Teens in the Real World
  Food Allergies in the Real World  

A Shout Out

By Carlo. Age 14. Allergic to milk, eggs, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, sesame, fish, and shellfish.

 

My friends are quite helpful when it comes to helping me manage my food allergies. They do a variety of things that help to make me safe, and also comfortable. They do this mostly in the lunchroom and when we’re out to eat. They also sometimes help me in emotional ways that they do not even know about.

When school is serving a lunch that they don’t like, they unknowingly make me feel good about bringing my own lunch. They remark on how I always know what I’m going to have that day and that I always have something good. They do these things to help me without even knowing they are doing it.

In the lunchroom, my friends help keep me safe. I sit at a normal table because my school doesn’t have a milk-, egg-, wheat-, peanut-, tree nuts-, soy-, and sesame-free table; no one in their right mind would limit their diet to mine. I don’t mind sitting with my friends, because they are always careful about what they eat around me.

They will not eat food like eggs, peanut butter, or a sesame seed bagel around me because they know that it is not safe for me. They keep their distance, and they make sure to eat without getting food everywhere. They wash their hands after lunch, and they listen when I ask them to please stop eating something around me.

My closest friends have all asked to be taught what to do in an emergency, and I have taken it upon myself to teach the others at least the basics of what to do. Some of them know how to administer epinephrine, and the rest know to tell an adult what is happening. I am confident that my friends would know what to do in an emergency; they could help save my life.

My friends are also just understanding and kind about my food allergies all the time. This is because they care so much about me and they want to know more about me, but they also feel that it is their duty to protect me. When we’re hanging out, they are always conscious of what they say. They refrain from saying things that will hurt me. They are as good out at a restaurant as they are in school, which is really helpful because I know that, even out of school, I have someone to count on to take care of me.

My friends will always be there to take care of me because they genuinely care. They would do anything for me, and I would do anything for them. They have taken it upon themselves to be as good as they can, and I thank them for that. They have done wonders for my feelings, and I want them to get the recognition that they deserve.

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