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Celiac & Teens

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I'm finding from most of the comments from other moms that their kids are diagnosed as small children or at least preteens. My daughter was just diagnosed at 14. I think I'm having a harder time adjusting than she is but maybe I'm just fooling myself. She just knows she feels better (just three weeks in). Wondering if anyone knows of a book addressed to celiac teens? I know as time goes on she will have more questions and will at some point will be leaving the safe haven of home. For now, I'm cooking everything. I can't seem to get her interested in learning how to cook it for herself. Again this is all new. Any suggestions?

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My son is 16 (dx at 10). Just a few things off the top of my head: it's pretty typical to feel good and optomistic, and then feel overwhelmed and grieving -- so be ready for that, with her and with yourself. It's really important to keep a positive outlook. It's important you never, ever condone cheating.(She'll cheat. It will make her so sick, she'll never do it again) Resist the urge to feel sorry for her. (I remind myself that no matter how inconvenient, isolating, or hard a gluten-free diet can be -- parents of children lost to leukemia, kidney disease, etc. would have given ANYTHING to have a disease that you can survive and manage)

Summer vacation is a good time to work on slowly building cooking skills. You are correct -- she needs to know how to cook, in order to go out in the world without you. Start with simple stuff like pasta, eggs, maybe one or two great cookies (the Good Eats guy on Food Network has THE BEST gluten-free choc chip cookie recipe!). There's lots of time. Invite her friends over for a fancy dress-up dinner party. Assume many mistakes will be made! But what a great way to encourage adventure, independance, and novelty.

Encourage her to join one of the many teen-oriented celiac lists. There's a whole thread here for celiac teens, too; more out there to be found. Someone else might have a teen-specific book but I don't know of one. There's a project for somebody!!

Good luck, and hang in there

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