Already we had a problem!

Posted on: Thu, 07/22/1999 - 11:27am
Ginger's picture
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Joined: 11/17/1999 - 09:00

I have posted our story a few times. We are new to this. My son,(14 months old) has a severe PA. We have only know of this for about a month now. We had to find out the hard by almost losing him.
We have since then had him tested and read everything we can about PA. Our world has completley changed. I must say thank you for all the responses I received before. This site has really help us and encouraged us.
Our home is now a peanut free home. Our families are aware of my son's PA. My 3 1/2 daughter is in summer camp twice a week. This is the same place she attends pre-school. We pay top dollar for her to go to this camp. I have had bad reactions already towards my son's PA and he doesn't even go there!!!
I informed her instructors (whom I know as her teachers) that she is not allowed to eat any peanut products anymore and would appreciate if they could make sure she didn't eat any or bring any home because of her brother.
Well, last friday my friend brought her home and I put her straight in the tub. She was telling me about her day and in comes my son with a plastic bag. My DD screams," he has my goodie bag from the b-day party today!" I grabbed it from him and guess what was inside?? A snickers bar!!
I called the school and spoke with the director, (whom I already spoke with) and informed her of what happened and what the consequences were. She had said that she didn't let her eat the snickers bar but put it a bag for here to bring home. She said see had no control over what she had since it was brought in by a pinata by a another mother.
I had told her about the high school in out town, that is becoming peanut free. I had stated that, that should be enforced in all schools and she said ," Oh don't say that, I love my PB & J sandwiches!" Needless to say I am upset. The same situation would have happened even if it were my son at that party. I was not informed that there was to be a b-day party at her camp that day. I am terrified what it is going to feel like when I leave my son in someone else hands!

Posted on: Thu, 07/22/1999 - 11:29am
Ginger's picture
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Joined: 11/17/1999 - 09:00

pBTW........ anyone from Bergen County NJ?/p

Posted on: Thu, 07/22/1999 - 11:49am
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Joined: 07/11/1999 - 09:00

pGinger--I myself have PA and I have a 2 yr old who is PA, and a 3 yr old who so far is not. So, I feel that I certainly know where you're coming from. However, I don't think it's wise to rely too much on instructors of your non PA child, there is no way you can get them to totally understand the danger. You will have to go thru your daughter's knapsack when she steps foot in the door. My 3 yr old is in camp, and I see a big (negative) difference between summer counselors, and preschool teachers. Even though some of the counselors are teachers during the school year, camp is much more laid back. I had hopes of sending my 2 yr old next year to this camp, two mornings a week, like I do with the older one, but now that I know he is PA, I am not. By the way, I grew up in Bergen County--and miss the malls, not the traffic!/p

Posted on: Thu, 07/22/1999 - 10:03pm
Christine's picture
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Joined: 02/03/1999 - 09:00

pGinger,br /
I also think that you are probably asking the "impossible" to get these teachers to go peanut free, especially when the peanut allergic child is not even a student there. My son, who has the allergy, attends a daycare/preschool and, while they don't serve "overt" peanut products in his classroom, it is definitely not a peanut-free classroom. He comes home often with goody bags from parties that contain Snicker's bars. We and he know that he is not to touch anything in the bag until he gets home and we go through it. Fortunately, the school does not allow ANY of the students to eat out of their goody bags until they are picked up by the parent. My older, non-allergic daughter also gets these goody bags and has these items. I think it is unreasonable to request that a school go peanut free because one of the students has a family member who has the allergy. The burden falls on the parents to scrutinize everything that comes through the door and if you suspect your child has eaten a peanut product earlier in the day, the child should be washed thoroughly and kept away from the allergic child for several hours.br /
Christine/p

Posted on: Thu, 07/22/1999 - 10:26pm
Lynda's picture
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Joined: 03/08/1999 - 09:00

pGinger....I am in Middlesex County, NJ.....My 4th child is my pa child and he is 19 months old. My husband and I have decided based on the student vs. teacher ratio in our area, we should look into home schooling. It seems that eating in the classroom is a frequent event (everything is cause to celebrate). I know this to be a fact because I am active in my older children's schools (private and public). I am not sure we are prepared to chance a deadly mistake since we can only control our actions and not those of people who have no special interest in whether Sean lives or dies. Unfortunately today, kids have become just another brat to push along to the next grade (partly due to the fact that some parents think teachers are babysitters, not educators). I hope that your daughters day care teacher comes to understand the severity of your son's allergy. As I have posted before, my daughter ate Rita's Italian Ice and then kissed my son later in the day and he had a reaction. It does happen. I believe that there is an allergy support group in North Jersey. Lynda/p

Posted on: Fri, 07/23/1999 - 12:04am
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Joined: 06/25/1999 - 09:00

pGinger,br /
I have a 4 1/2 year old pa daughter and a 31/2 yr old daughter not pa. We currently live in somerset county, we moved from Bergan County 5 yeears ago./p
pI have begun educating my 3 1/2 yr old about my daughters peanut allergies. She went to a Mommy and me program where the teacher was understanding enough not to make peanut butter bird feeders, esp. since I would be driving both daughters home at the same time. But this is rare and I understand this./p
pMy 3 1/2 yr old went thru a time when she thought she was the pa one! Now she is starting to understand more and she comes to me or my husband with anything she gets so we can check it to make certain it is safe to be near her older sister. She is learning that peanuts make her sister sick, and that if she has peanuts she could make her sister sick and that would not be good.br /
Neither of my children have seen a snickers wrapper, so I have a feeling she would ask about it, or not even take it since she can recognize the "safer" candies that are allowed in the house./p
pGood Luck and stay safe./p
pMary Lynn/p

Posted on: Fri, 07/23/1999 - 2:11am
Ginger's picture
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Joined: 11/17/1999 - 09:00

pChristine,br /
I just wanted to state that "I" was not asking the school to go peanut free, I had asked them to not allow my DD to bring any peanut products home. I don't think that is asking the impossible. We pay top dollar for this school/camp and it is not very large. Having ANY peanut product around my son can be deadly. They could have simply put the snickers bar in someone elses bag. I am not here to change the world. I am here to raise my children in the safest world possible. I had told them of the PA situation just a week before! Asking her caregivers to not allow peanut products to be sent home should have been enforced, just like watching her carefully while she is in their pool. Our town H.S. has voluntarily gone peanut free. I had just mentioned that to the director that day. To show her the severity of this allergy. I don't know why you would allow your children to even bring this home. Asking someone to eliminate a snickers bar from a goodie bag is not asking much. For they are their to provide a safe environment for our children as well. My son won't be able to go this camp or preschool. I can not take that chance. I am surprised you would take that chance knowing they are not supportive of your son's sitution. /p
p[This message has been edited by Ginger (edited July 23, 1999).]/p

Posted on: Fri, 07/23/1999 - 2:21am
Astrid's picture
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Joined: 02/15/1999 - 09:00

pGinger- I grew up in Ridgewood, NJ and go back there often- My son (1 1/2)is peanut anaphylactic. Where are you located?/p
pAstrid,br /
Mom in Reston, VA/p
p------------------/p

Posted on: Fri, 07/23/1999 - 2:34am
Christine's picture
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Joined: 02/03/1999 - 09:00

pGinger,br /
Sorry, I interpreted your post to read that you wanted your daughter's school to be peanut free. No, personally, I do not think it is too much to ask to have no peanut products sent home BUT in my past 4 years of experience with this I have discovered that it obviously is too much to ask. I initially started out asking that things like Snickers not be allowed at classroom parties etc. I have not gotten ANYWHERE with these people. They all say "yes, yes, we will do all we can" and they do absolutely nothing. My son has been with many daycare providers and only one was conscientious enough to follow orders. Then the stress of it got to her and she quit. So, for me, it would not be too much if a parent asked me to avoid a particular food. That is because I now have compassion for people who have difficulties. Many do not, which is sad. I guess I have just given up banging my head against the wall. I cannot quit my job. My son must be in daycare and I have had 4 unsuccessful years of trying to get them to do the bare minimum. So, I right now all I can get them to do is quit serving peanut butter in his room. This is all they will do. I lost a battle to have one child stop bringing in bakery donuts every morning. The staff still manages to "goof up" and send in a peanut butter snack in his classroom. These people just do not get it. It is sad to say that this is the BEST place I have found in my area. The reason I stay is that some of the employees have been there for 15 years. That is almost unheard of in a daycare center. I feel that I at least get some consistancy and somewhere will always be there that knows he has this allergy. Another center I went in had no employees there longer than 2 years. The rotation of workers was incredible.br /
Christine/p

Posted on: Fri, 07/23/1999 - 12:10pm
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Joined: 02/02/1999 - 09:00

pHi Ginger,/p
pI have a different opinion than most here. I feel that we have every right to ask a day care center to go pnt free when a pa child attends there. In addition, I believe that they should be responsible enough to remove pnt products from your non pa child's possessions before she comes home. /p
pI want to relate my positive experience here. My 7 year old daughter has attended a church day care since the age of 3. when I got ready to enroll here2 yr old pa brother there, I asked that they go pnt free. I brought the asst director all sorts of literature on pa (including some not so pleasant articles on the serious consequences of this allergy) and she agreed that it would be easier for the teachers and kitchen staff if the center went pnt free, to eliminate the cross contamination issues. Going pnt free for them has meant eliminating a couple of peanut snacks a week, and it has been no big deal for anyone. In fact, they say most of the kids said they didn't care too much for the pb anyway. I guess I am lucky that the director was an educated, compassionate person. /p
pTake care and stay safe, Deb/p

Posted on: Fri, 07/23/1999 - 9:56pm
Christine's picture
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Joined: 02/03/1999 - 09:00

pDeb,br /
You are very lucky! Can I have their phone number???? I don't "disagree" that we don't have the right to ask for the moon when it comes to the allergy. I have asked and asked and asked and have never gotten anywhere. I, too, think it should be very simple to remove the peanut snacks and possible cross-contaminated items. But for some reason, they just don't take the initiative to do it. I have been in their kitchen, checked all their recipies, check every one of their products, suggested alternative products to order and it is not done. It basically comes down to the fact that it causes them (the director) a tad bit of extra work and they don't want to do it. So, I'm not thinking that it is too much to ask, just that, in my situation, it has become almost pointless. I never get anywhere. Based on my experiences (and I misunderstood Ginger's first post), I thought it was unrealistic to ask a school to become peanut-free for a sibling of a PA child.br /
Christine/p

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