Generation gap in understanding PA?

Posted on: Mon, 01/20/2003 - 7:01am
anonymous's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Hello all! Hope everyone is off to a safe New Year! I have question to ask all of you, but I am afraid of how to word it, without sounding politically incorrect. Do any of you notice that it is harder to get the grandparents to understand and fully grasp the severity and seriousness of peanut allergies? Maybe it's just me, and if there are any grandparents out there, I am not meaning to offend, honestly. Any advice on ways to drive this home better to grandparents in particular?
I am afraid I am stirring up a bee's nest by singling out grandparents in particular, I don't mean to. It may just be the way I am communicating it that is the problem.

Sincerely not meaning to offend,
Lisa

Posted on: Mon, 01/20/2003 - 7:37am
cynde's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

My mom really gets it, she is anaphylactic to yellowjackets and at certain times of the year can have anaphylactic cross-reactions to diff (common) foods. My dad has actually asked her if it is in her head, and tried to talk me into giving my PA son food that says "may contain". He always says "what are the odds". My parents took both my kids this past summer for a few days and they were very nervous about it, and I made my dad promise not to question anything my mom did or said about food. He acted shocked when I brought it up, but promised to behave. The trip was an astounding success, so we are looking forward to more visits with Nana and Poppa.
My hubbies parents don't seem to get it, but with our comfort zone tightening up after each reaction, and them only seeing the kids once a year for a day or two doesn't help. I have to re-educate them every time.
I have met people my age who don't get it, so I'm not too sure about the generation thing. It may be just because my parents generation never had to deal with it. I do know my kids friends all know about it, because of us and other kids they know. It seems everyone knows someone.
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Cynde
[This message has been edited by cynde (edited January 21, 2003).]

Posted on: Mon, 01/20/2003 - 11:31am
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Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

i feel certain there is a generation gap where understanding PA (and lots of other things)are concerned. my in-laws, for example, cannot get over their old notions that the girls just need to get used to tolerating peanut containing foods. scary. they are the same people who would likely not be able to work our newer model microwave though, so it might be more of a generalized generation gap rather than specifically relating to PA. my parents, who are much younger than my in-laws do have a better understanding of PA (although they don't always act like it). i actually fault my own parents more (and other relatives who do know better) because although they do "get it" they still choose to ignore the risks. my inlaws are sometimes very childlike in their thinking. i hope that didn't sound just awful, but it is my perspective. joey

Posted on: Mon, 01/20/2003 - 7:51pm
Gwen Thornberry's picture
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Joined: 10/14/1999 - 09:00

My parents were convinced for the longest time that it was just in my head, although they humoured me by keeping nuts away from me. It was only when I had a skin prick test at age 12 that my mother finally believed me. I don't think they were being mean, they just had never heard of it before and it took a doctor explaining it to them for them to understand. There has been plenty of coverage in the last few years about PA/FA in Ireland, and my parents are now reading labels and reminding me to be careful and make sure I have the epi with me!
My granny on the other hand certainly did NOT believe me. She once forced me to eat a snickers bar, with me bawling my eyes out the whole time. Needless to say, I did react, although thankfully my reactions back then were just vomiting. After watching me vomit for around 6 hours, she finally agreed to not make me eat pn again.

Posted on: Tue, 01/21/2003 - 12:21pm
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Gwen! How horrible that someone would force you to eat something, especially when it is junk like snickers. We've all been forced at one time or another to try different kinds of food (broccoli, brussel sprouts) but ~holy moly~ what was she thinking? That is actually one of my re-occuring nightmares, someone forcing my son to eat something that could kill him!
Joeybeth, you are right about the older generation not understanding things of our generation, such as microwaves, PA's, etc. But when they can't figure out a microwave, it's just funny and maybe a bit annoying. When they keep bringing over homemade chex mix loaded with peanuts every single Christmas (like my husbands grandma does), it is infuriating!
Cynde, I'll bet you were just as nervous as your parents were the first time they took your kids for a few days! It was so brave of you to trust them, which is one thing I am trying to work on myself, allowing myself to trust certain members of the family. Once I have that conquered, then maybe I can move on to preschool, which is just around the corner!
Thanks so much to all of you for responding (and not being offended)! I was almost afraid to check up on this! haha!
Lisa

Posted on: Tue, 01/21/2003 - 12:45pm
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Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

lisa: oh my gosh! the dreaded chex party mix! my brother in law and his family bring it to every single function (even if it's just stinkin' sunday lunch sometimes). it's like a ritual they just cannot (or will not) let die. of course it's only a problem when we are around (but they majorly guilt us into attending everything they all attend). i thought it was just me that had family that has chex party mix as a major priority! haha. and then there's the peanut brittle my mother in law believes christmas wouldn't be the same without.... ugggh... joey

Posted on: Tue, 01/21/2003 - 12:55pm
joeybeth's picture
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Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

gwen: my girls have had their grandma insist that they "at least try" something on a couple of occasions. fortunately, they refused. one was sugar cookies that were clearly labelled as containing peanuts as an ingredient and the other was vanilla ice cream that was labelled as may contain. both girls have had reactions to vanilla ice cream before so they knew not to listen to grandma. with the sugar cookies, my girls were smart enough (at the ripe old age of 6 and 3!) to say "No! even though grandma said "don't be silly, they're just sugar cookies." my mother in law is an older grandma, kind of out of touch with things and resistent to any thinking that is different than what she was brought up with. also, in her defense, i would have to say that not many people would actually believe sugar cookies to be dangerous or to contain peanuts. that's why i always stress to her and other adults who might be around my kids..Read the Label Always. even then i always tell them to check with me first. one of my girls had a reaction from eating vanilla ice cream that had absolutely no allergy warning on it at all. i bet your grandmother felt terrible. at least she learned (the hard way) to take your allergy as seriously as she should have been doing all along. i hope it doesn't take something like this for our relatives to "get it." joey

Posted on: Tue, 01/21/2003 - 1:35pm
cynde's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

DC's mom, however did you guess that I was nervous too. I didn't sleep the night before they left, and just about called it off in the morning. The only reason I even considered it was because of my moms allergies and her cautiousness. She's an even bigger worrier than me (is that possible?). They made sure the PB that my dad loves was gone weeks ahead of time, and all the jam jars and margarine containers that may have been cross contaminated were gone too. Mom got used to reading labels when she had the cross reactions, it was for different foods, but she understands how important it is, and I sent up foods as well.
I hope you can have that too some day. It was good for my husband and I good for my parents and great for the kids. They called it Nana & Poppas summer camp because their cousins came over for 1 night too!
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Cynde

Posted on: Wed, 01/22/2003 - 2:49am
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Cynde, you are so lucky to have such a diligent mother, not many people would think to get rid of something that may have been cross-contaminated, such as jam jars, and other containers. Those people who really get it are so important in our lives because those are also the same people that advocate for us and our children.
And Joeybeth, maybe one day our families will realize that as much as Christmas would not be the same without peanut brittle or chex mix, it would also not be the same without our children there. Next Christmas I am going to be such a b****, and just put my foot completely down and say, if you plan on bringing it don't plan on us being there. I like quiet family Christmas's anyway!

Posted on: Wed, 01/22/2003 - 4:47am
cynde's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

DC's mom: I am lucky, thankyou. Good luck with your family. We just had a Chrismas with just us and it was so nice and relaxing. It's nice to have the option though, I hope your family gets it soon.
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Cynde

Posted on: Wed, 01/22/2003 - 12:10pm
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Joined: 08/27/2002 - 09:00

Yes! My in laws don't get it. After how many trips to the ER and they get so worred about her. FIL thinks if she get out more then she will be okay. What am I suppose to do, take her to the produce section and touch all the fruit by the peanuts? My MIL thinks she needs to calm down. Then everything will be okay. What part of being stupid don't they understand?

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