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JennyC

Do You Correct Friends & Family...

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I'm just curious whether others speak up when someone in their social circle calls celiac disease an allergy. I can see letting it slide if it was an acquaintance, but I'm wondering if I should have said something when my son's grandmother called my son's condition an allergy. I want to educate people, especially close friends and family, about the disease but my son's father's family does not seem too interested in learning. They put no forethought into their plans when they invite us over. They don't even to think about him enough to get chips he can eat. (How hard is that?) They have no idea about cross contamination. They just don't think, period. That is the way they are, as it has never been a problem for them. So would you correct your MIL?

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I wouldn't bother. Besides, if she thinks he has a wheat allergy, she might even be more careful than thinking it's celiac since wheat allergies have immediate reactions that can cause death!

People just don't care to know the details. If they're interested, they'll ask.

Just be sure you always bring food for him.

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Honestly, I don't correct people. I have found that they respond better when i say allergy. I only say intolerance and go into details with friends and family and anyone interested.

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One more thing,

I don't think it is that important to correct her/them. The most important thing is that they understand WHY there is such a need to not cross contaminate. I would concentrate on teaching them about what needs to be done and if they are just not going to do it then bring snacks and food with you for your son. This is a pain, i do realize, but you cant change people and your son is the priority here. My mother was very resistant at first but she eventually came around as she was able to see that I wasn't sick anymore and was feeling so much better. She now is EXTREMELY careful in the kitchen. So wiping out the ignorance is key here BUT start with the basics like what can/can't he eat, and why, and then about CC.

Good luck!

-Ali :)

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I do not correct people, basically most people do not really care what you are eating, including your family. As long as they can continue to eat what they want & remain ignorant, it seems to keep them happy. Of course I have had a life long battle with "food Allergies" so I would take my own food long before I knew anything about gluten...

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Guest j_mommy

With family I say " It's different from an allergy but you treat it like one". People I don't know well that ask, I don't correct them unless they really are interested in hearing about it!

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I think I'm the lone dissenter. I do correct people, if they're people I care enough about to feel that they really need to understand. I've had a couple of friends call it an "allergy." My response was "It's not an allergy. It's an autoimmune disease, and if it's not treated it can lead to diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid dysfunction, anemia, osteoporosis and cancer." I guess I'm hoping to scare them into understanding, lol! But for people that don't really need to know....or obviously don't care to know....I don't correct them.

Maybe you could buy Dr. Peter Green's book on celiac disease and give it to them (beautifully wrapped) as a holiday gift! Let Dr. Green correct them! :-)

Rho

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I would not correct most people, but I figure his family should want to understand. :rolleyes: So, how do you guys tackle cross contamination with family? I usually make sure that the food itself is gluten free and hope for the best. My son is a picky eater, and I definitely don't push him to eat at other people's homes. I can be more direct with my family, but not my boyfriend's. It's ridiculous. My son's health is the priority. So what questions do you ask the cooks about their food preparation?

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Take Your OWN Food, I would not eat fruit that someone cut up on their chopping board...

AND, I would not waste my time asking questions, because they are not going to get it & really they do not care...

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I am really lucky. My MIL, who can be a pain, was so sweet and actually ordered the GIG product binder for me as a gift. My mother got my son a gluten-free cookbook for kids.

My MIL is a good cook, so I like eating her food. But after I was off gluten for a few months, I started getting sick from hidden gluten -- in tupperware, CC, you all know what I mean.

So I started educating. I gave my MIL a couple packages of Pamela's and Bob's Red Mill baking mixes, which MIL now uses. She bought the soy sauce I use and she bought the squeeze bottles of mayo and mustard so she won't cook with something that has had a dirty knife in it. Really, I am so lucky.

But it's really hard to cook gluten-free in a gluten-containing kitchen, so in your case, JennyC (OP), I think there's no way to trust their food, unless you know it's a newly-opened, uncontaminated package of X from Kraft or Oscar Meyer or Doritos that you know for sure is gluten free. Good luck!

I would not correct most people, but I figure his family should want to understand. :rolleyes: So, how do you guys tackle cross contamination with family? I usually make sure that the food itself is gluten free and hope for the best. My son is a picky eater, and I definitely don't push him to eat at other people's homes. I can be more direct with my family, but not my boyfriend's. It's ridiculous. My son's health is the priority. So what questions do you ask the cooks about their food preparation?

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I correct people, because it seems silly to me to leave people in ignorance. Unless it's a detailed discussion, I usually say, "It's not an allergy, but an autoimmune reaction in the gut. But you can deal with the diet kinda like an allergy." This is to convey that it's similar to an allergy in seriousness and that there is an immune response, but also convey that it's *auto*immune.

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I typically don't correct them unless they ask for more information. The treatment is the same and very few people know about the difference between IgA, IgE and other reactions. I never knew there were reactions other than allergies before I got celiac, either. I don't find it very important to tell people the scientific details of what happens to my body. Issues like CC I feel are much more important to mention, and if you're only got time to tell them about one issue, I'd rather talk about CC.

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I don't see this as any different that any other correction you have the opportunity to make in a conversation. If someone mispronounces a word or uses poor grammar or gets a detail wrong, you have to make a judgement as to whether the error is important enough to the discussion to be worth the halt in the conversational flow. There are lots of factors that influence that decision. While there are people who korrect everything, I usually try to avoid them.

I sometimes use the word allergy myself when I think that will get the key point (I can't eat gluten) better than the more technically accurate but perhaps misunderstood autoimmune explanation.

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It depends on who it is I am talking to. With people, that I'm very close to like friends, family and students, I usually always correct them. If it is a stranger I will definitely correct them, when they approach me with that "Did you know, you could do 'x' to heal your allergy?" In that case I will definitely educate them, that what I have is no allergy and you can't cure it. Other than that it depends on the subject...

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I do correct people but I don't dwell on it. I just say that an allergy is totalally different than celiac disease. Is they ask more ??'s then I go into detail but I've found family to be the least who ask ???'s as they think it may involve them in to having to do something special.... I have friends who are more involved than family.... The kids friends parents have our kids for sleepovers & they either ask or buy a gluten-free breakfast food or they have us bring it with them. Now the in-laws will not even buy a decent bag of chips for the kids so when they go there , they never stay long as there are no goodies for them to snack on....I have mentioned that the kids can have this or that product but they say oh we don't like that stuff..... I just want to hit them up along side the head....... as if it would hurt them to buy a $.99 bag of chips!!!!

I think by far family has to be the worse.....

mamaw

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