Tesco to restock their frozen potato alphabet letters! #pleasehelpruby
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Please help our amazing, beautiful daughter Ruby by please reading our full story here, signing the petition and sharing with everyone you can!!
I AM ALSO WANTING TO RAISE AWARENESS & ACCEPTANCE OF AUTISM, SENSORY PROCESSING DISORDER & SESNORY MODULATION DISORDER WHICH IS WHAT RUBY HAS. PEOPLE NEED EDUCATING!
*After the latest developments of us being in the press, we have been subject to bullying/cyber bullying and so have many other people whether it has been towards them or their children. All the negative comments from people that I have personally seen or been told about, even some from the autistic community has been quite extraordinarily shocking to say the least! It makes me want to raise awareness of Ruby's conditions more but not only that that, it has now encouraged me to want to raise awareness of bullying/cyber bullying especially in people that have disabilities. I am very passionate about this and I feel it's about time people stood with their heads held high and not let them make us feel how they want us to feel!*
My 5 year old daughter has official diagnoses of autism, sensory processing disorder and sensory modulation disorder with a possible eating disorder which can be increased by any changes in her current diet. We have been told by professionals to give her what she will eat, to not introduce any new foods at this stage like we had tried in the past because that will make it worse. We were told once we lose one food, we are at high risk to literally loosing others which can be life threatening. We are working with a numerous professionals to try and help Ruby is everyway possible but one things people need to be aware of is that professional support takes time and there isn't a great deal of things in our area to help due to funding issues.
Ruby has a very strict, limited diet anyway that we can't mess with, we have tried many of times over the years which has just made her unwell and not eat anything. She has to have the same breakfast, the same things for lunch and her evening meal which consists of these letters with either Birdseye chicken dippers or Bernard Matthews turkey dinosaurs which isn't ideal but at least she is eating. She has to take a multivitamin supplement but she will only have Bassets chewable 3-6 years in strawberry, any others she will not take. Her diet isn't great, we know and it does cause us a tremendous amount of stress but we are constantly working on this. We have tried different techniques, foods etc over the years which have failed. We are still working with her on this but we have to be careful because any slightly change affects that meal all together, meaning she won't eat it, if anything is added to her plate, she acts as though it is all contaminated, even if we swap the food to a new plate.
For those of you asking... She was introduced to these because she refused to eat any of her freshly made, home cooked meals which she had from weaning upwards, this was years ago. Nanny had treated my son to these and we were desperate for her to eat so we tried them and she actually ate, thank goodness! She did used to eat sausages, fish fingers and only Pizza Hut pepperoni pizza but these were lost a long time ago too.
Tesco have stopped stocking their frozen alphabet letters with no intention or re-stocking them again. There has been no warning in stores, online or on any social media, it was all very sudden. We only found out when we were doing our weekly shop online to read 'This product is no longer available'. So we popped to our local store to find they had none but there wasn't any signs to say they had gone. I then rang up several stores in the area be told they have been discontinued and that there maybe a few here and there at different stores but couldn't tell me much else. Some people I know found they were being sold off cheap, obviously to get rid of the stock they had left. This inspired me to tweet them which lead to a conversation through direct message. I was given an apology and told the product had been discontinued with no intentions of them being reintroduced. They couldn't tell me why but said maybe if they got enough interest in to the product, Tesco may decide to reintroduce them at some point.
I have since rang up head office to be told that they have indeed been discontinued with no future stock planned. He looked in to it further and told me they have no plans to reintroduce them but maybe if they got enough interest in to the product, they may be reintroduced. He said they are being sold discounted at present, to get rid of the rest so you may find some here and there but then they will eventually dwindle out. He then took the case further to investigate what was what. The tech team came back with an apology but said they have been discontinued because they are reducing their ranges and this was the one that got taken out. I have also been in touch with the CEO via email to get a similar response again but it also included something like, 'I know it's not what you wanted to here with your personal circumstances but we are reviewing our ranges, making them smaller and the sales on these weren't very high so after extensive reviewing they have removed them.' A lot of stores and people at head office didn't even know they were discontinued. I have since has several calls from Tesco explaining the same. I am just surprised out of all their "child" like potato's this was the one to go.
Autism is a very complex condition that is hard to understand especially if you don't know anyone with the condition. Sensory processing disorder can be just as hard and them both together is extremely difficult, not just for people around them but for the person themselves. They like routine, changes are impossible, they have certain rituals and things need to be done in a certain way are just a few. I can only speak for my child but I can see her struggling everyday with everything and diet in general but to now have this added to the situation is causing more unnecessary stress.
The anxiety, the meltdowns, sobbing at dinner time because the letters aren't there, is heartbreaking to watch. What did it for me was the uncontrollable sobbing from her, she left the dinner table, ran towards me, grabbed me so tight, hugging me crying and said the hardest thing a mom could ever here, "Mummy please help me, please make me better". For anyone to hear that from their own child with or without a disability is crippling but me knowing I can't help her is soul destroying!! I try my best to help her through everything 24/7 and most times, Mummy can soothe things, ease things, fix things but this time I can't do anything because I've already tried everything and I need YOU people out there to help our family! Try to see beyond the everyday things we take for granted, see beyond the 'oh they are just some alphabet letters, that can be got anywhere', try to see beyond what you think she should be eating and try to see it through an autistic child's eyes, adults even, through my baby girls eyes!
With these not being available makes her not want to eat the dippers or the dinosaurs and we could sit there well over an hour to try to get her to eat, with no joy, in fact she would sit there all night! The big downside is not only does it affect that meal but it has been having an affect on all her others meals. Every time it's food time, it would be "I've got tummy ache", "Tummy hurts", "I can't eat it", "I will get fat, if I eat" and so on. Pushing away all her foods, taking over an hour, longer even, to even attempt something and if she managed it, it was the smallest amount. This has also had a huge impact on her fluid in take, she will hardly drink anything throughout the day and we have to keep pushing her but I cannot and will not force feed her to do anything, I have tried but it fails and it's cruel. It causes unnecessary stress and upset. I will not trick her either because she will know and I'll lose her trust! She is more overly anxious, sad and scared since this has started and food times are more of a battle. She would literally starve than eat anything else and without these, she would rather starve than eat anything, just because of one interruption in her eating!
My friend managed to get us a few bags a few weeks ago but soon they will be gone so at the moment things are ok as they can be and NO it has nothing to do the packaging as she doesn't see them, she doesn't come shopping with my husband if he needs to go in, we are online shoppers. She isn't allowed in the kitchen and she is not around whilst my husband is cooking the evening meal. The day I bought her dinner out after my friend got the letters for us, she was anxious but as soon as she looked at the plate her face lit up so bright and she ate the lot without questions but she still has the fear in her and she's right to because I know once they are gone, they are gone but she doesn't know that!! To her these will be there forever, she doesn't understand!
All the other brands or stores frozen letters aren't the same, they do not contain the same ingredients, the daily allowances aren't the same either and from my point you can tell they aren't identical which to most wouldn't be an issue but unfortunately to my daughter is it a huge issue and can tell every little detail...
The shape, the size, the texture, the thickness, the definition, the smell and the taste are not the same.
The more signatures we get, the more TESCO will take this seriously, the more comments we get will help too. I cannot force a shop to restock letters but I appreciate it, if they were more helpful and at least put me in touch with their manufactures/suppliers or liaise with them, themselves on my behalf but they keep refusing as it is "private and confidential".
If you could share it everywhere once you have signed, make your own posts, use all social media platforms, do live videos, prerecorded ones even, be selfless and go that extra mile for a lost little girl.
** Any celebrities or You Tubers out there that want to promote this for us, would be a great honor.**
Just think there maybe other children/adults/families out there having the exact issue as we are but they don't have a voice to make a stand, like I do so do it for all people with autism, sensory processing disorder and other disabilities where diet is affected!
If you wish to get in touch for whatever reason; maybe to do a story, help promote it, donate any bags of letters or for us to buy them off you, a TV show, radio, newspapers, magazines, You Tube channels, any internet pages etc, a celebrity/You Tuber wanting to help or simply to just offer us support then please feel free to contact me on the following...
Thank you so much for your time!!
Nicola Passey (Ruby's mom)
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