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How can we manage the difficulties of having a child with food allergies?
The emotional aspects of managing a child’s food allergies will challenge even the best of marriages.

When a child is diagnosed with life threatening food allergies usually the mother becomes the "overprotective" parent looking
out against all enemies, and the husband is more than often viewed as one of those opponents.  The mom  monitors what
food allergens the husband eats and how well he cleaned up afterward.

Mothers will be told that they need to relax  while most fathers will be viewed as too relax when it comes to managing their kids
food allergies. What couples need to always remember is that both of you want to keep your child safe. Agree to disagree but
you must make the plan. Dealing with food allergies is not as simple as dealing with seasonal allergies that cause sniffing or
skin rashes.  Food allergies can kill a person in just few seconds after ingesting the foods they are allergic to.

Work together and trust each other. The main objective is to keep your child from having a anaphylaxis life threatening
reaction. Therefore, make sure you put in place a plan and stick to it.

Most importantly, accidents do happened.  Please don't hide from each other if you believe your child had an accidental
exposure to any of the foods he is allergic to.  Reactions usually happen immediately but sometimes it could be hours after

The good news is that it will take time, but couples can unite with the purpose of finding a way to manage food allergies in
their household. In order to do so, you must take the time to create a plan. The chart below will help you start the process.
What you will think and/or say
What to do
Is your fault that our child was born with food allergies.
Every day a new study is published about what causes  food allergies. Results
range from genetics, to living in an extra clean environment, food additives,
pesticides, and even the water we drink.  Bottom line, more research is still on the
works, so don't waste your time on this subject.
You don't even know what our child is allergic just don't care.
Both parents need to be exposed to the same facts and experiences regarding
children’s health. Both parents should go to the doctor appointments or therapies,
school meetings and other important activities so that they get the same
experiences and input.
STOP! Don't give him/her that.  Are you crazy?
Make a list of the foods your child is allergic to, and post it in a visible area in the
kitchen.  Include related products and ingredients in the list.  For example,  if the
child is allergic to milk include in the list margarine, butter, whey, casein.
Since our child was born with food allergies you no longer care about me?
Parenting a child with a chronic medical condition results in more on-the-job stress
than being a police officer.  Couples need to discuss what kind of help they will
situation doesn't allow you to pay someone to do the job, then make a list of the
chores and decide who will be responsible for it.
Why did you bring peanuts into the house?  How can you be so selfish?
This is an important rule to put in place and make sure that everyone in that enters
exposure: cooking,  kissing, touching door knobs, drinking from same cup.
You have to choose between having a 100% allergy free home or not.

Any foods and products that contain the food allergens. Sounds crazy? It might
safest choice.
allowed to go into. Keep in mind that cooking certain foods such as eggs, peanuts,
and milk could also affect the allergic child and caused a severe allergic reaction.
Why can't you understand  that your  mother is not capable of taking care of our
food allergic child?
Agree on who will take care of the child besides the two of you.
Why does everyone in the family needs to sacrifice?
If you have more than one child discuss if, when and how the non-allergic child will
be allowed to eat the foods that could kill the allergic kid.
Why did you leave the Epipen at home again?  You just don't get it.
Place a bowl, or a hook next to the home exit door and get used to placing the
Epipen's next to the home keys.  As soon as the child is old enough to carry
Epipen's make him/her responsible for "self carrying" the injectors.  
Do not underestimate your kids ability to do so.  Many kids start carrying the
epinephrine's when they enter kindergarten.
Why didn't you inject him/her and called 911?  Don't you get it that he/she could
have died?
Make an emergency plan and ensure everyone in the family knows what they need
to do even when the allergic reaction seems to be mild.
Why don't you trust me?
Trust will only happen if the couple takes time to discuss and agree on how to
manage food allergies and doesn't deviate from the plan. Discussing how to
manage your kids food allergies and respecting each others decision should be
number one on the list.
Coping with any life-threatening medical condition in a child is a heavy burden especially on the parent doing the bulk of the daily childcare. As a
own, and keep adding to it as situations come up. Review it on a regular basis to ensure 100% compliance.  

If your kids are 11 years of age or older, try to attend the once a year event called the "FAAN Teen
Summit". This event is not only for teens with food allergies. Parents and siblings are encourage to
attend the event with the food allergic teen and participate in discussions and presentations to help
better manage the related challenges and stress of managing food allergies as a family.
having kids with food allergies and marriage
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