Do you think there are 2 kinds??

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 12:31am
Ginger's picture
Joined: 11/17/1999 - 09:00

I have realized from the people I know personally that there seems to be 2 kinds of PA parenting.
I have seen parents (with children with PA) give there kids "may contain traces of" products like M&M's & cookies etc....
Then there are the other parents, who read everything (labels & Literature) written about PA to educate themselves and other and would NEVER give there kids these products. It seems to be one extreme or the other.

I know a few parents with kids at our school with PA and they give their kids these things. One Mom had said, "My son doesn't have PA that bad, he only gets hives and vomits. He's not as bad as yours." I am like looking at this mother with my chin on the floor [img][/img]

I was told by our doctor, Hugh Sampson,that you cannot take these chances. Here is how he explained it to us and I had said this to this mother:
Do you know the EXACT amount your child was exposed to when he had his reaction? Like (Teaspoon, Tablespoon)

The next exposure, (God Forbid) will you know the amount will be less then the last time?

How do you know the next time won't be double the amount?
When we found out about my son's PA,he was given a tiny piece of PB&J sandwich, which I had rubbed on his lips to encourage him to eat it, [img][/img] he only licked his lips and he almost died.

Do I know the exact amount he had actually ingested?? NO I do not.

How do you know that M&M will not have a large trace of peanut, or an actual morsel??

Why aren't ALL the allergist explaining that EACH time you have a reaction is approx. 7 times worse than the last time!! They really need to tell parents this.
Well, this made sense to this Mom. She actually never thought of it that way. It changed her way of thinking about these chances.
Have you ever notice this with people you know?? Did I make any sense?? [img][/img]

Take care,


[This message has been edited by Ginger (edited February 13, 2003).]

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 1:01am
Sandy's picture
Joined: 05/27/2002 - 09:00

Hi Ginger,
I hear it all the time, and I tell them exactly what I am writing here. I say to the parents, "the more a child is exposed to peanuts, or may contain nuts, they are putting their child deeper at risk of having an anaphylactic reaction!" Some listen, some don't.

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 1:25am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Ginger, I'm not sure if it's as black and white as that. I think actually there are a lot of PA parents that fall into a "grey" area, one that we wouldn't consider lax like the first you mentioned but not as tight a comfort zone as the last set of parents you mentioned. Do you know what I mean?
I am not the perfect PA parent. My son has almost died because of my stupidity and his Father's denial. When we first learned that Jesse was PA, we still had peanuts in our home, we just didn't let Jesse eat them. We still ate "may contains", we just didn't let Jesse eat them.
However, after Jesse had the anaphylactic reaction where he almost died, we did tighten up (actually we had tightened up after his first anaphylactic reaction - finally realized the severity of it). We learned and I think we learned the damned (pardon me) hard way. I would never want another PA parent to learn about PA because their child almost died.
However, that being said, I do continue to learn by coming here and yes, I would probably fall into your group of parents that has a fairly tight comfort zone. It does make one look like Psycho Mom from He**, especially if you are presented with another PA child at your PA child's school whose parents have not even similar requirements to you.
There is a PA child in Grade 1 at Jesse's class. The guidelines for that class are very different than Jesse's. Her emergency medical plan is also very different from Jesse's. From what I've seen, I really don't want to meet the Mom. I wouldn't say anything to her because it's not my nature, but I would think that she would think I was a Psycho.
The same as the TNA child in Jesse's class. His Mother is a really really nice woman. The way she deals with her son's allergy is VERY different than how I deal with Jesse's PA even though the child has suffered an anaphylactic reaction.
For other PA parents (or the TNA Mom), I don't even try to educate when I come across someone whose comfort zone is very different than mine. It's not my place (and yet you feel this nagging in your head that you have to tell them to get with the program, their child could die). I just leave them be.
I have heard "my child's PA isn't as severe as Jesse's" so many times that I posted about it here a couple of years ago. My head was ready to explode. My head doesn't go boom anymore when I hear that. I don't know why.
Or, perhaps I do.
I know that Jesse's PA is severe. I know that all PA people have the potential to have an anaphylactic reaction. Basically, I know what I know. I use what I know to keep Jesse safe and to educate people around him.
What I would like to do though is have a rubber stamp made up with Psycho Mom from He** on it so that I could stamp my forehead every morning though. Oh well.
Best wishes! [img][/img]

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 1:29am
anonymous's picture
Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

I don't know if I would say just 2 kinds, either-or. I see the comfort zones as a continuum (spelling?), with some closer to one end, some closer to the other, and some closer to the middle.
For instance, some insist on home-schooling, some are only comfortable with a peanut-free school, some allow pb in the same room but a different table, some let their kids be all around it but not eat it, and as you say some let their children eat may contains.
Then again some parents are way strict in some aspects but way "lax" in others. We allow absolutely no peanut products or may contains in our house at all, but we are about to allow our son to eat lunch at school where other children may have pb. (I won't yet say this is my "comfort zone" because I am extremely nervous about the arrangement...I am testing my comfort zone).
Anyway, I think there are many different kinds of parents, not just two, but I agree that the two extremes are what get the most attention. You've got the put-the-kid-in-a-bubble parents at one end and then you've got the I-should-be-reported-for-child-endangerment parents on the other end. Thankfully, most of us fall somewhere in the middle.

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 3:40am
McKenziesMom's picture
Joined: 03/05/2001 - 09:00

I think there are more than 2 kinds too, and I think you move from one kind to another as your child grows.
I am the kind of mother who NEVER lets peanuts, nuts, shellfish in our house. I've NEVER let my DD eat anything that "may contain" nuts. She's always been in a PN free classroom ("may contains" are OK, food sharing isn't). She takes her own snacks to sleepovers, birthday parties, etc.
However, I can honestly say I've never stopped her from going to any event because of the allergy. If I'm not comfortable, I usually go with her (not sleepovers, of course!). Especially when she was younger. Now, she goes more places on her own.
So I switched from being a super-vigilant confident mother to a less vigilant nervous-wreck of a mother as my DD takes on more responsibility.
The "may contain" issue is a hot one - I personally would not be able to live with it if I KNOWINGLY gave my DD something that said "may contain" and she reacted. Just my opinion, though.

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 7:04am
Ginger's picture
Joined: 11/17/1999 - 09:00

After reading what everyone wrote I realized I should have worded my question differently [img][/img]
It is so hard typing questions, ideas, worries for everyone takes in things differently. I always assumed we were a bit on the tighter side yet we don't home school nor is my DS school peanut free. I just seem to talk to parents who either allow "traces of" products and base the allergy on the last reaction. I strongly feel that is a problem waiting to happen. I will say, I see all of your points and appreciate them.
I picked the wrong day to post a topic...
I have major PMS and I am not making any sense!! [img][/img]
Take care,

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 7:09am
joeybeth's picture
Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

ginger: i have been both....for the first two years i was the first type of parent (primarily because i didn't get any education from the first doctors that treated my first pa child's reactions). they simply said to "stay away from peanuts" and i took them at their word. fortunately, i found resources like other fantastic physicians and healthcare professionals along the way (usually when i was in the er with a child that was swelling and wheezing)and i feel so much more prepared now that i'm the second type of parent you mentioned. i always hope that my earlier ignorance is not the reason my two pa daughters' pa has gotten worse over time. when i think about the foods i let them eat and the situations i unwittingly put them in, it just makes me sick. but...i'm doing better now and i constantly try to talk others with pa or tna kids to look into all the info so they won't run the risks that we did.
joey (also, those non-concerned parents are part of the reason, in my opinion, that the rest of us have such a hard time getting school/preschool, etc. to take us seriously)

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 7:16am
joeybeth's picture
Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

oh...and ginger...i understood what you meant (i think). there do seem to be two main types of parents of pa kids. one type takes it very seriously but with varying comfort levels. the other type are the ones who don't carry any meds or even keep them in the home. they don't feed their kids peanuts/peanut butter but they don't feel there are any other measures that need to be taken (like speaking with the school nurse or having a any kind of plan "just in case."). i have personally met these people and they honestly aren't worried in the slightest way. i haven't run across anyone here that doesn't seem to have an interest in reducing risks for their child. some of us are a little more aggressive about it (like homeschooling or homebound teachers, etc..) and some are more lax (like me who has no formal plan for the school yet). i would agree with you that we all fall into the category of parents that do care. we just go at it at different angles. as i learn, i change. i'm in the process of implementing something with the school right now. joey

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 10:50am
Ginger's picture
Joined: 11/17/1999 - 09:00

Thank you Cindy &joey!
Leave to someone to write out what I was trying to say [img][/img]
Sometimes it is hard to explain something, isn't it in these forums?
I didn't mention the meds part and yes that is the other factor I forgot to write about. I care my son's med kit everywhere we go, it is just habit now. Plus I think age plays a huge factor. My DS is almost 5, it must be a bit easier when he's older and more aware for himself. I, too, have been writing a plan for my son for when he starts this Sept. It is a long process to finalize, but so well worth it. It is a plan that can save his life....
Here in my area (NJ) I am known as the wacko Mom... [img][/img] But so far I have only heard that said from my friends....
Take care,

Posted on: Thu, 02/13/2003 - 12:41pm
darthcleo's picture
Joined: 11/08/2000 - 09:00

I think I fall in *both* end of the spectrum. There's no "may contain" at home, and I try to make everything from scratch. He got the green light for soya, but I still refrain from using anything with soya. We homeschool although our primary reason is not the food allergy.
Yet at this very moment, we're on vacation in Florida. He gets to eat store bought ice cream everyday, twice a day. He gets cereals I wouldn't dream of giving back home. There's PB in the house (for my dad who won't give it up). He leaves the house without his medications. I'm much more relaxed here.
I want home to be 100% safe, and I want vacations to feel like a vacation.
It also helps that my son has never (cross my fingers) have an anaphylactic reaction yet. Just some hives and one vomiting from traces of chick peas. But then again, he's so protected back home that he doesn't have the opportunity to have reactions.

Posted on: Fri, 02/14/2003 - 9:12am
anonymous's picture
Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

I know exactly what you mean by "2 kinds." I see this situation all the time, with me being the most "conservative" mom I know. It just baffles me.


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