How big of a deal is food coloring/junk food to you? How upset would you be about this? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 08:59 AM - Thread Starter
 
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A family member picked up my younger daughter (4) yesterday to do something fun with her. I thought that sounded fine, and the older one was busy and the younger one was looking for something to do, so I sent them off together.

Last night, my daughter puked up what looked to me like a ton of blood. I was freaking out. My husband said not to freak out and maybe she ate something red. I called the family member and asked, and she said that she'd bought my 4-year-old a large red slush drink.

So I continued to freak out and said that she never has stuff like that and it's making her puke her guts out and with the red, I was worried she was vomiting blood. I was upset enough that I probably said things like that the family member couldn't be trusted and that kind of thing. greensad.gif I regret how upset I get, but you must remember that my baby was sick and had a bunch of red stuff coming out of her, and as we avoid red food coloring this is not something I have experience with.

Anyway, upon relieving her body of the bright red slush drink, the 4-year-old was happy as a clam and went to sleep and woke up happy as a clam and is still fine.

How upset would you be? Do I owe this family member an apology for flipping out?
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#2 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 09:48 AM
 
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Yes, I think so.  Junk food like slushies is pretty common for "mainstream" people and you didn't give the family member any instructions as to what to feed/not feed her.  It really isn't their fault that she got sick, but I do understand you being upset and scared about it.  I would have been too.
 

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#3 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 10:00 AM
 
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I think you owe them an apology. Being scared is understandable but verbally attacking someone for giving a child a treat on a special outing, especially one where no instructions against a treat were given, is not understandable. Kids puke sometimes and it isn't something I would use to create bad feelings among family members. I suggest you are more specific up front about what your child can eat. If you limit it to expensive organic stuff with no exceptions you should also provide the food and drink.
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#4 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 10:24 AM
 
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Yeah, if I were you I would suck it up and apologize. They didn't know you would disapprove or that she would get sick. I would have been freaking out as well!

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#5 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 12:40 PM
 
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I think you overreacted, and owe an apology.  I get being scared, but going off on someone else was a little over the top.

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#6 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 02:26 PM
 
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I would apologize for getting so upset, especially now that you know that's all it was and she is fine. And now you know to give warnings about that kind of stuff.

 

But really, I don't blame you for getting so upset. IDK how you were raised, but my parents didn't give us junk like that all the time. And yet I can totally see this same thing happening with my kids where I am left incredulous that anyone, let alone my own parents, think it's fine to give such a tiny person such an enormous drink and not expect them to puke.

 

When DS was younger, he was really sensitive to dyes. I told my parents that he was and not to give them to him and they did anyway. He was uncontrollable and miserable when they brought him home. I told them the next time they did that, he would be back on their doorstep until he had "detoxed" or he wouldn't be left with them again.

 

Even though you may have been over the top with what you said to the person, I think it's extremely rude to give kids so much junk that their parents are left with that kind of aftermath after a special day out. 

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#7 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 03:32 PM
 
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I would apologize, but if the person didn't also apologize. I wouldn't let that person be in charge of my child again. I wouldn't say anything, but just make an excuse if asked for another opportunity.

Oh if you point out to the child that the nausea and vomiting was caused by too much sugar and artificial coloring, she might start policing her own food intake. My son did at 3 1/2.
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#8 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 06:46 PM
 
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I would apologize. Say that you are sorry, that you were worried about your kid and your freaked out and acted out of hand.

I am sure that the person feels bad. From their point of view, they went out, had a special outing with a little kid they love and then got yelled at and were called untrustworthy of being around children for a treat. They probably feel hurt, bad about making a kid they love feel ill, and embarrassed.

 

Also, next time either limit the type of treat or the size of treat.

We do not feed our kid that stuff. But I would allow a family member or close friend to get our kid a small slushy or something on a special outing.


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#9 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 07:25 PM
 
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I agree that you should offer an apology. I definitely would. I understand being scared and reacting but once things got sorted out and the dust settled, it turned out to be an innocent gesture without anticipating a problem. I do my best to feed DD wholesome food but if I was looking after a child who was allergic to dairy and gluten and I didn't know, I'd offer a whole wheat grilled cheese sandwich with vegetables on the side for lunch and not anticipate any issues. I'm not saying that the slushy is the same as the sandwich but it could certainly make a child with those intolerances very sick indeed even though I offered it with the best intensions. I'd apologize and next time simply say "DD can't have such and such because she feels I'll later". I bet the adult in question feels bad that your DD vomited from what was supposed to be a special treat. It was a miscommunication and I bet the slushy seemed like a good idea at the time.
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#10 of 28 Old 06-09-2013, 07:54 PM
 
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I do not think it is that big of a deal. Getting junk food when with relatives or friends, when your own parents don't allow junk food, is a time-honored part of childhood. And the occasional treat probably will be fine for most people. That said, since in your case your daughter did react badly to the slushy, I would recommend to the relative that they avoid or limit giving her junk food in the future, since she doesn't have these things often and her body is not used to them. (Is she going to be in school? If so, she'll probably be exposed to more junk food then, too.) They'll probably do that on their own anyway, knowing what the aftermath is. I would not keep your relative from watching the child unless there is a repeated pattern of incidents and they haven't heeded any warnings you give. 

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#11 of 28 Old 06-10-2013, 01:09 PM
 
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I think this family member is probably going to be very offended, actually.  I understand your fear in the moment and I understand over-reacting, but I think you need to certainly apologize and their might be some weirdness for awhile!  They may not ask to take dd again after this!

I know if it were my family they would be very hurt to be treated that way.  And we are very healthy, but I don't hold my family to that standard and if dd is with them she does what they do.

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#12 of 28 Old 06-10-2013, 05:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I should have updated earlier. I did apologize, and she apologized for giving her so big of a slushy drink too. She said she understand why I was upset when I saw my daughter vomiting so much red, but she did appreciate the apology. I said she is trustworthy and can give her treats, but maybe smaller ones. (This family member has no children and I think misjudged how much was appropriate.)
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#13 of 28 Old 06-10-2013, 05:28 PM
 
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Mamazee, that sounds like everything has been resolved without hurt feelings. I'm glad to hear it went so well smile.gif
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#14 of 28 Old 06-10-2013, 06:08 PM
 
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I think it would be helpful for you to give her a specific list of treats that would be okay with you and maybe a list of things to avoid if she wants to pick something out herself.  It's really hard for someone who doesn't have kids and who hasn't researched these issues to know what is/isn't a good idea.

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#15 of 28 Old 06-11-2013, 07:52 AM
 
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I have visions of people being sure to give your little one blue slushies in the future so you won't be alarmed by the red;-)

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#16 of 28 Old 06-11-2013, 11:33 AM
 
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I have visions of people being sure to give your little one blue slushies in the future so you won't be alarmed by the red;-)

LOL...this sounds like a good plan.  Totally logical.  :)  

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#17 of 28 Old 06-11-2013, 12:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mamazee View Post

I should have updated earlier. I did apologize, and she apologized for giving her so big of a slushy drink too. She said she understand why I was upset when I saw my daughter vomiting so much red, but she did appreciate the apology. I said she is trustworthy and can give her treats, but maybe smaller ones. (This family member has no children and I think misjudged how much was appropriate.)

 

I'm glad everything turned out okay! 

 

On a related note, my friend vomited red wine and dark chocolate crepes in Paris and her boyfriend totally thought she was dying, so you're not the only one to be freaked out by red puke! 


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#18 of 28 Old 06-11-2013, 01:00 PM
 
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Watch out for beets! They make your pee and poop red (and probably similar if you vomited them). If someone else is going to be watching our daughter after she eats beets, we warn them so they aren't freaked out by the diapers. 

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#19 of 28 Old 06-11-2013, 02:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, my husband loves beets so we're aware of that. LOL.

And LOL as well @ the blue slushy idea! I would have known it was something she'd eaten then. orngbiggrin.gif
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#20 of 28 Old 06-11-2013, 03:10 PM
 
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I have visions of people being sure to give your little one blue slushies in the future so you won't be alarmed by the red;-)

Vulcan Blood???? ;-P
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#21 of 28 Old 06-11-2013, 09:07 PM
 
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I am glad it all worked out. I was going to say that maybe if the two of you could just communicate what went on for you and your expectations and how maybe they felt when you were upset with them,it could all be worked out!

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#22 of 28 Old 06-12-2013, 02:14 PM
 
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But really, I don't blame you for getting so upset. IDK how you were raised, but my parents didn't give us junk like that all the time. And yet I can totally see this same thing happening with my kids where I am left incredulous that anyone, let alone my own parents, think it's fine to give such a tiny person such an enormous drink and not expect them to puke.

 

Why? I've seen dozens of kids drink this kind of stuff (or eat fairly large quantities of candies that are loaded with sugar and dyes) without puking. Lots of kids do eat and drink this kind of thing, even at quite young ages, and don't go around puking. I certainly never got sick from eating too much crap, but I definitely did eat too much crap (not from my parents, and not with their knowledge). A lot of people just don't see these things as an issue.

 

I'd be upset that my child was sick, but I wouldn't go off on someone over it. Everyone has different rules, guidelines, beliefs, etc. about food, including junk food and treats.


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#23 of 28 Old 06-12-2013, 02:25 PM
 
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Why? I've seen dozens of kids drink this kind of stuff (or eat fairly large quantities of candies that are loaded with sugar and dyes) without puking. Lots of kids do eat and drink this kind of thing, even at quite young ages, and don't go around puking. I certainly never got sick from eating too much crap, but I definitely did eat too much crap (not from my parents, and not with their knowledge). A lot of people just don't see these things as an issue.

 

I'd be upset that my child was sick, but I wouldn't go off on someone over it. Everyone has different rules, guidelines, beliefs, etc. about food, including junk food and treats.

Your nailed it! I think everyone has different rule and guidelines. I think if children are no use to consuming lots of sugars and dyes they probably would get sick as the OP's child did. As a school teacher I too saw lots of kids consume food I would not even think of trying and be okay.

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#24 of 28 Old 06-12-2013, 10:35 PM
 
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glad I am seeing this now so have all the updates.

 

my first question was  - a "large" slushie drink. that means 16 oz for a FOUR year old?!!! YIKES!!! pure sugar and red! double YIKES

my second question was - does this person have kids?

 

its really really hard for those who are not so intuitive to think like a child without the experience.

 

glad things worked out. perhaps one day you guys can laugh over your reactions, at yourselves  - esp. when ur dd went to sleep AND woke up happy as a clam :)


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#25 of 28 Old 06-13-2013, 09:31 AM
 
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Why? I've seen dozens of kids drink this kind of stuff (or eat fairly large quantities of candies that are loaded with sugar and dyes) without puking. Lots of kids do eat and drink this kind of thing, even at quite young ages, and don't go around puking. I certainly never got sick from eating too much crap, but I definitely did eat too much crap (not from my parents, and not with their knowledge). A lot of people just don't see these things as an issue.

 

I'd be upset that my child was sick, but I wouldn't go off on someone over it. Everyone has different rules, guidelines, beliefs, etc. about food, including junk food and treats.


Unfortunately it's not just about junk food and other kids being able to handle it. Artificial dyes actually cleave DNA in half; they are used in laboratories when that action is desired for experimentation. They are a chemical additive and good for nothing but visuals. Junk food is junk, whether you puke from it or not. I'm not super uptight with my child but why give our loved ones junk when we don't have to?

 

And of course this knowledge is not "out there" in the general public, and I'm in total agreement that the apology from both sides was great. Then education has to follow, which is always super tricky.

 

At least we can learn from this that we do have to educate our caretakers if we know and care about food issues.

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#26 of 28 Old 06-13-2013, 10:39 AM
 
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I'm glad it all worked out. I would've reacted the exact same way. I was just thinking today: our son is 3 and has never had any artificial colors....yet. I am so happy about that. But yeah, that bubble's bound to burst, right? I get a little paranoid about artificial ingredients, especially coloring, in children's food (well in my food too, but less so as my body's much bigger and not still developing). So I fully sympathize and don't even blame you at all for freaking out. But yeah, apology necessary and so glad she did too, as I would also expect that.

 

I thought this was also an excellent point:

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Originally Posted by pek64 View Post


Oh if you point out to the child that the nausea and vomiting was caused by too much sugar and artificial coloring, she might start policing her own food intake. My son did at 3 1/2.

 

Don't know how long ago this was but you can talk to her about it and maybe it will really teach her how to regulate her own food. The physical memory of puking red is imprinted in her and may really help her to avoid artificial coloring on her own, which as you know she will have to make more and more of her own food decisions....and we can only try our best to teach them to make wise ones.

 

Good luck!


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#27 of 28 Old 06-13-2013, 01:23 PM
 
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Unfortunately it's not just about junk food and other kids being able to handle it. Artificial dyes actually cleave DNA in half; they are used in laboratories when that action is desired for experimentation. They are a chemical additive and good for nothing but visuals. Junk food is junk, whether you puke from it or not. I'm not super uptight with my child but why give our loved ones junk when we don't have to?

 

And of course this knowledge is not "out there" in the general public, and I'm in total agreement that the apology from both sides was great. Then education has to follow, which is always super tricky.

 

At least we can learn from this that we do have to educate our caretakers if we know and care about food issues.

 

I was only responding to the poster who said she'd be incredulous. This kind of thing is very common.


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#28 of 28 Old 06-13-2013, 03:29 PM
 
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I would be annoyed by a trashy treat but I am pretty clear on what are acceptable treats for the "bad judgement" grandma. It was problem the volume of the treat that she reacted to rather than the food dye.

 

But yes, flipping out is probably too strong and deserves a brief apology.

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