2008-12-17

Confessions of a Food Allergy Mom #5

The Kid received a birthday invitation to Chuck E. Cheese from one of his classmates, but I didn't respond because I was too overwhelmed by the idea of keeping him safe there, so he missed the party.

9 comments:

Nowheymama said...

I completely agree with you. You just know that all of the games there are covered with cheese grease from the hands of other kids. There is no way to keep them safe at a place like that.

shellyfish said...

Yeah, I think I would have been too freaked out. How hard for you to have to make that kind of decision (but a good one).

Poker Chick said...

OMG I thought I was the only one!!

Mrs. Rellim said...

I came across your blog as a link and feel such a connection. My son has food allergies too, but people tend to dismiss it like I'm making it up. I've often avoided parties and overnight invitations because of perceived lack of vigilance on the part of the adults in charge. I hope food allergies decrease as my son gets older. I appreciate your blog.

FoodAllergyMom said...

Show of hands?...I've done it too.
I've even thrown away invitations for home parties because they were from classmates we didn't know well and I just didn't want to call a stranger to go through the list of do's and don'ts. (OK, how the heck do you spell don'ts?)

Miryam (mama o' the matrices) said...

hey, my hand's up! (wave, wave)

Look, sometimes I'm not up for it. But more to the point, if I'm standing over the kid, grim-faced and vibrating with tension, what am I teaching him there? Fear? Anxiety?

I'd rather avoid the risk, and if it's not possible to get in early with the birthday mum and help plan, then offer a birthday playdate. I bake the cupcakes, we frost, do something fun (batting cages? something with wood and glue and mess?) and bam.

Because even though I know the kid's going to connect the dots between allergy and exclusion and fear, I don't want to be the one reinforcing that. I think my job is to problem solve and be creative, and say (as calmly as I can with a clenched jaw), 'well, sometimes that just doesn't work out. Sorry, kid.'

Or at least, that's my party line.

But mostly, sheesh. Haven't got the emotional energy to do that, and haven't got the zip to get up and guilt myself over it. Can I just take a nap instead?

My Buddy Mimi said...

My daughter was recently downgraded to "mild" dairy allergies, and I actually dared accept a birthday invite to Chuck E Cheese for the first time. It was a big moment for us. Of course it turned out that she was absolutely petrified of Chuck, and she never wants to go back, which is just fine with me.

Pam said...

So glad I'm not alone in all of this! It is exhausting!

Elisabeth said...

I'm way late on this one - but we did/do the same. In fact my boy had to skip a "Petting Zoo" party last week because we were on our "no med's days" leading up to annual skin testing.

Nobody understood why we didn't go. I wish people could "get it" a little better.