Hi! I'm new to the forum. It seems odd to come to strangers for such personal problems, but aside from the love and support form my husband, I'm not getting much feed back. So here I am!
I've been gluten free for about five months now, aside from multiple accidental glutenings. My husband (not gluten free) and I have ironed out the kinks in our own kitchen, and I finally feel safe when I cook and eat in my own home. The problem arises when my dear friends want to cook or bake for me. My one friend is studying to be a nutritionist, so she feels pretty confident in her philosophies about gluten free eating and other food intolerance issues. And my other friend claims to be gluten sensitive herself (hasn't been tested), however she frequently indulges in foods containing gluten. Whenever I try to explain my situation and how severe my sensitivity is, I feel shot down by them because of their pre-existing notions about gluten sensitivity. Even one crumb can send me into a tailspin of symptoms for days on end!
I have been glutened twice by my sweet nutritionist friend who has gone out of her way to prepare gluten free foods for me. Once was because she was eating gluteney brownies with one hand while preparing my food. And another time was because she used uncertified quick oats in cookies. She said she checked the label and wheat wasn't listed, but that doesn't rule out cross contamination. And my body, as we speak, is arguing her point to the contrary!
Both friends believe that the terms Celiac and Non-Celiac refer to the severity of symptoms. In their mind, only Celiacs experience such severe symptoms.
I have a degree in English/Lit, so I'm a person who has learned to research extensively (and secretly enjoy it). I've read hundreds of articles and books on the subject of Celiac and Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity. How can I explain these issues to them without alienating them or rejecting their offers of kindness? I love my friends so dearly, and as an introvert with only a few close friends, I'd hate to lose them over something so trivial.
Because I don't have Celiac disease, I don't have to worry about the increased risk of intestinal damage, cancer, etc. when I accidentally eat gluten, but even still. Is it worth the ten days of misery not to hurt someone's feelings?