Should I quit my job to stay home with my PA son

Posted on: Thu, 08/10/2017 - 12:06pm
Buzzyfoo's picture
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Joined: 08/10/2013 - 18:55

Hi, my 18 month old son just had a severe allergic reaction. At the babysitters he was given a peanut butter sandwich and he'd never had PB before. I was called to come get him from work as he had some hives. 20 min later I arrived and he was wheezing and covered in hives and trying to fall asleep. I rushed him to emergency room, and they gave him an EpiPen, prednisone and a proton pump inhibitor for inflammation. I have been with this daycare lady for 8 years with my other 2 boys. She promises she'll no longer serve peanut butter on the days he's there but her home is not peanut free. I have been packing all his lunches for the last 2 weeks since the allergic reaction but I sit at work all day worried he will touch something in her home with PB on it and put his fingers in mouth. Should I be this worried? I am thinking of quitting my job to be home with him as peanut free daycare basically costs what I make in a day (I have 3 kids at the babysitters in the summer). Did any of you ever leave work to stay home with your PA child or change daycares? This lady is a family friend and I don't want to hurt her but I am fearful he will get into something at her house since it is not peanut free.

Posted on: Sat, 08/10/2013 - 12:39pm
AD75's picture
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Joined: 08/04/2013 - 17:59

I'm in the same situation as you, one of my 18 month old twins just had a severe reaction to peanuts for the first time, blood test showed class 4 allergy to peanuts. Babysitter does not have a peanut free home but said she will try to clean behind others when they eat peanut products. We decided we just can't trust that he will be safe, especially at such a young age, so I'm moving to part time at the end of the month (fortunately can do so with my job) and grandma's will be my boys. Tough decision and financially difficult, but safety is most important to us, especially at this young age. Good luck with your decision.

Posted on: Sun, 08/11/2013 - 5:03am
informedmomma's picture
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Joined: 10/02/2012 - 18:16

Hi,
It sounds like he had a pretty serious reaction. :( I already stay home with my boys, so I didn't need to make that decision. We are also homeschooling our boys, and were thinking about it before we found out about the peanut allergy, but that definitely sealed the deal. I'm not very trusting of others because, unless they have been there and it's their child or close loved one, they just don't get it. What scares me, is that the scary stories you hear usually happen at camp or school, in other words, when the parents aren't around. It does help that you have known this lady for a long time, and I don't think a special "peanut free" daycare will necessarily be better than a caring person to take care of him. But I do think it would be necessary to not have peanuts out at all when he's there, and the place would need to be cleaned properly before he's there again if peanut products are out. But then again, there's always a chance that a peanut could be on the floor, and at his age, he could pick it up and eat it. Being an allergy mom just sucks. Staying home with your kids is a great thing, allergy or not, and if you can make it work, I say go for it. You can always try something else if it doesn't work out.

Posted on: Sun, 08/11/2013 - 10:16am
Saralinda's picture
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Joined: 01/12/2004 - 09:00

I know it is scary. First of all, breathe. You will be able to find an affordable peanut free day care. I bet you might even find that another mom who has a kid with allergies who could watch them in her home. There are solutions.

Posted on: Sun, 08/11/2013 - 11:26am
jap's picture
jap
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Joined: 08/11/2013 - 08:33

this all depends on how much you like your job and financial situation.
One does not always realize the cost of working, extra vehicles, day care , taxis, eating out, quality of life, stress on marriage. I would say stay home even if your child did not have a peanut allergy !!!!!!!
Many summer programs are not safe as has been shown with the sad case this summer with the 13 year old at camp.
I have stayed home for years my daughter had her one and only peanut exposure at age 1, she is now 15 and never had another one.
My son is doing his second degree at college.I cook all the meals do all the housework , banking , yard work , doctors and school appointments.
Don't worry it is the best investment you will make. Oh did i mention that i am a Guy
Julian

Posted on: Mon, 08/12/2013 - 4:32am
lexeast's picture
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Joined: 08/12/2013 - 08:57

I second the comment to take a moment to really breathe :o)
Discovering your child has a life-threatening allergy is very difficult to wrap your mind around, because it changes how you think and feel about everything you once thought was fairly stable.
My second child had an severe response which found me rushing to the ER when she was just over 1 year old. She had unintentional contact with a PBJ while at my mother's home. My mother handled everything well, but I still felt very uncertain in the days/weeks to follow--even when my daughter was with me or my husband. At the time my childcare consisted of time with my mother and a MDO program that was already peanut-free.
I have worked and I have taken time off, so I don't want to push either side of that debate. What I can tell you is that yes, you are reasonable in feeling the need to reassess your childcare options. Your child has new needs and restrictions now, so you may have to make new choices. Or you may be able to reconcile your concerns with honest discussions with those around you. Maybe your friend would change her stance if she fully understood all your concerns. Unfortunately no one is going to strive for perfection in this area quite like a parent.
After my daughter's allergy diagnosis, both our and my parents' homes immediately became 100% peanut and tree-nut free or as best as we could manage as we continued to learn more and more about foods and proper cleaning techniques to sanitize everything. Unloading our household of everything that had nuts in it or processed near it was daunting and took half a day of label reading. Grocery shopping was a nightmare for months, because of all we didn't know and how long it took to read every label in the store. At the time, I had to go to three different stores just to find all the items I needed that were safe. We even joined a church that was peanut-free. I did everything I could to eradicate nuts in our lives, and yet I constantly felt overwhelmed with all the choices and changes these stupid little nuts had wreaked in one fell swoop.
My daughter is now in third grade and I still worry. I still have meetings with her school(which is NOT nut-free). Her first day of kindergarten I sat in the school all day for fear of leaving the premises, even though the school had done everything in their power to help me plan for her first day. I still fret and go on every field trip (because healthy moms take a bag of almonds on field trips). I bake every cupcake she eats and provide safe snacks "just in case". I'm the go-to person the church calls with food allergy questions.
You will always be your child's greatest protector, but you are not an island. You, too, need help and support. And unfortunately keeping my daughter at home forever wouldn't protect her from the times I have messed up. So I suggest you ask your doctor for some names of parents who you could contact for helpful tips in your area. (My pediatrician gave me a list.) You are not alone. There is no perfect way to be an allergy mom (or dad). We all take it one day at a time.

Posted on: Tue, 08/13/2013 - 2:47am
Sherrylk's picture
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Joined: 08/06/2013 - 13:55

I know exactly what you are going through. My PA son had is first reaction at 8 months when he unintentionally got ahold of his older brothers peanut butter crackers. Whether to stay home with you son or not is a tough decision and many have given some valueable advise to consider. Whatever your decision I encourage you to teach your son how to live in a 'nutty world' and not be afraid of it. One thing my husband and I chose to do was make sure our son was educated on how to always ask if foods were safe, know which foods he should never eat (absolutley no bakery products, for example). If in doubt chicken out is our moto.
My son is now getting ready to enter 1st grade, and yes I am nervous. What parents isn't when a child has a severe medical condition? While keeping peanuts away from our son is our #1 priority and close #2 is making sure everyone who takes care of him (day care, school, relatives,ec.) knows what to do when an exposure does occur. And I have come to accept that it will occur. That actually helps keep me a little calmer when he is away from me. I know the people taking care of him won't panic, have been well trained on how to administer his EpiPen and get him to the ER. Education is the key to making your life less stressful. Educate yourself, educate your son (even at his young age) and educate those who may take care of him.

Posted on: Wed, 08/14/2013 - 3:08am
PeanutAllergy.com's picture
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Joined: 06/21/2013 - 11:03

Question of the Week: Answered!
Every week, PeanutAllergy.com will be answering one of the questions posted on our community page!
Our response:
Finding out that your child has a food allergy can be extremely overwhelming. Before making a decision about how to proceed, it is important that you weigh all of your options carefully.
Consider your financial situation. If staying home is simply not an option, do not stress. There are several solutions to the problem. Your child cannot always be in your care; eventually your son will make his way to school, where he will be under the supervision of several people. Thus, it is essential that you be an advocate for your child. Research about food allergies and educate both him and his caretakers to ease your concerns and make sure he is well protected.
Talk to your friend and voice your concerns. When it comes to food allergies, education is essential and it may be the case that she simply does not understand the danger and severity of food allergies. Have a conversation with her, express your fears and anxieties, and make sure she is trained in how to properly administer an Epi-pen and Benadryl, how to recognize the signs of an allergic reaction, how to properly read labels and about cross contamination.
After speaking with your friend, if you still do not feel comfortable leaving your child in her care, then it might be in your best interest to find a peanut-free daycare center or another babysitter who will promise either to keep peanuts out of the home or take the steps necessary to properly manage your child's allergies.

Posted on: Thu, 08/15/2013 - 3:30pm
JoelJacobson's picture
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Joined: 07/30/2013 - 19:02

Our severly peanut-allergic son is always with either my wife or me. When I am at work he is with my wife, and when she works on the weekend he is with me. We should do this at least until he is old enough to take care of himself.
What is more important, your son or your freinds feelings? Does she know how to inject epinephrine? Does she even have one with her?

Posted on: Sun, 08/18/2013 - 2:15am
Smmerriam's picture
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Joined: 08/18/2013 - 09:10

I was in the same situation almost 2 years ago. We couldn't afford it either but we saw no other choice. I stay home and I'm planning to home school as well. It's just not worth it to me to put a teacher in charge of keeping my son alive on top of everything else they have to do.

Posted on: Sun, 08/18/2013 - 2:56am
mom1995's picture
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Joined: 11/09/2004 - 09:00

I can more then understand the protect and defend response. You have had many great oppinions presented. I will add mine to the list as food for thought for you.
My daughter is about to be 18 and she is in the relm of the worse possible reaction for even second hand contact. My husband and I both believe that sheltering her would not teach her how to live in the world. She attended a preschool and has attended public schools, yes there have been times that someone did not do the right thing but since middle school she has had both the confidence and knowledge on how and what to do to be safe. She has had to educate adults along the way. She is a very impowered young lady with a greater understanding of how human nature is not always as kind as one would expect. She also made the choice to go to law school and become a Civil Rights lawyer to represent kids like her. So she is the example of how letting her experince the world has helped her take charge of her allergy and not let it rule her life. Don't get me wrong she had her doubts and just befoer middle school she was affraid and wanted to be home schooled. That was tough to help her understand that she could not let her allergy rule her life. She made it and even thanked us after the year. Which is hard to come by at that age. Good luck in what ever path you choose and know you can always change paths at any time.

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