I wonder sometimes what would happen if there was no diagnosis for difference. No label, no advice or expert telling us this is what our kids will do or won't do and this is how you handle it,etc....
What would we expect when we were expecting?
(Yeah that is a joke on that book I read cover to cover)
I am a dreamer.....
But seriously, what if we just had babies and raised them?
What if we just figured out what works best for our baby given the environment they would live in? What if everyone had an attitude that we collectively all did a little giving and taking, pushing and pulling...know what I mean?
What if our kids are runners and we let them, we just took them somewhere safe and let them run? What if we allowed them to have the desires they wanted, to fulfill their interest? What if we allowed them to truly experience choices?
I bet you have heard this..
"Give your child a choice, but pick choices you would be ok with."
Seriously?!? Is this really a choice?
(And yes I have done this for years and shared this wisdom)
As an older parent this is all I have on you, I am older, not wiser.
The only thing I can offer you is to please be respectful of your child and call me out when I am not respectful of mine.
Maybe many of you come from families that have people who all follow a certain path of success but I would wager you all know someone like this in your family tree.
I have a relative who has never married, a bit of a hoarder, collects items considered valuable by some- juvenile by others, not very social except with family and a few friends yet manages fine at a party, made decent grades, went to college, never had a relationship with the opposite sex or the same sex. They work at a job that makes minimum wage and has always lived with a relative.
I have never heard her mother speak of him in any way other than normal.
Is this person different?
But I can name a dozen families right now who have a similar relative.
Are they on the spectrum?
How do we classify this person?
Married to her work.
Married to his church.
A teddy bear.
A good ole boy.
Ne'er do well.
Jack of all trades master of none.
There are a myriad of slogans out there to describe this particular type of person but for the most part this person is a solid member of society.
So I guess what I wonder is how much are we influenced and how much do we influence a stereotype?
Does the good ole boy stereotype influence itself? Should it? Will it continue? Should we allow it to continue?
Are these questions we ask about my relative?
Nah? We just love her as she is.
We know his quirky things, he knows ours.
We dance around each other and with each other.
As an older mom of a teenage son with a diagnosis of Down syndrome,
I love to share things about my son but I try to be aware of what he wants me to share about him. As a 17 year old he does not want me to discuss matters that are too personal or are about his body and his teenage angst.
I can tell you this,his emotions are real, honest and based on his unique life.
The regrets that I have so far are not trusting my gut enough, not listening to him enough, not respecting him enough. I regret some of my actions based on a stereotype and not on him. I regret some of my decisions based on an experienced mom's wisdom. I am not at all diminishing that moms experience but it really is just that.... her experience and her child's ....
The bottom line is this...we all fart, poop, pee, piss our pants, leave skid marks,gag, burp, masturbate, try out lines on the opposite sex, get dumped, pick horrible clothes, pick horrible friends, pick good clothes, pick good friends, win, lose, try harder, get sick, cry, ache, love and want love.
And to tie this all up into a pretty bow....
we all just want to be loved.
And isn't true love based in respect.
Isn't that the crux of things? Really.
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