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AIBU?

Not to cater for allergy request at birthday party?

432 replies

coverp · 19/11/2023 19:30

DD birthday party coming up and have asked attendees for allergies/dietary requirements. Had the usual list back - some Veggie, one no pork, one nut allergy, one gluten free+dairy allergy.

I said - no problem, we will make sure that there are options for all but will be parents responsibility to ensure children are eating the correct thing (kids will be aged 2-5). It will be "normal" kids party food - sandwiches, crisps, vegetable sticks, fruit, yoghurt etc.

Had a reply separately from parent of gluten free / dairy allergy saying "sorry to be difficult, but we need there to be no gluten or dairy served at all - it's too dangerous for X as we can't guarantee he won't eat it. Sure you understand, thanks xx".

AIBU to say that this just doesn't work for us? I'm making the cake and have no idea how (or have any desire to learn) to make a nice gluten free / dairy free option. I was planning to buy little GF vegan cupcakes so that there is something there for the others, but DD has requested a specific thing for her bday which I've already started prepping.

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Am I being unreasonable?

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dammit88 · 19/11/2023 19:32

The cake would be quite easy to keep separate I think so you could definitely keep your plan on that

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EveWinter · 19/11/2023 19:32

As the parent of a child who would end up in hospital if you get it wrong I’d rather supply my own food, and did for all primary aged parties. So YANBU. Tell them you don’t want the responsibility.

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OhpoorMe · 19/11/2023 19:33

Nah that's daft. DD18m is gluten and dairy free and we would take our own chocolate etx and supervise her!

It does get harder as she gets older and realises she gets told no about things her friends are having though 😢 so anything you can do to offer nice treats would be appreciated!

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FfoxRedN · 19/11/2023 19:34

I agree with @EveWinter I would be suggesting that they bring their own packed lunch for their child to cater for their allergies to reduce the risk of them having anything they shouldn't!

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Jewelspun · 19/11/2023 19:35

Ridiculous for the mother to impose a restriction on everyone else.

Tell her no you can't do that but she is willing to stay and provide her child with her own food.

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Teatrayderby · 19/11/2023 19:35

I would just serve everything gf and df on a separate table to the rest of the food.

Do look at labels though as gf food often has dairy in it and vegan/dairy free usually has gluten.

My DC have several allergies and I always just bring my own but notify the party parents so they know not to bother catering or put any cake in the party bag.

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Hellocatshome · 19/11/2023 19:35

Seems a strange request. When mine were little anyone who had a child with allergies used to bring a packed lunch along for their child. I did make sure the party bags were named and appropriate for each child and their allergies but I couldn't cater the whole party to one kids requirements and the parents never expected us to.

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Cuthbertsrevenge · 19/11/2023 19:36

Have they not been to a birthday party before? They can’t expect parents to cater like that at every party their child goes to. They should take their own food and monitor their child. YANBU.

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Papillon23 · 19/11/2023 19:36

That's absurd. If they said they needed to come and supervise that would seem a reasonable compromise.

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PuttingDownRoots · 19/11/2023 19:37

The only way that could be done is a lunchbox for each child.

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UsingChangeofName · 19/11/2023 19:37

YANBU. Just remind her that you are happy to try your best to provide food for her but you are overseeing the whole party and will obviously be very busy so you will be unable to take on the responsibility of watching her individually the whole time.
As others have said, I think it safer for her to bring food for her dd and you are being very generous to do your best to provide things.

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RudsyFarmer · 19/11/2023 19:38

I would not want to have the responsibility for ensuring the child is not eating the allergic food. I would be asking the mother to provide her own food for the child.

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Hellocatshome · 19/11/2023 19:38

PuttingDownRoots · 19/11/2023 19:37

The only way that could be done is a lunchbox for each child.

Even then it needs strict supervision otherwise they will swap and share the food.

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Inthebleakmidwinter2 · 19/11/2023 19:38

I'd offer to buy separate food and keep it all in the packaging so parents can check it on the day, and say you will keep it separate from the rest of the party food. It's unreasonable to ask you to cater the whole party to one child's allergies.

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DuploTrain · 19/11/2023 19:39

That does seem strange.

Surely if their allergies are severe they would want to bring their own child’s food anyway and not risk cross contamination? And for those ages, presumably parents will be staying anyway so they’ll be supervising what the child eats?

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TeachFirstQuestionsLater · 19/11/2023 19:39

I would reply:

"I am so sorry but I am not comfortable catering for such a serious allergy if it is too dangerous to have non-GF and DF foods there too. I totally understand if your little one can not join us."

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Floralnomad · 19/11/2023 19:39

Just say that you will do what you can to eliminate x contamination but it’s not possible for you to make the entire party gf / df as your child wants her favourite foods at their party .

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Crunchymum · 19/11/2023 19:39

Just tell the parent that some of the food has already been finalised but they are welcome to provide their own food and / or stay and monitor what their DC consumes.

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InTheRainOnATrain · 19/11/2023 19:40

There’s a child with multiple allergies in DD’s class and they always bring a lunchbox including their own cupcake. No risk of anything going wrong that way and his mum says less worry for her.

This parent is being ridiculous! I would just say we can’t cater for that unfortunately but child is welcome to bring their own food and that they can stay to supervise.

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FairFuming · 19/11/2023 19:40

This is a crazy request. Are they family members? It's still crazy but a bit less cheeky to offer that. Definitely say what you will supply and suggest they bring a packed lunch too if they don't think that's good enough. Make it clear you would love to see them but will understand if they can't come under those conditions.

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CrispsandCheeseSandwich · 19/11/2023 19:40

I can't eat gluten and DH has a few anaphylactic allergies (nuts, peanuts and sesame) and when I read your thread title I was ready to say YABU because I thought maybe you weren't going to cater for them at all.
But no, no dairy or gluten at all is very restrictive. They need to be making sure he doesn't eat what he can't have.
I would make it really easy for the parents to identify the safe foods though.

I'm guessing your DD knows him through some sort of childcare setting? That won't be a completely gluten and dairy free environment. It just wouldn't happen.

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Beamur · 19/11/2023 19:40

GF is hard. You can't use any of the same chopping boards, knives, etc as the smallest contamination will be enough.
I don't think it's reasonable to expect someone else to make their child's party GF and dairy free. Kids Mum is going to have to come to terms with this and provide safe food and accompany their child until they are old enough to understand.

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TiramisuTastesDreamy · 19/11/2023 19:41

YANBU… the other parent needs to be realistic and accept it is not reasonable to expect all other guests to abide by her child’s allergies. This isn’t going to happen their whole life, unfortunately they need to get used to the fact that they need to plan ahead around food and help their child manage this situation. Surprised they have not offered to provide their own packed lunch

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sparklefresh · 19/11/2023 19:42

It's bad parenting on her part. She needs to supervise and make sure her child doesn't eat food they shouldn't, not impose a blanket ban on everyone.

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Bournetilly · 19/11/2023 19:42

TeachFirstQuestionsLater · 19/11/2023 19:39

I would reply:

"I am so sorry but I am not comfortable catering for such a serious allergy if it is too dangerous to have non-GF and DF foods there too. I totally understand if your little one can not join us."

Agree with this but just put at the end or you are welcome to bring along a packed lunch for them.

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