Food Allergies

…but it could be worse.

February 24, 2022

Has someone told you this? Or are you saying it to yourself?

I'm Lauren

Navigating food allergies can be pretty difficult at first. This blog serves as a guide for parents of children with food allergies.  Food allergy moms have a lot to worry about. Being alone on this journey is not one of them! 


Ahhh the ‘could be worse’. This is a special form of mom guilt that creeps up especially in the beginning stages after a diagnosis for your kiddo. Or maybe you are lucky enough to have been told, “Well, look on the bright side, it could be worse” by a family member or friend.

Here is the thing: there is some truth to it. However, is it helpful? Usually, not. Of course, any type of medical mom is always cognoscente of the parents caring for children with sadder and more complex medical issues.  Each trip my husband and I take to our children’s hospital, we are reminded there are “worse” diagnoses than our daughters’.

However, this also is not the lifestyle we had in mind when we started our family. We did not think our children would be limited in their childhood due to a diagnosis. We did not see ourselves drowning in medical debt for years due to a diagnosis. We did not see ourselves medicating our children day in and day out. Shouldn’t we be able to mourn the loss of our family dreams and ambitions? I think so.

A really good friend (*cough* therapist *cough*) once said the following to me after I laid the, ‘could be worse’ line down when talking about Jenna’s EoE diagnosis.

So, let’s pretend you and I are in a terrible car accident and both of our ambulances arrive at the hospital at the same time. You have a huge gash on your leg that clearly needs cleaned out and needs stitches.  However, I have a bone sticking out of my arm and I am in and out of consciousness. They are indeed going to treat me first. But what happens if they don’t ever tend to you? Don’t they eventually need to treat you also? If not treated, you can lose too much blood, can lose your leg, and so on. Just because someone is in worse shape, doesn’t mean you should ignore your situation. 

Quite the point.

I want to be sure I make it clear, I am not suggesting, that we have it as bad or as worse as many other medical moms. Actually; once introduced to the medical side of parenthood, my heart feels for them more so. BUT…since when is it a competition of who has it the worst? We are parents and should just be empathetic and helpful to any parent struggling.

So, take a moment and mourn the life you had in mind prior to diagnosis. Face the fact that everything will be more difficult than anticipated. Cry, feel bad, and think through it. Tell that person, “Yes, you are correct. It could be worse but this is also pretty life-changing and I need some time to process before I can get back in grateful mode.”

After you mourn a bit..I bet you will put your Tough-Mom panties on and handle this like a Mother-Effing boss. Because whatever your diagnosis is… it’s tough. But so are you.

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I'm Lauren, your new Food Allergy mom friend.

My great grandmother made sure I had her peanut butter cookie recipe memorized before the age of 10. Good southern food was part of my upbringing.  NOW, I am the mother of two daughters with severe food allergies and a GI disease. That means cooking without eggs, dairy, wheat, soy, peanuts, and tree nuts. I can remember thinking, 'What am I going to feed a kid that is allergic to everything?!?'. However, after years of my youngest being on the elimination diet...I can assure you, living with food allergies is doable. 

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Need some help with easy meals and snacks?

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A week of safe meals!

Please note: I am not a doctor or healthcare professional. Always follow your child's doctor's advice. Always read food labels as ingredients can and do change from time to time. 

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