There’s nothing worse than being sick on Christmas. Sitting in the corner feeling feverish, watching everyone else enjoy their holiday treats and unwrap presents while you make countless trips sprinting to the bathroom and feeling sorry for yourself. It’s even worse to end up in the hospital on Christmas, knowing that all of the festivities are going on without you, but that’s why most of us try to stay healthy around the holidays. Washing our hands frequently, avoiding anyone who’s been ill recently, and most importantly: not doing anything that we know will make us sick.
One woman recently reached out on Reddit wondering if she was a jerk for leaving her 16-year-old daughter in the hospital on Christmas all alone. The catch, however, is that the teenager knew exactly what she was doing before she became ill, so her mom had a hard time feeling sympathetic. Below, you’ll find the full story, as well as some of the responses readers have left the mother, so you can decide for yourself whether or not she should have spent time in the hospital on Christmas.
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We’d love to hear your thoughts on this situation in the comments section, and then, if you’re interested in checking out another Bored Panda article featuring family drama surrounding Christmas, look no further than right here!
After her daughter intentionally ate foods that make her sick on Christmas, this mother is wondering if she was wrong for spending the holiday at home instead of at the hospital
Image credits: Andrea Piacquadio (not the actual photo)
Image credits: Any Lane (not the actual photo)
Image credits: Hospitalthrowaway532
For many of us, the food is a huge part of the celebration on Christmas. Roasted turkey, tamales, gingerbread cookies, pecan pie, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, hot chocolate, and more. So I completely understand why this teenager would want to experience the holiday to the fullest. But ending up in the hospital is not a merry way to spend your Christmas, and unfortunately, as many of the commenters pointed out, 16 is old enough to understand that our actions have consequences. She has a history of experiencing severe illness after eating trigger foods, so why would she want to go through the torture of becoming violently ill yet again?
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Although food allergies and intolerances are a major inconvenience, and can be life-threatening, they are a common thing to deal with. In the United States alone, about 32 million people have food allergies, and about 20% of the world’s population has some sort of food intolerance. It may not be fun to avoid gluten, sugar, oil, or whatever else may be a trigger for this teen, but plenty of people are in a similar boat and have to avoid certain foods for health reasons as well. Personally, I don’t know what it’s like to have a severe food sensitivity or allergy, but I do know what celebrating the holidays on a vegan diet is like. Sure, it takes a little more effort to prepare, and I may not be able to eat Grandma’s Christmas cookies or my mom’s famous pies. But it is totally worth it to enjoy my day, knowing that I ate what makes me feel comfortable.
The mother who shared this story noted that she went out of her way to have many safe options available for her daughter, so there was no reason for her to stick to the trigger foods. Unfortunately, it can often make a food seem more appealing when it’s “off limits”, but for most people, the threat of becoming violently ill and ending up in the hospital is enough to deter us from eating certain foods. Essentially, those trigger foods are poison to her, and nobody likes to chase their dinner with a shot of household cleaner or paint.
Some commenters on Reddit also began hypothesizing about what health issues the girl may be battling. While she has not been officially diagnosed with anything, a few potential causes are simply having a sensitive stomach, having gallbladder issues, gastroparesis, or irritable bowel syndrome or disease. But the mother has noted that it’s been challenging to get a diagnosis, so they have been primarily focusing on how to manage the symptoms.
According to Verywell Health, one of the best ways to manage a sensitive stomach is to cut out trigger foods. And apparently, many of the most common trigger foods are the same foods this mother mentioned that upset her daughter: spicy foods, tomato sauce and citrus fruits, fried foods, high-fat foods, processed foods, gluten, artificial sweeteners and high sugar foods. However, it’s important to keep any diet from becoming too restrictive, so Verywell Health reminds readers with sensitive stomachs to ensure that they are still eating fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, fiber-rich whole grains and drinking plenty of water. Some of the best foods that individuals with sensitive stomachs can usually handle well are yogurt, fermented foods, whole grains, bananas, rice, cooked fruits and vegetables, eggs, lean cuts of meat and applesauce.
I can’t imagine how painful it must be to see your daughter struggle with constantly becoming ill like this, but at some point she has to learn her lesson. Her illness this time was preventable, and it would not have been fair for her mother’s Christmas to be ruined by spending time in the hospital just because someone wanted to eat all of her trigger foods. As some readers pointed out, it might be time to see a therapist and try to get this illness, or potentially anxiety-induced sickness, under control. 16 is old enough to start taking accountability. We would love to hear your thoughts on this situation in the comments down below, pandas. Do you think the mother should have stayed by her daughter’s side, or do you think it was time to show some tough love?
Many readers assured the mother that her tough love was justified, and that her daughter needs to learn her lesson
While others thought that the mother should have handled the situation differently
Some even suggested that the daughter seek professional help, as this behavior could be considered self-harm or a potentially sign of an eating disorder