Let’s make a deal, kid

15 VIPs have spoken »

TO: The kid with peanut allergies in my sixth grader’s class
FROM: Cardiogirl
RE: Negotiations

Hey pal, how are you? I’m sorry to hear about your peanut allergies. That must really suck because Reese’s Cups are the bomb — seriously.

Anyway, my kid told me that the school recently switched things up at lunch time. In the past they segregated the chicks from the boys at lunch during eating and recess. They said it had to do with posturing among the students or something; whatever it doesn’t matter.

What matters is that you all eat and have recess together now. Way to go on maturing as a class, I guess.

But this now means my kid can’t have a peanut butter sandwich at lunch. While annoying, I get it. But it’s Lent, dude. What am I supposed to send her on Fridays?

What do you eat on Fridays?

Regardless, I’m down with eliminating peanut products when my kid brings stuff in for the entire class but I’ve got a six-week proposal for you.

My kid says you two sit on the same side of the bench each day at lunch but there are two kids between you. I have faith in you and I believe you can keep your hands to yourself, gingah. Same goes for my kid.

This is an opportunity to show your parents how responsible you are.

You’re 11 going on 12; you can do this! Just keep your hands to yourself at lunch while sitting two kids down away from my kid and my kid will commit — for the next six weeks (until Easter when meat is welcome at lunch on Fridays) — to washing her hands before and after lunch.

This is still a win-win even if you do come in contact with the peanut butter. You’ve got some sort of syringe with the antidote, right? Your parents will be doubly impressed if you inject yourself and save the world in the process.

Deal? Have your people call my people and I’ll draw up a contract.

Thanks in advance, buddy.

Look at that! My lazy is alive after all. Thanks for your patience, VIPers.

15 VIPs have spoken

  • Han says:

    There was a girl in my class at school who had a really bad peanut allergy and they never got that technical about it.

    Maybe try chocolate spread instead – then again some chocolate sandwich spread has hazelnuts in it….

    I’m trying out being gluten free to see if it makes me feel any better (long story with TMI moments lol) it’s so complicated!!!
    Han recently posted..066: Tuesday TunesMy Profile

    • cardiogirl says:

      I’ve heard that gluten allergies can be supah nasty via the intestinal tract. I’m so thankful we don’t have food allergies in this house. I struggle with feeding my kids, if I had to work with a special diet we’d be at the hospital. All. The. Time.

  • Jaffer says:

    Dear Cardio Mom:

    Print this letter out and send out a copy or two hundred with your kid to whomever concerned
    Jaffer recently posted..And I’m finally off to get married…My Profile

  • Tracy says:

    I know at this point you think I’m some corporate shill for Trader Joe’s, but TJ’s Sesame Seed Butter! I’ve yet to encounter a preschool that allows nut butters, and that shit’s the shit. It’s BETTER than peanut butter (my hand to George Washington Carver’s heart): it’s premixed and smooth and creamy and never gets all gummed-up in the fridge. And it’s sooooo good. Nola and I like it smeared on celery sticks.

    • cardiogirl says:

      Hmmm, I am wondering if you’re gettin’ kick backs from TJ’s, howevever, we have one six blocks away and I’m desperate so I think I’m buying some Sesame Seed Butter. Thanks for the tip, chica!

  • Elizabeth A says:

    Hummus and pita bread?

  • Linda says:

    Glad to see you back on the cyberwaves. I’ve not had to deal with food allergies, thankfully. It seems like a pain to deal with for those of us without allergies. I expect I would feel differently if a particle of peanut dust got within breathing distance of a family member who was allergic.
    Linda recently posted..The Voices Are SilentMy Profile

    • cardiogirl says:

      I really am thankful that none of my kids are allergic to any food. However, that brings up an interesting dilemma to ponder: Would you rather that your kid had food allergies that required a modified diet OR would you rather have a kid who’s allergic to cats so that you could never again love and play with a cat in your own home. Oy. I have situation number two but it is easier to deal with than food allergies.

  • Oh, CG. I love ya and I get your point. I really do.

    But, as someone who suffers from severe food allergies, I feel badly enough about the way it effects those around me. Now I feel even worse for that 11-year-old boy in your daughte’rs class – because he’s going to be made an outcast by the other kids for his peanut allergy situation. Poor thing.

    Here’s hoping you can find a solution for your own daughter’s lunch!
    meleah rebeccah recently posted..Have You Ever – Volume ThreeMy Profile

    • cardiogirl says:

      I know I’m being a punk when it comes to this stuff. It’s just so surprising to me that there are kids in every class who are allergic to peanuts these days. I *swear* there were no kids at my lunch table — 35 years ago (augghhhh!) back when I was in school — who had food allergies.

      I know you have really severe allergies to tons of food and that sucks really hard. When you go to a restaurant with another person, does that person have to avoid the things you’re allergic to?

      I hope I’m not offending you, I’m just trying to understand. I figured that as long as you and your plate stay on the other side of the table you’re fine. Is that not the case? I do understand that when my kid brings in stuff for the entire class we have to be considerate and that makes sense because that kid wouldn’t be able to eat what we brought. But he’s not eating my kid’s lunch and that’s the piece I don’t understand.

  • I get what you are saying. Most people do not understand food allergies. You’re not being a punk. And, I don’t remember ANY kids in my school having food allergies when I was a child either. In fact, I didn’t START having food allergies until I was 27 years old. And sadly, they have progressively gotten worse with every year. Now 10 years later, I can’t even eat lettuce! WTF.

    Anywhooooo……I’ve digressed.

    “When you go to a restaurant with another person, does that person have to avoid the things you’re allergic to?” Sometimes YES. And sometimes NO.

    Here’s a for instance: one of my closets friends in the world, Leslie, has such a severe allergy to shell fish she cannot even be inside of a restaurant if they are cooking it. She had to leave to go outside and use an Epi-Pen to stop her throat from closing – merely from the fumes coming all the way from the KITCHEN.

    Here’s another for instance: having food someone cannot eat shoved in their face, might be too much of a temptation, especially for young people that just want to “fit in” who may or may not be getting made fun of for being different.

    [Seriously, talk to Anne of "Small Town Mommy" & Leila of "Don't Speak Whinese" - you can't even imagine what their kids go through.]

    Also, there is a thing called “CROSS CONTAMINATION”. I have broken out into hives, and my throat closed, simply because my food was cooked with the same spoon someone used to stir an onion. And I almost DIED because of it. Thus, I don’t eat out in restaurants very often.

    Now, I know for the next six weeks you will be inconvenienced and your daughter might have to eat things she doesn’t love. And that totally sucks. It really does. No question.

    But maybe, instead of thinking about how difficult this will be for you…can try to you imagine being that 11 year old girl [or her mom] who now has to read the labels of EVERY SINGLE PRODUCT she ever eats, or ever uses, and she now had to carry an Epi-Pen every where she goes, and watch everyone else eat foods she can’t have – FOR THE REST OF HER LIFE? A lifetime of: deprivation, compromised immune systems, vitamin deficiencies, doctors constantly stabbing you with needles, ect. ect. ect. seems a lot worse than 6 weeks of inconvenience. YES?

    I’m not saying any of this to be mean at all. And I REALLY hope I’m NOT offending YOU. I love ya, woman.

    Food allergies suck, especially the way the effect EVERYONE.

    meleah rebeccah recently posted..Have You Ever – Volume ThreeMy Profile

  • In this instance, I have to side with the school. A peanut allergy can mean “death” to a kid. That is not an acceptable risk. It would be more acceptable to let your child have fruit and cheese for lunch for the next few weeks. Or an egg salad sandwich, or perhaps a tuna sandwich. This may inconvenience 40 kids, but the thing here is that it really could kill one. I understand any parent that would not be willing to take the risk of their child dying because they were exposed to something they were allergic to. The other alternative is that the child with the allergies could simply be asked not to come to school on Fridays during Lent, but that seems harsh to me.

    • cardiogirl says:

      Fruit and cheese is a good suggestion, thanks Linda. The thing I can’t seem to wrap my head around is that this kid has to be out and about with friends — without his parents — and is on his own regarding avoiding peanuts. That is to say, when he’s not in a controlled environment like school. Does he carry any sort of rescue device with him? Let’s say he’s bowling with friends and one of the other kids has peanut M&Ms. What happens if he’s in contact with them and no one has alerted the bowling alley?

      How old does he have to be before he is able to handle it on his own? I’m really not trying to be argumentative, I just wonder when he has to start taking responsibility for dealing with it on his own.

  • Anji says:

    How about cheese? Like you I’m glad I didn’t have to cope with children who had allergies – just picky eaters…

    Read and be read ExposeYourBlog!
    Anji recently posted..Do you know who Kony is?My Profile

  • Les Becker says:

    I’m lucky not to have to face the “food allergy” demon anymore. I can’t speak for other areas, but here at least, once kids get into high school, food allergies mysteriously become a non-issue. It’s never brought up again. I guess once they’re in grade 9, the school system either assumes they’re old enough to monitor their own diets (yeah I remember MY fabulous food choices in the cafeteria) or they don’t particularly care if it’s a teenager dying of peanut butter asphyxiation a opposed to a cute little 11 year old.
    Les Becker recently posted..thewallsaresoft: I received +K in screenwriting from @jmgreenleaf, thanks! http://t.co/YFIplAoUMy Profile

  • Nicky says:

    A woman I knew was so allergic to peanuts that even the smell of peanut butter would cause a reaction. Also, back in the days when I worked in daycare, I had a little boy in my class who was allergic to cow’s milk. He would get a different coloured cup with his soy milk or goat’s milk in it. One day another child spilt his cup of cow’s milk and some of it dripped on the allergic boy’s leg. Just a few drops on his skin and he broke out in a rash from his toes to his thighs. So while your daughter and her classmate might try their best to stay away from each other, kids are kids and you never know what might happen…
    Nicky recently posted..My (Tooth) Brush With Death – Part IMy Profile

    • cardiogirl says:

      Yikes. I really am thankful that my kids don’t have food allergies. I am lazy about that stuff and my kids would be in the ER quite a few times before I got diligent.

  • MikeWJ says:

    Switch religions. Send your kid to school with a bologna sandwich on Fridays. Problem solved.

    You’re welcome.

  • tokenblogger says:

    Poor peanut butter. Remember when peanut butter was a life saving staple.
    tokenblogger recently posted..The view across the street…My Profile

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