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what is "decorum" on providing food for allergic child being invited to a party ....?!

(45 Posts)
babybarrister Mon 11-May-09 15:05:12

AIBU to be mightily pissed off with BIL and SIL for not bothering at all to the point that DS could not even eat the FG crisps as they were teddy things with milk in... [DH found pub to buy him some ...] I DO NOT expect a.n.other friends to bother and ALWAYS take along food [including chocolate treats, cake etc] for DS but I would have thought that own family could have at least attempted to make something of any effort when they do know all about it.

It is heartbreaking to see DS face drop when told he cannot have the micky mouse sandwiches when I would have made own sandwiches and if necessary cut them into shape myself if I had been told they were going to be on offer .... Having 2 parties in one weekend perhaps has sent me over the edge when at the first, DS food got thrown away [by accident] when he went off to play and by the time he had returned he was hungry ....! - oh well lesson learnt for Sunday party ....

sorry but needed a rant and frankly most MN on AIBU thread are not very sympathetic to allergy issues .....!!!!

CMOTdibbler Mon 11-May-09 15:11:05

YANBU - as a gf adult, I am insulted when family don't cater for me as 'it's too much trouble' or 'I wouldn't know what to do'. They are particularly U for not telling you that they wouldn't cater for your DS so that you had a chance to bring his own food

trixymalixy Mon 11-May-09 15:59:31

Your poor DS. I'm dreading parties when my Ds is old enough to realise that he can't eat the same as the rest of the kids.

YANBU, your family should have at least attempted to have some food available for your DS.

However, I would always take food along anyway just in case as even with the best will in the world people still get it badly wrong.

e.g. my MIL "he can have these sandwiches as I put the low fat spread on especially for DS" hmmShame about the milk in the low fat Lurpak!!!

She always makes an effort, but just never quite gets it right.

babybarrister Mon 11-May-09 19:43:38

I should make it clear that I did in fact take along food for DS to both parties [I always do just in case people try and get it wrong or in case of other emergencies etc ....!] it is just that as fas as DS was concerned it would have been nicer to have eaten a mickey mouse jam sandwich along with everyone else - they only had to miss out the bloody butter .,,,,,

sarah293 Mon 11-May-09 20:02:36

Message withdrawn

islandofsodor Mon 11-May-09 20:08:00

Butter on jam sandwiches, YUK!

There is one child in dd's class who is on a special hospital diet so she takes her own food everywhere as they have t balance proteins and carbs or something and weigh it all out.

However I would always try and cater for an allergic child. For this girl I fix the pass the parcel so she gets a sticker instead of the haribos.

cuppachar Mon 11-May-09 20:10:51

YANBU. MIL still forgets completely to provide anything for DD each time we go to their house for a weekend. DH thinks we should take food with us, but I think that way she will come to expect it and we'll be doing it forever. She manages to cater for BIL who is vegetarian so I don't see why it's so different...

Sometimes by coincidence she has something suitable in the house, and then boasts about how good they are at remembering, even though it's clearly by pure chance. They also think any kind of marg/spread is dairy free. It's a losing battle - I feel your pain!

civilfawlty Mon 11-May-09 20:14:29

I always make food for my friend's dd who has a dairy allergy, and try to make some special treats for her (marshmallow rice crispy cakes etc).

But I also think its quite scary for the parents of children without allergies thinking what can go wrong if they make a mistake, and as such perhaps its not unreasonable for a degree of trepidation on their part. Also- I wonder whether people always know what to do...?

I wonder if the best thing is to expect to have to take your own food, and be pleasantly surprised when someone offers to make something for your dcs.

CarGirl Mon 11-May-09 20:18:39

TBH I would be petrified of getting it wrong and would rather their own food was brought with them. However I'd hope that I had the sense to ask for a list of shop bought treats that he could have that I would willingly provide.

cuppachar Mon 11-May-09 20:19:36

I think there's a distinction between friends and family though - I don't expect friends to cater for DD but do think close family could easily learn what to give (or at least remember to ask!) Maybe IABU blush

trixymalixy Mon 11-May-09 20:21:55

That would have really p*ssed me off.

did you say anything or did they notice your DS's disappointment at all?

ilovemydogandMrObama Mon 11-May-09 20:29:29

we were at a birthday party on Saturday, and the issue wasn't so much what DS could/couldn't have, but rather that he was grabbing food off other children shock and they were, giving him food.

Guess call ahead and ask what's on the menu so DS won't feel left out?

Weta Tue 12-May-09 13:30:51

I agree, I think it's a real shame they didn't make more of an effort - and I agree it's different with friends and family. Often people just don't think, or don't seem to realise how hard it is for the child.

I was really upset one time when we went out with other mums and their kids and they all stopped for icecream, by which time I'd used up all the extra treats I'd brought along for DS1 (not realising how much junk food non-allergic children get through on an outing!!). It just felt like they couldn't be bothered imagining what it might be like for him, and he had to sit there and watch for what felt like ages!!

DS1 is very used to having his own party box, though it's easier here in France as party food is just a piece of cake and some sweets. But my MIL is absolutely fantastic and whenever he goes to stay I don't have to provide anything except his Neocate from the hospital - she gets in the right margarine, the soy yoghurts, cooks everything with soy cream etc and checks every label.

Anyway you're not being unreasonable - but for the future I guess you can either have a chat to them about it and maybe explain some of this, and the fact that some things could easily be adapted for him, or just grin and bear it. The other thing someone said to me is that because we mums of allergic children always have to be hyper-organised and always provide food, it looks to others like it's no problem. They assume food will be provided (by us) and that they don't need to worry about it.

SarahL2 Tue 12-May-09 13:44:32

DS doesn't yet have any allergic friends but my brother (aged 24) is Wheat/Gluten/Dairy/Nut intollerant.

He could eat them but they're not good for him so I buy in special food for him at parties cause I don't want him to feel left out!!

Hopefully, this will stand me in good stead for if DS ever does have any allergic friends as I'm already used to multi-catering

BlueBumedFly Tue 12-May-09 13:47:51

YANBU, gits.

pagwatch Tue 12-May-09 13:51:36

I hope for the best and prepare for the worst.

I look over what is available and he eats what he can BUT I always have a bag of food and treats just in case.

stealthsquiggle Tue 12-May-09 13:52:46

For family - I would absolutely do it. For a friend, if I was aware, I would do my very very best and at least know what was in everything so that we could let the parents know - it's just plain mean not to. A friend of mine saved all the packets from such party food as was not home made so that mother of allergic child could look through and double-check for herself what he could and couldn't have.

DesperateHousewifeToo Tue 12-May-09 14:17:31

Ds has been attending birthday parties for the last 4 years or so. He has nut and egg allergy (although eating egg again for past month).

I always see it as my responsibility to discuss with the parents whether they would like me to send him with any food. In all those years, I have only had one parent ask me to bring all his food. Most of them go through what they are planning to have and we work out together what he can have. I then send him with any alternatives.

Even though they are family, I still thing it was up to you to discuss it with them first and find out what they were planning. Most people who do not live with a food allergy forget about people who do.

tatt Tue 12-May-09 18:48:19

whatever happened to good manners? A hostess who knows a person with special dietary needs is visiting should cater for them - family or not. I wouldn't serve a vegetarian meat, I wouldn't have only food an allergic child couldn't eat. So relatives not having food for your child are being disgustingly rude.

It is good manners when visiting someone to let them know of any dietary issues. They can then decide whether to withdraw the invitation or not make others. I have always offered to take food to other people's homes the first time we are invited. However those who accept are not really my sort of people.

cuppachar Tue 12-May-09 19:30:02

I agree tatt, even though it sounds a bit harsh somehow! I am completely unfussy and eat anything, but I happily cater for visitors who are vegetarian, don't like spicy food, don't like mushrooms, sweetcorn, are on the Atkins diet, etc etc etc, and I think most people would too. It certainly wouldn't cross my mind to expect guests to bring their own food! And in my experience, people only tell me once they're a veggie, and don't remind me on each visit of their likes and dislikes. I don't understand why this same courtesy isn't extended to children with allergies.

pointydog Tue 12-May-09 19:38:06

I take it your ds is dairy free. It's a real pain in the arse. I wouldn't expect anyone to remember the ins ans outs of my child's diet. I would either be in contac t beforehand to discuss or I'd take my own fun food along to make all the other kids jealous. Like party rings.

(Butter and jam sadwiches are gorgeous!)

tatt Wed 13-May-09 08:49:03

Having lived with a dairy free diet for a time - it may be a pain and perhaps that might be an excuse for not providing ALL dairy food food. It is no excuse for not providing dairy free crisps. And using non-dairy spread on sandwiches or having some without butter is not exactly complicated.

I have catered for nut, milk, gluten and potato free at a sleepover and while they didn't all eat the same food they all had similar things.

tatt Wed 13-May-09 08:49:42

should have been all dairy-free food.

pointydog Wed 13-May-09 17:28:59

Most people do not imagine that crisps do contain milk. There is ahigh chance they weren't trying to be completely difficult about this

Tamarto Wed 13-May-09 17:34:30

Last time we had a guest with allergies i ended up catering the whole party to suit, i knew what he could and couldn't have from being at the playgroup, and knew the others wouldn't be missing out just having different crap to usual grin

It makes me sad when people make no effort at all as all i can think about is how much the child is missing out on anyway. sad

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