Girl allergic to books quits school

I know all to well what it is like to handle old books or books that have been somewhere that may have air fresheners or a smoker in the household.  I don’t accept used books from others to read.  I don’t buy books from used book stores.  I was buying my books directly online and now that I have a Kindle rarely buy paperback books at all any more.

I have to worry about chemicals, dust, and molds sending me into a severe reaction.  I would have to worry about these books contaminating my safe space here at home.  While I did attend two years of community college (way before the age of internet and computers), there is no way I could do it today with all my allergies and sensitivities.  My heart goes out to the young woman in London who suffers and for all the same reasons as I, cannot get books from a library.

Many of you are familiar with my friend Michellina at the-labyrinth who is attending the Victoria University in Australia.  She has made great strides in getting accommodation for her sensitivities.


9 responses to “Girl allergic to books quits school

  1. I hadn’t thought of books as being a problem for me until I checked out a book from the library – apparently a very perfumed person had read it previously. I still go to the library periodically but am careful to make sure the books I check out don’t cause me to react.

    • That is why I don’t borrow books from others, get books from the library, and especially not second hand book stores. My husband would always ask my why I was buying the “expensive” hard back books. Why couldn’t I just borrow. I would have to remind him why. I had nothing to do but read and so I bought and bought and bought. I did pass my books on to my sister who passed them on to a friend or took them to a second time around book store and exchanged them for something that she could read.

  2. Because I’m a bit crazy, I’ve at times wondered whether library books could have traces of gluten on them from people eating while they read (which I might pick up on my hands and accidentally transfer onto my food if I’m sloppy about handwashing, or also committing the sin of reading with a library book). The book I read where I felt most worried about this was actually Wheat Belly, of all things, which definitely had crumbs of something or other inside it. That was just one among many reasons I didn’t get past the first chapter of that book. 😉

    I never thought about how hard it must be for people with serious mold or dust sensitivities. Too bad! Have you learned to love the Kindle? I was lucky enough to get a tablet for Christmas (!) and have already started switching over to downloading ebooks from the library instead of getting hard copies (not really for any contamination concerns but mostly out of laziness).

    • Molly

      I thought I would never like a Kindle and now I have two (the paperwhite which is great in the sunlight or the car because of the no glare screen) and a Kindle Fire. I love them both now. I also like that I can go back and look at something I have bookmarked in a book without having to actually store a book which is a dust issue for me. I wouldn’t be surprised about cross contamination of wheat on books at the library or any other food allergen like peanut.

  3. Pingback: Woman Quits School Due to Chemical Sensitivities

  4. Thank you for putting this out into our blogosphere, Kathryn. Here’s my take in it: It’s not fair, I feel for Kirsty. It must be awful for her. Whenever we are well enough, we all need to push, push, push in every area of our lives. It’s the only way to bring awareness and light onto the issue of human rights, MCS, and social inclusion.

  5. Pingback: Girl quits school over allergy to books, part 2 | allergictolifemybattle

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