Thursday, October 11, 2007

Pot Luck

I was thinking about the egg-milk-nut free dessert I was taking to an event this weekend and felt a twinge of resentment. I can't say this is the first time I have felt this way. For a long time we avoided any events involving food (which left us out a lot) but as Max got into preschool avoiding events was not as easy. Max thrives at parties. He loves having tons of other kids and adults around to interact with. He is not attending events for the food; he NEEDS the social interaction.

At first I always brought my completley safe and dare I say delicious dish with a smile on my face. I even felt a little bit like a show off, as if to say "See all the great things I can create without milk, egg, or nuts?" But as the events increase and so do the needs of my two children and husband, my smile has waned. I am taking a dish to pass as well as packing a full meal for my two kids. Granted my husband and I generally eat what others bring but I am still needing to pack a complete nutritious meal for my kids, of which they will probably not eat much. Sometimes I feel "put out."

This kind of self-pitying isn't pretty. People don't like to hear the "oh poor me's." Even among other food allergy parents, self-pity is met with opposition. On one of the online groups I used to belong to (Parents Of Food Allergy Kids); parents allowing themselves or their children to feel sorry for themselves is taboo and is met with harsh criticism by other members. (I no longer belong to this group as I always felt "put in my place" after posting.) A vent posted on a listserve group I subscribe to was met with another member's reply that "venting was not constructive."

So, I guess there are two things at work here. One: How do you deal with social events involving food? How do you feel about it? And Two: How much self-pity, venting, resentment, negative feelings in general do you allow in regards to your child's food allergies? Is any amount healthy?


Angie said...

I read that listserv post of "venting not being constructive" and I thought it was a bunch of crapola. I feel like a couple years ago, that wasn't the case on the listserv. Also, remember that it was just one person saying that.

I think support (emotional) is so important. I love to vent and frankly, I like to hear others vent so that I know I'm not alone with some of my negative feelings. I'm sorry I didn't say so on the listserv but I often just skim those messages.

Please feel free to email me ANYTIME to vent. I feel freaking put out too. I mean, all the stuff that we have to pack just to leave the house for an hour is crazy. It sucks.

So, you know you can find my email on my blog, please use it!


Boom said...

This is so interesting.

My kids don't have food's a whole new world to me! Never occurred to me, quite frankly.

Don't your friends kick in and make foods that will work for your kids? If I was your friend, I'd certainly make the effort.

This stinks. I hate it for you. You're so MANY events revolve around FOOD!? Poo. :(