Husband won't take our daughter's allergy seriously!

Posted on: Sun, 08/13/2017 - 2:20am
PAMom22's picture
Joined: 08/13/2013 - 09:16

My daughter has multiple life threatening food allergies, has since birth. We don't eat peanut butter or nuts in our house, to keep it safe for her. My husband decided to eat a peanut butter candy bar tonight in our house right in front of our daughter. I was livid! I immediately took my daughter out of the room and kept them separated the rest of the night. But he said that I was "overreacting" and that I "needed to relax".

I am always fighting with the school to keep her safe, and the last thing I need is to have to fight with him. I don't know what to do anymore. He doesn't take her allergies seriously, despite her having gone into anaphylaxis shock twice. (Both of those were from coming into contact with the allergens, not actually eating them). Any advice would be appreciated on how to proceed from here.

Posted on: Tue, 08/13/2013 - 2:44am
samsmommy99's picture
Joined: 06/07/2005 - 09:00

I had this same issues with my wasn't until just recently when the girl in CA died despite all efforts that he actually freaked out...( sam was 8 months when he was
diagnosed, now he is almost 14)... We actually still had peanut butter and peanut stuff in the house after the diagnosis, but was reprimanded by the pediatrician that the next time he was exposed it would be much more swift, and possibly fatal. He did not see the ANA reaction, so maybe that's why he didn't think it was such a big deal...however, after the Dr warning us about the reaction time, we have been a peanut free household since...My husband actually has a severe allergy to Macadamia nuts, so I thought he would understand more....he is vigilant now even though I have raised him...he is also autistic and cannot speak, which makes it more difficult. My husband recently looked up all the peanut allergy deaths and freaked out....he has always been cautious after the warning from the Dr, but never realized that Sam could die...even if an epi pen was given.......he looks at it differently now.

Posted on: Wed, 07/15/2020 - 1:54pm
beachgal2020's picture
Joined: 07/09/2020 - 13:30

Thank you for your post, I think that this is such an important topic and one that so many PA families deal with on a daily basis, and it's also quite the debate as I've had this debate with family and friends before. There are family and friends that take this very seriously and ones that take it far too lightly. It's almost like it will take a critical situation in order for them to snap out of it and get serious. If you can remain a totally peanut free home then that is ideal. But I do understand the other side of the argument as well. I always try to be compassionate about it because regardless of what I am going through I try to think about what my family has given up to keep me safe. They've brought peanut products into the house before but we keep it totally separate from any foods that I consume and they will take it to their own room and throw out containers and wrappers in the trash bin outside after consumption. They are very careful. It is rare that they've done this but if they have they will let me know ahead of time. We've tried to find a happy medium to keep everyone happy.

Posted on: Tue, 08/13/2013 - 8:16am
mom1995's picture
Joined: 11/09/2004 - 09:00

I know I am going to hear about this and I respect all those who do not agree. Thank you now for all you will contribute to the debate. Here goes : Our daughter is one of those 1% worse case possible. We learned at 19 months. However we have never banned peanut butter or food that contains nuts. Hear me out. We do not allow loose nuts of any kind and we have a set of rules for the consuption of said food in the house. We have NEVER had an issue. The fact is there is nut products every where in the world and we felt that no matter what we had to do we had to teach her how to live in this world WITH her allergy not in fear of it. That she needed to know how it looked, how it smelled, how to advoid it and how to handle when it is in your space. She is about to turn 18 and she has had many situations come up and she has handled them with clarity and calm. The odds that any child will find someone with the same allergy are not as great as you think and the odds that your child may have to have room mates at some point in their young adult life is pretty great. Having those life experiences that taught her how to handle it are going to help her do well in a world filled with nuts. Pun intended.

Posted on: Tue, 08/13/2013 - 9:38am
Saralinda's picture
Joined: 01/12/2004 - 09:00

Mom1995, I am on your side. My 3 sisters and I are all PA and all have other allergies besides. My MD father, my RN mother, and my RN grandmother all knew the risks involved, but we did not have a nut free home. We were taught early on that some things were not safe for us to eat and we learned to avoid them. I am forever grateful that we were not put in cotton wool and never allowed to venture into the real world. Unless one locks up a person in a tower like Rapunzel, we all must exist in a world with many fearful things: allergies are only one. Education of the allergic person must begin at home. It is a parent's responsibility to warn and teach, but nuts are only one danger that kids face.

Posted on: Tue, 08/20/2013 - 3:17am
susiemc's picture
Joined: 08/22/2001 - 09:00

I encourage you and your husband to adopt practices that are the best choices for you and your family. Be open to them changing as your daughter gets older. I do agree with teaching your daughter how to deal with her allergies according to her age. I can understand your anxiety! Trust me I have two children with multiple food allergies and have had to keep my sense of loss of control in check. Do what your comfortable doing but really get in touch with how you want to help your daughter "live with" such vigilance in a way that she feels "normal". All kids want to "fit in". If your house is the only place you feel you can keep safe then have that protocol that "no nuts allowed in the home". That may change over time as your daughter gets older or it may not. I am sure your husband would never want to cause your daughter harm.....with that said he needs to be on board with the practices you both choose.
Good luck....and stay calm!

Posted on: Tue, 08/20/2013 - 4:18am
JoelJacobson's picture
Joined: 07/30/2013 - 19:02

Your husband's attitude is shocking but not surprising, I have seen it over and over. You did the right thing keeping them separated. Until a kid is old enough to protect themselves, who else will protect them but their parents. You might tell your husband to leave the house and not come near your daughter for a day or so after he eats peanuts. He could stay in a hotel and take a shower and put on clean clothes before he comes home.

Posted on: Tue, 08/20/2013 - 6:33am
Yael Kozar's picture
Joined: 01/05/2011 - 16:27

Been there and when my daughter had 4 reactions in one bite and 2 months in and out of hospitals including exploratory surgery from one bite of food my husband ordered and the chef didn't make the food safe-well Hubby was the one that said WHY IS ALL THIS HAPPENING TO HER after 5 years of being the "overreacting" parent. Hate to say it but no one questions me know as everyone believes she has one the worst peanut allergy levels for Ige mediated anaphylaxis. You are right to question this because he is setting her up not to trust DADDY. This is horrible for a child on every level.

Posted on: Fri, 08/23/2013 - 3:01am's picture
Joined: 06/21/2013 - 11:03

Question of the Week: Answered!
Every week, will be answering one of the questions posted on our community page.
Our Answer:
Dear PAMom22,
It is very frustrating that your husband refuses to take your child's allergies seriously. When it comes to food allergies, education is key. You don't want your daughter to have a life-threatening reaction for him to finally realize just how serious food allergies can be.
Show him videos and news articles about children who have died from a severe allergic reaction. Recently 13-year-old Natalie Giorgi died after eating a rice krispy treat containing traces of peanuts. Even after being given 3 EpiPens, the allergic reaction took her life. You can share the video with him and perhaps it will change his behavior. Click this link to watch the video:
You could also consider bringing him with you to an allergist or another health care provider, who can better explain the severity of your child's food allergies to him. You mentioned that he feels you are overreacting, so getting advice from a medical professional may help change his opinions and let him see that you are not overreacting in any way. Best of luck!

Posted on: Sun, 08/25/2013 - 2:37am
AllergyInformation3's picture
Joined: 08/25/2013 - 09:27

I regret that I your husband seems to have some form of willful ignorance about her life threatening condition. Have you thought about or contacted your division of family services? It seems to me like a hotline call, especially of it is a peanut dust allergy where any amount could trigger a life threatening reaction. This may create discord in your marriage but it may save your child's life. Since he already isn't listening to you, better to get help from the community resources to help get him to stop putting her in danger. You could also report it a social worker in another organization like a hospital or a school. Maybe he will listen to them? Just my thoughts on the matter - especially because he has already had two episodes of anaphylaxis. Just wanted to share this option with you. If it was anyone other than her father, they would seem like a bully, and you would need to report it to someone who can do something about it, right? Parents should be held accountable too.

Posted on: Sun, 08/25/2013 - 2:58am
ddepace65's picture
Joined: 05/27/2012 - 12:33

I to have a son with a peanut allergy. He was lucky enough to out grow his tree nut allergy around the age of 16. I want to comment on the person who said they taught there child how to live in a "peanut world". We also did the same thing. Our son is now turning 19 and in his second year of collage. He lives at school and has 3 room mates. We taught him how to be safe and how to speak to friends and others about his allergy. In our house we did not typically have any nut products. This was the place he did not have to worry, that could been our worry to keep him safe. With that said I think your husband was a bit thoughtless in his actions. There were many times my husband and I went through the same thing. Just ask him which is more important kissing his daughter goodnight or peanuts? You were not over reacting:)


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