I Am JJ: Education, patience & communication key to Thanksgiving success!

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Saturday, I had some technical difficulties recording my Food Allergy Talk Podcast with my parents. We re-taped it late last night, and I waited until today to post it so everyone can get a chance to hear it.

In response to a recent post that readers overwhelmingly reacted to, we talked about Thanksgiving, specifically the challenges that parents face when family and food allergies mix.

Some quick take-a-ways from our talk…

1) Be proactive. 2) Communicate. Communicate. Communicate… before and after. 3) Parents have every right to avoid an event or create their own event if they feel their child’s mental and/or physical health will be impacted. 4) Parents should never bad mouth another family member in front of the child. 5) Just because a family member does not accommodate a child’s allergy doesn’t mean they love that child any less. 6) As with many issues dealing with the allergy, it’s simply a matter of educating why it’s important, finding advocates within who can help relay your message, and the parents leading by example. 7) Education, patience & continued communication are key.

 JJ Vulopas is a senior at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. An advocate for young people, JJ has lived with food allergies his entire life. He is the author of the children's book, Land of Not. You can read his daily blog at www.thelandofcan.com and follow him @thelandofcan on Twitter and Instagram.