana response in line at the grocery store when somebody around them is eating a snickers.

Lala--I don't think I've seen the honeycomb commercial. Have you seen the oreo commercial where the little kid dunks his oreo into a glass of milk and the milk squirts everywhere? That one gives me the creeps.

When my dd was in public school, kids always commented on her weird lunches that got even weirder after ds2's allergies were dxed. When she was in first grade, she'd occasionally ask for lunchables "like the other kids" and I did buy her Little Debbie's once. : But, by third grade, her final year in public school, she didn't mind being different. She even shared her "weird" food with the other kids. In kindergarten she figured out that the red juice they serve at every party gave her stomach aches, so she started asking for water instead.

I'm feeling a lot better today. I vented to an acquaintance whose 1-year-old dd has most of the same allergies as ds2. She has her own AP playgroup (to be a hs group as the kids get older) that I've been invited to attend, but our participation has been limited because of 1. distance and 2. the presence of some form of dairy at every gathering. She's decided to declare the playgroup a dairy-free, peanut-free zone I guess we'll take the distance over the convenience of a local group.