Monday, February 25, 2013

Dear Nickelodeon

Dear Nickelodeon,
         I watched your latest video on Nick Mom, and I have to say, I wasn't terribly insulted..... at first.  These were my thoughts as I watched the video

1) We would NEVER let our allergy kids eat food from a bake sale, even if it was clearly labeled.

2) Thank you for separating the allergens! but my kid's still not eating it, so you just wasted your time.

3) Flavor free!?  Who are you kidding? We may be an allergy free house, but ALL of us allergy moms know how to bake.  Guess what?  We're good at it too. Like, really good. I can make anything you can, without the allergies, and make it better.  Not only will it taste better, but it will be healthier. Mostly because it's not from a box, like other parents use. You see, being an amazing cook is a necessity for us, and we have learned to be chefs out of necessity. 

4) that whole sarcastic comment about "lets show our kids healthy eating is cool"  How many children in the country are obese? How many FA kids are obese? I think there is an important message in the answer to those two questions. We live in a time where people eat out more than they eat in. Not us! It may not be "cool" to be healthy, but it will be in 50 years when all the unhealthy kids are dead from clogged arteries and food induced diabetes. (please don't come get me diabetes moms. I'm talking about the ones who bring it upon themselves)

5) "I hate gluten" That was the first comment that really made me think, You're an ass!


So, this video isn't so bad. I mean I've seen worse, and the world is full of uneducated people. I am really slow to jump on the allergy boycott bandwagon. I mean, we still eat GM cereals even though they made pb cheerios.  Maybe Nick just didn't think about the message they were putting out there.  Then I found this article  on their site as well. It is titled, " Top 9 Most Desirable Kids Allergies".  I'm sure it's all meant in fun, but obviously you have no idea what it is like to have to avoid red dye #40. (number 6 on this list was red drinks allergy)

Finally, I saw a link to this third video, and it was this one that finally got to me. While the woman starts the video by saying her child has an allergy, I don't think that excuses Nick from putting out the message that food allergies aren't a big deal. Also if this is a true story (which I doubt it is) this woman has obviously never seen her child quit breathing. I have, and it's definitely not something that anyone would would ever joke about. For the most part, I won't even talk about it, and I would definitely not call it, "no big deal" afterwards. 

After realizing that Nick is showing a pattern of making light about food allergies, I feel that you must not be educated. I don't know if you are a man or woman, but I assume you are a parent, if you are running a nick site.  If you knew what we had to deal with on a daily/weekly/yearly basis, you would have never written the things you did. You see, nick, every day we pack our kids lunches and medications and wish them a good day at school, while we sit at home or work hoping that they make it home safely at the end of the day. You don't know what it's like to have that moment of panic when the schools number pops up on caller ID . While other parents may have separation anxiety, or worry that their kid may fall on the playground and break something, we have to worry about the kid that ate a pb sandwich at lunch and didn't wash his hands, or the kid that bites, because either of those things can send our babies to the hospital.

Yes, our child's needs make it harder for you to plan your bake sale or christmas party. What you don't know, is that we spend 6 moths filling out paperwork and going to meetings, just to ensure our children are allowed to go to school in a safer, less restrictive environment. Then our kids do get into school, and they overhear the other parents bullying their parents, or complaining about restricted parties. Did you ever stop to think that you are also making life harder on us?  How are your comments affecting my child? Here is an example of what your thoughtless comments do to our children.

Yeah, I get it, you're pissed because you like junk food, and in america food comes first. Is there any celebration in this country that doesn't involve food? So for one hour (or 8 in a nut free school) you don't get the food that you want. BIG DEAL! What you are doing to my child, is telling them that they are the party pooper. They're not to be included, and by ostracizing us parents, you are taking your children down that ignorant path with you. Pretty soon our kids are sitting at a table by themselves, being excluded from activites, and are getting bullied by your kids. All because of something they have no control over. You don't ask a child with cerebral palsy to climb the rope in gym, you don't make fun of the kid in the wheelchair for using the ramp, so why do you make my food allergic kid sit in a room full of food that will exclude them and possibly injure them?  And if you don't get your way, and the classroom is food free, then why do you choose to believe it is OK to blame me and my child instead of the disease?

I could go on and on about all the trips to the doctor. The needles, the tests, and all the specialists  but I'm sure you've gotten bored by now. This is just a tiny glimpse into my daily life. So, while I'm sure you didn't mean to stir the hornets nest...  you did. Us food allergy parents have a lot on our plate already, and if you're not willing to be an ally, then could you at least not work against us?

P.S. Maybe you could take a cue from Disney. They have introduced characters on some of their shows that have food allergies. Their parks are also allergy friendly, and one of their actors, Kenton Duty of  Shake it Up, made a video about how to be safe with FA. I can tell you, that we will definitely be spending more time watching Disney, and avoiding Nick, unless you decide to take action on this matter.

2 comments:

  1. This is the exact reason why we don't allow Nick on our TV. I love a good joke and sarcasm, but this crossed the line. We don't allow our kids to watch Nick since many of the shows teaching behavior that our family does not embrace.

    Maybe they could learn something from Kenton Duty. From what I understand, the backlash is swinging hard and there should be something coming forth soon.

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  2. I know what you mean Caroline. I have always limited it to bubble guppies and max & ruby, because I disagree with most of their shows content, but now we're done. They released a statement this morning saying they have received "considerable feedback" and are "evaluating the next step" I just wish we lived in a society that believed we should build each other up, instead of tear each other down.

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