Lax PA parents making my job more difficult (m)

29 replies [Last post]
By robinlp on Wed, 08-18-04, 00:53

or should I say she was easy going? I was at a meeting tonight for my daughters first grade class (she doesn't have allergies it is my younger son...not yet in school). However, we were discussing class snack and someone mentioned that salted peanuts were a good snack and the teacher mentioned that one child was PA. His Mom said..."oh, that is okay if you want to eat peanuts around him he doesn't react that badly"

HELLO!!! I felt like screaming at her right there. I am preparing myself for a BIG JOB when my son starts school to keep things safe for him and was hoping for support from other PA parents. Goodness, I hope they are not all like her since I will not be okay w/ a class of first graders eating salted peanuts around my son. Should I address this Mom? I mean, my PA child doesn't even go to school yet so it really doesn't effect me BUT...

What would you do?

[This message has been edited by robinlp (edited August 17, 2004).]

[This message has been edited by robinlp (edited August 17, 2004).]

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By PeteFerraro on Wed, 08-18-04, 01:21

Been there done that.

I would print out some "educational" material from the web on peanut allergies and attempt to educate your new found friend.

I'd also have a chat with the school nurse and have him/her educate your child's teacher.

Remember...

PA children are in the minority. Fully educated food allergy parents are even harder to come by.

The world was not created in one day and all of its problems can't be fixed in one day. One day at a time, one battle at a time one crisis at a time.

Good luck on your new job!

------------------
Pete Ferraro
[url="http://www.FerraroFamily.org"]www.FerraroFamily.org[/url]

[This message has been edited by PeteFerraro (edited August 17, 2004).]

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By CVB in CA on Wed, 08-18-04, 01:42

I might approach this woman casually. No lectures. Seek background info about the kid-how did you find out?, how long have you know?, what kind of reactions?, etc. You can tell a lot about their attitude and knowledge level this way.

Sometimes parents are not that well informed, and sometimes they don't want to be more informed. Sometimes they get pretty bad advice from their doctor. They may figure it's none of your business.

I know of a PA child in an adjoining school whose mom let ritz peanut bits be the class snack for weeks on end in kindergarten. A friend of mine there approached her about it as her kid seemed to be reacting as soon as the child entered the room with runny nose, sneezing, red eyes, etc.

The mom didn't have much response, just "that's the way it is". It has been three years now, and her kid has suffered through these sort of situations in every classroom. Maybe she figures the child is learning to cope?

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By on Wed, 08-18-04, 01:59

robinlp, probably not what you're going to want to hear. I would leave the other PA parent be. It's her child.

I sincerely understand how difficult this may make things for you when you present your PA child to the same school in a couple of years.

In my son's last two schools, there were previous PA children whose parents both had very different "comfort zones" than I did for my son and I did end up looking like Psycho Mom from He**. Indeed, this past year, it certainly did affect how school administration dealt (or didn't deal) with my son's allergy because of previous PA parents that were more lax (if you will).

However, I honestly don't think it's your place. I do think it's your place to do what you have to do to ensure the relative safety of your son while he is in school (I think you're American, so a 504 Plan?) but really I'd leave the other parent be.

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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By Hrg2 on Sun, 03-13-11, 03:56

Thank you anon. Perhaps the reaction the kid my have is mild and sees no reason to stress over it to the degree that you do. It appears to me that most people here freak out over even the slightest reaction. I have kids with varying degrees of reactions to peanuts, shellfish and for myself kiwi. I do not worry too much about the peanut reactions as they are minor.
Some people on here need to mellow out while others need to remain as string as they are now or even stronger.

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By on Wed, 08-18-04, 02:02

Oh, robinlp, also wanted to add that I remember when Jesse was entering Grade One and I found out there was finally another PA child entering his school. I thought, wow, I'll have another PA parent to speak with and we'll be on the same wave-length, yadda yadda. Not sure at all. And, it's been my experience ever since (Jesse just finished Grade 3) that any other PA parent I've met in *real* life (aside from PA.com members who I have met), have been very different about PA than I am.

I do the best I can to ensure the relative safety of my son. If I look like Psycho Mom from He** because of what may be considered strict requirements while he is at school, I don't mind. As far as other PA parents, I just leave them be (my jaw has almost dropped on many occasions and I have just had to bite my tongue, shut my mouth).

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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By MommaBear on Wed, 08-18-04, 02:37

Quote:Originally posted by robinlp:
[b] However, we were discussing class snack and someone mentioned that salted peanuts were a good snack and the teacher mentioned that one child was PA. His Mom said..."oh, that is okay if you want to eat peanuts around him he doesn't react that badly"

HELLO!!! I felt like screaming at her right there. I am preparing myself for a BIG JOB when my son starts school to keep things safe for him and was hoping for support from other PA parents. Goodness, I hope they are not all like her since I will not be okay w/ a class of first graders eating salted peanuts around my son. Should I address this Mom? I mean, my PA child doesn't even go to school yet so it really doesn't effect me BUT...

What would you do?

[/b]

You have me thinking.........Should I always keep my mouth shut regarding a child's safety/life who is not my own? [i]hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm[/i]. Should I refrain from intervening? Where does a parent's rights end and my moral/ethical obligation begin? Not even sure if "rights" enter into this. I mean, can one fulfill their moral/ethical obligation and not interfere with another's rights..........?

I've always told myself: If *I* don't act in my cubs best interests............[i]who will[/i]?

serious, serious thought here. I'll get back.

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By MommaBear on Wed, 08-18-04, 02:50

linking.

[url="http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/Forum1/HTML/005237.html"]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/Forum1/HTML/005237.html[/url]

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By ryan's mom on Wed, 08-18-04, 11:30

An above post mentioned PA kids are in the minority. So are parents of PA kids that treat this for what it is--a life-threatening food allergy. Lax parents haven't "hurt" my quest for a safe and appropriate education for my son, however, they haven't made it easy and have posed some tricky situations for me.

I must say that Ryan's allergy is treated very seriously in school because I take it seriously. I mean what I say, say what I mean, and do as I say. Can't say that about other parents of PA kids unfortunately.

And of course avoiding talking to other parents with PA kids in school (about PA issues) helps me keep my sanity. I always feel like tapping them on the head and saying, "HELLOOOOOOOOO..." whenever I do.

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By Jodi2boys on Wed, 08-18-04, 14:29

Going through the same situation. Last year, when my son started preschool, there was another student with a PA in 2nd grade. I was so happy thinking we could work together, someone else to understand, etc, etc. NOT the case...completely different comfort zone and views than mine.

This year, I just found out besides my son (entering Kindergarten), the other PA student entering 3rd grade...there are 2 more students entering the school with a PA (Preschool and 8th grade).

Again, I started thinking this might help in convincing the school to take PB&J off the school menu, replace the peanut candy from the vending machines with safe food/candy, etc. (just a few examples).

But...none of the other 3 PA students requested a 504, asked for any accomodations or even met with their teachers to prepare. One comment was even made- my son doesn't need a PF classroom...he ONLY gets the hives. AAhh!!

My personal opinion is having other PA students in the same school with parents that have such a different comfort zone...hurts us more than helps us. I feel the school has to wonder why they have this crazy mom (that'd be me) asking for all these accommodations to be made, have a 504 Plan, etc. When...they have these other parents of PA children very layed back, feel it's alright for things to remane the same and so forth.

If the 4 of us parents of PA children could work together to make the school a safer environment...I think it'd be much stronger than just myself doing it.

Okay...I feel a little better getting that all out.

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Mommy to
Jake~ 7 yrs. old- allergic to peanuts, cat/dog dander and dust mytes.

Sammy~ 5 yrs. old- NKA

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By mommyof two on Wed, 08-18-04, 15:35

this is a tough one...my son is only 15 month but i somehow thought parents of other PA kids at school will make it easier for us at least not harder!!.... may be you can talk to her and suggest her to check out this site and FAAn's site?! ask her if she's carrying epi-pen or has ever been to see pediatric allergist?! let us know how it goes?

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By MommaBear on Wed, 08-18-04, 16:03

[url="http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/Forum7/HTML/000419.html"]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/Forum7/HTML/000419.html[/url]

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By williamsmummy on Wed, 08-18-04, 20:00

In a new situation or class teacher , I always make a point of saying that they have never looked after my son before and his allergies are serious.
this stops the comparaisons to the other allergic children they may have encountered.
Then it doenst matter if the other PA child's parents are too lax or uneducated, its more important that the careers of your child sit up and pay attention to you.

I dont make a secret of the fact that william has allergies, and am quite happy to talk to other parents in the playground who have children with allergies.
I always bear in mind that the parenting path with an allergic child is individual, they will learn in the future what peanut allergy is all about. The hard way , as we all do.
If they ask , or I point out that I have lots of info ( from allergyUK or the Anaphylaxis campaign) at home and they are interested I will pass it on.

But the fight to keep your own child safe comes first.
You tell the teachers what is needed just for your child. keep it simple , clear and to the point.
Praise them and thank them if they volunteer to train for epi pens, ( always know who is trained !! ) work with them on building a good relationship.
What other parents think is not worth paying much mind to on this subject. If they think that their child will never have a severe reaction, its an arguement that will never work your way, and really I never want to be in the posistion of having that 'told you so' moment if the worst should happen.
good luck
sarah

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By synthia on Thu, 08-19-04, 00:59

Welcome back williamsmummy! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Love this site
Synthia

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By NutlessMOM on Thu, 08-19-04, 03:26

I think being the mom of two PA children, I am more aware of allergies...food or otherwise. Both of my children have very different reactions to PA. My dd breaks out in hives and that is about it. BUT, my ds will break out in hives, asthma starts flaring up and he has went in anaphylaxis shock requiring two epinephrine shots, plus other medicines. I have different comfort zones with each of them but the same rules applies for the both of them. The allergist told me that each time my children were exposed to peanuts, their reactions can be progressively worse.

So, with this other parent, I would have very casually asked what kind of reaction that her child had. I would tell her that my child had this same allergy and tell her how severe his reactions can be. Do not be condescending about her "comfort" zone. If this person is friendly enough, then you may tell her that whenever your child starts school, that peanut products can not be around your child because of his reactions and the possibility of DEATH occurring.

Your time will come when you will take a stand for your child either to the teacher or the administration. So, if you have a few years before he starts school, do all the research that you can on his allergy and have it ready when he starts school. You need to have a letter for your doctor, allergist, etc.. to explain the allergy and what kind of precautions need to be implemented. (Basically a 504 plan) Maybe, the school will not view you as the Psycho-Mom from H*LL. (I was viewed that way at school because I had the only 2 PA kids at school..we finally had 3 PA kids at school when I decided to pull my children out to home school). There are some things that I wished that I had handled differently when dealing with my children's allergies at school. The main thing would have been implementing the 504 for both of my children when they started in Kindergarten. I truly think that this would have saved me a lot of grief and kept me from being the Psycho-mom.

Anyway, sorry to ramble too much. Kim [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

[This message has been edited by NutlessMOM (edited August 18, 2004).]

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By on Thu, 08-19-04, 14:57

williamsmummy, welcome back! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] I agree with you. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Jodi2boys, I really hear what you're saying. I remember when there was finally another PA student entering Jesse's first school and I thought, GREAT, I won't look like Psycho Mom from He** anymore and I'll have someone to talk to. Didn't happen.

In Grade One, he didn't have any other PA students in the school and I have to say, out of the three years in Belleville, it was our best year as far as the school dealing with PA. I'm not clear that it had to do with the absence of other PA parents with different comfort zones or not or if it was simply because it was, in fact, a great school with a lot of great programs.

In Grade Two, the principal certainly worked well with me despite having another PA student in the school whose parents had a very different comfort zone than I did.

Last year, well, it was just he**. My daughter (non-PA) was in the class of the other PA student and a "safe" snack list was sent home with her. I asked the school where the he** they got the list because it was not something I personally would have okayed. They got it from the other PA parents.

I really wish that when there are other PA parents in *real* life at the school that we could "band" together so that those of us with written school plans for our children don't look like Psycho People.

I'm not sure if the school where my children will be attending this year has other PA students or not.

In all actuality, I would just as soon Jess be the only PA student.

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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By virginia mom on Sat, 08-21-04, 01:48

I agree that it's important for PA parents to "band together". For the past two years, I was one of two PA parents at my daughter's school. Both of us were on the same page regarding precautions, peanut free classrooms and a peanut free table at lunch. This year, however, the other PA parent has found out that her daughter has "outgrown" her PA (yea!). While this is wonderful news, we have another PA parent coming into kindergarten whose approach to PA is the most lax I have ever seen. First, she does not have an allergist. She says that her son's PA was diagnosed by a regular doctor. Second, she does not have an epipen. Third, and this is the scariest of all, she claims that her son can sometimes "cheat" with his PA and have half of a Snickers candy bar! This scares the bejesus out of me because she will come to school and assure everyone that PA is not that big of a deal. In my opinion, PA is like being pregnant - you either are or are not. No one can predict the reaction to peanut exposure and "cheating" is NEVER allowed! In this case, while I understand that her son's welfare is her affair, this certainly undermines everything I have put into place for my PA daughter in the past two years... Other parents may feel that this proves I have "overblown" a minor allergy that is really an intolerance - Can you see the smoke coming out of my ears?!?

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By Mama S on Sun, 08-22-04, 04:49

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[This message has been edited by Mama S (edited August 27, 2004).]

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By MommaBear on Sun, 08-22-04, 17:24

Quote:Originally posted by virginia mom:
[b]While this is wonderful news, we have another PA parent coming into kindergarten whose approach to PA is the most lax I have ever seen. First, she does not have an allergist. She says that her son's PA was diagnosed by a regular doctor. [/b]

[b]Huh?????[/b]

[i]This is criteria for a "lax" parent?????????????????[/i]

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By MommaBear on Sun, 08-22-04, 17:33

[url="http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/111/6/S2/1591"]http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/111/6/S2/1591[/url]

Not as advice in any manner or form and only describing *my own personal, highly individual, and unique* situation:

My sons pediatrician diagnosed my cubs Peanut/Nut Allergy. And my cubs Asthma. He also has been pivotal in the Management thereof.

In no way do I feel this was [i]outside *his* scope of practice[/i]. Don't know about other situations, only my own.

General Disclaimer: I am not offering advice in any manner or form. I do not guarantee the accuracy, content, or currentness of the link in this post.

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By lalow on Sun, 08-22-04, 18:39

I was told by my son's allergist to treat my son's peanut allergy as life threatening. I was told to always bring an epi-pen with me and to take it very seriously. He has only had one reaction at 14 months (he broke out in hives) and got a score of one on his RAST. When people ask me if his allergy is serious that is what I tell them. I guess I dont understand why there are so many Dr's out there not educating their patients and families.

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Lalow
James 7 yrs, NKA
Ben 5 yrs, PA and MA
Lydia 5 yrs, NKA
Paul 3 yrs, NKA

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By virginia mom on Wed, 08-25-04, 00:11

This is in reply to Momma Bear's question about my opinion of a lax parent regarding peanut allergy - when my friend's pediatrician "diagnosed" her child's peanut allergy, he did it without a scratch test or a blood test - he diagnosed it based on her description of a one time reaction to peanuts. Now this mom is walking around saying that her son is peanut allergic but can eat it from time to time. To diagnose an allergy without a diagnostic test of any kind is reprehensible. And, yes, it is "lax" of a parent who thinks they have a PA child to not carry an Epi pen and to say that peanut ingestion "from time to time" is okay.

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By erik on Wed, 08-25-04, 00:26

Quote:Originally posted by virginia mom:
[b]To diagnose an allergy without a diagnostic test of any kind is reprehensible. [/b]

I disagree. When I was 2 years old, I took a bite of my mother's peanut butter sandwich and then went for a nap. My face swelled up and my mother called the doctor and he dropped by (this was years ago when doctors did house calls).

The doctor diagnosed me as peanut allergic based on observing what happened. He told my mother to make sure I avoided peanut products. It wasn't until I was about 12 years old that I actually went to an allergist.

I totally disagree that this was "reprehensible" behavior. Our family doctor did a great job. He was certain it was a peanut allergy based on the symptoms. This was verified about 10 years later when I went to an allergist for the first time and had a skin test.

Quote:Originally posted by virginia mom:
[b]And, yes, it is "lax" of a parent who thinks they have a PA child to not carry an Epi pen and to say that peanut ingestion "from time to time" is okay.[/b]

Yes.. if you have a peanut allergy, you should not eat peanuts from time to time. This is dangerous. And if you can eat the peanuts with no problems, maybe you don't actuallyhave a peanut allergy. I also agree an epi-pen should be carried to protect the child in case of a reaction.

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By e-mom on Wed, 08-25-04, 01:05

I would say that if this child can eat peanuts from time to time then he/she is not allergic them.

I haven't ventured into this thread because I think I am probably more lax that most of the moms on this board. However, we do have an allergist, carry several epipens and don't "cheat" with peanuts. So, I don't know, I guess that makes me a pretty normal mom who is concerned that her child has a peanut allergy.

What makes me more lax is we eat a variety of foods and restaurants that many have posted here that they do not or would not and so far, at the start of kindergarten tomorrow, everything is going well. (that may come to bite me in the a$$ later but for now it's working for us)

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By erik on Wed, 08-25-04, 01:13

Quote:Originally posted by e-mom:
[b]What makes me more lax is we eat a variety of foods and restaurants that many have posted here that they do not or would not ...[/b]

If that is your definition, then I am lax too. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/tongue.gif[/img]

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By e-mom on Wed, 08-25-04, 01:18

Hey, Erik, I'm sure you have been asked this before but what steps were taken for you while you were in school. Did you have epipens? Peanut free table? Peanut free classroom? Or were you just careful?

I'm just curious because I think we are of the same "comfort zone".

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By Sandra Y on Wed, 08-25-04, 02:04

There have always been other PA kids at the schools my son has attended. Although I sometimes seem "lax" by PA.com standards, out in the Real World I am much more vigilant than any other PA parents I've come across.

The way other families deal with PA has never affected us in our relations with the school. I think most schools are used to the idea that kids with the same medical diagnosis can have different treatment plans. Some kids with CP walk with a bad limp and others use a wheelchair. Some LD kids need remedial classes and others are in gifted programs.

I would say never get involved in a discussion with school officials about how other families deal with PA. No responsible school official would even discuss such a thing as it would be a breach of confidentiality. Just go to school armed with your medical documentation and focus on your own situation.

As far as what other parents will think, I wouldn't even give it a thought. No matter what you do, if your kid is PA or not, there will be other parents who criticize you and your child for one thing or another. Some parents are just really obnoxious so you have to simply avoid them. For every loudmouth there are probably ten others who are quietly hoping the bigmouth will shut up and go away.

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By erik on Wed, 08-25-04, 03:43

Quote:Originally posted by e-mom:
[b]Hey, Erik, I'm sure you have been asked this before but what steps were taken for you while you were in school. Did you have epipens? Peanut free table? Peanut free classroom? Or were you just careful?
[/b]

Hi e-mom,

I started at school in the early 1970s. I had no epi-pen, no peanut-free classrooms, etc... back then, there was not much awareness of peanut allergy. Other students ate peanut butter sandwiches, but I just was careful, washed my hands, and I never sat right next to anyone eating peanut butter. I was very careful. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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By Nutternomore on Wed, 08-25-04, 07:20

Quote:Originally posted by MommaBear:
[b] [url="http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/111/6/S2/1591"]http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/111/6/S2/1591[/url]

General Disclaimer: I am not offering advice in any manner or form. I do not guarantee the accuracy, content, or currentness of the link in this post.[/b]
-----------------------

I remember when this free supplement to Pediatrics magazine came out. In doing some research on that supplement, I recall that the reason it was published (and made available on-line [b]for free[/b]) was that there was recognition that in general, pediatricians were woefully underprepared to deal with the rising tide of food allergies. This supplement was one of many methods employed a couple of years ago to quickly close the knowledge gap in the pediatrician community...

Our son's initial pediatrician was a fine doctor, but we learned in retrospect that he was out of his league in dealing with food allergies. Our son was experiencing GERD symptoms and excema, and while we did lots of tests (barium swallow, etc.), it never dawned on him that perhaps DS could be allergic to the formula. Switched doctors, and learned that he was allergic to soy; as soon as we switched to Alimentum, major improvements (this was prior to learning about DS' PN/TN allergies - which after the 1st anaphylactic episode - [i]we[/i] became educated!).

Not saying that a pediatrician is incapable of diagnosing (of course), but I like specialists in this field, due to how rapidly the field is changing (explosion of research, etc.).

Also, I noted that virginia mom gave a number of reasons that led to her assessment of "lax"...

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By HookwormIsHope on Fri, 11-05-10, 20:10

Wow, how insulting. I can't believe someone would say that about their own kid..That makes me grateful to have the parents I have!!!

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Peanuts, Soy, Peas, asthma allergies

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