Sep 10, 2017

An Open Letter From the Mom of a Child with a Food Allergy

As you prepare to send your children to school, if they don’t have life-threatening food allergies, try to take a second to think of us parents who do.

I am getting ready to send my son, my only child, off to school and I am relying on his teacher and other parents and students to keep him safe so he comes home to me and his dad every night.

It’s terrifying.

Food can kill him. In minutes.

According to Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE), six million children in the U.S. have food allergies. FARE states that: “Every 3 minutes a food allergy reaction sends someone to the emergency department.”
Since my son’s diagnosis six years ago, we’ve been so incredibly blessed to have supportive family and friends – and two safe years at his elementary school – but his world will continue to get a lot bigger.
Seeing memes and comments about being angry with no nut or no peanut policies and other safeguards the schools are legally required to put in place – to keep kids like mine safe – is hurtful. They come out every September, like clockwork.
I know it’s hard to have a picky eater; I have one too. I’m not without sympathy.
But I am asking, and I think I speak for the many, many other moms and dads whose children deal with life-threatening food allergies, to just work with us; ask us questions. Try to have empathy. You are modeling empathy for your children, too.
As a food allergy parent, I’m asking for your cooperation for a reason; not to make your life harder.
I’m doing it to have another day, another birthday, another Christmas, with my son.
It’s that simple. And it’s that important. This year, reach out to that allergy parent in your child’s class. I’m sure he or she could use a friend.

Sincerely, An Allergy Mom

Metro Detroit Mommy Writer: