Peter Andre’s wife Emily receives backlash for endorsing ‘chickenpox parties’ by mother who’s daughter died from illness aged three
15 March 2019, 12:55 | Updated: 15 March 2019, 13:35
One mother has been left distressed after Emily MacDonagh said she would consider throwing a ‘chickenpox party’ for her children.
Peter Andre’s wife Emily MacDonagh this week revealed she would consider throwing a ‘chickenpox party’ for her children.
The doctor wrote in her column with OK! magazine: “When it comes to chickenpox some mums throw chickenpox parties and other kids go along so they also get infected and then it's out the way.”
Emily also wrote: “But I've never been invited to one so I'm thinking of taking matters into my own hands!" before going on to explain how she is planning to get her children vaccinated so they don’t have to catch the infection at all.
One mother, Angie Bunce-Mason, has been left upset by the comments after her daughter, Elana, tragically died from chicken pox in 2009 when she was only three years old.
Angie told Heart.co.uk: “It’s obviously a really emotive subject for us, and we’ve been working so hard over the past 10 years, and then somebody says something like that it just makes your blood boil.”
Angie’s daughter first caught chicken pox when her older brother had it.
After a few days, Elana’s spots started to crust over, but she was still left feeling unwell.
Elana took her daughter to her GP, who immediately sent the little girl to hospital as she thought she had caught pneumonia.
Angie said: “We got to the hospital at five past 11 on the Friday night, and by five past six on the Saturday morning she’d had a cardiac arrest.
“By seven o’clock we made the decision that it wasn’t fair to continue because if she did pull through she wouldn’t have had any quality of life.”
Elana’s post mortem revealed she had got chicken pox lesions on her lungs which had then given off pneumonia symptoms.
Since Elana’s death ten years ago, Angie has been trying to raise awareness of what happened to her daughter.
“Since then I’ve tried to do a lot of work, to raise people’s awareness of what’s happened. Trying to make a positive out of a negative”, she said.
“Elana was only here for three years and ten months, but we’ve got to make her life worth while. If we can prevent this from happening to other people, that’s what she was here for. It’s her legacy.”
Speaking about parents throwing chickenpox parties, Angie commented: “I can’t see the logic. As a parent, you should be protecting your child. And at best chicken pox is itchy, sore and not nice for a couple days – at worse, it’s fatal.”
“Why would you want to knowingly expose your child to something that will make them unwell? You should be wanting to protect your child.”
She believes that knowingly exposing your child to chickenpox is “like abuse” and is a form of “neglecting your child’s welfare”.
Angie supports Emily’s comments about getting her children vaccinated, and is something that she would encourage parents to have done.
Heart.co.uk contacted representatives for Emily who declined to comment.