This is a statement that most of us who have or care for someone with food allergies, hears all of the time. From my experience, this usually is delivered two ways. One comes from a sympathetic friend or relative as they have a genuine look of concern on their face. The other comes from a person that says it in a way that suggests that we are all crazy and making something out of nothing. This is the response that gets my blood boiling.
Recently, I have encountered this reaction twice. One person, even rolled their eyes. We were discussing a mutual friend who has a few allergies but whose children has extensive food allergies. This person whom I was speaking to does not know about my particular situation so I felt like they were being even more honest with their response. Which is disturbing. And we were talking about true allergies, as diagnosed by a doctor, not some imagined dislike for a food. Even if we had been discussing a food intolerance, the reaction was completely unfair and cold.
It seems that we all have an uphill battle that we are fighting. It adds insult to injury when people treat our disease as if it were not real. Just because food allergies were not formerly as prevalent as they are now, does not make them any less significant. And they are on the rise. In my world, they seem to be increasing daily. Sadly, more and more people are contacting me and calling me seeking support and what little advice I can give. It is so painful to hear all of the stories and to know how difficult this situation is for so many. And often we are not talking about one or two food allergies, now it seems that people have a list of things that could kill them or make them very sick. Again, I am so thankful to have access to a forum like this blog and many of those that I follow.
People tend to assume is that our children are allergic because we have food allergies. Again, this is not always the case. I think that people do not want to accept that something needs to be done. People are getting sick. Ignorance is no longer bliss. Is it environmental? Is it the medications that we take? Is it the overuse of pesticides? Could it be caused by over processed food? There are no answers but I hope that someday, we will have a cause. And people are going to have to wake up to what is going on in the world.
Until then, gravitate to those who show genuine compassion. And do not get hurt feelings by those who are wearing blinders. Hopefully, education is the key to ending all of this insanity!