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Posted on: Fri, 12/15/2000 - 7:20am
PattyR's picture
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Joined: 04/12/2002 - 09:00

There are quite a few PA kids in my children's school and I am the most proactive Mom of all. I do not request a peanut free classroom for my child but do request that they not use nuts as part of school projects. They have respected that although obviously they have to be reminded at times. This is my son's second year at this school and it is just recently that a couple of problems have popped up. His teachers last year were wonderful. As we all know, this allergy involves constant education on our part and I will rise to the occasion. My son has never had a reaction at school. Since you have coined the phrase at this website, this is my comfort level and I am sure that you will respect that.

Posted on: Fri, 12/15/2000 - 7:38am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

PattyR., I totally understand where you're coming from. I'm very fortunate that my son's school board does have a policy re PA in place that ensures he have a "peanut free" classroom. Because of this, I feel I have the right to request that the school follow it's own school board policy guidelines. Now, if there was no policy in place, I'm not sure where I would stand on this, "comfort zone" wise.
I was simply surprised that so many activities would involve peanut/nut products in a class with a PA child. But, it looks as though you know how to deal with the school quite effectively and certainly don't need my two cents worth when I'm not in the same situation. I didn't mean to suggest that you did. I was simply voicing my surprise and concern at the activities and recognized that your son did not have a "peanut free" classroom. I did not question whether you had requested one or not or why or why not you would or wouldn't request one.
I completely recognize that each of us has our own "comfort zones". Actually, out of anyone posting on this board, I think you'll find that I NEVER question another parent's "comfort zone" and I certainly did not want to appear to be doing so in my post above. Again, I was simply voicing concern and surprise and probably shouldn't have since I am not in the same situation with my son's school. Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
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Posted on: Fri, 12/15/2000 - 9:39am
mkruby's picture
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Joined: 05/01/2000 - 09:00

The last time I had to worry about PA was Thursday Nov. 30th when we went to a catered event and I noticed peanut butter frosting on a cake. So, when I answered "I didn't", I honestly meant it. Before that, I'd have to say at the start of school...can't remember. I don't have pb in the house, so no worry there and the rest, I leave up to my kids. They have been taught to be cautious and take responsibility for it, so, well, I trust them. Now, Cindy, when the kids were your kids' ages, I did worry about it on a daily basis, almost daily and I used that time period for their training in the real world. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Posted on: Fri, 12/15/2000 - 1:21pm
rebekahc's picture
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Joined: 12/02/1999 - 09:00

Well, since I don't get to these boards until nighttime I'll answer for Friday.
This morning I had a phone conversation with my mom about pecans. She had some that someone had picked in their yard, so she was sure there was no cross-contamination risk. She wanted to make Logan some cookies using them. I had to remind her that Logan is also allergic to pistacios, so we avoid all tree nuts. Also, because most nuts are such high cross-contamination risks it's easier to just avoid nuts in general rather than try to sort out which ones he's not allergic to and which ones aren't contaminated. That would be just too confusing for him and everyone else.
Today at lunch my daughter and I were eating at a local sandwich shop. About half way through our meal my throat and roof of my mouth started to itch and my lips were tingly. I looked around and sure enough the child sitting at the next table had pulled out a peanutbutter cookie - ugh. We moved to the other side of the restaurant and finished our dinner.
I picked my son up from preschool and, since this was the last day before the holidays, his box was loaded with goody bags from the other children. There were Reeses PB cups in 2 of the bags. I just threw the whole bags away.
Then tonight when my daughter was using the potty, I saw hives all over her legs. I wracked my brain trying to remember anything she might have eaten but then realized the hives were from the spandex in her tights and not from peanuts.
Oh, also I spent an hour at Wal-Mart reading labels on the candy trying to find something that was corn free and also did not have the peanut warning - I was unsuccessful.
Rebekah

Posted on: Sat, 12/16/2000 - 6:05am
Triciasmom's picture
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Joined: 08/03/2000 - 09:00

Today is not going so well for me today. I had nightmares about PA all last night. Then when I checked my breastfeeding support newsgroup, there was a mom trashing me for my response to a thread about peanuts and nuts. Basically, she had commented that peanut and nut allergies were unrelated to each other. The thread had started when one mom said that she wanted to introduce cashew butter to her 6 month old baby. A number of moms, including me, warned her that peanuts and nuts (and a number of other foods) were a potential allergin for many babies.
When I wrote in and said that even though PA and nut allergies were unrelated that it was important to be aware that PA persons are often allergic to tree nuts too and that cross-contamination is a problem, she just totally laid into me for being a fanatic. She said that none of the people she knew with PA were allergic to other nuts.
I stopped myself from replying to her snooty post. It doesn't do any good to talk to people who have decided that they know everything. I thought that she totally oversimplified peanut and tree nut allergies. I wrote that my goal was to help increase awareness to other mothers about waiting a few years before introducing peanuts and tree nuts. She told me to stop short of being a fanatic.
I cannot express the rage and pain and sadness I feel right now. Thanks for listening.
Amy

Posted on: Sat, 12/16/2000 - 8:45am
mkruby's picture
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Joined: 05/01/2000 - 09:00

Amy..you're right and she's wrong and you did the right thing by not stooping to her level. You can give her my e-mail, as I have four out of five here allergic to peanut and some tree nuts [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] Then she can know someone..lol Also...they say you shouldn't introduce any nut or peanut to a child until the child is around 4 years of age, because the proteins in the nuts and peanuts are too complex for their systems, which is potentially dangerous for children who already have a disposition to allergies. I wish I had known this myself before I gave my son pb on bread at the age of 9 1/2 months and saw him go into anaphylactic shock. Some people you just can't teach and well, it's their loss and/or their child's, and unfortunately there is nothing we can do about it...just know you tried.
Man, am I blunt, huh? [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Posted on: Sat, 12/16/2000 - 10:34am
DMB's picture
DMB
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Joined: 02/22/2001 - 09:00

Amy, I know it's easier said than done, but please try not to let that lady's post bother you. You were trying to do the right thing and hopefully the original poster will take your advice. That's all you can do. People will only learn what they want to.
Back to the original question . . . I haven't really thought about my son's peanut allergy all week. We were snowed in the beginning of the week which meant no school and Thurs my son was sick which meant no school again. Yesterday my youngest son had to have tubes put in his ears, so I was with him at the hospital for the morning and we didn't go anywhere else the rest of the day.
Today my day started with a phone call from my MIL who wanted to tell me about this new experimental shot for peanut allergy sufferers. As she was reading the article to me, I could pretty much finish her sentences. She was telling me all the statistics for peanut allergy and how severe it really is for some people. I don't know if she really thought I didn't know all of this already??? We've been dealing with this for 2 years now and I guess it takes some stranger to give her an article to make her realize the seriousness of this. Go figure.
Then tonight we're expecting another snow storm, so my husband wanted to order chinese food and eat it at home. We decided it shouldn't be a risk to our son (since we wouldn't give him any) and just ordered chicken fried rice. We used to eat chinese food all the time before my son was diagnosed. Now it's just an at-home treat for us every few months or so. That was my day. . . now I'm just cleaning the bathrooms on a Saturday night! I need a life! Deanna

Posted on: Sat, 12/16/2000 - 12:37pm
Caring Mom's picture
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Joined: 10/12/2000 - 09:00

Cindy,
Thank-you for such a wonderful response. Let me ask you a question, I just received a form labelled Determination of 504 Eligibility/Accmodation Plan,(from the nurse & principal). It states that Bobby's classroom has to be TN/PN free & no one is allowed to use his classroom for after school activities(re:Girlscouts,boyscouts,etc.).
Did you ever hear of this or have something like this in Canada? My cousin whos child is PA told me about this last year & said I should request one when Bobby goes to school, well in any event the school approached me on this & I was very pleased to see that they are really up on the allergies. Their is a total of ten children in Bobby's school with PN/TN allergies.
I thought about the incident last night driving home from work & thought this may have been my fault. I should have said no M&M's. They would of agreed with me because, when Bobby started school they came to me with a snack list that the children had to buy from school (with all the ingredients of every item)& everything was peanut & nut free. I couldn't beleive this I was so excited that the school was doing this for him.
Also, what are Canadian smarties? I keep seeing the post & I wasn't sure so I did not reply.
I went on & on long enough but, thank-you.
Ronna

Posted on: Sat, 12/16/2000 - 1:22pm
BATTY's picture
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Joined: 12/04/2000 - 09:00

We went to a cattered event at church last night. Ricky asked everyone in the kitchen
if anthing might have peanuts and grilled the people in the kitchen if it was safe for him to eat. I'm glad he does that now instead of us. He made it pretty good thru the meal, but when they served the german chocalate cake they told him it was ok, he asked what was on the top of his and they told him it was ok,it was just heath bars. He did'nt eat it. When my wife and I went to the store we read the ingredients it had the may contain peanuts on it. I am sure glad he chose not to eat it.

Posted on: Sat, 12/16/2000 - 5:20pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Caring Mom, I hope an American person can answer your post "properly" re the 504. As a Canadian, I'm really not clear what it is.
However, if Bobby is allowed protection at the school, I would advise that you take it.
This is simply my opinion though and you may find others, even on this board that would disagree with me. This will ensure Bobby a "peanut free and tree nut free" classroom.
Also, by not letting other groups in after school, it ensures that his classroom does not get any peanut or tree nut residue in it after it has been cleaned by the custodial staff. I would definitely say to go with this one. Now, I may get blasted for this opinion and I'm quite open to that!
I was very fortunate that Jesse's school board does have a policy re PA in place. Had they not, I don't know what I would do and that's why I find it so difficult when I deal with another PA parent whose child is not ensured their safety at school. It's something that I cannot fathom. I can screech and scream about it and question, but I can't fathom it. My son did have a policy in place re PA with his school board, so I simply chose it to ensure Jesse's safety while he is in the classroom. It has made me feel 100% better about him going to school, although I certainly do not have a false sense of security.
Now, the M & M's, this one has me going now anyway. I just found out that another child in Jesse's "peanut free" classroom was allowed to bring in and eat plain M & M's on Thursday. Jesse told me about this and apparently the Mother had shown his teacher the label and everything and the M & M's were okayed for consumption. Well, I did check, through this board, and plain M & M's do have the "may contain" warning on them in Canada.
So, in fact, they should not be allowed in his "peanut free" classroom.
I think the most troubling thing about this though is that because the child's Mother had confirmed with the teacher that it was okay for her child to eat plain M & M's in a "peanut free" classroom, Jesse thought that M & M's were "safe" for him. He knows that he is not supposed to share anyone else's foods.
But, this started a questioning for him, whereby if so and so can eat this in my "peanut free" classroom, why can't I?
He understands why he can't eat peanut products. He knows that he is not allowed to eat anyone else's food. He knows that he is not allowed to eat foods that say "may contain". But, my soul, this little guy just turned 5 last week. If it's mind boggling to many of us half the time, how do you think it flows through their brains. By allowing the plain M & M's in, it was basically telling Jesse that they were "safe" whether he consumed any or not.
I have to deal with this right away too because his Christmas party is coming up this Thursday. It's bad enough that I already had to call the teacher re the Christmas party and the imported from the U.S. Pillsbury products. She was wonderful, the notice was in Jesse's knapsack Thursday night not to send any of those products to the party.
Now, I have another "issue" for her. I find this the most frustrating of all because you really do not want to enanger other people, other non-PA parents, the school, etc. And yet, I am going to have to tell her that plain M & M's are NOT okay in a "peanut free" classroom. I'm then going to have to determine how the other Mother considered them to be "safe". If it means that she thinks "may contain" products are okay, then how many other non-PA parents do? This will require, of course, some literature about "may contain" products. I already know what source I'm going to use so that is fine, but to me, it's simply another frustrating stressful thing to deal with and they seem to be popping up at the school all over this year.
At any rate, I have waffled on enough. You have to decide for yourself and Bobby if you want him in a "peanut free and tree nut free" classroom. I do know that there are other PA parents that chose for their children NOT to have the classroom "peanut free and tree nut free". However, for me, since I do have the policy in place for Jesse, I used it to ensure his safety and to lessen my stress level while he is at school. If you have been offered what I consider the same protection for Bobby, I would take it. And, I'm quite willing to get bonked on the head for my opinion by anyone on the board.
People have worked very long and very hard to get certain things put into law or different things enacted so that people are "safer".
Why not take advantage of something that was probably worked on very hard to achieve and will help ensure your child's safety. It's up to you, as his parent, not to acquire a false sense of security about his situation at school and it's also up to you to explain to Bobby that this doesn't mean that he's totally "safe" at school. But these are things that you can deal with with your son.
But, again, I'd say if you have protection in place for your child, take it. Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
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