Monday, March 12, 2012

Multiple Children, One Allergic.

In my house we only have 1 child with food allergies. As of now, we have 2 children. Some may not know what to do in that situation. In our home, our children are young so out of necessity we have had our daughter follow our son's diet. We even have her follow his diet if my husband and I eat something that our son is allergic to, although that does not happen very often. But, over the years I have come to realize that unless my son is not around, my daughter should always eat the same as her brother. I mean, when she gets to be in high school or whatnot she will have more of a choice of course but for the next many years she will follow his diet around him. Having everyone eat one food and him eating another would just single him out even more. He will have to be singled out in public or at schools but the one place he should fit in completely is home. We may not be allergic to the foods that he is but we should still show him the respect we expect him to show others. I have seen him when we go out to eat or to someone's house for dinner and they do not cook for his needs. He and our daughter will be the only one not being able to eat the big meal while he gets stuck with vienna sausages since I carry them around in case we eat out on the fly. He will look at the pizza and feel bad because he likes pizza too, just he cannot eat that kind or he likes ham too but that was cured with butter. All the other kids get the yummy deserts and salads but he has to eat something that I brought for him that he eats at times like this.  So, that is why I feel that he should be able to eat what everyone else at the dinner table is eating when at home. Or at least what the other children are eating. I am happy that we have done it this way because not once has he ever been the ONLY person eating something different. He always has his sister and she usually does not mind. She is still pretty young, so she has her fits sometimes when she wants what is on someone else's plate and not hers but that is a rarity.

Having more children after your first with food allergies can be a hard decision. Let me tell you, we had a hard time deciding to have our daughter. We are having an even harder time deciding on a third. For me it is not just deciding whether to add another member to our family which is huge decision on it's own. But, it is deciding if we are willing to go the whole year after it is born being extremely cautious, keeping the allergens far away just in case. Then going through all of the testing to find out if they have an allergy. Then what if they do have food allergies? Can we handle two children with such allergies? Can we try to avoid the allergies in any way? Do we really want to do this? I have finally come to my decision and my husband is still debating. But, we will know soon whether we will try for another. We have been deciding this for a good 2 years now. I have been put down when people hear that I have even thought about having another child. I have been told that with the health problems in my son, we should not have any more children. And, I took that to heart and believed it at one point. But, every child is precious. It may have health problems but is that a reason that they should not exist? NO is my answer!

1 comment:

  1. Brit, don't let others put you down. You are an intelligent woman. I personally see women with 3 or more children every day, and those women (while they love their children very much) have so much less time for themselves, fulfilling their own dreams, and accomplishing their goals.

    When we are young, we think that the mere act of parenting is all we need to feel fulfilled. But as the children get older and their need levels rise (along with their independence) it becomes more and more strain on the family. It becomes more strenuous on the marriage, too.

    I love the last few sentences in this blog. It shows your heart and your passion for children. But what about POURING all that love into the two you already have? When there is three there is the Middle Child. If the third one is allergic, how is it going to affect Hannah that she is ALWAYS going to have to be the one compromising?

    You and I are Oldest children in our sibling lines (I count the sibling I grew up with). So you and I are used to being right, being the smartest and most determined. You and I were the popular kids. But what about all the things that we got to do that our siblings didn't?

    Maybe ask Shane what it was like to be the middle child. Interview Kailee, too. Take the allergy aspect as one component (an important one), but also make sure to take into consideration of how this will affect your future education and career goals, how the baby's possible health will not only affect the baby's quality of life, but also his/her siblings.

    The last sentence of your blog sounds like you are arguing against abortion. No one is telling you to terminate a future child. But pouring into these two and allowing yourself to acknowledge that it's enough.

    You have such a beautiful heart, Brit. You are so full of love and compassion. I love watching how you're raising your babies and how you stick up for your son. I love reading about how you have Hannah stick to his food list so he doesn't feel left out and how she is mature enough to accept it (mostly).

    I think your heart and love are so filled with these two. They are so blessed to have you. I have watched moms go from feeling filled from their babies, to feeling drained from them. And sometimes the difference is that having one more...

    I love you, Sweetheart. I know you'll make the best choice for yourself and for your family. :)