They call it off-grid parenting. The Allen family is raising their family without medical intervention, starting from birth. When first child, Ulysses, was born, he was attached to mom until his umbilical cord and placenta fell off naturally; called “lotus birthing,” the same was done with Ostara.
Ulysses is also still breastfeeding at age 5, as mother, Adele believes that it should be a mutual discussion between the child and mother. For now, she continues to breastfeed, saying it doesn’t matter if Ulysses has teeth, she’s going to continue until he wants her to stop.
None of the children have been seen by a doctor, and mom says that she doesn’t plan to see one anytime soon, despite parents and friends concern. The children also aren’t vaccinated, as mother says that diseases like meningitis can be cared by fasting, and the kids don’t wear shoes. Any reminders about vaccinations are swiftly thrown away, and the kids aren’t headed to school until they request to go. The family of four all sleep in the same room, practicing co-sleeping, and Adele believes in letting her kids’ bodies decide when to sleep, so there’s no rigid bedtime routine.
Ulysses is unable to read or write, and the family is trying to move to Costa Rica to go even more off-grid. Adele and husband Matt are now trying crowdfunding their lifestyle change. They’ve set up a FundMyTravel campaign complete with a video about their intentions. Their goal is to move to Costa Rica, “buy a big plot of land where we can grow food, and have access to wildlife and nature in it’s [sic] natural state.” The money – a requested $100,000 – is intended to fund the travel, the land cost and the self-build home.
The family further raised eyebrows when they appeared on the show “This Morning,” and 1-year-old Ostara urinated on live television, eliminating right on the set. The family said that her “nappy leaked” but the incident still got the internet talking. The parents, however, didn’t react but kept talking while it occurred instead of helping their daughter. The audience also wasn’t pleased with Ulysses jumping on the furniture and not being told not to do so.
Some worry that the parents medical approach could be dangerous, as Adele has self-treated chicken pox and scarlet fever, saying “We believe in the body to self-heal. If you support the body’s healing through supplements and herbs, then you will heal.” She’s also said that if she were to contract cancer, she would go the natural route toward treating it.
Adele first found the natural alternative approach when she found she could lose weight with coconut oil rather than other methods; she started investigating herbs and other natural treatments and made her lifestyle changes. The publicity surrounding the family hasn’t helped their campaign, however, as they’ve only raised a little over a hundred pounds. Not only that, but the most recent donation was four days ago, and now the family is the talk of the internet. Slate and other outlets have written an article criticizing the family’s plan, and now we can only wait and see if they go forward with their move – over 500 comments have been left on their page, and the number keeps growing.