Teens in the Real World
  Food Allergies in the Real World  

Dating Alternatives

by Courtney, age 14. Allergic to shellfish.

While my parents consider me too young to date one-on-one, I do spend a lot of time out with friends. Since I'm allergic to shellfish, we often pick burger or pizza places that don't serve any seafood, so I'm totally safe.

If it's somewhere more formal, someone in our group will call ahead and speak with the manager of the restaurant to make sure everything is all set, and clarify any accommodations that might need to be made.

When there's a new friend with us, I found the best approach is to let them know about my allergy while we're making plans. That way it's easy to take my allergy into consideration when choosing a hangout spot.

Even though I don't technically date, my friends do a great job looking out for me. Sometimes they've even been the ones to remind me to notify restaurant management of my allergy! They all know how to use my EpiPen®. It's nice to know that my friends care so much, and so far, I've had no reactions when I’m out with them.

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