A letter to people who don't understand about my special needs child...
I posted this on my Facebook because I have some very judgmental people living in my neighborhood who see my child with an "invisible" disability as a spoiled brat. Upon further thought, I think everybody should read this. Feel free to share this with your friends, neighbors, Facebook friends, etc. If it helps even one child have the people around him or her be more understanding and tolerant, then this letter has done some good already.
Dear judgmental neighbors...
Maybe the child you see throwing that tantrum isn't a "spoiled brat who needs a whooping", but having an Autistic Meltdown and this is the only way he knows how to cope.
Maybe the child you see being pushed in a stroller to the store isn't being treated like a baby because his Mother has no clue, or because he's too lazy or spoiled to walk, but because he has ADHD and does not yet have the impulse control to be trusted to not pull away and run into oncoming traffic.
Maybe the child you see swinging his arms hitting or bumping into your child (and being immediately corrected by his Mother) isn't trying to beat up your child, but is sensory seeking due to a sensory processing disorder and his Mother is working on helping him learn where is body space ends and somebody else's body space starts.
Maybe the child you see, the little BOY you see, with the long ponytail has a ponytail because feeling his hair on the back of his neck gives him comfort (sensory issues) and sitting still for a haircut is too hard for him (ADHD) and the snipping sound of the scissors scares him terribly (Autism), so it's easier to let him grow it the way he likes it.
Maybe the child you see who doesn't always say hello back when you say hi to him because he's shy and timid by nature and when you get offended and cuss him out when he doesn't say hello, it only enforces to him that you're a mean, scary bully.
Maybe I don't always stop to talk to you, or cut you off in the middle of a sentence, not because I'm being rude or unsociable, but because I see my son about to do something that needs me to supervise him closely or because I see that my son is about to hit his limit before having a melt down and I'd like to help him change his situation before things gets out of control, for his sake as much as for mine and your sake.
Maybe the child you see isn't a "bad" or "spoiled" child, maybe he's just different from your child. If you took the time to look at what's going on around you instead of judging, maybe you'd see that although my child isn't as "perfect" as you'd like him to be, but he is the most loving, amazing child there ever was and he's absolutely PERFECT for ME.
I pray for the day Family Court recognizes that CHILDREN have rights, parents only have PRIVILEGES. Only then, will I know my child is safe.