You know those hives that appear so subtly around the edges of your mouth, you almost doubt you're seeing them? You think to yourself "Are those hives?" And then you think, "No, that's just from eating a sandwich with toasted bread" or "that's the ketchup" or "that's from the sauce." But you keep watching and the pinkness around the edges of lips begins to swell ever so slightly until you realize you are certain that's a hive or two. The unmistakable shinyness of puffy pink skin around the edges of one's mouth right after eating or even during eating--yep, it's hives. But it's not itchy, you say to yourself. Maybe it isn't an allergic reaction. But you know it really is. You told everyone you needed to about the food allergies, every server who attended to your table. You checked with the manager beforehand. And nothing more happens. Just a few hives. After a while, after you have left the restaurant, the hives fade away. Phew! Just hives.
Eating out with food allergies can be stressful. You never realized before you managed food allergies, that eating out with abandon, not worrying about having a life threatening reaction to a food was a luxury. You didn't appreciate that luxury while you had it and suddenly one day, it was gone.
Do you return to the restaurant? Is it worth eating out? It's a very personal decision. It's all about your own personal comfort level. Whatever you decide, please take a moment to share your dining out experience--good or bad--on the AllergyEats website. It's such a tremendous resource and just keeps getting better! The more reviews, the more helpful the site will be for individuals managing food allergies, and the more options we'll have, so please be sure to share your reviews!