Was this good, bad, or just the way it goes?

Posted on: Mon, 05/07/2007 - 5:08am
Lori Jo's picture
Joined: 09/17/2003 - 09:00

I've been brewing over this for a while. Not sure if I'm glad, sad, or something else. My dd's go to a small, private school where all the students know each other. My youngest dd (PA) is also miss personality, and knows more people in town than I do I think. At Easter, we went from younger dd's school party to older dd's party with younger in tow. The class mother immediately announced "Now class, ___ is here. That means no touching or hugging her since you have food on your hands." All of the food was safe to be around, and while I love that adults and children look out for her without our prompting, I hated that she had to be singled out like that.

Perhaps I'm just thinking aloud in a room of like minded people, but I wanted to tell someone. Any thoughts?

Lori Jo,

Rose, 7-31-02, PA
Beatrice & Georgia, 8-14-99

Posted on: Mon, 05/07/2007 - 5:28am
Spoedig's picture
Joined: 09/17/2004 - 09:00

While I COMPLETELY understand the emotional aspect of wanting your child to be the same as all, I personally would be thrilled that the room mother brought this up. I liked that she said they shouldn't be touching her, etc.
I am sure all the kids are aware of your child's situation. For myself as the parent, it is sometimes a "slap in the face" to be confronted by ones child being "different". We want them to not have to deal with such life altering situations.
Was your child upset by this announcement?

Posted on: Mon, 05/07/2007 - 5:29am
Momcat's picture
Joined: 03/15/2005 - 09:00

I don't know... it seems a little odd that she felt she needed to make this annoucement when you were right there keeping an eye on things.

Posted on: Mon, 05/07/2007 - 5:53am
Corvallis Mom's picture
Joined: 05/22/2001 - 09:00

Exactly what I was thinking, Momcat.
I've found over the years that when statements like this are made (and they always make me cringe)....it is often because the person making them is 'thinking out loud.' Without filtering anything for 'social appropriateness' if you see what I mean.
Sort of like saying "Oh, look, here comes Janey. Her hair fell out because of her chemotherapy, so don't stare." [i] Wow. Good thing you said something.... she might have forgotten and enjoyed being with her friends again otherwise.[/i] [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/rolleyes.gif[/img]
It is just plain hurtful and rude to [i]deliberately draw attention[/i] to another person's disability or physical appearance that way. But with diabetes or FA, many people who don't live with it don't think about it.
(Note that in the original post, the food was safe [i]and[/i] a parent was present.)
And what a lot of adults don't realize about my DD is that at 8 yo, she is far more adroit at keeping an eye on anything suspect and placing distance between herself and anyone she doesn't want touching her. LOL

Posted on: Mon, 05/07/2007 - 10:15am
Lori Anne's picture
Joined: 07/13/2005 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by Corvallis Mom:
It is just plain hurtful and rude to [i]deliberately draw attention[/i] to another person's disability or physical appearance that way. But with diabetes or FA, many people who don't live with it don't think about it.
Definitely. It is rude, but I don't think she was deliberately trying to be rude. I think she was probably thinking about keeping your child safe. I find that many people who understand how serious food allergies are can sometimes be nervous about the allergy and keeping the child safe. She was probably thinking that she was helping.
I don't think she was thinking about how it might make your daughter feel. I think it would have bothered my dd if someone had done that. Definitely. But I just think this woman was trying to help and inadvertently hurt feelings in the process. She didn't realize that it would make anyone feel singled out.
That's just my guess. It doesn't seem like she was trying to be mean spirited.
However, in order for it not to happen in the future, you might have to say something (in a kind way) about your daughter possibly feeling singled out.

Posted on: Mon, 05/07/2007 - 10:31am
Sandra Y's picture
Joined: 08/22/2000 - 09:00

Sometimes it seems no matter what people do, it is wrong. Some parents of PA kids might feel that the announcement was wonderful, proactive and considerate. Other parents might feel it goes over the line and singles out their child.
Personally, I wouldn't like the announcement. I have never asked my PA son not to touch other people. I always felt the allergy risk was small compared to the emotional harm to him in feeling that he can't interact normally with other people. (That is my judgment for my son's situation--never got hives from that, so it's not something I worry about).
In that case, I would just speak up and say to the group, "Oh, it's OK, he's not allergic to his friends...only peanuts!" I think if you act good-natured about it and give the correct info, that's the best you can do.
However, if the person who made the announcement is a known witch and was only doing it to make others uncomfortable, I might try to get in a dig at her, hee hee.
Anyway, it's up to the parent to set those guidelines, so if you disagree with the announcement just speak up in an authoritative but friendly way (sometimes hard to do on the spur of the moment when you're not expecting it and have to think too fast).
A similar situation I've been in is some friends have told me they didn't let their kid have PB for breakfast because they knew they'd be seeing us later in the day. Now, I know some parents of PA kids would love that, but I consider it unnecessary and I really don't want people making unneeded accommodations. I thank the friend but tell her there's no need to restrict PB earlier in the day. I think if people feel those restrictions are necessary, then getting together with us will end up being a burden for them and the relationship will suffer.

Posted on: Tue, 05/08/2007 - 2:27am
Lori Jo's picture
Joined: 09/17/2003 - 09:00

Thanks for all the responses. I think they echo my ambivalence - I've basically got mixed feelings: thrilled that someone cared enough to try to make her safe, upset that she was singled out. I know the lady that did it, and I'm sure it was strictly out of kindness. And like has been said a million times here, if you don't live it, it is hard to really "get it."
I love the statement "she's not allergic to her friends, only PN's." I'll have to use that some time. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
Again, thanks for being here and understanding.
Lori Jo,
Rose, 7-31-02, PA
Beatrice & Georgia, 8-14-99

Posted on: Tue, 05/08/2007 - 3:41am
CorinneM1's picture
Joined: 06/20/2002 - 09:00

I wouldn't be put out by it. Perhaps you felt as if she was stepping on your toes since you were there to handle the situation, but it sounds as if she was trying to support you and look out for your child...as well as her children in the class since their actions are her responsibility.
In fact, I would look at it that way. She could have been in trouble if one of her kids accidently caused a reaction on your daughter and that is not stepping on your toes...that is her job.

Posted on: Tue, 05/08/2007 - 4:02am
anonymous's picture
Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Ok, the statement she made could come across as rude, but it doesn't sound like she was trying to be rude--just helpful. At least it sounds like she "gets it" as far as safety is concerned.
Personally, I'd take unintentionally rude over unintentionally dangerous to my PA child any day.


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