Accept the difference. Don’t ignore it.

The following image from www.postsecret.com

[autism.jpg]

When I saw this post, I started thinking about those who deny the existence of special needs in their children, and withhold from them the opportunity to get any therapy that might be needed.

I’ve come across those who are offended at the idea that their child might have “something wrong” with them. I’ve come across others who find the suggestion laughable: “My child? Special needs? Haha, what nonsense!” and then, there are those who just behave as though everything is fine and blankly ignore any suggestions from well-meaning others to perhaps get some help? When people say: “I can’t believe her teacher/doctor/whoever said we should get her checked for <insert whatever special needs term you like here> … I mean, she’s just a little different, but that’s no reason to label her!” I’m not sure what to say … what’s wrong with getting your kid tested?

And what is this stigma attached to special needs? The concept that people who are differently abled from the majority of the population as being “lesser” than everyone else is revolting. Sure, not all those with special needs are geniuses…but they’re pretty cool anyway. Just like you and me.

I wish parents would understand: if there is even a small chance your child has some kind of special needs, getting help is not a bad thing. Labels mean nothing nowadays. Labels are what you make of them. IT’S OKAY if your kid has autism. Or Down Syndrome. Or Fragile X. It’s going to be difficult, sure. But the “label” is not going to ruin anyone’s life. Not unless you let it.

I’m not even saying to go with one opinion. Take two. Or three. But if everyone says the same thing, get help. Please. Don’t ruin your child’s life by being too late.

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