Yes, Your Kid Can Actually Live Without Peanut Butter

I have no dog in this fight, honestly. Emma and Abby could bathe themselves in peanut butter if they wanted to. They could it eat by the jarful and other than probably being really full, they would be 100% fine.

Not the case for children with peanut allergies, though. Not even close.

In addition to all of the planning and worrying and checking that mothers of children with peanut allergies have to do in order to do something as simple as sending their kids to school, they also have to combat people who don’t care that their child could *LITERALLY* die from peanut exposure.

I cannot imagine having to live with that kind of fear every day, and I certainly cannot imagine having to deal with people who seemed so callous about the life of my child.

Here are ACTUAL things I know have been said TO a mom of a child with a peanut allergy. I know because the mom these things were said to is Lisa, the other Dose Girl.

“Well, my little sweet pea will only eat PB&J for lunch, so that is what I am packing. It’s really up to your 4 year-old to avoid it, not mine”.

“Oh, y’all won’t be able to attend the picnic? Fantastic. We can all bring peanut butter sandwiches for once”.

“Can’t they put your son at a table by himself to eat? I mean, should his allergy really affect my child?”

Oh yes. All true. All said. By mothers. To a mother. About her child. The child who has a life-threatening allergy.

Can you even imagine saying to a mother whose child had cancer, “Hey, listen, don’t take this the wrong way or anything, but your kid’s baldness is really bringing my kid down. Can you make her sit by herself?”

You probably gasped at the thought of being so rude to someone struggling. And yet, somehow, mothers of children with peanut allergies are not afforded the same consideration.

Because, y’all, it is SO MUCH easier to slap together a PB&J and not worry about the child with the peanut allergy. I mean, come on, kids are really picky, so coming up with an alternate lunch is like really, really hard. And really, why should you be bothered with someone else’s problem?

Because you should. Because you can be. Because for your child to eat a slice of turkey or a plain jelly sandwich means another child gets to live. It means another mother can feel just slightly less fear putting her child on a bus to go to school. Perhaps she can wonder a little less if that will be the day that the emergency Epi-Pen in her son’s pocket will need to be used. Maybe even not spend every minute he is out of her sight imagining the phone ringing with the news that her child is dead.

It is really the least that we can do. The mothers whose children can eat what they want, when they want, for the mothers of children who do not have the same luxury.




Yes, Your Kid Can Actually Live Without Peanut Butter — 194 Comments

  1. This never ceases to amaze me! I cannot believe other people (and moms especially!) can be so ignorant!!! The worst was the one about “now we can all bring peanut butter sandwiches.” Are you kidding me? I want to kick these people in the teeth. It’s an opportunity to teach your kids a life lesson. A lesson of compassion and consideration and caring. I’m so sorry you have to deal with this Lisa – both the nastiness and ignorance of other people AND a life threatening issue with your children!! Just awful.

    • Honestly, Allie, that was the comment that got me the most, too. When Lisa shared it with me, I was just shocked that someone could be so hurtful and rude, quite frankly. I just cannot imagine having that kind of callous attitude about someone’s child and a condition they have absolutely no control over. Thank you for reading and leaving such a good comment.

  2. This always makes me want to throw something!! I too have a child with an extremely serious peanut allergy, complete with two ambulance rides and having an extremely close relationship with the school nurse. I have to say that I have never personally encountered this attitude myself, though who knows if something was ever said behind my back. I have heard other peanut parents tell stories that make my head spin though!!

    The one thing my husband and I were always amazed about was how much other children took it upon themselves to be so careful around our son. I would get calls from parents asking me what snack was safe because there child refused to eat a snack that was unsafe for Tom. Stories of kids reading labels and checking other kids sandwiches were always relayed home to me. Of course we were always careful to have his own food packed and stored away for him and perhaps the best advocate for our son, is our son.

    You are so right,our goal as parents of children with allergies is not take away another child’s freedom, it is to keep our children alive. As always, thanks for a great post!

    • My children are VERY much like Tom’s friends when it comes to Bobby and his allergy Kathy…and they are exactly the same way about other children who have peanut allergies. It makes me happy that they understand so young what it means to be compassionate about something happening to someone else.
      I am so sorry that you have to live so close to the edge with Tom…I cannot begin to imagine the stress that comes with that.
      You and Lisa definitely get extra gold stars in parenting from me! πŸ™‚

  3. I can’t believe some people have been so cruel and ignorant!

    I can’t imagine the rage you’d feel, knowing that a “responsible adult” like another parent couldn’t bother to think past the tip of their own nose for a few minutes to realize that it’s someone’s life we’re talking about.

    And from a peanut allergic person (not deathly allergic, just allergic) I can attest that there are a lot of other spreads there are just as good on a sandwich or a cracker!

    • It really is shocking, isn’t it? I cannot believe that anyone would ever think it would be appropriate to say any of these things to a mother about anything, but especially about something concerning her child’s health.
      And yes, you are so right, there are plenty of alternatives besides peanut butter.

  4. You are so right! I love the humorous bluntness of this post. We had a little boy in playgroup who was allergic to everything. I was relieved when I didn’t have to plan snack around him when we wasn’t coming.

    • While we definitely try to be humorous most of the time on this blog, this is actually not one of those times. I think you may have missed something Deirdre. Lisa’s son is deathly allergic to peanuts and the things that have been said to her about that allergy have been very unkind and hurtful. Children with life-threatening allergies cannot help it. They do not wish to make life more complicated when it comes to planning playgroup snacks…they just wish to be able to play safely and not be in danger.

      • First time to this blog, and I think it is great! Just wanted to comment on this specific response…there is a huge difference between saying to the mother directly how glad you are that you can now have pbj, and inwardly FEELING relieved. The first (what happened to Lisa) is just down right rude. But what JDaniel is saying is different to me. It IS scary planning around allergies, whether it is your own child or a friend’s child. So I understand how she may feel relieved to not have that fear when that child isn’t attending. She just shouldn’t SAY that to the kid’s mom.

        • No doubt Jessica. Allergies are scary and definitely take a lot of pre-planning on the part of the allergy mom and the non-allergy mom. Definitely. But in the end, we all do it because it keeps our children safe. All our children.

  5. I worked at a camp one summer where they just flat out said no peanut butter. There are alternatives, such as soy butter, or like you said, other things children can eat. (They do manage in other countries, where peanut butter is often a strange concept to people and is super hard to come by because no one eats it.) I really had no idea how insensitive some adults could be, I’m so sorry you have had to deal with this, Lisa.

    • Thank you Bev. There are definitely plenty of alternatives out there. As someone who does not have to deal with this issue, I would be totally fine with a peanut free environment. My children can definitely eat other things.

  6. I agree with all of this. I don’t see the big deal for parents to go peanut free! In the end it’s really the parents that are being self righteous and just plain wrong! Awesome post ladies!

  7. Well said and will say although my girls do love peanut butter and aren’t allergic, I could never be this cruel to a child or the parent of a child who has a peanut allergy. I just don’t understand the nerve of some parents. It is ridiculous and think you said it quite perfectly here ladies!

    • Thank you Janine. We hope that what people will take away from this post is that everyone needs to be kind and considerate, especially when it comes to a child with allergies.

  8. Oh my god!!! What horrible people! That’s so rude!! All of them are so horrible in their own way! Go sit alone? We can bring sandwiches to a picnic? Honestly, who wants to go to a fucking picnic that just has PB&J anyway? That sounds like the laziest picnic ever.

    I think Lisa should find out what all those people are allergic to and “accidentally” feed it to them and then say “it’s really up to you to avoid it, not me.”

    I’ve heard that a lot of schools require kids to have PB&J with almond butter. Which is awesome unless your kid is also allergic to almond butter.

    • Right Tara? A picnic with PB&J sounds totally lame. The truth is that with all of the nut allergies out there, people need to be sensitive and find alternative solutions for their children. Like I said, it really does seem like the least we can all do, right?

    • Thank you for sharing it. That attitude does suck, you are totally right. I feel like the message may be stronger coming from a parent who does not have to deal with life-threatening allergies.

  9. I am sitting here using all of my restraint to not spew out a few f-bombs and other colorful words at the complete ignorance and stupidity of the people that said those things to Lisa. It makes me want to haul ass to NC and give a few moms a piece of my mind. Unbelievable! I am sharing this because somewhere, someone is getting aggravated at having to make a turkey sandwich and this post will seriously set them straight. My kids would gladly enjoy a peanut butter-free lunch with your Bobby any day!

    • Awww, AnnMarie, you rock! You are totally right. For a mom who had to deal with a whining kid this morning who didn’t want to take turkey, she should know that there is another mom out there who can relax a little bit today knowing that her child is safe.

  10. Completely agree! There was a child hard of hearing in my middle’s son’s classroom. They were taught early on how to do basic signing. Parents complained that it was taking away from the children learning “real” stuff. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?!? It helped this child learn! I am so thankful my son learned, because he taught me and to this day, we both understand and use this to communicate with others.

    • GOOD GOD Crystal, that is INSANE! I cannot believe that anyone would ever be so rude about a child and the ways in which a classroom would attempt to help him. I am with you 100%. I think it amazing that your son learned to sign.

  11. I am always trying to be aware to NOT share anything with peanut butter to anyone. They are LIFE THREATENING allergies, and if they DO even take a bite, they need the epi shot RIGHT AWAY, and never WAIT for the symptoms to start…because that can be too late. I would have chewed that ladies head off. Not literally, but verbally. Lol. So sad.

    • Exactly Jenn. Key word there is life-threatening. As in, the person/child could actually die. You are so right about how serious it is.

  12. I understand completely, but, there was no indication of a peanut allergy in K’s class this year & slacker sahm that I am(joking of course) sent 1 day a pb&j, K came home in tears, she had to sit with the “not cool kids” for lunch…lol. I won’t ever be packing pb&j again, like, ever… I completely get it & would have never done it had I known, I will just stay away from pb&j for the rest of her school lunches, smartest thing to do, in my personal opinion…

    • oh no! I know! I have been so worried about this. We have yet to hear anything from our school – not in K last year or in 1st this year – and it does worry me. I try to send it in infrequently but I always check with the teacher and remind her to never share it with anyone. So scary!

      • I think it is excellent that you both are so concerned about your children’s classrooms and that you make a concerted effort to be proactive in checking on allergies. I am the same way, because again, it just feels like the right thing to do.

      • It’s not so much the sharing– it is the residue on the table– and whatever your daughter touches after lunch and what’s left on her mouth when she drinks from the water fountain– ect.

        I’ve been told to homeschool, keep my daughter off playgrounds, put her in a bubble, that it was nature’s way of picking off the ‘weak’– and it gets vicious– whiny parents who are lazy, complaining about having to find alternate sources of lunch for their PB addicted mini-tyrants.
        We pack lunch almost everyday— I make an extra portion of dinner meals that I can use for two lunches– she brings things like chicken parm, salmon, pasta, amazing lunches letting go of PB helped us let go of processed foods too– it’s strangely liberating and really made me think about what I was feeding her.
        The comment about “Your right to PB does not trump my child’s right to life.” resonated with me deeply and I stopped apologizing for her PA. Now I ask how we can educate and create a safe space for her.
        Most folks once you tell them how common it is becoming– She is one of 12 students at her Elem school of 500 with a PA, they stop accusing me of coddling her or making the allergy up.
        Great article!! Thank you– πŸ˜€

        • What an amazingly honest comment Beth. Thank you for sharing your situation. I absolutely cannot believe the things that have been said to you. People will never cease to amaze me with their cruelty. I am just so sorry.

  13. It’s amazing the hurtful things that people will say to each other, often not realizing it until the words are out of their mouths! This is a good reminder to think before we speak! I cannot imagine the worry & fear mothers live with every single day when their children have allergies of any kind. You’re absolutely right – the least we can do is be respectful when we speak and thoughtful when we pack lunches!

  14. I can’t imagine being so cruel…I really don’t understand how someone could say such a thing! What horrible people!!! Peanut allergies are one of those ultra serious ones. It’s life threatening!!! Why don’t people get that?!

    • Exactly Michelle. Why don’t people understand that better? And I don’t know why people say such insensitive things.

  15. Peanut butter is so deadly these days and some parents don’t know or don’t care and that’s sad. I never serve peanut butter to any child that visits me because I am afraid something might happen. I always ask the parents what do they like so I can know what to serve.

    • That is the perfect way to handle it Kita. I am also very cautious about checking with parents ahead of time to make sure that what I am serving is safe for their children.

  16. I had no idea Lisa was a PB-free mama! You girls are so quiet about these things sometimes! πŸ˜‰ But I kid there, seriously, omg – I was SO nervous about this with school that I asked the teacher when we didn’t get any info about it. I was like, why isn’t anyone telling us if we need to go peanut-free? This was last year. This year I’m just sort of going with it, but my daughter would not care, and would also totally opt for pb substitutes if need be. I need to share this with a friend right now because she’s going through an issue where her son’s class – HIS CLASS – is NOT PEANUT FREE and he is allergic. WHAT? Sigh. Ridiculous.

    Lisa, I love you, girl. I’m sorry you’ve been the person to be at the other end of these ridiculous comments. In the words of that Tanner child, HOW RUDE. (I tried to make you smile some, did it work?) Puffy heart you, and you, Ashley, for shedding light on this. xo

    • WHAT Andrea? His class is not peanut free but he is allergic? Oh my Gosh, that is AWFUL. Please tell your friend I am so sorry she is having to face that. UGH.
      Thank you for this very sweet, very thoughtful comment friend. πŸ™‚

  17. How sad for Lisa! That is so crazy – as if peanut butter is a big deal! I’ve always ensured that my kids don’t have too much so they will eat many other things. Our school is entirely peanut- and nut-free, and I don’t mind a bit! I know I would be so thankful for that if it were MY child who suffered from a life-threatening condition. I don’t even let the kids have PB for breakfast before going into a nut-free environment, just in case.

    • That is fantastic Erin, especially that you do not allow it for breakfast either. I have no doubt that you are the dream mother of all nut allergy parents.

  18. As one of those children, there were lots of times (and this was back in the day when having an allergic child was not part of an awareness campaign) when kids ate sandwiches and cookies and I couldn’t. And know what? I got made fun of by them because I couldn’t! So I wanted to be like my peers and tried to eat something I shouldn’t and ended up in the ER with a very angry mom. I still have to ask what’s in stuff when I eat anywhere but at home and I’ve taught my allergic kids to do the same. One carries an Epi pen in her purse now. Allergies ain’t no joke!

    • Oh my Gosh, that is SO SCARY. I am so sorry that you had to experience that simply trying to fit in. That is just awful.
      Allergies are definitely no joke at all.

      • It was rough as a kid (that peer pressure and crap) but after awhile it was no big thing. I still tell people now who go “OMG! I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t eat such and such…” that I’m much more fond of breathing than the food.

  19. Thank you for discussing this topic. My children do not have nut allergies, which shouldn’t and doesn’t affect whether or not I care about this topic. Mothers who do not take a global outlook when it comes to protecting ALL children need to reevaluate their responsibilities to our society. Because protecting our own kids isn’t our only job.

  20. Well said Ash! Non allergy parents need to be grateful they are not dealing with an allergy 24/7 and act like human beings for the times when it is necessary. I remember being in a parent meeting last year and being told there was a child in my son’s class that had a nut allergy, so could we all please keep our kids lunches but free. The mom of the child spoke up and announced it was her child and I could tell she felt nervous or uncomfortable doing so and that made me so sad for her. We should all support each other through this life of parenting, it is hard enough as it is!

    • Doesn’t it just break your heart that she had to feel nervous or uncomfortable sharing a condition that her child has absolutely no control over at all? Just so sad. We should all support each other is right…love your last sentence.

  21. My daughter specifically requested peanut free lunches so she could sit with her friend at the peanut free table. She never wanted her friend to eat by herself. Even kids know its right, so what is the big deal.

    People need to get over it. Not having peanut products around other children is not the end of the world. Their safety should be as much a priority as your own child’s would be.

    • My daughter did the same thing in first grade as well Karen. I was really proud of her. And you make a great point…kids even probably know better than adults how to behave about this stuff.

  22. Having had a cousin die of cardiac arrest at the age of 10, right in his classroom from picking up (not even eating) a doughnut fried in peanut oil that a parent brought in for another child’s birthday (this was 25 years ago, before peanut allergies were so common or even really known about), I have always worried that my children will develop an allergy. I also worked at a day camp where I had to administer an epi-pen to a 7 year old after another parent, who had called to complain several times that all her kid would eat was peanut butter and she was sending it anyway, told her daughter to offer the kid a bite because she was obviously just faking it because she didn’t like peanut butter. My kids are fine with peanuts, but I would never even dream of sending my daughter to school with something that could kill her classmates. There are so many alternatives nowadays, WOW Butter, soy butter, lots of things. Those parents are just lazy and selfish.

    • Oh Nicole. I don’t even know what to say. I am so sorry about your cousin. I just cannot imagine.
      And that story about the mom who thought the child was faking it just chills me to my core. What is wrong with people?

  23. My slapping hand is itching to meet these people who said such things. As the director of my daughter’s school said on Parent’s Night – “Sunbutter. It doesn’t taste the same but once you get used to that taste, yippeee. And just think about how you’re not putting other children at risk when you eat it and it tastes even better.”

  24. My son is in 4th grade and this is the first year a note came home telling me to avoid peanut butter sandwiches and snacks. Turns out he has a classmate with a peanut allergy. I have to be honest here and say initially I was upset. Mainly because my son is an insanely picky eater. He doesn’t even eat chicken or even ice cream. What kid doesn’t eat chicken or at least ice cream?! But peanut butter? He loves it! Some days I would back a PB&J sandwich and PB crackers feeling proud he was getting so much protein! I did this for four years and suddenly was told to stop. We’ve tried PB “alternatives” and he swears he can taste the difference. So as a courtesy I have stopped with the PB&J (and send turkey and pepperoni ) because I would want the same courtesy. The comments you mentioned in the post were callous and unfeeling and I would never say such a thing. . .but sometimes as parents we’re only focused on our own children and their individual needs. We all talk a good game but unless you’re in someone elses shoes it’s hard to fathom their struggle. I couldn’t even imagine what someone who lives with such allergy has to go through and I wouldn’t want child to be the cause of someone getting really ill. . .so, I just feed my him peanut butter when he gets home! πŸ˜‰

    • Okay, not sure if I wasn’t entirely awake or what! LOL! I was trying to say, “I wouldn’t want MY child being the cause of someone getting really ill.” And I should add, my son had PB crackers one day b4 the note came home and told the little boy with the allergy (who is his friend) that he was going to sit at the very end of the table so it wouldn’t bother him and my son didn’t even open the crackers. . .

      • I genuinely appreciate the honesty in your comment Tracie, because I do understand exactly what you are saying. It is hard when you have a picky kid (I have one myself) to feel like you have to come up with an alternate solution, but I love that you totally understand why you should.
        And I love the story about your son. He sounds amazing. πŸ™‚

  25. My cousin’s son has a severe peanut allergy. Even touching something that has a trace of peanut on it could send him to the ER. I can’t imagine living with the fear that your child might have a severe reaction because another person doesn’t want to adhere to a simple request that could save a life. My son’s class is nut-free this year. While they are allowed to bring snacks with nuts in them, they can’t bring anything for lunch that includes peanuts. (They have a peanut-free lunch table.) Knowing how severe these allergies are, I told my son we’re not sending him to school with food that contains any nuts or traces of nuts in them. At 8, you just can’t guarantee they won’t eat a PB&J sandwich and then high 5 their peanut allergic friend.

    • Great point Jennifer. Thank you for saying it so well. You just can’t ever know, and you truly cannot be safe enough when it comes to this issue.

  26. Thank you. Seriously- thank you for reminding me of the significance and outright gravity of this allergy and how moms everywhere suffer with having to deal with such adversity.

    Food allergies is the one thing I was spared in all the medical strife we have had over here- and I am so glad you brought this to my attention again. I try to be sensitive and completely supportive of those allergy needs at school, but you helped “wake me up” again to this reality.

    So sorry you have this burden to deal with, Lisa!! Poor mama and poor child! πŸ™

    • Thank you for being so supportive of this issue and this post Chris. You rock! No doubt in my mind you are already way ahead of the game when it comes to being sensitive to children and health issues. πŸ™‚

  27. Couldn’t agree more, I’m shocked when people try to put convenience in front of the health needs of other children. My husband is a principal and you wouldn’t believe the pushback he got when they had to go to being a peanut free school because of a student with a life threatening allergy.

    • Isn’t that just insane that he would actually get pushback on such a serious issue Jessica? I am so sorry to hear that. Unimaginable.

  28. That’s simply horrible that anyone would say anything like that. I have to admit that when I was teaching a private school in Boston I became something of an “allergy skeptic.” When I started teaching, my school at the time (of more than 1000 students) never had had peanut allergies in its students. No one even knew what it was. Then ten years later it seemed like nearly every other kid had an allergy or intolerance of some sort. But then I had my son two years ago, and, let me tell you, I am not a skeptic anymore. We actually have another appointment with an allergist this week. He’s allergic to so many things, and I have become THAT mom, the one who reminds her preschool teachers every other day about what his allergies are.

    • Great comment Jessica…I appreciate your honesty very much about what it is like to walk in both sets of shoes on this issue. Thank you.

  29. I can’t believe parents can be so insensitive. Wait. I take that back, yes I can. It really is a shame. My children aren’t allergic to peanut butter, but they don’t like it, so they never have it. But they were in a peanut free class and sometimes this meant checking if something was prepared with peanut oil or on the same equipment with peanuts. We stay away from it all for the other child’s sake.

    • Your comment made me smile Hope, because I am like you…I always feel like I can’t believe the things that people say, except oh yes, I can!

  30. Some people are seriously crazy and stupid. Aside from the concepts of respect for others and basic human decency another reason these ridiculous parents should willingly comply is to save their own child from having to witness their classroom pal whisked away in an ambulance in life-threatening distress. It is heartening to hear so many stories of kids taking it upon themselves to be responsible. Kids are awesome even when there parents are not.

    • Love your comment Mo. I am incredibly touched by the stories of kindness from children I have read here today. Renews my faith in the world! πŸ™‚

  31. Stigma and Ignorance are every where, for every kind of disability. I face it with Bipolar Disorder, your son faces it with a peanut allergy. I wish (God, I wish) that people would be more considerate, kind, gentle, understanding and just plain courteous. We cannot let them beat us. We must educate them over and over again until they get it. We must fight this stigma. Followed you from SITS. Have a blessed day!

    • Beautiful comment Vicki. And I could not agree with you more. As long as there is a stigma, people will feel shame. And they shouldn’t. At all.

  32. Last year, just before my daughter turned 4, was the first year we were told someone in the class had a peanut allergy. No big deal, plenty of other things to eat (my kid likes hummus sandwiches! much healthier than pb any way). This year we didn’t get a letter, but I decided to continue the pb-free route just in case. Well, last week I noticed a sign inside the classroom, somewhere that is clearly meant for the teachers and not really for the parents, which listed the kids with allergies, and there IS child who has a peanut allergy. I am so glad we haven’t sent in anything with pb, but was a little frightened to think that maybe other parents didn’t know. I think pb-free is a good policy just in case. Especially with very young children.

    Also, is there any wonder we have an obesity problem in the US? Other countries would not let their kids eat this fatty, high calorie spread EVERY SINGLE DAY. That’s lazy and poor nutrition. Sure, pb has protein and can be healthy in moderation…so have it once in a while on toast for breakfast or on the weekends.

    • Oh my Gosh, Jessica that is so scary to know that there is a child in the class with an allergy, but not to have received a letter home. YIKES. I certainly hope that the teachers let the parents of the other children know.

  33. My son is only 2 and I honestly didn’t pay much attention to peanut allergies until he was born. I think part of the problem is education – I don’t think that people realize how serious some allergies can be or how little of a trigger it takes to get a ride to the ER. So, this kind of discussion is great because, if nothing else, it reminds those of us without these allergies to remember those with them and just be more aware. The other part of the problem are those people who are just so selfish as to say those kinds of things to people or completely disregard other people’s health just because. That part, I don’t get.

    • I agree with you totally that raising awareness is key, especially for those of us without direct experience on just how serious these allergies can be! And yes, the other problem is definitely the selfish people.

  34. We have to start rethinking peanut butter in a big way. It’s a food that’s become dangerous to too many. We are allergy free and I do keep it in the house but I would never even DREAM of packing PBJ sandwiches to take to ANY event where I knew someone was allergic. I can’t believe the comments you’ve had to contend with Lisa – but in a way, I can. But it’s a shame and it’s senseless. Hugs to you girl. And to Bobby!

    • Could not agree with you more. It is definitely time to rethink our stance on peanut butter. Like you, I keep it in my house but that is the only place it is ever consumed.

  35. Thanks for writing about this, Ashley. Thankfully, I haven’t dealt with that level of ignorance in the times I’ve had to share and make special requests for Josh due to his peanut allergy. I haven’t hit public schools yet, though, and I’m sure it’s coming. I should start praying for tact right now because I can only imagine what I would say back to someone so ignorant. The only thing that would prevent me from giving them a tongue lashing would be them rendering me speechless at their stupidity.

    A couple weeks ago, my friend’s husband joined their nut allergic son at the allergy table at our elementary school. Sitting next to her husband was a mom eating a salad with walnuts in it. Seriously? Just dumb.

    • You are welcome. And I hope for your sake that you don’t contend with this sort of sentiment ever.
      What the hell is wrong with someone eating a salad with walnuts at a nut free table. People are so stupid.

  36. I am still feeling ashamed of the time I served almonds at a party where my friend’s son was and he’s allergic to tree nuts. God bless those families who have to face this. May the world greet them with respect and care!

    • I think we have done those things Christie…but the fact that we feel badly about doing it is what keeps us from sucking! Love your last sentence.

  37. It is really, really impressive how self involved some people are, isn’t it? I have had to make my classroom “A No Nut Zone” on more than one school year, and each time someone tries to bully the identity of the child with the allergy out of me, I get more and more disgusted. Who cares who it is?!? Someone needs you to leave the peanuts at home so they can make it through another day. Wouldn’t you want someone to do it for you.

    • That is awful Lindsey. I cannot believe people would try to bully you for the name of the child. And really, who cares who it is? Does it matter?

  38. THANK YOU! As the parent of a child with a potentially life threatening peanut allergy, THANK YOU. This past summer Sweets was in a camp that was PEANUT FREE. A family decided to send their child in with a PBJ sandwich anyways. Their child happened to have the exact same lunch bag as my Sweets. And guess what? Their lunch bags got mixed up and Sweets, the one with the allergy, got the PBJ. It was noticed and quickly thrown out by a very attentive camp aide, but she STILL had a significant reaction only by touching it.
    Soy butter and sunflower seed butter are good alternatives.
    Nobody ONLY eats PBJ. Nobody.

    • OH MY GOD Christie. I cannot BELIEVE someone would do that. What is WRONG with people?? Thank God your sweet girl is okay, but I cannot even imagine how angry you must have been.

  39. After watching a video about the little girl who recently died in California due to her peanut allergy, I can say my attitude has definitely changed. I regularly ask parents around me if there are any issues before feeding my son peanut butter in their presence. If it saves a life, it’s worth it.

  40. I don’t think we know and peanut sensitive kids, but there are some at my kids’ school. Frances and Henry both are diligent about making sure that the snacks they bring in to share have no peanut warnings on them. I think the teachers at school have trained them pretty well.
    I’m sorry Lisa has had to put up with some dumba$$ses!

  41. I feel so badly that you have to deal with parents like that! Parents like that would never survive in my neck of the woods – our schools, our camps, our activities, and even our kids (try sending something that you by accident missed seeing a nut on the label and your kids come home letting you know you are the worst for not being cautious enough) are SO strict about NUT FREE everything (not even just peanut free) and have been for a while. It’s been that way for a good 12 years. Sending a peanut better sandwich is unheard of here. I have often read people in the US commenting about sending a PBJ sandwich to class and wondered “what on earth are they talking about?!?!?” It is NOT that hard to find substitutes. Please.

    • Your neck of the woods sounds perfect Leah! πŸ™‚ That is exactly how we wish it was here, too. Would make everything so much easier.

  42. My daughter loves PB&J but not so much that she’s willing to see a friend/classmate die or become seriously ill. I mean really people. I love the quote/statement at the end.

    • Thank you Andrea. Loving peanut butter is totally fine…I love it, too, but like your daughter not enough to put someone’s life at risk.

  43. SUCH an important post! I’m so lucky that my kids don’t have food allergies, but several of their friends do. I don’t make PB&J for them to take to school any more. It’s just too important!

    • Thank you so much for reading and commenting Ginny Marie. We really appreciate it and definitely agree with you on the importance of this issue.

  44. I would almost think you were joking but I know you’re not. Unbelieveable that mothers, or anybody, would say this. Is it really that much trouble to show some consideration? What if it was your kid? Be singing a different tune then.

    • It definitely seems like I should be joking, right? But like you said, if the shoe were on the other foot, the feelings would be much different.

  45. My child is friends with someone who has multiple allergies that are potentially fatal. We love hosting at our house but understand that it’s just easier and probably safer if we go over to their house to play. Avoiding is rough but understanding should help all of us get over it (and at least keep us from saying such insensitive things).

  46. A very well stated message here, ladies. Sometimes the analogies help us to take a better look at things that seem harmless but are really dangerous to those with allergies. I would be so scared as a mom of a child with this, and knowing that there are understanding parents/teachers out there is so reassuring. Hoping that people wise up and start getting serious about this…I just wish it didn’t have to take a negative consequence hitting close to home to get the message to sink in for some.

  47. People can be so dumb. Seriously. There are peanut allergies in Natalie’s class so they ask you NOT to bring snacks with any form of peanut. Not a big deal.

  48. Not gonna lie – there is a part of me that wants to slap those moms who make comments like the ones made to Lisa. For starters they are training a whole new generation of people to be noncaring. Plus, it is just rude and uncalled for!!!
    My oldest son has a good friend who has a severe peanut allergy and thankfully Jordan has always been aware and compassionate about it. In elementary school he always considered every one of his lunch choices and as they got older he would make sure that none of our snack options would be something that could be bad for his friend.

    • Your son is the definition of a good friend. I love that.
      You are so right…these uncaring parents are totally bringing up a whole new generation of uncaring people.

  49. Amen, sister! I have preached this from the roof tops and will continue to do so. I am always shocked by the “food allergies are imaginary” attitude out there despite the reports contrary to this. Blows my mind! Respect, sympathy and empathy need a call-back for sure!

  50. I have one of those pb lovin’ sons. He eats them all weekend long and in the afternoon after school. It’s not like he also has to take them for lunch. Some people are just so lame! It’s interesting how common this is now. There wasn’t a single kid with a peanut allergy at school when I was a kid – none. I wonder what happened to increase the prevalence so much (science geek alert).

  51. This is pretty heartbreaking. I love peanut butter. It is one of my favorite foods. But I would give it up in a heartbeat to keep others safe. I think sometimes parents are too afraid to have difficult conversations with their kids or disappoint them. But what great teaching moment, to explain that they have to be careful and thoughtful and considerate to other children who suffer from allergies. And what a silly thing to say, can’t your kid eat alone? Have you seen the way kids eat? Like they aren’t going to get peanut butter all over their face, hands, and clothes?

    • Great point Stevie…even if they eat alone, there is a great chance that someone will have peanut butter all over themselves at some point and accidentally touch another child.

  52. As a recently retired school nurse, I am sad to report that I have actually encountered not only parents with these callous attitudes but school nurses who feel it is unrealistic to put the burden of establishing and enforcing policies that protect the child with food allergies while at school. Unfortunately, it takes a catastrophe to make people understand the seriousness of peanut/tree nut allergies.

    • Isn’t that just ridiculous? If a school nurse can not help enforce a policy to keep children safe, then who can? This comment just makes me sad.

  53. Great perspective. I will *admit* that I hate not making peanut butter of anything as it’s not just my daughter’s favorite but also mine. She’s only in preschool so I only have to worry about snack time so it’s easy to do no-peanut-butter, but either way, a child’s life is soooo much more important. Plus kids are taught to share but not their food for obvious reasons and at any age this is hard. I know for me I want my child to be sensitive to other kids needs, not just her own.

    • Excellent comment Kiera. It is the being sensitive to others that I think is the key here…both as adults and as children. πŸ™‚

  54. Wow. Just wow. You know the first thing I thought when I read the, can’t your child eat by himself statement? I thought, no, you know what? Your child absolutely HAS to have that PB&J sandwich? Then he can eat by himself. Does that seem fair to you?

  55. Preschools and elementary schools are usually very good about protecting kids with allergies from accidental exposure. But middle and high schools don’t have the same measures, and kids have to learn how to protect themselves. A friend of mine struggles with this; she knows her 12 year old will eventually have to be independent in terms of keeping himself safe from peanut exposure, but I can’t imagine how anxiety provoking it must be for her.

    • Totally agree Dana. We have to teach our children from the get go about the importance of their own allergy (if they have one) and allergies of someone they may know.

  56. I can’t even imagine how scared I would be knowing what would happen if my child has this allergy and if exposed could become deathly ill. You have no control over this situation, and always have that worry in your mind. I am sorry those moms were so rude πŸ™

  57. my son’s daycare is peanut free but it’s so hard to find sunflower butter in my area…you would think it would be more accessible. I always ask the students I work with if they have peanut allergies…I want to make sure I don’t have any peanut residue or brings snacks that might leave peanut crmbs.

    My mother’s school is having a big fight with this now. One mom wants the school to be peanut free and everyone disagrees. I can’t imagine being the mother…I know I always fear Dino wanting yogut or ice cream and not being able to have it…but it won’t kill him. I would be a raving lunatic if he had a peanut allergy.

    • I feel the same way you do Karen. I feel so sorry for that mom at your mother’s school. I cannot imagine trying to fight the system and feel so alone doing it.

  58. I really can’t imagine having to deal with this. I also don’t understand why more schools aren’t peanut free and then it takes out the parents trying to place blame on the child who has the allergy. For goodness sake, I live in a smaller town where the school board seems to be run by the village idiots and even they have enough sense to make the schools peanut free (yes, I have issues with the school board…just not peanut issues).

    I know this might seem like a stupid question but I am totally serious. Is it really just peanuts or all nuts? I mean if it’s just peanuts why can’t the mom’s make an almond butter and jelly sandwich or how about that sunflower seed spread they make now.Seriously, the kids will never know and making another child feel bad for having a life threatening allergy is just horrible.

    I also wouldn’t be able to control the crazy that would be spewing forth if it were my child and people made comments like that. I have issues with bawling people out for lesser crimes. Let me know if you need me to come over and give someone a browbeating. πŸ™‚

    • I feel like schools should be peanut free as well. I wish they were. I think a lot of the time it is all nuts, not just peanuts when there is a nut allergy present.

    • My allergist said sometimes it is either peanuts or nuts– My daughter is allergic to both– an epi pen for PB and her eyeballs swell and then swell shut with nuts– I’ve been blessed with teachers in KG, 1st and 2nd who committed to being PB free– and all the parents and kids are on board.. she’s not the only one with dietary issues and instead of leaving a child out of a party– the parents find ways to provide something that is inclusive– I love our school.

  59. It really is not that difficult to find PBJ alternatives for lunches – I mean, we have Pinterest, right? Practically unlimited lunch ideas at our fingertips. My son’s entire school is nut-free and had been since he started. You said it all in your post – children with allergies should be safe, and we should teach our children to be aware. I don’t understand why some people can’t see the seriousness of food allergies.

    • So true. What is Pinterest for if not for that?
      I don’t understand at all why people do not see the seriousness of food allergies.

  60. Oh wow – I don’t believe that other mum’s would actually say that! My daughter and I have been blessed with no nut allergies but she has never taken a PBJ sandwich to school. While I understand the seriousness of a PB allergy, posts like yours help reinforce my understanding more.

  61. Oh wow, other mothers can be so mean!! you know, this is just another example of what an entitled society we live in. people think that whatever they want to do should be gospel and to heck with anyone who might be hurt by that. what happened to empathy? what happened to not always putting oneself first? its sickening. and its even worse when we’re not just talking about bruised egos, or hurt feelings, we’re talking about a kid’s life. those parents should be forced to attend a class on common human decency, and attendance is mandatory since its for the common good, like jury duty.

  62. None of my girls have allergies either and, I will admit that, when they were attending a completely nut-free preschool, I did get frustrated. However, as I have met other moms who are dealing with this constant fear I have tried really hard to put myself in their shoes and I have tried to be more understanding. Your cancer analogy really puts it in perspective and is something I will remember the next time I start to get frustrated. Thanks for posting this – it is something I needed to read!

    • Thank you Lisa. We really appreciate this comment. I was hoping when I wrote this that the cancer analogy would be helpful to people, so I am glad it was.

  63. These people are just disgusting. I’m sorry but I can’t seem to find an adjective that would suit them better. Reading this made me want to punch them in the face. I’m not sure how Lisa haven’t already.

    I am so sorry for what parents of kids with allergies have to go through. I can’t say I understand completely but I have some experience. My little brother is allergic to diary. Yep. He’s not lactose intolerant. He’s literally allergic to diary as in he cannot breath even if he touches too much of it. No parent ever called to see what treats he can have or not, and the teachers pretty much forget five minutes after they are told. So my stepmom went out o her way to make him aware and stay away from such treats. We consider ourselves lucky because nothing major has happened since he was a baby. But it’s no thanks to anyone else.

    I’m sure it’s the parents that say these foul things that would overreact most if it were their child and someone else said it to them.

    • Oh Gosh, Xae, a dairy allergy that severe must be SO STRESSFUL. I can’t imagine people not taking it seriously. How utterly frustrating. I am so sorry.

  64. While I understand completely – please remember that Peanut allergies are not the only serious food allergies. As a mom of a child who has had to deal with a life-threatening egg allergy his whole life, our food choices have also been incredibly limited. All the area schools and play areas don’t allow peanuts….peanut allergies are serious, yes, but what about my child’s allergy? What about severe shellfish allergies (which my husband has)? What about serious gluten – or strawberry – or blueberry allergies? When you also eliminate peanuts, what does that leave? I understand complying with nut-free choices for the sake of other children’s safety, but when will anyone else comply with my child’s egg-free requirements? It makes me frustrated and sad that because he doesn’t have the most popular allergy, nobody accommodates him. And if you thought peanuts were in everything, you might be surprised with how many products egg is in. Candy, bread, soup, pasta, chips, and obviously cakes, pies and bakery items. Not only that, but hands-on things like Easter egg dying, science projects….the list is never-ending and my kid is always forced to sit out. Be sensitive to ALL allergies, not just peanuts.

    • Meg, we are in full agreement that ALL allergies are important. We chose to focus on peanut allergies, as that is the one we have direct and person experience with. Lisa actually had an anaphylactic reaction to eggs over the summer and completely empathizes with the difficulty in managing food as a result.
      If a child has an allergy as severe as your son, the same precautions should be taken in his school (and life) as well.

  65. My peanut allergic son just turned 3. I don’t plan for him to go to school for at least another year–but it’s going to be so incredibly difficult for me to entrust his life, literally, to the teachers, and even to the discretion of other parents who really don’t understand or care. I am grateful that the majority of people that I speak with are understanding and sensitive…but I would probably have to hold myself back from punching someone in the face who made any of those comments regarding my child. Seriously?? This is my child’s life that we’re talking about–why would you take that so lightly?? I am hoping that the press surrounding recent deaths from allergic reaction will help spread awareness and sensitivity. But it’s sad that it takes death (not even near death) of our children for people to start paying attention.

    • It is really sad and very scary that it takes something tragic to wake people up to the reality of life-threatening allergies, right? Hopefully when your son goes to school you will be able to develop a relationship with his teacher that will give you the confidence to feel secure sending him out of your control. Hugs Sarah.

  66. I kept scrolling down to look for the part I missed- the punchline- the part where you said, “Of course no one would EVER say something so thoughtless!” It took me three reads before I realized you were serious. πŸ™ I really can’t believe anyone would say anything so unkind to another mother’s face. I wonder when/if the school systems will implement some more stringent protocol for nut allergies. Hugs to you- thanks for reminding those of us who are PB&J-ers what we take for granted.

    • It would seem like there should a “just kidding” moment, but sadly no. I agree with you totally about schools…I wish they would come up with a universal nut allergy policy and stick to it.

  67. I love this post but before I shout AMEN too loudly…I have been THAT mom. At my toddler’s bday party there were a lot of guests (too many for a toddler party, honestly) and I forgot that one of the mom’s there had a son allergic to PB. Then we went out to lunch with this same family awhile later and my other kid got a PB sandwich at the restaurant. I LOVE this family in question and would never try to kill their son. But I just flat out forgot. I mean, hell, I can barely remember to put diapers in the diaper bag and brush my teeth. The best-intentioned moms like me may sometimes just have boneheaded moments.

    • Oh Allison…we have ALL been that mom before, but unlike the mothers who made these statements to Lisa, none of us would ever dream of harming one of the children around us. Anything we have ever done has truly been because we genuinely forgot. I definitely fully relate to this comment! πŸ™‚

  68. My youngest son has a severe allergy to peanuts. We carry the epi-pen wherever we go. It’s not easy. He’s very picky as is, and the worry about peanuts doesn’t help. We pack our own food/snacks for everything! People don’t always get it.

  69. Ok I have never read this blog but had it float by on Facebook. These rude comments are way more common then people realize. Yes I am a parent dealing with a child’s peanut allergy the first in our little schools history or so I’m told in fact. I won’t list the comments I’ve received as they make my blood boil but my retort was always the same thing. Ok you have your kid bring pb&j to school the next day I’ll have my son walk in with a gun, you better make sure your son avoids it because its his responsibility not to get shot. I know it’s harsh but it doesn’t sink into some people’s heads unless you go extreme.

    • You know Chad, we totally get what you are saying. When you have a peanut allergic child, a peanut butter sandwich is just as dangerous to that child as a loaded gun. We totally understand your frustration and how you are feeling. We appreciate you reading and taking the time to comment.

  70. Thanks for this post!!! I have a kid with a peanut allergy and it drives me crazy when people think it’s not a “real” allergy. The worst is on the airplane once when I was flying with my daughter and the flight attendant asked people to refrain from eating peanuts and the two rows in front of us had all these people saying things like, “Well, I’m allergic to mushrooms – can you make sure no one is eating mushrooms on the plane? Hahahahahaha.” and so forth. I felt ashamed, embarrassed, sad, and very frustrated. There were plenty of alternative snacks and also I don’t think it was necessary to make those kinds of comments! I appreciate this post very much!

    • You are welcome Phyllis. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment! I cannot believe people were so rude to you on the airplane…just awful! I am so sorry!

  71. I have a bit of a different comment, because I have a different kind of situation.

    I will start by saying that I am sorry that your child suffers from this life-threatening illness. I can’t imagine how scary that must be on a daily basis. It hurts my heart to think about this. Hugs to you.

    My own son has a severe eating disorder, which has stemmed from sensory processing disorder. Because of this disorder, learning to eat has been an overwhelming source of stress for him. Peanut butter sandwiches are the ONLY things he will eat. For him, there are no alternatives. Not plain bread, no other spreads, no turkey, no cheese, no bagels, nothing. While his issue is NOT life-threatening, it is impossible for us to find other options at this time, but not for lack of trying. We are very careful when we hear of kids with peanut allergies and wouldn’t do anything to put anyone in danger, but I have to say I am grateful there is a peanut-free table at his school rather that a peanut-free school, because for him, there really is no other option other than starvation! I know our situation is unusual, but I wanted to add my two cents to everyone who says there are alternatives. I sure wish there were!!!

    But again, my heart goes out to you. It must be very scary for you and I am sorry you have to have this worry, Lisa.

    • Alexandra, that must be so stressful. Our school also has a peanut free table. If we had our choice we would love to see it become a table for eating peanut butter. It would easier to clean, maintain, etc. We appreciate you reading and taking the time to comment.

  72. My boys love, love, love “Fluffernutter” sandwiches. Peanut butter and marshmallow fluff. I know, not even close to healthy, but they love them.

    On the first day of school I packed each of the boys a fluffernutter. And on the second day of school, they carried lunchboxes with ham and turkey sandwiches.

    Guilty on that first day. Guilty because I’ve never even put thought into it before. I’ve never had to. My boys have always bought lunches until this year, when I placed them into charter schools and for the first time (with a 6th and a 4th grader) I had to pack lunches. I didn’t even have a passing thought about peanut allergies, because I’ve never dealt with it. (I used to work in the health field, so I’m probably an asshole)

    When a note came home with the boys after that first day asking parents to educate their children, that if they bring peanut butter to school they have to sit at a special “peanuts only” table and wash their hands before interacting with other students, I realized the gravity of the situation.

    Does having a special table really negate the danger to those with allergies? And how many kids will remember to wash their hands, honestly?

    Fluffernutters are now weekend fare and the boys take ham and turkey to school.

    I’m glad to see awareness is rising, and someone speaking out. Because there’s always going to Moms like me, that don’t know.

    • I love every single thing about this comment. Everything. I love that you were honest about what happened. I especially love that your school has a peanut only table, as opposed to a peanut free table. While I totally agree with you 100% that it would still be hard to maintain safety that way, I appreciate the fact that your school is not looking to ostracize the children with peanut allergies. Fantastic.

  73. Trust me when I say I’m not proud of this. I was that mom that didn’t care enough to pay attention to what I sent my kid to school with for breakfast (it was a PB choc chip granola bar). I knew there was a peanut allergy in the class. I knew how bad it was. But I just didn’t think about it. It wasn’t like I didn’t care. I was so ashamed of myself when I picked up Bryson and the teachers (more kindly than they probably should have) reminded me not to bring PB to school. The allergic child swelled up around the eyes and they immediately got Bryson and the PB out of the room (after the Epi-Pen came out). And that was it.
    But I felt soooo awful. I couldn’t believe I had been so careless to have let this happen. So to know there are people like this just breaks my heart.
    I learned my lesson and it is always on my mind now. And it’s on Bryson’s mind. There’s also a pineapple allergy and he’s always making sure there’s no pineapples in this or that, or reminding me not to grab the PB granola bars at the grocery store.
    Lisa, I’m so sorry you had to hear these awful things. And for all of us scatterbrained, airheaded, forgetful and careless mothers that don’t understand, I am so incredibly sorry I sent my kid to school with PB by mistake (to you and the mother of the kid at B’s school). I do hope you will forgive us.

    • I admire your honesty here Heather. I know that it was not easy to admit that. But what I really admire most is that when you learned of the severity and potential consequences you changed. That is the most important part. Good for you! πŸ™‚

  74. I don’t have kids, but I did a short stint as a substitute teacher. One day, I was assigned the peanut free room (not in advance, they told me when I arrived). I had a granola bar in my purse that was labelled “produced in facility that also produced nuts” and man, was I PARANOID about keeping my purse closed and in a locked cabinet all day.

    Anyway – peanut free classrooms (actually it was more like a general allergy classroom) seem like a great idea/compromise to me. If you have a child that really can ONLY eat peanut butter, you can insist that they aren’t placed in that classroom. And if your child has another severe allergy (ie strawberries), I think you’re more likely to find sympathy/understanding in a class with other kids who have parents also dealing with allergies.

  75. i had a childhood friend with a peanut allergy. one of my best friends has a tree nut allergy (i accidentally shared my rocky road ice cream with her one night, and had to help her, uh, get rid of it. small price for my mistake). i don’t think that people realize how bad the allergy has gotten for some kids.

    when i first heard about peanut wars in the schools, i was pro-peanut butter, because i thought it was an overreaction to make an entire school peanut free. i had no earthly idea that there were people who could die if they touched peanut butter. no earthly idea.

    as far as the allergic kids being charged with avoiding it, my 42 year old exboyfriend almost ended up in the hospital after a few bites of my chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream that he insisted on snitching, even though he knows he’s allergic. if a 42 year old man cannot be trusted to honor his allergy, why the hell would we expect an 8 year old to do so?

    people are just ugly sometimes. i have digestive issues- i can’t eat very spicy food, and sometimes i can’t eat fast food or anything greasy. it gave me a great chance to clear my social circle of people who don’t really care about me. i had a girl say “what’s the worst that can happen” about eating taco bell in the middle of a six hour car trip. i had to explain what the worst case scenario was. humiliating. i did have the nerve to ask her to my face why she wanted me to make myself sick for her convenience. seriously. grow up.

    • Such a great comment Cat. I really don’t think people can appreciate how severe it is, and I certainly agree that the child is not the ONLY one responsible for their life-threatening allergy. Thank you for reading and taking the time to comment.

  76. I’m not surprised at all!! We had several kids at our school who had food allergies and you wouldn’t believe how difficult it was to get other parents to make minor adjustments to accommodate those kids…yeah you probably would believe it! Thank God my kids never had food allergies, but I did growing up and still do. I couldn’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten the side eye when I’ve requested NOT to go to a seafood restaurant. I mean really…can we just go to a restaurant that has seafood on the menu! So sorry Lisa that parents can be so insensitive! Whew, I got so into this subject I almost forgot to mention that I’m stopping by from SITs Saturday Sharefest! Have a good one ladies!!

    Michell @Prowess and Pearls

    • Thank you so much for stopping by and visiting Michell! We really appreciate your thoughtful comment. And totally agree with you…people should just be kind and respectful and care about each other. Period.

  77. Thanks for putting it out there so clearly and plainly. I’ve recently become gluten-intolerant and my daughter is diagnosed celiac. People act as if it is some kind of a new-age not real condition. In Italy, they check children for celiac before they enter Kindergarten. Talk about making sure children aren’t malnourished.

    Any life-threatening allergy does belong to all of society.

    Why the attitudes? I’m not going to say since I don’t understand it other than lack of empathy, selfishness, etc.

    Remember our society gets money from the sale of tobacco which is a poison and a carcinogen. What signal does that send?

    Enjoy Sharefest. You obviously have struck a chord by the number of comments.

    • Good point Shelia. We definitely put up with things in our society that we should not. Thank you so much for reading and leaving this thoughtful comment.

  78. I am not surprised that this debate is generating so many comments! I AM surprised, however, at some of these parents’ lack of empathy. Some of the things (well, all of them, actually) said to Lisa blew my mind. I think we can all agree parenting changes you. I feel as though I belong to a tribe now. I walk past a parent on the street while they’re enduring a tantrum and my brain goes ‘I know’. My face goes ‘I know’. I cannot hear about something bad happening to another tribe member’s child. You know. I can’t understand a different type of parenting mentality, one that is so isolated. Very sad.

    – Glad to have come across the post on SITSsharefest. –

    • Could not agree with you more Katia. I feel exactly the same way about being a parent. I wish everyone felt the same way. We are a tribe and should support each other.

  79. So glad this was on Honest Voices because I had been meaning to read it. I’ve been sending Henry to Italian preschool with pb/j because processed meat disgusts me and I need something not too messy for him to eat. But you are so, so right. I need to make sure no one has a peanut allergy there! It’s a very small group, so I can do that. At school though… I bet you can find something else. Cream cheese and jelly – I used to eat it all the time. (My son is lactose intolerant, so not a real option for me.)

    Anyway, good post as usual, Dose Girls!

    • Thank you so much Deb for reading and commenting. And I will tell you as a mom of a kid who does not love lunch meat, we do a lot of just jelly sandwiches, so that could be an option for your son. πŸ™‚

  80. Oh my god, this made me sick to my stomach. Especially this line –> β€œOh, y’all won’t be able to attend the picnic? Fantastic. We can all bring peanut butter sandwiches for once”.


  81. Thank you for this post. I wish everyone would read it. I worry EVERY day that I will get a call from my son’s school that he had a reaction or is dead. I get comments like this all of the time and have to fight to keep him safe. People just don’t understand that he did not chose this and sending a PB&J sandwich could kill him. Ugh! Thanks for the support!

    • Oh Allie, I am just so sorry you have to live with the constant fear. Thank you so much for reading and leaving this heartfelt comment.

  82. I have been fighting this fight since the beginning of the school year. And just today at lunch my son’s teacher told me that it was the other children’s right to eat peanutbutter. I retorted that my son had a right to live and not be ostracized for having been born with a medical condition. If I allowed my son to go to school with a kife or a gun, people would loose their minds at how irresponsible I was because other choldren could die, but when my child (and at least one other child in his class) are put in mortal danger by other kids lunches, it is me who is considered irrational for being concerned. What’s worse is my son isn’t even allowed to carry his epipen with him, it has to remain in the nurses office and the school officials have dogged me every single time I try and set up a meeting to resolve the problem.

    • A child’s consumption of peanut butter does not trump your child;s right to live. Try to contact the Principal via the front office or her direct VM or email– tell her/him you are giving him 48 hours to respond and set up a conference with the teacher, the nurse, and the principal. If this doesn’t happen, school boards have parent liaisons or advocates— contact them when you do the Principal and ask them to attend the meeting– Not being able to carry the epi is fairly standard, but to rebut with a child’s right to PB is outlandish and dangerous— esp since there is no epi pen in the classroom. Ask her how she would handle an epi pen incident and if she knows how to administer or what the protocol is. Our school nurse has done a teach in on epi pens— we have 15 students out of 500 who have a PA— this school HAS to address this. You have to the loud and constant or they WILL dodge you b/c they can.

  83. Pingback: Because Peanut Allergies Still Matter - The Dose of Reality

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