Jump to content
  • Sign Up
  • Join Our Community!

    Do you have questions about celiac disease or the gluten-free diet?

tarnalberry

Wheat Makes Me Paranoid!

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

For those struggling with shared kitchens, the modifications of the diet, and the social interactions after taking it up, I thought I'd share how even the experienced find it to be overwhelming sometimes.

I feel pretty comfortable with the gluten free diet - I've been gluten-free for nearly two and a half years, excluding a couple bits of testing at the beginning of that. And my husband and I keep a mostly gluten free kitchen - he just has one shelf for his oatmeal, cereal, granola bars, crakers, and bisquick. I don't find turning down food that I'm unsure of difficult, I'm prepared with food I can transport easily for long trips, and don't have trouble dealing with restaurants or friends' houses (either finding something gluten-free or just having water). I have very supportive family, friends, and co-workers, who would never dream of encouraging me to eat something that would make me sick or would belittle my committment to the diet, even without a biopsy. But sometimes, gluten still makes me paranoid.

My husband's family stayed with us for five days over the holidays. Besides the complications of cooking for the combination of my husband (not a huge vegetable fan, eats meals often based around meat, and isn't a fan of low-fat modifications to cooking) and my father in law (follows the Ornish diet - very-low fat, vegetarian diet, with lots of fiber), the unusual need to clean up after five people (though my mother in law was helpful, of course), and the self-imposed pressure of keeping family entertained, the kitchen was driving me insane! My father in law regularly has at least two LARGE bowls of Shredded Wheat for "dessert" every night. When we discovered, the first night, that he fills the bowls so full that there are crumbs everywhere, we tossed the first tablecloth in the wash, and he started laying out a large selection of paper towels out under his bowl and the cereal boxes. (Which, was both amusing, and quite touching.) My mother in law grabbed a couple of squares of the shredded wheat to try them (a two-brand taste test), and the next day, I found crumbs there too. So, I continue - three days after they've left, and the second table cloth put in the wash - to regularly check the table and be worried about crumbs.

One morning my mother in law made oatmeal for my father in law and brother in law, in an old stainless steel pan that I had left out specifically for that purpose. I had reminded her to only use stainless steel utensils two nights before, and wasn't too worried about her cooking, because she's been good about watching what's around. When I got up (after she had made breakfast for them), she had used a slotted plastic spoon for stirring (remembering, fortunately, not to use a wooden spoon!), and once again, I was worried, and cleaned it off thoroughly before the oats even had time to cool on the plastic.

At Christmas dinner, my brother in law got some bread from the large cutting board that is the only wheat-designated spot in the kitchen, and proceeded to pass a piece to my father in law, over the salad bowl. More panic! It was towards the end of the meal at that point, and I got up and just noted that it'd be easiest if I just moved the salad bowl. Neither was offended/upset/critical, and both apologized, realizing how easy it was to not even think about something that's second nature to them. (Which made me yet more nervous.)

And the day after Christmas, I worked with my mother in law in the kitchen to come up with a gluten free (and low fat, for my father in law as well) version of her very tasty banana muffins. I was skeptical that it would turn out acceptable to anyone but myself, but I turned around to find half my muffins gone right after they were taken out of the oven. When I noted the next morning that there were some muffins left, my brother in law corrected me, saying he had eaten five of them for dessert. While I wasn't in a panic over contamination, I was frustrated that the two dozen muffins I had made that I could eat (and I don't bake often, and had never gotten these particular muffins to turn out well enough that my husband would eat them), were gone that quickly - with one person eating so many at once. I usually pride myself on making food that anyone and everyone can share, and for once, felt a bit off-put that someone had eaten MY special food. (And subsequently felt a bit guilty for feeling selfish about something I'm usually not selfish about. ;-) )

Really, I had a good Christmas (even though it was the first hosting at my house, and if I've re-learned anything it's the advice my boss gave me earlier this year "lower your expectations"), and I'm only highlighting the negative here, but I wanted to share the experience particualrly with our newer friends here who are having troubles adapting to the diet either on their own, or with their friends and family. Some of us have been doing this for years, and it can often feel easy or old-hat. Some of us have incredibly supportive family, who go out of their way to keep us safe. Some of us may make it sound like dealing with this inconvenience gets to be a breeze. But even then, we're still wondering "is that speck on my counter wheat?", "how many of those crumbs fell on the floor?", and "why can't they just KNOW?!" And, I wanted to vent about it to people who would understand getting crazy over bread passed over the salad bowl. ;-) (Nowhere else, I tell ya... nowhere else!)

(Ok, ok, my silent dream is that, for five days (four nights only!), my in laws could just avoid wheat based products, but that would be a *major* deviation for my father in law, who is a creature of habit in this particular facet, and I'm not willing to ask quite that much.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"I was frustrated that the two dozen muffins I had made that I could eat (and I don't bake often, and had never gotten these particular muffins to turn out well enough that my husband would eat them), were gone that quickly - with one person eating so many at once. I usually pride myself on making food that anyone and everyone can share, and for once, felt a bit off-put that someone had eaten MY special food. (And subsequently felt a bit guilty for feeling selfish about something I'm usually not selfish about. ;-) )"

I deal with this all the time...

I have two roommates (both non-Celiac), and I do most of the cooking (especially during special events or group activities). They think I am "bonkers" about cleaning the kitchen and cleaning dishes before they go in the dishwasher...

I find myself getting ticked off whenever they eat "my food". Sometimes I have to settle down and think about why I am angry -- Am I playing the victim here? Am I really that upset at them or at the disease? What is going on? Am I acting like an adult or not?

Eventually, I forget about it (until the next time), but it can be frustrating when people do not understand that gluten-free food is a special thing, especially when you bake/cook/make it. It feels so good to make food and I love to cook for other people, it just "saddens" me sometimes when they eat all of the gluten-free I cook and I know I can't eat the stuff they cook...

I could probably deal with it better if they bought me an occasional gluten-free pie from Whole Foods or something :) Sometimes its hard not to feel a little selfish (especially 4-5 days in a row) I feel ya Tiff..

Such is life I suppose...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tiffany--Thanks for sharing that. This year I will be hosting my parents and then my husband's mom, sister, and her husband. Both our families live out of town, so any of them that visit are here for at least a few days. Your story made me chuckle because I can just see it all happening! Right about now, I hope you're getting some rest :) . Glad to hear you and your family had a nice holiday together.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh my gosh----I am so glad I'm not the only person who feels the EXACT same way!

I live with two twenty-something dudes that live off sandwiches and frozen pizza. I do most of my cooking from scratch, so I spend a lot of time in the kitchen, and I get SOOOOOOOOO paranoid about every last crumb. I've walked in to see my frying pans being used for grilled cheese, my knives being used to slice bread, my spices being used to season pasta, and my cookie sheets used for pizza. They have never really taken celiac disease seriously, even though they both have seen how sick I can get.

Then there's the issue with them getting into my food. I spent a whole day baking a pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving, only to have my boyfriend inhale 1/4 of it within 5 minutes of taking it out of the oven. Then he had the nerve to say it was "good, but not as good as the real thing"......GRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh, and when we're watching a movie and he eats some pretzals or whatever and then sticks his unclean hands into my popcorn bowl, then gets mad when I get upset that he's done that!!!!!!!!! Sometimes it's overwhelming, and even though I try to understand that they don't have to live with this disease, I still find myself upset about it. I guess I should be thankful I don't live with a couple of bakers, but geez it's hard to look at the bright side of this sometimes.

Thanks for letting me vent :blink:

Nadia

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
For those struggling with shared kitchens, the modifications of the diet, and the social interactions after taking it up, I thought I'd share how even the experienced find it to be overwhelming sometimes.

Thanks, Tiffany, for sharing this! i'm sorry that you had to be on constant crumb-watch! it is good for me, though, to read other people's stories because sometimes i get frustrated with myself for being so paranoid! ;) hope you get some down time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

THANK YOU SO MUCH for sharing this thought. I am COMPLETELY paranoid about crumbs, kitchen sharing. I live alone but I am having GREAT difficulty with visitng my parents and eating from their gluten filled kitchen. They seem to try but really DO NOT understand that I am nuts about the gluten factor and making sure that they do not even eat bread at the dinner table.

I find myself unable to relax even with this diet outside of my home. It is awful and I get very upset and I feel with no place to discharge my anger about it .I can deal with it at work -- but even that is neurotic.. I bring my lunch from home and sometimes I need to refrigerate my food which is in tupperware but before I put the tupperware in the fridge i have to wrap it in a plastic bag tightly. It makes me feel like I am a control freak. Anyone else do stuff like this?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is it bad to use the same bakeware as gluten foods? I can understand cutting boards (my dad cut up my gluten-free turkey on our wooden cutting board, that we've used for a million pizzas before I went gluten-free-oh, well). But what about things you put in the dishwasher? My husband uses kitchen the same utensils I do, but they get washed before I use them. I almost died of shock when he used my brand new hand mixer in a pool of flour and water (paper mache), but he reassured me it would be fine, it would get washed in the dishwasher. Do I need to be worried about that?

I share a kitchen with my husband and two sons (young, and uncoordinated). There is constantly crumbs everywhere, and even when they get cleaned up, they end up on the washcloth, or on the floor (and I am always the one to clean them). I am forced to touch gluten many times throughout the day, but I try to wash my hands. But I am the only one, and I often share chip bowls and popcorn bowls. Not to mention touching everything that gluten-y hands have touched (faucets, soap, counters, backs of chairs, hand towels, who knows what else? what if there's a crumb on the arm of my couch?). How can you do this diet without being a paranoid mess?

Lisa

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest nini

my hubby recently used my brand new pizza pan for his gluten laden frozen pizza... I about FLIPPED... now I cover it with foil.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
How can you do this diet without being a paranoid mess?

Lisa

If someone finds out - please let me know! While my mother goes to great lengths when I'm over to give me food I can eat, I am always SO paranoid!! Of course, I've seen her cut their bread and then touch my bread, dip wheat bread into the gluten-free gravy to taste test it, and make a salad w/o washing her hands from the last dish. To them it's nothing, to me constant paranoia!! Then when I have the nerve to speak up my father says "oh, don't be like THAT". So the last meal I had over at their house I just picked at and then came home and made myself a snack... of course, they were a bit upset that I didn't eat more of the food they went to great effort to make... Sigh... I keep telling myself it will get better (and next time I'll offer to bring something!).

So glad to know i"m not alone in this! :blink:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest nini
:D I can't believe how much foil I use now!

yeah I know... I have to use it in my toaster oven all the time now because even after I wash the rack, I'm still paranoid that he's left gluten crumbs stuck in there! I can't believe how often I clean out my toaster oven now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

He he. I use foil too, and my non celiac coworkers caught on and do it too because of the ease of cleanup :rolleyes:

Nadia

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest nini

I'm REALLY struggling with this issue today... don't know why. It just all of a sudden hit me how insensitive hubby appears to be over all of this. You would think he would at least get it because of his daughter, even if he thinks I can fend for myself... I dunno, I'm just really angry about my husband not caring if he leaves crumb messes around or not. (maybe because the only times I'm getting cc'ed is at home now)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm REALLY struggling with this issue today... don't know why. It just all of a sudden hit me how insensitive hubby appears to be over all of this. You would think he would at least get it because of his daughter, even if he thinks I can fend for myself... I dunno, I'm just really angry about my husband not caring if he leaves crumb messes around or not. (maybe because the only times I'm getting cc'ed is at home now)

I don't blame you about being angry. I see it as a respect issue, and right now (given that he's been gluten-free with you guys before), he's just being childishly disrespectful. Is he trying to get back at you for bringing this into the house? Is he trying to punish you for bringing this to his daughter? Is he just in denial over the whole thing? Is he just stupid? (Ok, the last one wasn't serious, but when you get angry, sometimes even the mean questions slip out...)

What does he say when you ask him why he is trying to get you and your daughter sick? Or at least why he doesn't care about it? I do hope that he has to deal with the consequences (help take care of your daughter when she's not feeling well, take care of what you usually do in the the house because you're not feeling well, etc.) Have you guys calmly discussed why he's doing this, what he thinks would help make it easier, and how it's affecting you and your daughter?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest nini

his excuses stem from mostly that he is working out of the house now. He used to work outside the home and could eat gluten when he was at work, but now he's home all the time and claims that he's being deprived. OR that he's trying to save us money and the gluten free foods that he likes are just too expensive, so for him to eat food HE likes, he buys junk. It's been hard to have a rational conversation about this because we are both holding onto some anger at the other person in regards to this diet. He thinks I "give him looks" whenever he buys something with gluten...

something is going to have to change, but as long as I'm continuing to not feel well I don't even have the energy to deal with this. I've broken down crying over it and he just gets mad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
his excuses stem from mostly that he is working out of the house now. He used to work outside the home and could eat gluten when he was at work, but now he's home all the time and claims that he's being deprived. OR that he's trying to save us money and the gluten free foods that he likes are just too expensive, so for him to eat food HE likes, he buys junk. It's been hard to have a rational conversation about this because we are both holding onto some anger at the other person in regards to this diet. He thinks I "give him looks" whenever he buys something with gluten...

something is going to have to change, but as long as I'm continuing to not feel well I don't even have the energy to deal with this. I've broken down crying over it and he just gets mad.

well, I can "understand" about his thinking he can't have it now that he's at home (but I presume he has a car/bike/feet, and can walk *outside* of the home if he WANTS to), but that doesn't explain why he doesn't clean up after himself. I'm curious if he even answers the "ok, so you can have the gluten-filled food here, but you just have to keep things clean - why would you keep making us sick even if you can have anything you want?" question.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nini, I understand your anger, I am dealing with the same thing. Only with me, it's my husband and two daughters (14 and 20), who leave crumbs absolutely everywhere and don't clean them up. I have been sick for over a week now, I constantly get glutened with them all at home over the holidays. It will get somewhat easier when Susie is back in school, and Ken goes to work at least two or three days a week (he works from home part of the time), and I hope that Janet will find herself a regular job soon (she doesn't have one right now). But no matter what, I feel VERY unsafe at home! Because they simply don't care or don't get it.

I can't give you any advice, because I haven't figured out what to do myself yet (move out?).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest nini

he trys to clean up after himself, but he's oblivious to the extent to which he contaminates things... I suppose I could say more but I haven't felt like bringing it up. His car isn't working and so he only goes out when I'm home...

I think I'm making it out to sound worse than it is because I'm not feeling well right now, usually I cook most of the meals and it's not an issue, but with him home more, he eats whenever he's hungry rather than coming home and me having dinner cooking...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tiffany,

(((Hugs)))) and sympathies over the family visit. My inlaws were here too, and were very conscientious about contamination, moreso than I expected, yet I did ask my dh to crawl out of bed one night and completely wash down the dining table which they had all just devoured a pizza at. I just couldn't get to sleep thinking about it, and my 3 yr old sitting there the next morning at breakfast, and everyone would have forgotten by then (ds is gluten-free too)....

Nini,

I've been reading your posts on your dh...is it possible he felt better on the gluten-free diet and doesn't want to admit it? The other possibility that comes to mind is that he is the kind of person to whom food has an emotional attachment, and he's having a hard time processing gluten-free-ness.

My dh was actually more upset by my going gluten-free than I was. It's not like going gluten-free was a walk in the park for me, but I was really somewhat relieved by the whole thing and the celiac diagnosis gave me hope that my life could actually get better. For dh, though, it was an end to things we shared, like baking cookies late at night, him making pizza (which he loved to do), and so on. He was angry about it for a long time, even though he was supportive of the diet.

I don't know if your dh is a reader, but i got mine a copy of Thich Nhat Han's book "Anger", and despite the rolling eyes when I gave it to him, 4 months later he is halfway through it, saying how much he likes it and that I should read it too, lol.

Merika

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Top Posters +

  • Upcoming Events

    • April 17, 2019 Until April 27, 2019
      0  
      April 17-27, 2020   For the past few years many of you have asked us to arrange a River Boat Cruise that will allow us to visit Amsterdam's famous Keukenhof Gardens at its prime time of the blossoming of the millions of Tulips and Hyacinths - alongside the windmills of the Netherlands.  With the participation of a minimum of 20 persons we have arranged an All-Inclusive Cruise from Antwerp to Amsterdam.  This cruise will not be offered to the public until January, 2019 and always sells out quickly.   THERE WILL BE NO MONEY REQUIRED NOR COMMITMENT FROM YOU until we have all the final costs and details.  If you are at all interested check out our website for as many of the details that we have as of this time.   We need your request to be placed on a list of interested participants so we can present that number to Uniworld to show we have the sincere interest in this All-Inclusive Bob & Ruth's Gluten-free Cruise.   PLEASE CHECK OUT OUR WEBSITE FOR THE DETAILED INFORMATION THAT WE HAVE AS OF THIS TIME.   http://bobandruths.com
    • April 24, 2019 04:00 PM Until 08:00 AM
      0  
       
       
       
      Celiac Emotional Healing Support Group
       
       
       
      Again you are invited to join Johnny Patout, LCSW for Baton Rouge's first emotional healing support group meeting to assist those living with celiac disease manage the emotional challenges so many of us face. Most often the emotional disturbances include depression, disinterest in normal activities, insomnia, grief, mood changes, anxiety, inability to concentrate, extreme concern about managing a gluten-free lifestyle and other emotional and behavioral challenges.
       
      The professionals at Jamestown Avenue Counseling Center created the emotional healing support group to give us a safe place to begin to process our emotions and support each other as we heal emotionally while managing celiac disease and the resulting autoimmune disorders.
       
      The emotional healing support group meets every Thursday, 6:00-7:00pm, at the Jamestown Avenue Counseling Center of Baton Rouge. Jamestown Avenue Counseling Center is located at 4637 Jamestown Avenue, Baton Rouge, Suite B-1. Suite B-1 is upstairs.
       
      The support group is free and open everyone managing celiac disease. For more information: emotionalhealingforceliacs@hotmail.com
    • May 04, 2019 Until May 05, 2019
      0  
      Nourished Festival is a family-friendly event with 10 locations across the US. Attendees will be able to sample food, health and beauty products, meet with companies, learn about the most current food lifestyles, receive coupons and attend educational sessions with industry experts. 
      Nourished Festival, managed by The Nourished Group and presented by Enjoy Life Foods, is the largest gluten-free, allergy-friendly and specialty diet event in the US, with 10 locations including.
      ABOUT THE NOURISHED FESTIVALS
      Managed by The Nourished Group, formerly The Gluten Free Media Group, The Nourished Festivals are the largest and fastest growing special diet consumer events in the United States. Started in 2007, the events have expanded from one to ten cities throughout the country. The festivals cater to anyone looking to lead a healthier lifestyle or those who follow a specialty diet due to autoimmune conditions, food sensitivities, allergies or intolerances. Offerings including Paleo, Keto, Plant-Based, Gluten-Free, Allergen-Friendly and Nut-Free products. The events provide the opportunity for attendees to sample and purchase new products, receive coupons, meet with brand ambassadors and attend educational classes with industry experts. For more information, visit http://www.nourishedfestival.com 
       
×
×
  • Create New...