Has It Become Unacceptable to Eat Peanut Butter in Public?
A mum has been berated by a fellow shopper for allowing her child to eat a peanut butter sandwich in a supermarket shopping trolley, potentially risking the lives of allergy sufferers.
The anonymous mum took to parenting forum UrbanBaby to ask other parents if it has become unacceptable to eat peanut butter in public, explaining that she was stopped in her local Target and lectured about peanut allergies while her 4-year-old child was eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
She explained that her child was not a messy eater, that she had wiped the trolley down before her child had begun her sandwich, and had intended to wipe both her child and the trolley down again when she had finished, but that wasn’t enough for either the fellow shopper or many of the commenters on her thread.
“That’s really inconsiderate. So many kids have life-threatening allergies to peanut butter. Eating it in a shopping cart GUARANTEES it will be smeared on the handle, etc. It’s really awful you would do this. Sorry, but imagine if it were your child with the allergy,” one wrote.
“That’s actually kind of lousy of you. You are aware that kids with peanut allergies exist in the world, so it’s kind of a dick move to let your kid smear peanut butter all over the child seat of a public cart,” wrote another.
But is it up to perfect strangers to ensure that other children are kept safe from potentially lethal allergens? Many commenters stood up for the mum, saying that she should be allowed to do whatever she likes in public and that while they considered eating food in a shopping trolley “nasty”, it was not her responsibility to ensure a supermarket was a nut-free zone.
“Peanuts are part of life. If your kid is that allergic to something then the onus is on you to do your due diligence to either A: Not take your kid in public or B: Super clean anything they touch. Way too much time devoted to trying to control others actions and not enough time spent telling our children the importance of how you deal with others actions. 10% of life is what happens to you, 90% of life is how you react to it.”
“As an allergy mum whose kids had 9 anaphylactic allergies, I agree!! No one should have to watch what they eat because of my kid’s allergies!” another mum wrote.
Personally, I would try to be mindful of others and not feed my children peanut butter in public. None of my children have life-threatening allergies, but none of them are obsessed with nut products either, so it’s easy for me to say that.