feeling sad...........................

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on mothers day we had a family get together, and there were plenty of safe choices for william to eat. But recently he has been really stressed, and tells us that he doenst trust us, and reads all the food labels at home all the time. He looked at all the food, and just refused to eat anything , he couldnt face it.

The combination of tree pollen , and SATs exam stress coming up ,and a new school in september, means that william is not sleeping very well at night.

I think the allergy stuff is the last straw. I feel so sad for him, and I think he is really dreading our big holiday this year.

Thats it all really, bit of a moan. But I am, really sad that this is my 11yr olds life at the moment.

sarah

On Mar 19, 2007

Oh Sarah.

Being an 11 year-old boy isn't much fun period for many boys. Adding the whole food allergy thing into it must make it very hard for him.

I don't know what to suggest except to try to find the positive in everything for him --like an 11 year-old will even listen to his mum without rolling eyes & saying "Yeah, right." But you have to keep trying. With a smile. Even when you feel like crying.

Hopefully some of the parents here who have pre-teens, teens, and kids who've grown up & happily survived it all (PA AND teen-hood) will post some wonderful words of wisdom.

<> [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Hang in there . . . wish I could be of more help. Truly.

~Elizabeth

On Mar 19, 2007

Awww Sarah - I'm sorry you and William are going through this. If it helps any, my son went through significant anxiety about that age - we had moved and he was using Singular which we thought were partly contributing but I think there is some anxiety associated with that age and stage of life. At that time, we did look into setting up an appointment with a child psychologist - the process took really long and by the time we could get in, DS didn't really seem to need counseling anymore. If it helps to tell him, my son got his feet back under him after a bit and was able to feel like he could manage. I remember too, being annoyed that he didn't trust me enough to just eat what I gave him but wanted to read the labels for himself. But really, I'm now glad he decided to own his allergy and take this control. It [b]is[/b] sad and hard to see them have to cope with hurdles and emotions but most likely this is just temporary - if you think it might help, let him know he's not the only one who has felt how he's feeling.

------------------ Jana

[url="http://www.seattlefoodallergy.org"]www.seattlefoodallergy.org[/url]

On Mar 20, 2007

My kids didn't have food allergies, but they did have other *issues* at that age. Sometimes, what I found most appropriate was to actually tell them "yes, that makes me sad too" or "darn right I'm angry about that". Being able to verbalize feelings can sometimes help. It doesn't solve the underlieing issue (allergies in this case), but it can help to know someone else feels our feelings are justified. (if that makes any sense -- I'm not sure)

On Mar 20, 2007

I'm sorry, Sarah... [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/frown.gif[/img]

Tell him everything you want him to know, even if it seems like he's not listening. They can't REALLY turn off their ears, you know. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img]

And your words will be in his head bouncing around, waiting for just the right moment to surface, when he needs to hear them the most... and they'll help him.

On Mar 20, 2007

I go through phases like this a lot when I'm really stressed or tired. I don't think it's so much an age thing as a normal human thing.

There are some days when I feel okay popping something with a "same facility" warning in my mouth. And there are other days when I'm washing my hands every two seconds because of imaginary residue (I'm not contact reactive, and I know while I'm doing it that it's excessive). It's basically an effort to gain control over SOMETHING when it feels like you have control over nothing. Trust me, if he weren't PA, he'd just find something else to micromanage.

It *should* pass. And probably come. And go. And come again. I'd only worry if it DOESN'T pass, or if it's happening more often than not. Otherwise, probably just a temporary phase. You could probably talk to him about how he's feeling, and let him know some techniques to deal with stress, like deep breathing or journaling, to help him feel better. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

On Mar 21, 2007

Hi there. I'm 37 and I feel like this sometimes too. My son is only 5 (also PA/TNA and allergic to seeds - and sometimes he tells me it's not fair). It's so sad to see our children feeling like this. What I think I would do is try to make him feel comfortable and let him know that you understand and when he is ready to eat something in a restaurant he can. I would still go out and take snacks or a drink for him to the restaurant. My son hardly eats when we go out, I know it may seem different with an older child.

One day I went out to a lounge and there were peanuts everywhere. I felt bad because we got seats (which were limited) you only get seats if you order something from the menu. The 3 people with me ordered and I didn't even want a glass of water. I got one but I didn't even touch it. I don't feel bad unless other people feel bad or make me feel bad (like I'm paranoid - because the people that serve you touch the peanuts). I don't care if I don't want to eat or drink, I enjoy the company.

It's hard but we don't have hard days all the time. I'm sure he will feel better and try eating at a restaurant again. Especially if you know that a place is willing to make a safe dish or a place that you have been to before where you trust.

[This message has been edited by momll70 (edited March 21, 2007).]

On Mar 24, 2007

Sarah, I've been thinking about William lately. How is he doing?

On Mar 27, 2007

thanks for your concern. williams mood is up and down at the moment.

He was invited to a friends bowling birthday party, and he was really keen to go, and started saying that he would just play the games and then leave when they wanted to eat. Or he would stay and eat before he left home.

I wasnt happy with this, we compromised i said I would go and check out the food when i dropped him of, and if it wasnt safe I would get him something else. Because he didnt want to sort out the food himself ( even with me there, he wanted me to do it) i went through his emergency plan. Practicing how to use the epi pens, inhalers, oral steriods, what to say , what to do etc etc.

We still cant get william to try piriton anithistamine tablets, even though they are very small. So we still at 11 yrs old have to carry bottles around with us. I checked to see if he could open a bottle with a child safety cap on. Which , thankfully he could, so that gives him some measure of independance.

Aftewards he had a big cry with daddy ( dont tell anyone I have told you this!!) and then felt much better.

He went to the party, was happy , ate the food, and was really cheerful when I picked him up.

Which is a good sign.

Our next big problem in on the horizon, a week long trip with school. I have paid, but he is making noises that he doenst want to go, allergies being his only reason not to. But , I am sending him.

allergies are bloody nightmare.

sarah

On Mar 27, 2007

Hugs to you and your son too. Things will get better. Maybe he needs some time. Does he have a teacher or a good friend he can trust that is going on this trip?

I want to add that I think you are great for giving him some independence which is hard to do, but very important at the same time, for a PA parent.

[This message has been edited by momll70 (edited March 27, 2007).]

On Mar 27, 2007

Sarah, are there chewable tablets available? (I'm not sure if piriton tablets are chewable or if you swallow them whole.) My nine year old is [i]finally[/i] taking some chewables. (Orange is OK. Red needs a strong drink. Purple not a chance.)

********

The trip [i]might[/i] be the cause of the depression and worry. When I know I have to travel somewhere -- even if I do want to go there -- I stress sometimes for weeks before going. A week long school trip could be stressing him enough now that it is coming out in other areas of his life. Is this his first time away for that kind of trip -- away without mom or dad?

Good luck, and hugs to your both.

On Apr 4, 2007

no chewables this side of the pond, am going to buy them this summer on our hols to USA !!!!

sarah

On Apr 4, 2007

Hi Sarah,

Dd is 12 and I do echo that it is a difficult age. She has been doing very well with carrying the Epi, asking in resturants etc... but family stuff is still hard for her since she in anxious. We have lots of family here and they all are very cooperative, however as we all know when you only think about the allergy for a few meals a year it is easy to forget. The few small incidents we have had (cookies with PB chips, salads with tree nuts and my MIL famous jello mold with walnuts) are things she remembers and I think is reluctant to trust the food at their houses or that they bring here as contributions.

She has been more comfortable the last few family celebrations, by making her own dessert - key lime pie - which is safe for her, she loves it, she is in control since she made it and of course everyone makes a fuss about what a chef she is. Would something like that help William look forward to the family holiday more?

She also has a school trip soon! I think you are right to have William go - while I am not sure how much they learn it is a good way to bond with classmates, see the teachers in a slightly different way and be more self managing.

On Apr 15, 2007

I think i can relate exactly what William is feeling like right at the moment. I'm TNA (Anaphylactic) and 16.

Nearly Everytime we eat out, apart from a few well trusted places, my brain says "get outta here" . It sounds stupid to other people but there you go!

I think he's realizing just how serious this allergy can be, and wants to be in control (like me!).

My tips?

Make the house PN/TN free. This makes it a safe haven for me, and ALLOW him to regulary check the packets, even though you may find it annoying, hes finding his own comfy zone. If anything I would be delighted !!!

When it comes to going out, I found one thing helps to know that il be ok, does he have a med bag that he can sling over his shoulder when need be? A mobile?

As for the school trip, heres some ideas:

- Ask the head to make the school trip TN/PN free. I went to the isle of white in year six (age 11) for a week, and this made me feel a **** of a lot better. Mind you, my head teacher was terrified that something would happen to me! make a booklet to give to them telling them how to handle different situations (like avoiding x-tam, where epis are kept, what to do if hives) and get him to help.

- Do his friends understand the allergy and look out for him?

Could he train them what to do in a emergency?

When he goes over to friends houses/bday parties, I would ask if they could make the whole thing nut free. you could offer to make a list of safe food, and william could maybe come round slightly early to see and check over everything.

I know how he feels, and please tell him if he needs to talk my email/msn is [email]k9ruby@hotmail.com[/email]

On Apr 15, 2007

Yeah, we are going through that anxiety age too, i think because my son is almost 8 so I am having check labels too, we read together, and he is realizing, that how many things have peanuts in them. it didn't used to bother him, but now it does. But what I found helps, is finding other PA kids his age, they can "share" feelings, have peanut free snacks. Because the other kid truly knows whats going on, they help each other.

On Apr 17, 2007

bump

On Apr 19, 2007

thank you for your comments and e-mail adress kruby, may contact you in september when william starts school. If thats OK?

thanks sarah

On Apr 19, 2007

Quote:

thank you for your comments and e-mail adress kruby, may contact you in september when william starts school. If thats OK?

thanks sarah

Thats fine! Of course you can!

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