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Old 10-23-2012, 11:00 AM   #1
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Allergies rant

We have a boy with allergies, (milk, peanut, maybe eggs too) in our 3&4 yo sunday school class. His mom has been bringing him a seperate snack. Our head teacher asked his mom to give us a list of snacks he can have and that will be all we have in our classroom. Her response? "that's ok. I have his epi pen upstairs" are you freaking serious!?!?! What mother thinks that way?!? It would take us at least 2 or 3 min to run upstairs and find her. What if she happened to be in the bathroom? I actually had to stop him from eating someone elses snack the other day so I seriously doubt he has been told much re not eating anything not from mom. Scares the life out of me. Why would you want to take a risk like that?? This isn't the first thing I've seen this mom do/say that baffles me but geesh.

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Old 10-23-2012, 11:13 AM   #2
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Re: Allergies rant

Writing this as the mom of a kid with severe, extensive food allergies: If the child is not contact- or airway-reactive to his allergens, and she's sending in his own snack, I'm not quite sure what the concern is? She may also simply feel safer sending her own snacks because of the possibility of cross-contamination from hands, etc.

My daughter--who IS contact-reactive--has been in a classroom with her allergens since she was 2, as her allergies are far too extensive to ban all the foods. Although it creates some anxiety, it is very important for her to learn how to manage her allergies, since the world is not hypoallergenic and because "allergen-free" classrooms can create a false sense of security. (The allergens are in there, trust me.)

Do you know how recently her son was diagnosed? Parents react very, very differently to diagnoses of life-threatening allergies. My SO and I are researchers, so that's what we did immediately--researched, educated ourselves, educated all of our daughters caregivers, put emergency plans in place, etc. For some, it's harder to face the constant threat to your child and some people react by downplaying the allergies.

If you are one of the teachers, though, I would insist that the epi-pen stay with the kid (the parents can get a little pouch that he wears around his waist). My kid's Epi goes where she goes, at all times.
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Old 10-23-2012, 02:19 PM   #3
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Re: Allergies rant

Parents just like everyone else react differently. Some are more cautious than others. DD has a few food allergies including a very serious peanut allergy. I will not let her go places that serve peanuts with out me- not yet at least (but then I also wouldn't let her stay some place where food is present without her epi pen). She gets her own snack- even when people tell me that have safe snacks. Unless I have pre-approved the packaged snack including brand she doesn't eat it.

Parents also start teaching their kids at different ages. We didn't start teaching dd to turn food down until 4 because she was always with us. She has never had a babysitter or been in daycare (except for the 2 months when she was first diagnosed- that is actually where she had her peanut exposure and reaction just before she turned 2). It actually didn't take much for her to learn to turn down food unless we have approved it. She even turned down a cupcake last week during a class party. Now we eat out a lot so we did start teaching her at 3 to speak up and ask whether or not her food might have peanuts or come in contact with peanuts. That was is harder then just turning food down. But she is terrified of shots so she wants to avoid getting her epi pen.

And she could be really concerned but just answered to answer. She is providing the the snack. Her child might not be contact reactive. Honestly sometimes its just easier to answer with the quick response than a real explanation of why you do or don't do things. And I have found that it upsets and sometimes makes people angry when you don't "trust" them after they have made a effort.
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Last edited by jbug_4; 10-23-2012 at 02:28 PM.
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