Teens in the Real World
  Food Allergies in the Real World  

Going Out on the Town

By Laura, 20. Allergic to milk and fish.

Going out is an enormous part of college; it is how you make friends, and it makes college fun. It also lets you relax from classes. I prefer to go out with at least one person who knows that I have food allergies, so that I have someone I can turn to if I begin to get sick. If people know that I have allergies and I become sick, they are usually very understanding and are always willing to do whatever I need them to do. If people don’t know about my allergies, they tend to become frustrated because they don’t understand why I don’t just ignore feeling sick. In any situation, it’s important to have your friends by your side.

I’m lucky that a lot of my friends don’t make food a central part of the evening. In fact, I have hardly met anyone at college who does. I think this is mostly because by the time everyone goes out, people have already eaten.

One of the most important things you can do when you go out is always carry your medicine, just in case. I forgot mine once, and I was very uncomfortable every time I thought about it not being with me; I was aware of its absence the entire night. It bothered me because I knew if I needed it, I wouldn’t have it.

Even though going out is a fun part of college, there are many more ways to make friends, even before you set foot outside your dorm. I made many of my really good friends through my dorm freshman year. They now know about my allergies, and I can always call on them if I need help. If I had not taken the opportunity to meet my hallmates, then I would not have the support group that I have at school today. My friends are my support group and my safety net, and they are always there for me – both when we’re hanging out and when we’re going out.

Want to know more about alcohol and its effects on epinephrine?

Check out the article in our Food Allergy 101 section.

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