Thursday, March 12, 2009

What About Me? Siblings of Special Needs Kids Article Link

My fellow writer and blogger (and writing class bud) Tiffani Hill-Patterson wrote this article about the sibs of special needs kids for Birmingham Parent Magazine.

Often, we need to make accomodations for our food-allergic kids that may negatively affect their non-allergic sibs (like skipping the ice cream parlor or what have you). We need to make sure that our non-allergic children get extra attention now and then, or get to visit an off-limits place without their sibling once in a while.

For example, my youngest daughter is extremely supportive of her sister and is always on "nut patrol" for her, but she really wants to eat at IHOP. At 6 years old, the "big, fluffy pancakes" seem like the ultimate treat to her. We normally avoid breakfast places like this--too many tree nuts. So my husband or I are planning to take our younger daughter to IHOP on her own this weekend.

Since I have one allergic child and one who is not, the "What About Me?" story hit home for me and I imagine it will for many of you. The balancing act isn't easy--but it's very important to make sure we keep things as "fair" as possible.

In her article, Tiffani explores a lot of the same stuff we go through as FA parents. Check it out!


Tiffani Hill-Patterson said...

Thanks for the link, Jenny. Sounds like your daughters do a great job caring for each other! Which means you're a great mom. :-)

Jenny said...

Thanks, Tiffani. I may not always succeed, but heaven knows I try. :)

And BTW, right back at 'ya! Great article.

Anonymous said...

I'm finding that taking my other children out with out Simmi is rather difficult right now because my husband is away. He has been away for almost three months now, so needless to say, they are dieing to be able to go out to a movie, or go to breakfast for some eggs or anything where we don't have to worry.
Striking that balance is so important, but how do you do it when you are pretty much housebound with no other support system in place? I have been wondering that for sometime now.

Jenny said...

Angela brings up a good point about how important it is to have a support system when one of your kids has a medical condition or special need. We don't have a lot of family in the area, so this has been an issue for us as well, though I'm not in Angela's exact situation.

Anyone have any tips for her on how to get the support you need, esp. when one partner is away?

For me, teaming up with other mothers in the area has been helpful--they can watch the one child while you take the other one out. What about anyone else?

Unknown said...

So, at IHOP .. is it b/c of the pecan syrups and such, or are there tree nuts in their pancakes? We haven't been to an IHOP in a long time, but we used to go there lots?

Jenny said...

The pecan syrup, the nuts used in some of the pancakes/baked goods/ name it. Too much cross-contact risk so we don't chance it. It's hard to enjoy your breakfast when you're worrying about it.

Most breakfast places are like this, so I've gotten really good at making breakfast at home! :)