Why Must I Stop Enjoying Seafood Just Because You Are Allergic to It?

The thing is, the person with seafood allergies is not the Original Poster’s sister or any member of her entire family. Not her boyfriend. Not her best friend. Not even one of her friends.

They are all medical professionals, who should know how to take care of their own health. But it turns out that OP was being withheld from enjoying the kind of food she loves by a person — a co-worker with shellfish allergy — who does not take precautions for her own self as much as everyone else does on her behalf!

Photo: Pexels/Tom Fisk

With the username u/shmoneybooboo, this is OP’s post was published on Reddit’s controversial forum r/AmItheA–hole: “I work nights at a hospital, and I work a lot of overtime, so I spend 36-72 hours at work per week there. Most of us don’t bring food and end up putting in one big order on someone’s phone and Venmoing that person. There’s a woman I work with, call her M, who has allergies to shellfish and peanuts. We often accommodate her by ordering from her chosen restaurants.”

OP continued the story by relating how one night she decided to order seafood from a sports bar that she has come to love, but the place does not serve non-seafood dishes. Still, she offered her coworkers the option to place their orders on her phone just in case they would like to eat seafood too.

Many of them started to make orders on her phone, but M reacted angrily and accused OP of being inconsiderate. M even loudly spoke things like, “guess everyone’s ordering seafood tonight, hope I don’t die.”

Photo: Pexels/Tima Miroshnichenko

OP also relayed this particular conversation she had with M wherein she discovered that her allergies were for shellfish but not for all kinds of seafood. Moreover, M admitted that she has not buying a new EpiPen when hers expires or bothering to carry one with her.

OP writes:

M: “I wish we could order from [restaurant B] since I can eat their food.”

Me: “How did you find that out?”

M: “I just ate there once and nothing happened, so I kept going and felt safe because I never had a reaction.”

Me: “Oh, well maybe we could call this restaurant and explain your allergy to see if they can accommodate you.”

M: “No, even if they say they can, it’s too risky.”

Photo: Pexels/Tima Miroshnichenko

Me: “This is the best place to take a risk, it’s the hospital, we have epi-pens everywhere.”

M: “Oh, no, I don’t use epi-pens, mine has been expired for 3 years. I don’t even carry one. I’m so careful with my allergies that I don’t need one.”

Me: “So you want the whole unit to tip-toe around your allergies every time we order food, yet, despite the risk of anaphylactic shock, you don’t even have an epi-pen?”

M: “Like I said, I am so careful that I haven’t needed one the last 3 years.”

Me: “Well, I don’t like that you are putting the responsibility on me to protect you from your allergies when you clearly don’t take them seriously enough to carry an epi-pen.”

M: “Make sure you wash your hands and your work area really well, like scrub everything down when you’re done, and don’t come anywhere near me when you’re eating.”

After that conversation, OP said that she just walked to the break room, and when she returned, M was still complaining about her to the nurse-in-charge, who was sympathetic toward her.

Photo: Pexels/Vish Varadh

Nonetheless, OP and many of her co-workers just enjoyed themselves when their orders arrived.

From OP’s point of view, M could order her own food if she didn’t like what everyone else was having. Why should she have to worry about M’s allergies when in fact M doesn’t even care to have an epi-pen in case of an emergency?

Many members of the AITA community chose to side with OP!

IgnotusPeverill firmly stated, “OP is NTA – the one co-worker is just acting like a curmudgeon. She clearly can order her own food from another restaurant or bring in her own food if her allergy is that bad. I think she just liked the drama of the whole thing.”

Far_Koala_5174 shared the same opinion: “Yes, can’t be bothered to carry an unexpired epi-pen for her own damn self but wants EVERYONE ELSE to take much more care with her than she does. Self-centered jerk. NTA.”


This Reddit user named Darth_Dronus also couldn’t help voicing out, “Right! And then they weren’t even ordering shellfish!! Like what was she mortified about?”

Likewise, srslyeffedmind expressed, “The responsibility to mitigate allergies falls to the person with the allergy. A person that sensitive needs to avoid public spaces because there are people who aren’t going to be aware of this in a public space and who have zero responsibility or reason to avoid these foods. What if a patient came in who’d eaten seafood? If the person’s allergy were that severe, they couldn’t work in a hospital that serves the public. OP is NTA.”

And this comment from Alternative_Sell_668 is also noteworthy: “100%. I am allergic to onions, and it’s a serious allergy, but I don’t expect other people around me to not consume onion rings. It’s my responsibility to protect myself, and, not for nothing, it seems like this isn’t even about allergies – it’s about her not getting her way. I honestly wonder if she’s even allergic to shellfish or does she just not like fish. The whole ‘we treat all fish in my house as shellfish’ remark made me suspicious. It sucks because people will say they have allergies just because they don’t like something, which makes it more difficult for people like me with true allergies. The fact that she doesn’t carry an epi-pen also makes me suspicious because I’m super careful about my allergy too, but I make sure I have my epi-pen because accidents happen.”

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