It never ends. It seriously never ends.
The constant ignorance out there and the constant need to defend ourselves about our disease and other food intolerances.
What set me off this time?
An utterly ridiculous article on HuffPost titled "Why Do Your Kid's Allergies Mean My Kid Can't Have a Birthday?" written by one Carina Hoskisson.
Here's the link. Feel free to leave a comment.
It's time for a Gluten Dude breakdown.
Let's start with the title: Right away we have an entitled mom who thinks her child having a piece of birthday cake in school is more important than another child's health. And who's saying your kid can't have a birthday? Won't you celebrate at home? Isn't one cake party enough for him?
She says: All over the country parents are being asked to accommodate the specialized needs of other people's children thanks to the skyrocketing number of food allergies and food intolerances.
Dude says: And I wonder why this is. Could it be that half the things many of our kids are eating don't even classify as food? Have you read the ingredients of some of the things out there?
She says: We can't bring in homemade cookies or snacks; we're asked to buy commercially prepared goods. Even if you agree to bring in commercially prepared snacks, you're asked to make sure they're "gluten, nut, and egg-free" or some other combination of scary food exorcism.
Dude says: People with allergies can die from one bite. People with celiac disease have their intestines attacked by their own body with one bite. Your kid getting a cupcake is worth this risk to other kids? Really?? Tell me... what color is the sky in your world?
She says: To a certain extent, I get it. When I was in high school, a girl in my town died from eating a few bites of a Twix bar that happened to contain traces of peanuts.
Dude says: "To a certain extent" you get it? Someone died and you only get it "to a certain extent"?? No, that IS the extent. That's why it's so damn important.
She says: I would never endanger the life of a child over a peanut butter cookie; that would be ridiculous.
Dude says: Then what's the point of your article? Let's move on.
She says: However, I am rapidly reaching the end of my rope... One mom told me there were so many allergies in her children's classes last year that all she could bring was gummy bears and juice boxes. Let me get this straight: I'm supposed to feed my kids processed, preservative-laden food because your kid has a wheat allergy?
Dude says: In a perfect world, we'd do away with the food parties altogether. It's an old-school tradition that does not seem to have a place anymore. But if the teachers are insistent on having a food party and if processed crap is the only option to keep a kid safe (which we all know it's not), then yeah, you do it.
Again, I ask... why is your child getting a piece of cake more important than another child's health?
She says: I understand the problem with allergies because I have allergies; I'm allergic to egg whites. The difference is I don't demand egg-free items when I go to parties or to work events.
Dude says: YOU'RE AN ADULT. You have the willpower to say no. As strong as a celiac child may be, it may be tough if everyone is having a cupcake and he/she feels left out. There is temptation that a child may not have the strength to overcome.
Comparing yourself to a child is ridiculous. Actually, in this case, maybe it's not.
She says: I agree that a teacher should let all parents know about any life-threatening allergies in a classroom. However, my kid shouldn't have to forgo his birthday cake because yours can't eat it.
Dude says: Or you can teach your kid a lesson in empathy and tell him "another child's health is more important than you getting a piece of cake at school... but hey, don't worry... we'll have some awesome cake tonight." Is that so hard to do?
She says: Some schools have even gone the route of banning all classroom birthdays and celebrations, which is ridiculous.
Dude says: No... actually... it's not ridiculous. What's ridiculous is that at a time when food allergies are becoming more and more prevalent, there is still such a lack of compassion and understanding.
Look... I'm all for balance and I'm all for letting our kids socialize at school and have some fun. But why does it need to be based around food? The only reason is because it's always been done that way. Change takes time. It's time to start.
She says: Let's stop the allergy insanity, and let the rest of them eat cake -- the lovely, homemade, buttery, gluten-stuffed cake.
Dude says: I have no more words for this woman. I just hope her kids grow up with more tolerance, more empathy and more understanding. Somehow... I doubt it. Cycles are hard to break.
When the Disney fiasco happened last year, the common argument against us was that "this is the pussification of America." It's like they all got the same memo or something.
Well, if standing up for something you believe in... if standing up for someone who is portrayed as weak and inferior because he has food allergies... if that's "pussification," then I'm the biggest p***y in the world.
Oh... and here's the topper. As I'm writing this post, some bonehead posted this on Twitter: Kids teacher just emailed saying only gluten free snacks in the classroom. MY KID DOESNT HAVE CELIAC DISEASE! Ugh, hippies drive me INSANE.
Yep... that's us... just a bunch of hippies with a made-up disease.
So sorry for the inconvenience.