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to not phone another parent about my teenage child's nut allergy?

17 replies

tatt · 18/10/2007 08:31

child is going for a sleepover. She has, after prompting, telephoned the mother herself to ask if she was Ok about the nut allergy. The child whose (birthday) sleepover it is had been reminded and it was suggested she tell her mother. She hadn't told the mother and my child hasn't been there before. My child is now well trained to avoid anything risky and its part of her training for when she leaves home that she has to take responisibility for herself.

Still wonder if the other mother would expect me to speak to her personally. I was around when daughter phoned in case the mother asked to speak to me, but it was sprung on her then. Still wondering if I should phone her myself?

OP posts:

GColdtimer · 18/10/2007 08:34

I would. I think I would have expected a call from you to tell me about it tbh, even if your dd knows what to avoid and has to take responsibility. She doesn't need to know you have phoned if that is what you are worried about.


DoctorFrankenSquonk · 18/10/2007 08:36

if you are worried, phone her, but ask her not to tell your dd that you rang.

You have to show that you trust her to take responsibility for this.

If I was having the sleepover, I would expect you to ring me in case I have any questions about what I can and can't do.


ScottishMummy · 18/10/2007 08:42

personally i would call the other mum, as a courtesy and general chat about the nut allergy. to clarify and reassure as much as anything.


pointydog · 18/10/2007 08:45

If your child is now a teenager I think you're quite right to start to put the responsibility on to her. Your dd should be able to talk about it to the mother.

If you don't know the mother, a brief private call from you might be a good idea.


Freckle · 18/10/2007 08:47

I have a friend of DS2's coming to tea soon. He sent me a list of his allergies (food-wise) with a list of acceptable alternatives. I thought it was great. I did speak to his mother and we touched on the allergy issue but the child had pretty much covered it. He's 11.

As the list had been sent home, I didn't really expect his mum to call me about it, although I did expect to speak to her at some point as both boys are new at secondary school and she doesn't know me from Adam.

If you have any concerns, speak to the mum. I doubt she will be bothered by a call. Your dd has addressed the issue herself, but it's always useful to have back up.


JennaJ · 18/10/2007 08:52

If you are worried about it then call her.. if you trust your dd to be able to deal with it then at 14 there probably isn't really a 'necessity' to call her. My 5 yr old with a nut allergy can pick out things at a party that he can't eat and will ask the mother to check ingredients on anything he is not sure about!!

Go with your instincts..that fact that you need to ask suggests you are uneasy about it and probably need to call .



phdlife · 18/10/2007 08:56

tatt I hope you'll forgive me putting my two cents in even though I have neither teenagers nor a dc with nut allergy. However I do have an 11yo niece with off-the-scale nut allergy so have thought it about it a lot following convos with my dsis.

I agree with you completely that your dd needs to take responsibility for this. On the other hand, if she does have a reaction wouldn't the other mother need to know what to do? Did your dd cover that with her in the phone call? Or is dd supposed to administer epipen herself?


chloesmumtoo · 18/10/2007 09:10

Hi tatt, I just wanted to ask how old your dd is? Yeah I would phone if I was you just to go over things. Any advise for me? I have a nut allergic dd she is only 5years at the mo but I dont let her go to friends houses. I just wondered when you started letting her go, at what age, when did you feel she could take care of herself . I have not got anyone I really trust to have her, friends wise, other than family. Plus she has other problems, bad eczema,dust mite allergy,multiple food allergies-not anaphylactic like with the peanut though.


titchy · 18/10/2007 09:50

No advice for OP but Chloe's mum I would say it's unfair to not let your dd go to other people's houses. Obviously they need to be aware of her allergy issues and what to do, but she will start to feel very left out if she isn't allowed to go to someone's else house for tea, parties etc. I kow it's a worry but presumably she's at school now and you need to allow her a bit of freedom!


LadyVictoriaOfCake · 18/10/2007 10:00

i would just call and ask if the mother has any questions about it.

chloesmum, i dont have an anaphylatic child, but i do have a child with multiple alleries. it is very hard to let them go it alone, i know. dd1 reactiosn from urticia, to lip swlling, sometimes asthma attack. dd1 is now 7 and recently went on her first sleepover and meal out with her friends. dd1 is very well versed on what she can and cant have. hers are mainly to do with food colourings and cats. so i find out where she is going to eat, and if its soemwhere we have been before then tell dd what is 'safe' and what isnt. dd1 chjoose pizza from frankie and bennys the other week with her friends. the mum asked if she was ok with it, becuase she wasnt sure if it contained colourings, dd1 told her she had had it before. i always send her with inhalers and bottle of anti-histimine as well.


wb · 18/10/2007 10:18

As the parent of a nut-allergic child I would like to know if a teenager with a serious allergy was staying at my house but would be happy if that info came from the teenager themselves. I wouldn't particularly feel the need to speak to their mum but wouldn't be surprised if she wanted to speak to me.

As long as the other mum has your number (which I guess she'd want anyway) I'd leave it up to her to phone you. Unless you're worried in which case maybe a discreet phone call.....


chloesmumtoo · 18/10/2007 10:53

titchy it is unfair, but at the mo she is only 5yrs. I was asking when tatt first started allowing her dd to have more freedom reguarding the epipen situation ect(nut allergy). At the moment her body wouldnt cope with someone elses home environment very well anyway and I am only doing whats best esp playing in another childs bedroom ect would cause her hell and would soon be in distress. She cannot eat any pre made foods except some choc, she suffers badly with her eyes and all over body itching and sometimes hives if she just goes into her brothers bedroom. Which I must add is not carpeted and has fully anti dustmite bedding ect. She is in a bad enough state when she gets home from school and wears her special eczema legging to stop her itching further. She is allergic to obviously peanuts, tomatoes, carrots, green beans, bannana, all peppers, corn/maize, dustmite and pollens. Good knows what else but I am sure there is more. I do allow to go to every party she wants and go along too. I do not intrude on her space and allow her her own freedom by being at a distance but being there, I must add she is a very confident little girl. She obviously needs her own food at times like this. Things would be different if we had a very close friend who wanted to swot up and give me confidence in caring for dd with reguards to her nut allergy but we dont have someone like that. with everything else at the mo its a bit difficult to say the least. Hopefully things will improve as she gets older. At parties we even have to grap for the periton. Thanks Ladyvictoriaofcake, hope my dd will be able to get along later on like your dd but it is hard isnt it. Dd is now beginning to suffer in the supermarkets already. I presume its the increase in nuts around? She gets asthma too


tatt · 18/10/2007 11:00

she's teenage and supposed to be able to adminster the epipen herself. We had refresher training last night with two out of date epipens (because I wasn't happy with her first go) and a trainer pen. The house is in a city so close to a&e and she has her usual card with her with home and mobile numbers on.

Obviously I am still worried - goes with the allergy, I'm afraid. She's never used the pen herself except on an apple or orange and may have other allergies beside nut. But she's very cautious about food and at her last party had a cheese sandwich when she wasn't confident about the food. I'm more concerned about how the other mum will feel if I don't phone her.

Chloe'smum it's up to you what level of risk you are prepared to accept for your child and how you balance that against your child's other needs. Also only you can know how reliable she is if offered something unsuitable. I've always taken the view that not to let mine go to other houses/ parties etc is depriving her of a normal life and not preparing her for a future without mum there. However when she was primary age I always spoke to the mum about it and gave them a sheet with OK food on if they wanted it. When she was very small I'd show the other parent how to use an epipen, using the trainer pen. I bought a mobile so I could be phoned if necessary and at the first party I didn't attend I confess to sitting in the car in a nearby road, but out of sight, so I could get there quickly if I had to. I was lucky that there were people I could trust, although there were always more playdates at my home than anyone else's. I still don't let her go many places at Christmas because I feel the risk is higher so the risk/benefit balance isn't as good.

As you can see I'm stil not confident about her using the pen herself. We always have a practise before she stays anywhere, even if its supposed to be a nut free place. If your child does have a reaction try and let her do it, then you will feel more confident. We started training in refusing food early and then had a gradual process of things like encouraging the child to remember to take the allergy kit themselves.

OP posts:

chloesmumtoo · 18/10/2007 11:22

Great, thanks for the advise tatt


tatt · 18/10/2007 11:35

just rung the other mother who didn't seem that bothered. Her mother has anaphylactic reactions to crab (but no epipen). She's changed the menu and has baking boys cakes so quite clued up.

chloesmum I'm a slow typer so was typing while you were explaining about your child's problems. Its obviously very difficult for you since your child has multiple problems. Have you got her on probiotics? I don't really know if they help or not. However I have noticed my child is more likely to have a reaction if they are ill so I do everything possible to boost their immune system.

I've also read some stuff recently that suggests dehydration makes allegies worse. I'm still trying to find out if this is internet trash or has any scientific foundation. I'll make sure my kid is well hydrated until I find out .

It is a great comfort to know there is someone you could leave your child with in a emergency. Sometimes people know more than you expect (like mum of my dd's friend today).

OP posts:

chloesmumtoo · 18/10/2007 12:38

No I havn't actually. Yeah I have heard about probiotics. Never really looked into it, trouble is I try to put as little different things into her body as possible! Thats interesting about dehydration. My dd is terrible for drinking. Esp at school because she can get away with it. Comes home with nearly 2 full bottles of which I have sent her with. Yeah noticed things are worse when she is ill also,everything gets worse. She is not allergic to grapes as had her skin prick tests done but when shes ill they have been known to make her throat itch so badly she will make horrid noises trying to scratch it.


chloesmumtoo · 18/10/2007 12:39

Glad everythings ok with the other mum by the way!

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