If I\'m overprotective will my son rebel by trying dangerous food when he\'s older?

Posted on: Sat, 01/04/2003 - 4:48pm
cynde's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

Just had a discussion with DH about him thinking I go too far with what I restrict our son from eating. He is concerned that DS will rebel when he is older and eat potentially dangerous foods.

DH was not present at DS last anaphylactic reaction when I thought I was watching him die. It was from eating a cheesecake that made no mention of nuts of any kind on the label. An inventory list I got later, from the manufacturer listed all nuts in various forms that are used in their facility [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/mad.gif[/img]. I do not allow DS to eat anything from any bakeries anymore.

DH came home with donuts from Robins today and said the girl behind the counter said they don't use nuts there. DS in tears when I said he couldn't have any. A lovely family brawl ensued, with me being the loser/bad guy. This was when DH said he was worried that I was going to make DS rebel when he is older [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/confused.gif[/img]. Any thoughts on this. I thought I was teaching DS how to be safe and look after himself.

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Cynde

Posted on: Sat, 01/04/2003 - 10:40pm
Jazz It Up's picture
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Joined: 08/19/2002 - 09:00

Hi Cynde,
I don't think one could be *too* protective when it comes to peanut allergy. You have to be diligent and there is no way around that.
I don't know how old your son is (mine is 8) and one of the biggest rules we have with our son is *if you can't read it, you can't eat it and it's non-negotiable.* Bakery goods are a high risk for a potential reaction due to cross-contamination.
In our situation my husband and I have created a *united front* whereas if I tell my son no, my dh will back me. This is something we had to work on because there were things he thought were okay for our son to have that were not in my *comfort zone* for him.
Some ways to give *control* to your child is to let him read labels (if old enough) at the grocery store and you both pick up the same product. Play "see who can find the word peanut* in the label first...if you or your son come across a food with peanuts in the ingredients ask your son, "can you eat this product?" *He* will say "no"...you won't be.
At restaurants we let him ask for the chef and explain his peanut allergy to the waitress and he asks what kind of oil they use.
I don't know if I have helped you or not...it seems I can get advice better than give it. LOL!
Hang in there! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
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Stay Safe!
Connie
[This message has been edited by Jazz It Up (edited January 05, 2003).]

Posted on: Sat, 01/04/2003 - 11:15pm
ABreitner's picture
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Joined: 07/02/2002 - 09:00

Perhaps a call to the manager of the bakery would have helped in comfirming the no nuts policy. I would not trust someone working at the counter to know about cross contamination issues.
One time I gave my son a muffin from a health food store that had none of his allergens listed. After I gave him a bite and then took a bite myself I found it was full of almonds. We didn't and still don't know if he is allergic to all nuts but I was terrified. I talked to the manager who went and talked to the person who was making the muffins. The answer that came back was that the baker had just decided that almonds would taste good in that particular muffin. I was furious! I no longer trust any baked good unless I make it myself.
BTW, Ben's face broke out in a rash that day. Since that is not unusual I can't say for certain it was the almond but I suspect it was.
Ann

Posted on: Sun, 01/05/2003 - 1:00am
Going Nuts's picture
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Joined: 10/04/2001 - 09:00

I guess this is an issue all parents face - if it isn't with food, it's with something else! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/rolleyes.gif[/img]
As Connie posted, we also have an "If you can't read it, you don't eat it" policy. I have also had to "educate" my DH, who is much more loosey-goosey by nature than I am. I'm *still* educating him. It took a long time for him to really get the concept of cross-contamination, airborne reactions. He just didn't believe it until he saw it himself. And frankly, even after seeing it I know he still thinks I'm too restrictive, but defers to me in this matter.
I don't remember how far along in this process you are, how old your son is and how long you have been dealing with it. The point is, you were right, and since DH doesn't deal with it full time the way you do it may take him longer to accept it. Don't relax your zones to keep the peace; that just confuses children. We have to remember that we are raising them to be fully responsible for this one day and the best way to do that is to have very clear rules.
As for whether he will rebel when he gets older, that is probably more a function of his own personality than anything else. Some kids will always find something to rebel against; others won't. (I have nightmares about Kevin experimenting with unlabelled baked goods the way other kids experiment with drugs and alcohol. I picture him on seedy street corners trying to score Drake's cakes!).
Good luck!
Amy

Posted on: Sun, 01/05/2003 - 1:55am
cynde's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

Thanks for your advice and words of encouragement. Our son is 8 and we have been dealing with PA since he was just over a year old. His last and scarieast anaphylactic reaction was 7 months ago, and his only other one was just over a year ago. DH saw the first one which was "not too bad", and seems to be stuck in thinking it is "no big deal". I just can't seem to make him understand what it was like, and he does argue with me about foods in front of DS. I will be mentioning the "if you can't read it you don't eat it" rule.
What about restaurants? Do you ask for a written ingredient list? Or do you trust your server? We only go to a couple of restaurants on a regular basis, but when we travel????
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Cynde

Posted on: Sun, 01/05/2003 - 2:24am
Carefulmom's picture
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Joined: 01/03/2002 - 09:00

I think the comment about if you are too over-protective later your son will rebel and eat foods he shouldn`t is ridiculous. I have a friend who says all the time if parents are too strict the child rebels, and it is her excuse for being too lazy to discipline her child who is now off in reform school after threating to bomb the school he was in. Back to your question, you are not being over-protective, I think your husband is failing in his job as a parent. It is a parent`s job to protect their child. Your son is more likely to rebel because your husband argues about this in front of him possibly convincing your son you are over reacting (which you aren`t) than to rebel because you have taught him the rules he needs to follow to stay alive.
About the restaurants, when we are out of town I always bring dd`s food. She is allowed to have in a restaurant fresh fruit with nothing on it, dry cereal in a box with the ingredients on it, and fries only at Fatburger, nowhere else. She is also allergic to milk and egg, so our rules may be different.
[This message has been edited by Carefulmom (edited January 05, 2003).]

Posted on: Sun, 01/05/2003 - 2:50am
cynde's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

Thanks carefulmom, your words were music to my ears. I too think the mixed signals our son is getting will cause confusion and he won't learn how cautious he needs to be. Now I have to convince DH, can't wait for that discussion.
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Cynde

Posted on: Sun, 01/05/2003 - 3:08am
KarenH's picture
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Joined: 09/21/2002 - 09:00

Just a suggestion...
Take DH with you to the doc and let HIM tell DH just how life threatening it is. You don't really want to wait until DH falters and finds out for himself, at the expense of your son.

Posted on: Sun, 01/05/2003 - 3:51am
cynde's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

My husband has come to all the doctors appointments with us, he says he understands. But obviously he doesn't.
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Cynde

Posted on: Sun, 01/05/2003 - 5:09am
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

I anticipate some type of rebellion. We're fairly conservative in our food choices, so I can only hope that if he makes "risky" food choices when he's older, it will still be in a relatively safe "zone."
I mean, if he goes to the store and wants some type of store-bought chocolate chip cookie, I'm hoping he'll buy prepackaged Nabisco ones with a clear ingredient statement instead of passing by the store bakery and asking an ignorant clerk if cookie X has peanuts or possible traces of cross-contamination. I won't touch most prepackaged cookies and we make our own anyway. But if he's out with his friends, I'm hoping he'll be a smart "cookie" (no pun intended) and avoid making a stupid food choice. Prepackaged stuff certainly isn't risk free, but in the grand scheme of things, I could live with that if it's his choice. Just as long as he carries his epipen with him ALL the time.

Posted on: Sun, 01/05/2003 - 2:00pm
Carefulmom's picture
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Joined: 01/03/2002 - 09:00

I don`t know what you think of this idea, but when I had a huge problem with preschool not taking my daughter`s food allergies as seriously as I thought they should, I asked my allergist to write them a letter. The letter he wrote was very blunt. It even said something like "food allergies can be fatal." The letter worked and the preschool really changed their tune after that. Do you think something like that might help with your husband?

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