Dealing with annoying comments

Posted on: Thu, 11/26/2015 - 12:45am
learningmore's picture
Joined: 09/03/2009 - 17:34

Hi all—I know this is something that many of us have been dealing with for awhile now: annoying comments regarding my peanut/treenut allergy. Recently, some comments have included: "Oh, we don't want to kill her." or when I asked a coworker to write a recommendation for me, she randomly retorted: "I'd say that you are allergic to everything." She ordinarily is pretty in tune to my allergies, but these types of insensitive comments slip out—and I notice that about most people.

I acknowledge that maybe people don't know how to react or how to handle these types of things so these awkward comments come out. I try to say something along the lines of: "It's a serious medical condition that I need to take care of."

I used to push back more and say: "Hey, that really bothers me when you say that." But it just happens so much that I took a step back in terms of how much energy I was putting into it.

Anyone out there feel similarly/have any other thoughts to add to the toolbox of tactics to use in this type of situation? Thanks so much and sending lots of good vibes your way.

Posted on: Sat, 11/28/2015 - 1:11pm's picture
Joined: 06/21/2013 - 11:03

Question of the Week: Answered!
Every week, answers one of the questions posted in our community.
Our Answer:
We are sorry to hear that some people are making comments about your allergy that make you uncomfortable. Dealing with a food allergy comes with more challenges than just dietary ones. You are definitely not alone when it comes to dealing with less-than-pleasant comments about a food allergy.
For starters, it sounds like you already have a good approach for dealing with these comments. It’s important to realize that not everyone will understand the seriousness of your condition. But that doesn’t mean that it’s easy to deal with those comments, either.
Parents especially know the challenge of speaking to many different people about food allergies. Although this is a different situation, it is a similar one. For parents, it’s important to get a sense of what teachers or other parents think might happen to a child who is allergic to certain foods. Make sure your co workers and other people around you know that this is a condition that could cause immediate physical symptoms – not just something that you can overcome easily. Read more about communication with others about an allergy here.
You should also know that the Americans with Disabilities Act protects the rights of people with disabilities. Although you might not immediately think of a food allergy as a disability, a disability is actually any mental or physical impairment that significantly limits major life activities such as eating and breathing. People with food allergies have a right to request changes in the workplace environment if there are conditions that disadvantage them. The ADA also protects against any harassment, coercion or retaliation against an employee who uses their ADA rights.
You have every right to have accommodations made for you when it comes to your food allergy. If a co worker seems annoyed at this, you can try kindly reminding them about the seriousness of your conditions and your rights under the ADA. You can read more about them here.
It’s also important to remember that you should always take safety measures when dealing with a food allergy — especially if you’re in a new environment or around people who might not fully understand your allergy. Always make sure to double-check food at an office party or holiday get-together where you don’t know everyone or their cooking style. Read more about managing your allergy here.
We always recommend speaking with your doctor about your concerns.
We hope this information is helpful. Take care!

More Community Posts

Peanut Free and Nut Free Community

create a new community post
Displaying 1 - 20 of 20
Latest Post by penelope Mon, 10/14/2019 - 12:56pm
Comments: 0
Latest Post by penelope Mon, 10/14/2019 - 12:52pm
Comments: 1
Latest Post by Italia38 Tue, 10/08/2019 - 12:19pm
Comments: 3
Latest Post by Italia38 Tue, 10/08/2019 - 12:18pm
Comments: 1
Latest Post by penelope Mon, 10/07/2019 - 7:19pm
Comments: 2
Latest Post by penelope Mon, 10/07/2019 - 7:16pm
Comments: 10
Latest Post by penelope Mon, 10/07/2019 - 7:13pm
Comments: 13
Latest Post by penelope Mon, 10/07/2019 - 7:10pm
Comments: 9
Latest Post by mom2two Mon, 09/16/2019 - 1:03pm
Comments: 18
Latest Post by desmond Mon, 09/16/2019 - 1:00pm
Comments: 1
Latest Post by desmond Mon, 09/16/2019 - 12:58pm
Comments: 19
Latest Post by TeddyCan Mon, 09/09/2019 - 4:32pm
Comments: 10
Latest Post by DTurner Mon, 09/09/2019 - 4:31pm
Comments: 5
Latest Post by B.M.18 Mon, 09/09/2019 - 4:30pm
Comments: 3
Latest Post by abolitionist146 Mon, 09/09/2019 - 4:28pm
Comments: 2
Latest Post by nutfreenyc Mon, 09/09/2019 - 4:19pm
Comments: 4
Latest Post by AllergicTeen2 Mon, 09/09/2019 - 4:18pm
Comments: 2
Latest Post by Fri, 09/06/2019 - 1:52pm
Comments: 1

More Articles

You might have wondered if small amounts of an ingredient can be added to a food product without being declared on the food’s label. The FDA...

Is it possible to eat your way to a food allergy cure? Scientists think it’s...

There are many reasons why you may want to substitute almond flour for wheat flour in recipes. Of course, if you have a...

Not all oils are created equal. Some oils are high in saturated fats or in trans-fatty acids – not good for general health. Some are partially...

It may never be safe to begin feeding peanut butter to your baby or toddler if you have peanut allergies in your family. If either parent or one...

More Articles

More Articles

What is a peanut allergy? It is a reaction that occurs in the body after eating peanuts or peanut...

For those with severe food allergies, flying can be a stressful process. Here are...

Approximately one out of 13 children under age 18 are allergic to at least one food, though many of them will outgrow their allergy by the age of...

Fact 1: Over a third of food allergy reactions happen after the first known oral...

The reason why some people are affected by allergies while others are not begins in their genes. Allergies are passed down from generation to...

Here’s a tip that might someday save your life, or that of a loved one: two to four times a year, review the proper way to use your epinephrine...

Lactose intolerance is the inability to process lactose, a sugar found in milk, caused by the lack of a needed enzyme. Those with lactose...

Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA)

An important part of peanut allergy awareness was enacted on January 1, 2006...

Tomato allergies are very rare. They are a "type 1 allergy," which means a contact allergy. When a person with this type of allergy touches a...

Milk allergies are becoming more common, especially in babies and small children. There is some confusion about what is an allergic reaction and...

Recognizing food allergy in babies or toddlers is not always easy, but there are specific risk factors and signs that parents and other caregivers...

Burlap bags are often used to store and ship coffee beans, potatoes, rice, seeds, nuts, and peanuts. They can be one of the disguised...

People with pollen allergies need to stay away from some foods. If you have allergic rhinitis in the spring or fall, you may not realize that you...

Of course, everyone knows that if you have a peanut allergy that you should avoid peanuts, peanut butter, peanut butter cookies and foods that...

Eating at a nut-free lunch table in school is a safety precaution that causes some students to feel isolated from their peers. Unfortunately,...