One Parent Still Doesn\'t Get It!

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 2:24am
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I posted my story under the "We are Under Attack" post about how we were having a similar problem in our school with parents being upset about not being able to send peanut products to school with their children. Our son's Back to School Night was last night and everything seemed to go smoothly. We had decided after speaking with the teacher that we would not be in the classroom because of the fear that it could become heated since there were quite a few angry parents. It seems (at least for now) that they may back down from their positions after the teacher explained the severity of this allergy. My guess is that most of them just didn't understand the allergy and now that they are aware, they are now compassionate about it. However, I was told this morning that there was one parent who wants us to meet her in the middle. It appears that her child "only" likes PB&J and wants to know if it is okay to send it in and then have her child wash his hands thoroughly afterwards. Part of me is saying "Fine, as long as he washes her hands and isn't anywhere near my son." Another part of me is saying, "Yeah right! A six year old is going to wash his hands thoroughly?" I'm amazed that this parent still is pushing to send PB&J to school even after hearing that this is a life or death situation. What do you guys think? Do you think it is unreasonable of me to say no to this so-called solution? I'm not asking for an outright ban in the class and I'm not sure the principal would agree to it (although she is supporting us). I was really hoping after last night's "education" on PA that everyone would just say that it isn't worth it to send PB&J's (and other peanut products) in.

[This message has been edited by B'sMom (edited September 25, 2003).]

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 4:47am
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As I said to another member a few minutes ago, I think it's inappropriate that the school isn't handling this on their own and fielding all the negativity on their own. You should be kept out of it. Your child has a right to be there just like their child does. Your child has special needs (of a sort), and legally must be accomodated. Too many parents don't understand like. "Only liking peanut butter" is not a special need!
I would say DO NOT BACK down for this one child, because if the school gets wind of your thinking that that's okay, then the next thing you know, you'll have everybody and his dog arriving with PB&J and "promising" to wash up. Is that the kind of school you are comfortable with?
Stand your ground! And insist that the school bring itself up to YOUR level and not the other way around!
Good luck!!!!!

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 5:23am
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Stand your ground (let the administration take the heat). Her child can learn to eat other things, no healthy child will starve themselves, and her child can eat PB&J for the other 18 hours of the day.

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 8:08am
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Unless her child has some sensory issue related to some special needs condition, I'd continue to say no, and maybe offer to buy her a sample of sunbutter or a jar of acceptable soy butter to try.
------------------
Cheryl, mom to Jason (6 PA/TA/other FAs and EAs),Joey (4 NKA) and Allison (11/02 dairy sensitive)

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 8:27am
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isn't it a shame that some people can't look past their own circumstances to see that there is a whole big world out there full of oopportunities for them to be helpful? good Lord! i hate to think i'd ever refuse to cooperate HAPPILY with a family who had a seriously food allergic child. you would think i'd stop being amazed that there are people out there like that...but i'm still amazed every time. what kind of parent honestly thinks their child can only eat one food every day for lunch forever??? ridiculous.

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 12:32pm
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Teacher & Cynde are right - hold your ground - once you lose your footing, it's next to impossible to get back to where you were in the first place.
Solarflare made a great suggestion about the soy & sunbutter alternatives.
One thing to keep in mind - a child with freshly eaten PB breath, breathing in your childs eyes can result in the exact same reaction as your child touching a PB surface and rubbing their eyes - I'm talking from experience (one I don't want to ever repeat)
Each school day mornings are signficantly stressful with me wondering how many kids standing in the line beside my DD heading into school have had PB for breakfast, not only not washed their hands, but most probably didn't brush their teeth and tongue afterwards, and even if they did - is that enough to stop my child from reacting from the PB being expelled from their breath into my childs eyes when they are up close and talking to her..... the worries never end....

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 1:15pm
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Thank you everyone for your replies. Since I first posted this message I have since received more information about this parent who wants to still bring in PB&J sandwiches. Apparently, this family is vegan (the teacher didn't give me this information initially) and the child's pediatrician told them he needs to eat peanut butter for protein. I, of course, just about went off the deep end when I heard this. Are they trying to tell me that peanut butter is the only source of protein out there? My understanding of vegans is that they will not eat eggs and won't even drink milk. If I'm wrong about this, please correct me. So, my question is since this is the case, what other sources of protein are out there that vegans eat? Any ideas?
[This message has been edited by B'sMom (edited September 25, 2003).]

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 1:36pm
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i am hot! this doctor had enough time to say (loosly)that this child just Had to eat peanuts??PLEEEAAASE!and i might add that it is not your responsibility to get a list of other proteins if these parents are real vagans they alredy know all the alternitives.
sounds as though they have nothing to do with their time but power struggle with you.
oooh woe is my child,she/he can't have p/b&j.
as we all know p/a has and will kill not eating meat won't!so there for you have upper hand period and do not back down!
i have had many run ins with parents and am only expressing my opinion,not to offend(hope i didn't but that whole subject gets me mad!!!)good luck and stand your ground!!

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 2:13pm
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If your child is not allergic to tree nuts, I would suggest almond butter, cashew butter etc. Most of them are may contain though. Also there is Sunbutter and Soynut butter. The other child could eat soy products like soymilk, tofu, etc. There are also beans, whole grains, and vegan meat alternatives. If this family is vegan, I'm sure they already have many sources of protein besides peanuts that they eat.

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 2:32pm
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Chances are these parents are in a real quandry. It sounds as if they want to follow the rules but just can't figure out how to do it.
First, I would wait to see if the school resolves it. If they can't then...Only attempt this if you think you can do it in a friendly, relaxed manner...
How about having lunch with the Mom of this child? We are more likely to be persuaded by 1)people we like 2)people we believe are like us and 3)people who seem to have our best interests at heart.
Call her up and ask if you two can get together at your house for lunch. Be sure to ask her for a list of things she can eat (demonstrates empathy and a willingness to compromise and accomodate different diets and lifestyles). Talk about how difficult it is to maintain a diet that is out-of-the mainstream (after all this is a big thing you both have in common). Ask her 'how she does it' (opens the door for you two to discuss the challenges you both face). Ask how she decided to become vegan. Then, only after you've talked about her and the challenges she faces and built a good rapport bring up your experience. Talk about how you discovered your child has PA. Tell her how it terrifies you. Ask what you can do to help her out.
Anytime our school talks about PA we insist on being there just because it might get heated. People are afraid of the 'unknown' and we've found that missing these meetings will cause some folks to imagine our family as big green monsters with horns where our ears should be. We usually start the meetings out by talking about the our experience, how we were a huge peanut butter family prior to DD's diagnosis (in fact I bought Reese's by the case - can you imagine?) and how, if they ever find a cure, I will personally bake PB cookies for every parent of every child DD has ever attended school with and that we are really glad that there are so many friendly faces in this room because there are absolute horror stories out there and we are soooo lucky to share a community with you.
You have a lot in common with these parents. Granted, their diet is by choice, but can you imagine the enormous list of "do not eat" food their child must take along to play dates? I bet they use a lot of the same strategies we all use...

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 2:56pm
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Personally, I think it should be up to the school, not the parent, to be working this out. It's not up to the parent to figure out what the vegan parent can feed her child, or even have to offer suggestions. THE SCHOOL should be the ones handling this. There are accomodations that are made for all kinds of disabilities, and simply not eating pb for 2 1/2 hours a day is NOT a big deal.
You know, one kindergarten I worked in had a rule for snacks-fruit, veggies, cheese and crackers ONLY. The kids would bring in their snack, we'd cut them up and arrange them on a plate, and everyone would share. It was much healthier too, with none of that pre packaged junk stuff. They can eat the pb when they go home for lunch. :P

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 3:05pm
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B's mom - the family who wrote the letter of complaint to my son's teacher is also vegan. She is also insistent that her child needs some form of nut butter for lunch EVERY DAY in order to get all the protein they need. My son's teacher told her that she can make a peanut/nut free lunch for her child and then feed them peanut butter or another nut butter as soon as they get home from school, where it won't risk my child's life. She said in no uncertain terms that it is always possible to find alternatives if one will only look. I love this woman!
I have only known a few vegans and they take their belief very seriously. I certainly would never wish to interfere with her family's choice. However, I will insist to the end that the school lunch is only one meal out of 21, and anyone (vegan or not) can find some sort of compromise when it comes to the life or death of a child. Her child can get a little extra protein after school to stay healthy. My child can die. Where is the choice here?
Lori

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 9:09pm
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That is ridiculous. Does the doctor mean to say the child needs peanut butter for breakfast, lunch AND dinner? If not, why does it have to be for lunch? Why not a peanut butter sandwich for breakfast and then the child can wash his hands and brush his teeth? I've said this before, but I've been vegan and in order to be, you have to be very educated about protein sources. They know alternative protein sources. If they won't eat dairy and meat and their child will only eat peanut butter out of the remaining protein sources, then they are being very irresponsible by remaining vegans. When it comes right down to it, their spiritual/diet choices come in second to your child's life. We make these choices in society all of the time. Stand your ground! Absolutely don't give in, or it sends a signal for the school to me more lax about the policy overall.

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 11:15pm
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One of my daughter's classmates has a mother similar to the one you are describing. To request that an exception be made for her child to bring in PB is a lot like playing Russian Roulette. Will my child get hurt by this? Maybe, maybe not - but why take the chance? I'll tell you why they are willing to take the chance - because it's not THEIR child. I don't think this is a vegan issue - vegans are not oblivious to medical science. It sounds like her attitude is "if you're going to accommodate one child's food 'issue', then you'll have to accommodate mine". This is ignorance at its best - or worst.

Posted on: Fri, 09/12/2003 - 11:59pm
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Quote:Originally posted by virginia mom:
[b]It sounds like her attitude is "if you're going to accommodate one child's food 'issue', then you'll have to accommodate mine".[/b]
That's how I read her too.
I really, really like Elizabethsmom thinking about winning this mom over (who knows... this mom may become your biggest supporter). But hold off. Approach her [i]after [/i]the school has addressed it with her first. It'll be much better for you (and everyone) to let the school handle it.

Posted on: Sat, 09/13/2003 - 2:57am
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I just bumped up another topic started by VeganMom that raised these same issues. Despite the fact that many posters had very valid suggestions about what her daughter could eat, VeganMom chose to get angry because some suggested things like cheese and other dairy products, not realizing that vegans don't eat any animal products at all. It looked like she was just trying to get agreement that there was no other solution for her daughter, and when she didn't, she focussed on the thing she could disagree with. The bottom line is, there are options, and a life-threatening allergy has to take precedence over a life choice, no matter what the spiritual or religious underpinnings of that choice may be.
[This message has been edited by Kim M (edited September 13, 2003).]

Posted on: Sat, 09/13/2003 - 5:47am
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Thank you everyone for all of your support! I have to admit that I almost felt like giving up with this one woman because you just get to a point where you feel like you have been "beaten" down. But, you are all correct in that if I back down now, I will lose my position on this with the school. I, too, like Elizabeth's Mom's advice. If the school isn't able to handle it, I am going to try to find out who this mother is and try to win her over to my side. We are in a Catholic school and my hope is that she sent her child to a Christian school because she wants her child to learn the Christian value system which includes compassion. I am praying that after talking to her very nicely, she will be able to find it in her heart to understand my position. Thank you again for all of your support. I don't know what I would do without all of you on this board! I'll keep you all posted on what happens!
[This message has been edited by B'sMom (edited September 25, 2003).]

Posted on: Sat, 09/13/2003 - 9:57am
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I think beans and corn eaten together make a complete protein (as do other plant foods, I just can't think of them right now), and would fit a vegan diet. Could that be the childs lunch 5 days a week and they can have PB at home the other 16 meals and snacks???????
It really can't be that difficult, if that childs only source of protein is PB they are obviously following the advice of a quack.

Posted on: Sat, 09/13/2003 - 12:56pm
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I don't know if this will help in convincing the parent that their child does not "need" PB, but here is some info on foods with protein. I believe one serving of PB has 6 grams of protein. Protein in other foods:
One serving of Raisin Bran has 5 grams of protein. Some other whole grain cereals have quite a bit of protein, including Cracklin' Oat Bran, and Quaker Oat Squares. 1 cup of oatmeal has 6 grams, 1 cup vegetarian baked beans has 12 grams, 1 bagel has 9 grams, 1 cup cooked broccoli has 5 grams, 1 cup cooked brown rice has 5 grams, 1 cup cooked lentils has 18 grams, 1 cup cooked bulgar 6 grams, 2 slices whole wheat bread 5 grams, 1 medium potato has 4 grams; 1 cup lima beans, kidney beans, black beans, or chick peas have 15 grams; 1 cup quinoa has 11 grams.
Baby oatmeal cereal can be added to rice milk or other foods to increase protein intake. I believe pastas also have protein.
Also there are some vegan members of this board who in the past have mentioned protein sources and products such as hummus, dal, seitan, and field roast.
[This message has been edited by dmbb (edited September 13, 2003).]
[This message has been edited by dmbb (edited September 13, 2003).]

Posted on: Sat, 09/13/2003 - 5:03pm
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Your child is protected by a 504 plan. If this mother will not cooperate, get the school system to get the 504 plan out and do there job. If the mother still wont cooperate, then that child in my opinion needs to be moved to a classroom that has no peanut allergin children in it so she can be free to have her pb&j sandwhiches since " that is all she will eat." *rolling eyes here* WHATEVER!!!
I can understand she is vegan, but there are many other things a child can nad will eat when they get hungry enough that a vegan can eat.
They are being rediculous if you ask me. You do not have a choice in the matter of what you feed your child when it concerns peanuts.. but this women does have a choice,, she is just being very ignorant and close minded if you ask me.
I am sorry, but if someone were to come to my house and they had a wheat allergy and all I ate was wheat, I woudl wait till after they left, I would make sure I washed all surfaces well before they got here and that i washed my hands very good... its not like she cant have her protein after school... stand your ground or everyone will buckle and then you will be a very very angry mom who will be very flustered and scared and stressed.
check into the 504 plan. I know the school "HAS" to have a copy of it legally, but there are also copy's of it on the net. I have an ADHD daughter and was introduced to the 504 and the IEP from my ADHD childrens group I am on for support and education.
If this mother wont budge, your child HAS A DISABILITY which is life threatening. If she can not get past that, then I would not want my child in the same room as her child, but that is just me. To me, she has no concern about human life. She seems to want to justify ( or argue really) the fact that they are vegan so her child has to have peanut butter? have it after school lady, when my kid is not around! GRRRRR
Ok I am done... or I will just keep going and going.
check out [url="http://www.wrightslaw.com"]www.wrightslaw.com[/url]
Here you will find information about the 504 plan and IEP's and what they are and how to get them to work. 504's are already in place and what teachers and staff HAVE to do to protect YOUR child. IEP's are something that you might have to fight for your child to have throughout there school life and they will have to be approved for IEP... I am not sure if PA kids can get an IEP though, but I am assuming they can. Basically an IEP is a legal letter stating things to help keep your child safe and happy in school.
EX: For my ADHD, I could have an IEP plan made up saying she is to wear headphones during class to block out white noises. She is to have no homework brought home, she is to have 15 minute breaks every hour. She is to have a closet she can " get away" so she does not have meltdown.. you put whatever you want in the IEP.. so if this can be for a PA child, then you would simply put, NO PEANUTS will be aloud near my child or in there classroom, and the teachers and staff would legally have to abide by this IEP. But again, I am not sure if a PA child can have an IEP, cause this is geared more towards helping a learning disabled child get the best education possible, I believe. Mina does not have an IEP thus why I am not sure exactly what it covers. But I have heard other moms talk about it and it might be worth looking into for EVERYONE on here.
Trevor's school is nut free other than snacks brought into the classroom and we have already taken care of that. His teacher is wounderful!
Hugs,
Amy
Quote:Originally posted by B'sMom:
[b]I posted my story under the "We are Under Attack" post about how we were having a similar problem in our school with parents being upset about not being able to send peanut products to school with their children. Our son's Back to School Night was last night and everything seemed to go smoothly. We had decided after speaking with the teacher that we would not be in the classroom because of the fear that it could become heated since there were quite a few angry parents. It seems (at least for now) that they may back down from their positions after the teacher explained the severity of this allergy. My guess is that most of them just didn't understand the allergy and now that they are aware, they are now compassionate about it. However, I was told this morning that there was one parent who wants us to meet her in the middle. It appears that her child "only" likes PB&J and wants to know if it is okay to send it in and then have her child wash her hands thoroughly afterwards. Part of me is saying "Fine, as long as she washes her hands and isn't anywhere near my son." Another part of me is saying, "Yeah right! A six year old is going to wash her hands thoroughly?" I'm amazed that this parent still is pushing to send PB&J to school even after hearing that this is a life or death situation. What do you guys think? Do you think it is unreasonable of me to say no to this so-called solution? I'm not asking for an outright ban in the class and the principal would refuse it anyways. I was really hoping after last night's "education" on PA that everyone would just say that it isn't worth it to send PB&J's (and other peanut products) in.[/b]

Posted on: Sun, 09/14/2003 - 7:36am
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Amy, thanks for the info. However, it is my understanding that a 504 plan will not work when one is in a private school that does not receive federal funding (which we are). So, I am kind of at the mercy of the school at this point. Fortunately, the principal and the teacher appear to be backing me. I'm really hoping to find out who this parent is so I can talk to her myself. I am hoping that I can lure her to my way of thinking with kindness and a lot of facts. If that doesn't work, then this is someone who just doesn't want to listen and doesn't have a heart. In that case, I will make it very clear to her that should anything happen to my child because of her intentionally sending in something lethal, she will have to live with that for the rest of her life. I would also make it clear that I would pursue the legal system against her at all costs. Of course, I don't even want to have to get to that point. That would be my last words to her. I am so upset over this. I wouldn't be surprised if I get an ulcer over this whole thing. I just can't seem to understand how people just can't be compassionate.
[This message has been edited by B'sMom (edited September 25, 2003).]

Posted on: Sun, 09/14/2003 - 7:45am
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I'm not a regular here - I stumbled here looking for something else - but thought I'd jump in.
It sounds like this family has an uneducated pediatrician and is trying to follow his/her orders nonetheless. By way of background, Most doctors know very little about nutrition - they do not study it in medical school, except for one 3-hour class. That's 3 hours, not 3 credits.
So doctors are basically drawing on the (outdated) Basic 4 Food Groups they learned about in kindergarten. They are usually not up to date on nutrition information, and therefore are woefully unprepared to deal with something like veganism.
I'm vegan now, but ate pretty much anything as a kid. My brother, on the other hand, was a notoriously picky eater. He refused to eat meat, so the doctor said he should eat peanut butter for protein. He liked it, and no one in the family was allergic to peanuts, so it was no big deal.
But think back to the "basic 4" you were taught in school - the only real alternative to meat that I recall being presented was peanut butter. Soynut butter? Beans? Tofu? Who ate that stuff? The only beans I ate as a kid were baked beans. And I don't think my pediatrician considered beans to even be a food!
Of course, the truth is that all grains, beans, and vegetables have protein. As long as enough wholesome food is being eaten to meet calorie requirements, sufficient protein is being consumed. Vegan protein sources abound - everything from rice and beans and potatoes and broccoli to more "exotic" foods like seitan (wheat gluten) and tempeh (fermented soybean cakes).
If I had to make a guess about this family's circumstances, I would say that they have transitioned to veganism fairly recently (and therefore are probably just learning about vegan foods that aren't eaten by most people who aren't vegan) and are probably meeting a fair amount of resistance from their families. They are probably hearing from their parents that they are harming their child's health with a vegan diet. But since the doctor said that the child will be fine if he eats nut butters with every meal, this means they can tell their parents that they are following the doctor's orders and their child is healthy.
Really, they may be in a situation that's very much like the one you are facing - with the key difference being that their child won't die if one mistake is made!
If finances allow, I would highly recommend purchasing a copy of "Raising Vegetarian Children", by Joanne Stepaniak, and giving it to this family. The book is full of information about nutrition, interpersonal relationships as related to veg*nism, and recipes and lunchbox suggestions!
I've said a mouthful and I'll stop now! Good luck.

Posted on: Sun, 09/14/2003 - 9:03am
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Quote:Originally posted by B'sMom:
[b] In that case, I will make it very clear to her that should anything happen to my child because of her intentionally sending in something lethal, she will have to live with that for the rest of her life. I would also make it clear that I would pursue the legal system against her at all costs. [/b]
[i]quietly acknowledging some sentiments that do exist in the PA community[/i] as I have previously mentioned issues (on both sides of the fence) related to [i]liability[/i], and the influence it may havee on certain situations, if even only influence related to the mere idea of it.

Posted on: Sun, 09/14/2003 - 9:17am
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Quote:Originally posted by Just Looking:
[b] By way of background, Most doctors know very little about nutrition - they do not study it in medical school, except for one 3-hour class. That's 3 hours, not 3 credits.
[/b]
Hmmmmm.... I'm an RN. BSN prepared. Also have a Bachelor's in Biology/Chemistry, took the "medicine track" as I [i]was[/i] going to pursue medical school, but became increasingly aware I was probably not going to enjoy the time committment such a profession demanded. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/tongue.gif[/img] (Love being a mother/homemaker/wife/daughter/RN)
I was [i]required[/i] to take a full year of Food/Nutrition (cojoined with the core curriculum in enodcrinology/Anatomy & Physiology/Pathophysiology I was also [i]required to take ----- Instructors were very good in relating the topics, integrating knowledge and applying such during clinicals --- love visuals.
Are you saying that a physician's education is not equal or requiring the equivallent or more in depth level of instruction/education?
Where are you located, if you don't mind me asking?
I will also note I regularly take continuing education in areas related to my field and others that may be of efficacy.

Posted on: Mon, 09/22/2003 - 1:44pm
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Now I am really fuming. Since I last posted about this, things seemed to have calmed down at the school. I asked the teacher to tell the parent (I didn't know who the parent was at the time) who was insisting on bring PB&J's to school that I wanted to have a nice chat with her about how we could accommodate both of our needs. My guess is the teacher passed along the message. Of course, the parent never approached me and I figured she either gave up the issue or didn't have the guts to approach me. I now know the latter is true.
First, a little background. This woman's son went to kindergarten with my son last year. The kindergarten had a full ban on peanuts in the classroom that she had no choice to abide by. Not a word was said to me by her about not being able to send in PB&J's to school. All of a sudden, it appears to be a problem!!! Apparently, her son is lethargic at the end of the day because he won't eat his lunch at school if it isn't PB&J! Also, this woman clearly does not feed her child nutritious meals as I clearly remember her complaining to me at the beginning of the last school year that the teacher had called her in to discuss her son's lunches and how she wasn't packing nutritious lunches for him. Apparently, she sent nothing but junk food. She didn't like the fact that the teacher called her on it.
Anyways, today her son was sitting behind my son at lunchtime. He decided that it would be funny to taunt my son by waving his PB&J sandwich in my son's face!!! Fortunately, my son has very good friends who stuck up for him and told the boy to stop. The yard duty teacher (who didn't see this incident) moved the boy to another location when she realized what he was eating. Sadly, my son is so shy, he didn't speak up for himself! I was so upset because we had so many discussions about how he needs to speak up if someone is eating peanut products around him. He did raise his hand to get the yard duty teacher's attention, but he didn't say a word about what happened!
When he finally told me this evening about the situation, I immediately got on the phone with this child's mother. I explained to her what happened and how it was completely unacceptable behavior and all she could say was that she would talk to her son about it. I then asked her how she could send in PB&J after the teacher clearly explained to her and everyone else about how serious this allergy is. She did not admit to being vegan (as I was told this parent is), but she did say that her son must have protein during lunch and the doctor told her that peanut butter was their option! I, of course, told her there are many other sources of protein and even gave her other lunch ideas. She wasn't interested in any of my ideas and wasn't about to budge. What the whole conversation boiled down to is that her son is a very picky eater and will only eat certain things. She mentioned some hot meals that he likes, but claims the Thermos I told her about doesn't keep his food warm - so she doesn't send those meals in. I use that Thermos all of the time as well as other people I know and none of us have had a problem. From her side of the conversation, it was clear she doesn't want to be bothered with preparing hot lunches in the morning. (Personally, I think it is a lot easier to warm up leftover dinner and throw it in the thermos than make a whole sandwich and pack all the side stuff.) So, obviously PB&J is a convenient option for her and she doesn't want to be inconvenienced.
Everytime I tried to come up with a solution that might accommodate her needs, she shot it down with some lame excuse as to why my solutions wouldn't work. I did make it clear to her that I was going to have a talk with the principal and the teacher tomorrow about this as I feel that the teacher needs to address this situation with the entire class. All of the kids need to be made aware of how serious this allergy is so they don't do something stupid like this. All she could say to me was that she would talk to her son about how serious my son's allergy is. She even shockingly said that since it is now "after the fact" that he wouldn't be suffering any consequences, but rather she would "educate" him about the allergy! I just about exploded with anger! What kind of parenting skills is that???
Anyways, sorry this is so long. I just needed to vent. I am still shaking with anger as I type this!
[This message has been edited by B'sMom (edited September 23, 2003).]
[This message has been edited by B'sMom (edited September 25, 2003).]

Posted on: Mon, 09/22/2003 - 2:40pm
anonymous's picture
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Oh - and one other thing. Does anyone have any suggestions on different lunch ideas (something that picky kids really like to eat) that have lots of protein? I know. I know. I shouldn't have to provide this info. to this woman, but I am trying to be as accommodating as possible in hope that she will try to accommodate our needs. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Posted on: Mon, 09/22/2003 - 11:45pm
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Bsmom, Im sorry, I cant remember, did they make it a rule no pb or just a request? If it is a rule, I would insist that the school stops it.
I think its great that you are trying to help this mom but I think you are fighting a losing battle with her. I think the more you try to talk her into not sending it in the more adamant she will be in sending it in. I know that stinks but she doesnt seem to me like the kind of person who will ever get it.
I would make the school deal with her. I would also notify the school immediately about what her son did so they can make sure it doesnt happen again.

Posted on: Tue, 09/23/2003 - 12:37am
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Quote:Originally posted by momma2boys:
[b]I think its great that you are trying to help this mom but I think you are fighting a losing battle with her. ... I would make the school deal with her. I would also notify the school immediately about what her son did so they can make sure it doesnt happen again.[/b]
Ditto.
I wouldn't engage in a "fight" with her either ... let the school "be the bad guy" and enforce their own rules/requests. They should address her non-compliance and also follow their discipline procedures for her son's bullying.

Posted on: Tue, 09/23/2003 - 3:20am
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Well, I just got back from the school. When I walked my kids up, the mother of the boy who pulled this stunt yesterday runs up to me with her son and makes him apologize to my son. We talked some more about what happened and I, again, told her that I would be willing to try to help her with her son's needs if she was willing to work with our needs. It was pretty clear that she wasn't interested in any of my solutions and she isn't about to budge on her position. So, I just walked away from her and went straight to the principal. I informed the principal about what happened and she said that she and the teacher would talk to the students today about the seriousness of food allergies and how a stunt like yesterdays is absolutely unacceptable and that there will be severe consequences if it ever happens again. I don't know what, if anything, she is going to do about this child's behavior yesterday. She does know that I spoke with the kid's mother last night. Since we do not have a ban in the classroom (we merely requested that parents refrain from sending in peanut products), they are going to have the head yard duty teacher monitor my son's class (and particularly this child whose parents insist on sending PB&J's) every lunch period.
The thing that burns me is that I tried to be reasonable with this woman and even tried to show her that I was willing to work with her on her needs. She clearly wasn't interested in doing the same. Some people just disgust me and she is clearly at the top of that list today!
Thanks for listening!

Posted on: Tue, 09/23/2003 - 4:08am
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Why are these events becoming more and more prevalent in today's society?
I'm sorry you are dealing with this incident. How unfair!
Geez, given all of Caitlins allergiesand limitations, I feel lucky. Shes only in preschool now, but DW (Ann) just met the school nurse (room next door to the class room). The epi is kept unlocked, the bendryl/elidel are kept locked. THe nurse is very nice. Out of the 10 kids in class, one has milk/chicken allergy, one with environmental, and then Caitlin.
I feel she's in good hands, given that last year (when Sara was with the same teacher), there was one student with multiple food allergies, and they never had a reaction (and she's anaph. to SOMETHING. The instructions for her was USE EPI IMMEDIATELY)
So, I can only hope we get the same teacher next year (and nurse), and I dont want to think about Kindergarten until she's 5! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
I hope things are resolved with your childs classroom!
Jason
Caitlin 4-17-00 Allergic to Dairy, Egg, Wheat, Bananas, Grapes, Rye, Sesame, Beef and Avoiding Latex and all Nuts
Sara 2-13-98 NKA (avoiding nuts)
Meghan 2-28-03 dx'ed Reflux - Alimentum feeder, Zantac - 1.2ml 2x/day
[url="http://community.webshots.com/user/jtolpin"]http://community.webshots.com/user/jtolpin[/url]

Posted on: Tue, 09/23/2003 - 11:03pm
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OK, maybe I am extreme, but I would consider this attempted assault and would make a BIG DEAL out of it. "Attempted poisoning" would be coming out of my mouth. I would expect disciplinary action by the school and zero tolerance for deadly bullying. And I would not go away until it was so. Obviously, this child is a big problem.

Posted on: Tue, 09/23/2003 - 11:05pm
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Oh, and I would also cite this as evidence that mere requests are not sufficient to keep my child safe especially when children are using PB against my child in a hostile fashion. An all out ban is in order.

Posted on: Wed, 09/24/2003 - 12:31am
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Quote:Originally posted by StaceyK:
[b]Oh, and I would also cite this as evidence that mere requests are not sufficient to keep my child safe especially when children are using PB against my child in a hostile fashion. An all out ban is in order.[/b]
without the ability to [b]define, enforce, therefore [i]possibly[/i] achieve[/b], is not "an all out ban" [i]merely a request[/i] in itself? (Could such possibly create the same situation on a larger scale?)

Posted on: Wed, 09/24/2003 - 2:02am
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No, a request to not bring in PB brings with it no consequences if you do. You just did not honor the request. A rule/outright ban on peanut butter does have consequences ~ whatever is decided upon - from come bring your child another lunch to we will provide cheese sandwiches which we will charge you for or the peanut-bringing child is segregated to a peanut table for parents who "forget" the rule. A request is wimpy, non-specific and carries no consequence. I am a harda** on this. This substance can kill the allergic child and we have here a malicious child taunting the allergic one with a poison. Zero tolerance. I must add that I have zero tolerance for punks in general, whatever their weaponry, and I get extremely peeved when teachers look the other way (like in the kid-beat-up-every-day case in Eugene - parents had to resort to a federal lawsuit.) I do not go to worj and have to physically or otherwise defend myself every day and it amazes me tiny kids are expected to.
[This message has been edited by StaceyK (edited September 24, 2003).]

Posted on: Wed, 09/24/2003 - 3:50am
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Stacey - I hear where you're coming from. Unfortunately, we are in a private school and they do not have to accommodate us (they do not receive any government funding at all). I'm not totally comfortable with a ban (at this time) because I feel that when people hear the word "ban" they freak out and start assuming their rights are being taken away. I prefer to appeal to one's compassion by educating them on the seriousness of this allergy (I think this is a round about way of imposing a "ban" in the class). Fortunately, we have succeeded in doing so with everyone (that I know of) except this one person. The school is going to keep a watchful eye on this child and especially my son during lunch. The mother appears to be nervous about this situation now as she didn't send any peanut products with her son yesterday. She knows they were "caught" and they are the only ones looking like fools now. Everyone else (that I know of) who had a problem with our request initially has seemed to back off once they were told how serious this allergy is. She chose not to and now she looks like an uncompassionate fool in front of everyone. I'm sure she's very concerned about what the principal is thinking right now. Her son was not initially accepted into the school after testing last year. From what I understand, the only reason they got in was because an opening came up. So, she knows they had a rocky start with the school to start with and she may be worried about not being able to stay. I am hoping this has "convinced" her to keep the peanut products away whether she agrees with what we are doing or not.
I, too, think a ban in the class should be imposed, but I think it is easier and less controversial if we do it in a way where people think they are helping us out instead of being told what to do. That's just my opinion and I know that idea won't work everywhere. Fortunately, it seems to be working at our school with the exception of this one parent.
[This message has been edited by B'sMom (edited September 25, 2003).]

Posted on: Wed, 09/24/2003 - 7:43am
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OH!! I'm sorry, I did not realize this was a private school in question ~ I missed that. In that case, you really can't insist on a ban. I will be in a similar position in 2 years at our beloved Catholic gradeschool. Politically, spiritually, academically ~ they are our dream school. The PA thing - they are trying, bless them, but they are behind the learning curve. We plan on doing a lot of educating. I think they have their hearts in the right place. Good luck to you!!

Posted on: Wed, 09/24/2003 - 12:54pm
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Quote:Originally posted by StaceyK:
[b]No, a request to not bring in PB brings with it no consequences if you do. You just did not honor the request. A rule/outright ban on peanut butter does have consequences ~ whatever is decided upon - from come bring your child another lunch to we will provide cheese sandwiches which we will charge you for or the peanut-bringing child is segregated to a peanut table for parents who "forget" the rule. A request is wimpy, non-specific and carries no consequence. I am a harda** on this. [/b]
Ok then. [i] A strong request with possible "consequences"[/i]? Off the top of my head what sounds more like a "ban" is possibly how airports handle items like contraband and weapons. Enforcement from the getgo. And a way to accomplish it. Sadly, it is my understanding that this is not 100% foolproof either?
Quote:Originally posted by StaceyK:
[b]
This substance can kill the allergic child and we have here a malicious child taunting the allergic one with a poison. [/b]
Truly understand the emotion a parent may feel in such a situation, but......... We are talking about a first grader, right? Do you think he truly is capable of understanding the consequences and its permanence? Especially if it doesn't involve him? Before I saw death, became an RN, dealt with injury, pain, and death in general....... heck, before [i]I lost my own father[/i], the deep understanding wasn't there. Truly, it wasn't. It became a period of growth. Personally? I was 34 when it became crystal to me.

Posted on: Thu, 09/25/2003 - 9:05am
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I had a really nice chat with the teacher yesterday afternoon about this whole situation. I have to say that I am really impressed with the school. From what the teacher told me, it is pretty clear that they are going to back me 100%. We are the first ones in the school with this problem, so this is a learning situation for the school. It seems that they are doing everything they can to educate themselves about the allergy and how to handle it. The principal just told me today how she has been on the internet trying to learn more about the allergy. Kudos to her for doing so! It give me so much peace of mind knowing that they are trying to do whatever they can to protect my son. I was so worried in the beginning because being a private school, I knew we were at their mercy because the disability laws do not apply to them. I feel very fortunate that the staff at this school is as wonderful as ever.
As for this mom who is pushing the PB&J issue, it is still an uphill battle with her. She and her husband are not about to back down. However, I now feel confident that the school is going to stand their ground and not back down to her unreasonable demands. I'll keep everyone posted on how things progress.

Posted on: Thu, 09/25/2003 - 12:05pm
StaceyK's picture
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Well, I'd say the child has a genetically inherited mean streak from the way his mother is acting. I'm being half serious there. However ~ Even if I had not 'gotten death' at 6 I would not bully another kid for kicks. Some people are naturally bent toward finding pleasure in the suffering of others (from practical jokes all the way up to torture and death on a scale) and some are naturally empathetic. I have VERY LITTLE SYMPATHY for the innate 'find pleasure in the misery of others' group. If you take 2 6-year- olds and one is enjoying being mean to the other, who is the innocent victim, then I would err on making the bully uncomfortable. I would not set up a system that keeps the innocent victim in fear. It should be on the bully to reform. 6 year olds require special care and understanding of course. But you still make sure the burden is not on the innocent victim.

Posted on: Thu, 09/25/2003 - 1:29pm
MommaBear's picture
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Quote:Originally posted by StaceyK:
[b] I would not set up a system that keeps the innocent victim in fear. It should be on the bully to reform. 6 year olds require special care and understanding of course. But you still make sure the burden is not on the innocent victim. [/b]
Really, honestly, I'm not talking about setting up a system at all. Don't remember mentioning it (at least in this thread) [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/biggrin.gif[/img]
Just wondering what kind of pressure the child in question might be experiencing. Hard to tell with limited information.

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