There are reasons people choose and enjoy isolation, but developing disabling adverse effects from the toxic chemicals in everyday products and materials is seldom one of them.
Do you know someone who says fragrances bother or disable them? Chances are pretty good that you do, now that 34.7% of the population experience adverse effects, ranging from mild to severe and disabling, from fragrance exposures.
When your friend, family member, or colleague informs you that something you use has an adverse effect on them, how would you respond?
Do you choose the friendship? Or the product?
Would you stop using your perfume or cologne and other scented products to be “safe” near your friend?
Can you stop using fabric softeners, dryer sheets, and fragranced (or otherwise toxic) laundry products, replacing them with non-toxic, fragrance-free versions?
Would you change your favorite moisturizer or lipstick if they are causing your friend or co-worker to experience adverse health effects?
Would you shop around for new products that don’t have toxic fragrance chemicals or other harmful ingredients?
How willing are you to do these things for your friend, family member, or colleague?
When you choose the friendship, you also choose health; your own health, your friend’s health, future generation’s health, and eco-system health!
And when you do, we are able to enjoy your company, your self, your gifts and your services, your experiences, your sorrows, and your joys.
We can enjoy being WITH YOU!
When you choose the products, we can’t!
(Hint: it’s usually not because we don’t like you anymore)
We cannot enjoy the scrambled brain cells, the headaches, the blurred vision, the trouble recalling words, the dizziness, the difficulty breathing, the loss of co-ordination, or any other often debilitating symptom that those toxic chemicals can produce in our bodies and brains. We can not enjoy them when they start, nor for the minutes, hours, days, or weeks it takes to recover. Nor can we enjoy the things we cannot do as a result of the toxic effects.
Will you do what we all need you to do?
Many people with MCS/ES, MCAS, fragrance sensitivity, migraines, asthma, cancer, autism, etc., can only be around and hug others when people are free of fragrance and other harmful ingredients found in too many everyday products.
If you choose to still use your carefully (or not) “chosen” products instead of the friendship, believing they are more important than the well-being of another human being, then guess what! The advertisers have successfully worked their manipulative marketing magic to make a few extra dollars off you!
But you are not the only one!
They use some of their profits to fight testing and regulation and even go so far as to create misleading “science” to publicly deny adverse effects, claiming their toxic chemicals are within government limits, if there are any (which they usually wrote) so that when someone tells you they are experiencing health problems from those products, the industry line is that it couldn’t possibly be their fault, and of course you should keep spending your money with them.
Yet we all still have power.
Much more than we realize.
Everything we say, do, and buy has effects and consequences. We can make a choice as to what kind of consequences and impact we have in and on the world.
We can have a world where friendship, health and long-term well-being are more important than short-term appearances and corporate profits.
But we have to make an effort to make that happen, if that’s what we want.
What kind of a world do you choose?
What kind of products do you buy and use?
If we keep choosing the conventional products advertised on tv and in glossy magazines, or the products pushed by MLMs, more and more people (including children) will become sick and injured with chronic health problems.
It’s not just people with MCS/ES who are affected. Cancers, MS, autism, asthma, fibromyalgia, endocrine disruption, diabetes, obesity, sperm damage, reproductive difficulties, and many other health problems are being connected to chemicals commonly found in fragrances and other everyday products.
Health care costs are climbing, we are all paying for them at the same time the corporations profit from making us sick.
If you dig deep enough, you might find that many of the suppliers of fragrance and cosmetics ingredients also make pesticides, solvents and other products and materials derived mostly from the oil, gas and coal industry, and they also make pharmaceutical and medical supplies, thereby profiting at both ends.
As more people discover these truths, the MLMs pushing essential oils have jumped in with false claims that their products are safe alternatives, but if they were, so many people wouldn’t be having adverse health effects from those too (even from the pure, the therapeutic, and the organic ones).
Most of us think it’s normal to have some products that just don’t agree with us, so we search for another product that does. It’s almost easy to ignore and forget about the symptoms, until they become more common and in response to more products, like when many things that used to be ok, no longer are.
Still, it’s usually not until it gets to a point that it’s difficult to find safe replacement products, that we start asking more questions and searching for answers.
What we learn then can be very disappointing. Yet if this info was available to all, and people could be diagnosed and “accommodated” early (not subjected to further exposures), severe MCS/ES can usually be avoided, and other accommodations are MUCH easier to accomplish. If however the MCS/ES progresses due to prolongued and/or repeated exposures, it becomes harder, much harder, and it can even become so hard that some don’t make it.
When the symptoms become severe, and the person is no longer able to work, they will NEED help, as everyday exposures, like from shopping, or going to the doctor, will be too harmful or impossible to safely endure, or require days to weeks to recover from.
Common tasks that require energy can become extremely difficult, but when assistance is needed, far too often it isn’t available if the helpers cause more harm from 1st, 2nd, or 3rd hand fragrance residues, and as a result, too many people live without having even their basic needs met. Because, products.
Life should not be about choosing from bad or worse.
We should all have safe products and clean air to breathe.
Why is it so hard for people to quit using fragranced products, much like quitting smoking, even though there are so many safer fragrance-free options available? Shouldn’t a simple decision to stop the harm be enough?
All anyone has are the friends, family, and communities who believe friendship and kindness are more important than fragrances and other harmful products.
Please choose people, not products!
Choose clean air!
If you want to learn more about fragrances, and how and why they are so problematic these days, here are two excellent resources:
How to be fragrance-free (updated):
A list of fragrance-free policies that includes municipalities, hospitals, schools and others…
Many people with MCS/ES also have EHS and will need you to turn off your wireless devices in their presence.
photo cropped from a poster made by AEHA Ontario, now known as EHA Ontario
Here are some MCS Visitors Guidelines for visiting people with more severe MCS/ES
check in particular Section 4. Guideline Checklists for a visit to a MCS person
It’s good for you! It’s good for me!
(post updated February 2020)