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mrsry

Friends/family Who Just Don't Care

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I'm sure this has been hashed over many times on this board, but I needed to vent a little about people who really don't care about what you can and can't eat.

More specifically, my in-laws. At other family gatherings with my own family and my cousin's in-laws, people really made an effort to make sure there was something I could eat or that they cooked something suitable for me. They understood and didn't want me getting sick.

On the other hand, my sister-in-law dropped off two boxes of Entenmann's carrot cake, fully knowing I couldn't eat it or even open the box! I went to brunch with my husband's grandfather over the weekend and his first choice was IHOP. When that didn't work out, he took us to a deli. I ordered vegetable soup, which was the only thing on the menu that looked promising...until I got it and realized that it contained mashed up barley and pasta! Then the grandfather and the waitress gave me a guilt trip for not eating it. I started having cramps after trying to fish out a few pieces of vegetable.

Whenever we go to dinner at his parents' house, his mom insists on ordering take-out without regard to whether it has gluten or not. They expect me to eat with bagels and sandwiches all over the table. We are at a point where we're just saying that if we they invite us over we'll eat before we go.

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I finally got to the point where I spoke with a professional counselor about this issue. This was before we added gluten to the family list but we still had severe shellfish, milk and some lesser issues. Family members would cook something and add our allergens into something that usually wouldn't contain that allergen. I got accused of over reacting UNTIL I went to the counselor. His reaction was over reacting!! :D (Not really) He gave me "permission" ;) not to eat their food again!

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I would eat before you go. Or bring your own food. Or stop going. Or start doing events that don't involve food.

I wish I could give you better advise, but it sounds like these are people who aren't making any effort to understand and trying to educate them is just going to be one frustration after another. It's not worth the extra stress in your life.

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Mrsry

My parents are really understanding about me not eating gluten. When they come to visit they always ask if I am going to make spaghetti (my dad really likes the gluten free noodles) or tacos. I actually have fun when my parents are here b/c I know they understand what I can and cannot eat. But

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People just don't understand.

It's part of what makes this forum & meeting other celiacs in real life so utterly invaluable to me.

Try to remember it really is due more to ignorance than cold-hearted apathy.

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I just loved my MIL's response when we went out for lunch once. "Can't you just get a sandwich and eat the insides?"

Meanwhile, they go to great lengths to accommodate their son's lactose intolerance (and he's able to take pills for that!). I'm also expected to interrogate restaurants about whether they've ever used their cookware with shellfish.

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Sometimes I have to get mad at my extended family ( not my wife and kids).

They have to realize and we have to continuously educate them that being celiac is not a choice. Its not like choosing to be vegetarian or eating only organic foods. Often people relate to things that way with allergies and this is the biggest problem I have. They must realize that its potentially life threatening. Maybe you have to make them feel a little guilty!

good luck!

I'm sure this has been hashed over many times on this board, but I needed to vent a little about people who really don't care about what you can and can't eat.

More specifically, my in-laws. At other family gatherings with my own family and my cousin's in-laws, people really made an effort to make sure there was something I could eat or that they cooked something suitable for me. They understood and didn't want me getting sick.

On the other hand, my sister-in-law dropped off two boxes of Entenmann's carrot cake, fully knowing I couldn't eat it or even open the box! I went to brunch with my husband's grandfather over the weekend and his first choice was IHOP. When that didn't work out, he took us to a deli. I ordered vegetable soup, which was the only thing on the menu that looked promising...until I got it and realized that it contained mashed up barley and pasta! Then the grandfather and the waitress gave me a guilt trip for not eating it. I started having cramps after trying to fish out a few pieces of vegetable.

Whenever we go to dinner at his parents' house, his mom insists on ordering take-out without regard to whether it has gluten or not. They expect me to eat with bagels and sandwiches all over the table. We are at a point where we're just saying that if we they invite us over we'll eat before we go.

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I hear ya! I have had very little understanding from my husbands family and for them life is food (nothing I can eat). The hardest thing in all of this has been dealing with them all. Some of them even chose not to invite me to dinners/events/parties because I can't eat what they offer (my husband and I are totally out of the loop since I got my diagnosis- I was even not invited to a bridal shower because of this; my husbands brother got married in December). They don't wanna deal with it at all and there isn't a thing I can eat on the table when there are family dinners. I always bring my own.

(I should add that I have told people I'll bring my own food and they still don't invite. Maybe they feel bad having me there not being able to take part in full. I do think it is bad not to even be able to make my own choice if I want to go to a bridal shower to a future sister in law or not and instead having them decide not to invite me (they invited my other sister in law and my mother in law).)

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Most people are just too busy with their own lives to care what we can or cannot eat. If it is brought to their attention, they just do not get it. & I will say that I can see that. The government is huge & has spent a lot of money to convince us how healthy wheat and dairy is for us. Most people cannot think anything else. I am slowly coming to realize that I am not quilty if I am not able to convince a person that gluten & dairy are not healthy foods, & then they get sick & die.

I do feel guilty that I am healthy while everyone else in my family is sick, especially my grandchildren, if hurts me to see them suffer, like I did as a child & into adulthood.

I am big on just taking my own food. I also refuse invitations where I think I will be uncomfortable. Life is too short. Do not put yourself in those positions to be belittled, just refuse the invitation, let hubby know you will meet up with them later - & do something fun that you will enjoy.

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My point of view comes from 29 years of being gluten free. I never expect anyone to make any special effort to accomodate me. This is the coping strategy that works the best for me.

I find out what the food arrangements are and do one or a combination of the following:

1) I eat before I go.

2) I bring my own food. If there will not be access to a microwave I bring a salad with meat, cheese, hardboiled egg, vegetables and my own salad dressing. If I think it is necessary, I will bring along my own silverware and placemat.

3) I check with the restuarant and determine if there is something I can eat. Example: I am going out this Wed. I know the only thing I can eat at this restuarant is a baked potato. I will supplement this with a salad.

I also let people know I am happy to join them for their company regardless of what is being served.

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MOST occasions I say, "Sure, we would love to come.... I will bring my own food so that you don't have to worry about my special diet requirements" and then I change the subject. I don't let them talk me into anything and I don't let them make me feel guilty. After work, perhaps you should put the ball in your husband's court and say, "I won't be able to join you tonight so after my husband takes me home, he will meet you at the restuartant." That way, if your husband wants, he can have dinner with his folks and you won't get sick. He might even get the message that YOUR health needs to come FIRST before making his folks happy.

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i understand my one aunt never has anything for me when i go there the aunt i live with always has to bring me something, i mean hello theres a martins that has gluten-free things there someone can just go and pick up something gluten-free that i can have, yeah and if we go somewhere that doesnt do gluten-free food i end up sitting there looking at whatever they have and "say boy that looks good" or i wish i could have that" LOL

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I do think it is bad not to even be able to make my own choice if I want to go to a bridal shower to a future sister in law or not and instead having them decide not to invite me (they invited my other sister in law and my mother in law).)

My sister in law is having a bridal shower with cupcakes as the centerpiece for each table! I mean, does it have to be that much in our face? I almost wish I hadn't been invited so I wouldn't have to make the choice of going and getting sick, or just not going and looking bad. How can I go to a party that revolves around cupcakes? I refused an invitation to go to her home recently, knowing it would be a gluten-fest. Sure enough, my husband went and said they gave him brownies.

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I gave up on everyone else and I am in control.

Wherever I travel, I take food with me. To hockey tournaments overnight, I've actually made a homemade gluten-free lasagna and taken our small microwave with us so I could enjoy a safe, decent meal. Elsewhere, I bought myself a nice two compartment lunch bag with strap so I can pack my gluten-free goodies - usually some cookies or scones, fruit, water, small tins of tuna, whatever.

Going to relatives - bring a dish - and get to it first (no cross contamination). Eventually they will get the point...or they won't...but you'll be safe.

My packing list...

Thai noodle bowls

small tuna tins

gluten-free chips - Riceworks or other

gluten-free snack bars

Homemade goodies - I freeze a bunch in small bags and grab as needed

Lately I've been making fish poppers - tuna or salmon with gluten-free breadcrumbs, egg, & spice, baked in a muffin tin (protein!)

gluten-free rice crackers - all flavors

Bob's Redmill scones off the sorghum flour bag (with added dry cranberries & ground flaxseed)

Whatever !

Honey, you aren't going to change other people but ultimately YOU are in charge of your own health. In my workplace there are birthday cakes, valentine's cakes, food at staff meetings - nothing I can eat (except the plain veggies without the dip - boring !). They order pizza regularly...ugh. I make myself gourmet coffee & eat my own food. Sucks sometimes, but I feel good ! <_<

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My sister in law is having a bridal shower with cupcakes as the centerpiece for each table! I mean, does it have to be that much in our face? I almost wish I hadn't been invited so I wouldn't have to make the choice of going and getting sick, or just not going and looking bad. How can I go to a party that revolves around cupcakes? I refused an invitation to go to her home recently, knowing it would be a gluten-fest. Sure enough, my husband went and said they gave him brownies.

I read somewhere that Celiac disease makes you find out who really cares and who your true friends are. I think that is true. You really see who cares for you or not. I don't expect people to make big efforts for me, but just a little question if they can do something for me or just a little thought on how to try to make me feel welcome or thought of makes a big difference.

I have learned from this that some doesn't have a clue on how to try to imagine what it is like to deal with a disease like this. I don't expect them to know, but at least try a little.

Even though we had the opposite thing happening with the bridal shower, I know how hard dealing with other people can be.

I never thought about how much the world evolves around food in general before I got Celiac disease. Food commercials, social gatherings. My husbands family wouldn't know what to do for social gatherings if it isn't about food. They would panic. ;)

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I too am in the habit of bringing my own food. I agree that you can't expect everyone to stop thier world for your allergies. My food allergy no-no list if very long and I don't expect others to understand it nor do I trust that even when they try it is done correctly. There is just too much hidden gluten out there. But the worst for me is my hubby refuses to remove the gluten from the house. :( He understands that I can't eat it and is supportive in that way. If we do go out to eat he is careful about picking somewhere I can eat. But one of his favorite past-times is cooking. specifically baking. Though he has tried the gluten free baking for me he just ends up frustrated. He really enjoys his homemade wheat pizzas. I am always trying to keep the CC out of the kitchen but it's darn near impossible.

I read somewhere that someone was saying they really do feel sorry for the family members of celiacs b/c it is difficult on them as well. IT's amazing how many are effected by celiacs whether they have it or just know someone who has it.

thankfully I have some friends that also have food allergy issues and I hang out with other's who eat wholefoods and generally leave out the wheat and dairy for health reasons - not out of necessity. While this is very nice, I agree, we are the soul people responsible for our health and happiness. And life IS too short!

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