Humans will forever amaze me.
Before I gave birth to my son, who just happened to be born with spina bifida, I wasn’t one talk to someone about their child’s anything, much less their disabilities. I’m not happy about that fact, but it is what it is. Part of it was I just wasn’t a “kid person” and the rest was I didn’t know what to say.
Now that I have my son I realize that not saying anything was a much better alternative than speaking out of turn, being insensitive, or asking rude questions. You would be shocked if you knew all the stories I’ve heard about people coming out the side of their mouth out of ignorance or lack of couth (“broughtupsy”). I regret my lack of interaction in past situations where I could’ve offered a kind word, but when you know better you do better …
… and you tell others, so here are 5 things you should never ever evah evAH EVAH say to a parent of a child with special needs. LEGGO!
1. I would have had an abortion
Yes, I’ve heard this more than once. Can you imagine? Someone was talking to me in the restroom when they shared that a family member has a 10 year old son with cerebral palsy, it’s tearing their family member’s marriage apart, and they would never have a child with a disability if they knew beforehand. They then tell me they aren’t as strong as I am and they would’ve had an abortion. I just stood there staring at them. Once my mom called to relay a similar story of someone. Someone told her if they were me they would have had an abortion and I had to talk my mom out of going back and ringing their neck. It’s not a compliment. It does not make me feel like I am strong, it makes me feel like you are clueless and insensitive enough to tell a parent who loves their child that, for all intents and purposes, you would have killed them. Not ok.
2. My child is spoiled.
This one grates me gears! My son can not walk and has to be carried around much more than other children. On top of that I’m a stay at home mom so he spends the majority of his time with me. He also has sensory issues with textures and sounds that cause him to freak out. OF COURSE he’s gonna be attached to me. Of course I’m gonna go help him if he’s toppling over, of course I’m gonna be extra attentive to him in social situations. Whenever someone has said this to me they get this face with the quickness >> <<. You have no clue what the experience is like so if you can’t say something nice then shhhhhhhhhhhh zip it.
Want to see the 3 other things never to say to a parent with a child with special needs? Check out this video:
Special needs parents sound off, what foolishness so you wish people would stop saying to you?
Oh and don’t forget to check out my other VEDA (Vlog Every Day In August) videos.