Ever feel like you don't belong here (MDC)? - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-06-2007, 03:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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As I sit here crying after what someone has said elsewhere on MDC, I realize how isolated to the SN board I feel (you all are wonderful, so that's not a complaint!). What I'm trying to say is that because of dd's medical issues, we often have to make choices for her that are really not in line with NFL. I don't do herbs or other homeopathic remedies because so much of that can interact with her drugs. I don't "wait and see" when she has a fever. I rely heavily on western medicine and am grateful for it every single morning when I go in to see my daughter sleeping and alive. It's just so incredibly painful to have those decisions judged all the time. I don't consider myself a mainstream parent. I try incredibly hard to be an attached, thoughtful parent and to live as naturally as possible in our circumstances. To be judged for situations beyond my control is agonizing.

Does this happen to others or am I just too sensitive?
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Old 01-06-2007, 03:59 PM
 
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I don't post on this board usually, just lurk, but I wanted to offer a hug. People who don't have special needs kids have no idea what it's like to have to make those choices and have a tendancy to stick their foot in their mouth because of it. IMO you are just as welome/entitled to be here as anyone else. It's great to have NFL "ideals", but sometimes they need to take a backseat to reality.

Keep doing what you're doing. You're just as good as a mother as anyone else . Some people just need lessons in compassion and empathy.
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Old 01-06-2007, 04:00 PM
 
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I'm not a special needs parent but I think that often, posters might be assuming that your situation is just like their situation, when it is not.

Unfortunately, to post personal stuff at MDC, I've found that you sometimes have to have a thick skin and remember, that there are always posters who will complain about practically everything and anything. If you stick it out, hopefully you'll figure out a way to get your needs and support met without letting yourself get hurt by those with other opinions.

FYI, I don't know what happened in the other thread, so I'm just speaking generally.
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Old 01-06-2007, 04:49 PM
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Ikwym. I stopped going to church for that reason. It wasn't so much the religious side- I have a super cool church. The "problem" was that there were seven or so of us pregnant within the same few months. It was fun to be pg with em all but after the babies were born, I loathed church. They would all sit around and talk about what their children were doing. Yippi skippi Hard to feel mean in church but I managed to. Their kids were all cooing and looking around. And then they were all pointing and playing patty-cakes. And then there were the scoots, crawls and first steps. Not to mention of course the first words, sentences and songs. It burned me in a way I never thought I could feel. It stunned me how horrible I cried as my kid was not reaching those milestones and their babies were flying by them. Heck, my kid wouldn't look at me, did the infamous army crawl forever it seemed, the few words he said he lost word w/in a week, and heck he didn't even answer to his own name... fast foward eight years and I've learned to let it go.

I usually avoid the childhood board here at mcd just because my situation does not fit in there. He is so atypical- lol even for autism. I'll peak in from now and then but I never stay too long. I think all the boards here are great to be honest. It's just that not all of them give me what I need when I come here. Thank gawd for this board. I've learned soooooo much here it
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Old 01-06-2007, 05:10 PM
 
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Not a member of this board, but I just wanted to offer you hugs. I'm sorry you feel you have to defend your parenting choices.

BTW, I just read your post about vaccines, and while I am not a fan of vaccines, I totally understand why you would chose to vaccinate your DC. I don't vax, but I definetly would if my child was immune compromised (and I would vax my other children to protect that child.) The vax thing is all about risk benefit, in my opinion, and you have evaluated the risks for your family and made a decision, that I think is totally appropriate.

Hope I'm not out of line posting this, but I wanted to offer you support.

Rebecca
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Old 01-06-2007, 05:28 PM
 
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I think that when you have a child with special needs, you have to broaden your view of attachment parenting and natural family living. you have to make choices that support your child's needs. I think attachment parenting is about the bonding we do with our children more that fitting a standard set by others. You parent the way that works for you child and your family.

mom to four lively children. birth and postpartum doula. midwifery student. choosing to enjoy life. :
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Old 01-06-2007, 05:38 PM
 
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Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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Old 01-06-2007, 05:42 PM
 
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I hang out in the NICU/Preemie board.

I feel very similar at times. I've been attacked for giving Synagis, to prevent RSV. People have questioned that DD got bottles and HMF in NICU. People have questioned my C/S.

It is hard when you have made your decisions from a completely different space than others, and they won't look at your place, but what their view to be the correct one.



I try to remember why I come here and that the IGNORE feature is a wonderful thing.
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Old 01-06-2007, 07:54 PM
 
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It can be hard being here sometimes, that's for sure. What comforts me is this....knowing that I too used to be as judgemental and narrowminded as some of the people I see here, and knowing that it all changed is what gives me hope. It's easy to peer down your nose and see things in absolutes and black and white when you've never been forced to muddle your way through parenting's gray areas first hand. I just shake my head and take a deep breath and realize that one day, maybe not any time soon, but one day, they too will have that event in their life that shakes up their entire world view and makes them realize, "gee, I sure was/am a jerk for judging people like that, I really DON'T know it all and my way really ISN'T always best and the world really ISN'T black and white."

I kind of keep to this forum too for the same reasons. It gets old, people sitting on their high horses, peering down their noses at you and tsk tsk tsking for something they truly know nothing about.



ETA I'm sorely tempted to link this thread in my sigline, there are some particularly judgemental and holier than thou posters who really need to see it. :
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Old 01-06-2007, 07:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, everyone. I went back to the thread and tried to read it in a more compassionate spirit. That helped, as does realizing that because we are all talking about our children and our parenting, it's bound to be a bit heated around here sometimes!
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Old 01-06-2007, 08:31 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Finch
It gets old, people sitting on their high horses, peering down their noses at you and tsk tsk tsking for something they truly know nothing about.
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Originally Posted by intorainbowz View Post
It is hard when you have made your decisions from a completely different space than others, and they won't look at your place, but what their view to be the correct one.
Yeah. Maybe this is really a topic for another thread, but is this kind of thing ableism? Or is it just judgmental?
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Old 01-06-2007, 08:40 PM
 
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I encounter this IRL as well. Don't get me going on the lady at chuch who preaches VBAC to me like it is gospel truth, when she knows nothing in my medical history, and has not responded to a direct "I believe my OB when she says that a VBAC would not be the wisest course." I feel no need to get into my reasons with EVERY one, KWIM?

Oh, BTW, I'm not innocent of this at all. I do this too.

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Originally Posted by mama-a-llama View Post
Yeah. Maybe this is really a topic for another thread, but is this kind of thing ableism? Or is it just judgmental?
Both I believe. Defensiveness and denial also comes into play. I mean if "this" could happen to any of us, it could happen to them.

They had uncomplicated pregnancies, so there is something deficient in those of use who had complications.

They are doing fine with "alternative" treatments, why does this not work for us too?

As their lives have never been faced with the choices we have had to make, they have no idea how they would really respond. They know how they think they would respond, and post on that.

People also get tunnel vision. They get focused on that point and go from there.... I KNOW I do this. I've posted when I'm tunnel vision focused on NICU, complications, etc.
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Old 01-06-2007, 10:17 PM
 
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Yeah. Maybe this is really a topic for another thread, but is this kind of thing ableism? Or is it just judgmental?
I think it's just plain old judgemental. Peering down their noses. Seriously. They have a little checklist of things you must do to be deemed a worthwhile person, and if you don't fall into that little checklist, well then....you're just an ignorant "mainstream" (they like to throw that word around like it's something bad, too...) mom and clearly don't love your child or want the best for them.

It's the same mindset that people get in junior high school, if you ask me. I.e., "I can't be friends with her because she doesn't wear jordache jeans (yes I'm an 80's girl...) or doesn't know how to valley girl talk or eats all store brand food..." Just replace that with, "I can't be friends with her because she bottlefed/formula fed/used sposies/circed her son/had a c-section for a reason I deem invalid/vaxed her child/got an epidural/doesn't want to vbac/shops at walmart/votes republican...."

The list goes on and on and on. There's a lot of smugness here, and I find it ironic that people who claim to want to ascribe to being gentler, kinder people are so freaking judgemental and smug, when they get their knickers in a big ol' knot if someone tsk tsks them about NIP or babywearing or homebirth, etc..

People need to just realize that for the most part, we're just moms, trying to do our best, trying to make some sort of meaningful connection with other moms in the same boat, regardless of what life choices eachother have made that we do or don't agree with.

I say it all the time, and I'll say it again, having a special needs child has made me much much MUCH less judgemental. It's easy to say "why don't you just..." when you've never walked in that person's shoes. A lesson I had to learn the hard way.
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Old 01-06-2007, 10:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Finch View Post
I say it all the time, and I'll say it again, having a special needs child has made me much much MUCH less judgemental. It's easy to say "why don't you just..." when you've never walked in that person's shoes. A lesson I had to learn the hard way.
This is exactly what I've discovered. Not that I necessarily knew I was being judgmental at the time but in hindsight I see several situations where I was. Some of the things I see posted here just make me shake my head and wish everyone could be 'enlightened' so-to-speak. I am very thankful for the SN parenting forum...more than I ever could say with just words.
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Old 01-06-2007, 10:29 PM
 
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This is exactly what I've discovered. Not that I necessarily knew I was being judgmental at the time but in hindsight I see several situations where I was. Some of the things I see posted here just make me shake my head and wish everyone could be 'enlightened' so-to-speak. I am very thankful for the SN parenting forum...more than I ever could say with just words.
ITA with that entire post.
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Old 01-06-2007, 10:37 PM
 
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This experience of having a NICU baby (who, just give her time will be SN) has made me a kinder, more caring, softer soul. It has also made me tough as nails, fierce, and very protective of my family. I'm more easily wounded, but I stand and fight even so. Does that make sense...

(I say give her time she will be SN because of her birth, prematurity, and pregnancy, she will prolly have LD, ADD - both parents have this, and who knows what else. I'm not being pesimistic, just realistic. She is not exactly expected to read or write at 7 months.)
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Old 01-06-2007, 10:42 PM
 
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This is a great thread.

First -- s: to you for having to go through this. You know that you made the right decision for your child.

Dealing with this kind of judgemental oneupsmomship after my second dd was born with a birth defect, and my older dd had special needs involving sid (unbeknownst to me at the time) was brutal. I was devastated. People who meant well said things that hurt so much I was just reeling. I could give examples, but I am too paranoid. But it was as though the world was divided into people who got it and people who didn't get it. Sadly, tragically, the only people who seemed to get it were people in the medical profession and people who had been through something similar. Everyone else, even my own family, was clueless.

Really, it was kind of sickening to realize that just a few months earlier I was just as judgemental and totally lacked empathy and understanding, even though I thought I knew everything and thought that I could even imagine what others were going through. Kid went through surgery? It would be so off my self centered radar that I would forget to ask about it. Now, when I hear about a kid going through surgery it is all I can do not to appear in the hospital myself. I think about the little kid who just went through brain surgery on this board every day. My world is different. I wish my eyes never had to have been opened in this way... I wish there were a way my eyes could have been opened without having to see children suffer.
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Old 01-06-2007, 10:45 PM
 
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I'm going to jump in here for a min if no one minds. The title of the thread has had me reading several times today. I am a quiet, rare poster on MDC. The reason for this is because of the judgements some people make. I chose not to open myself up to that because to me this is a pleasurable time spent on me, not a time to upset or anger myself if I feel I have to defend myself. I am making choices in my soon to be parenthood that many would not like. As a pp said I am making the choices the best I can for specific reasons. What amazes me is the number of posts I see where a person is not considered 'worthy' of friendship for having different ways of parenting. Why not lead by example and enjoy the benefits of a friendship that may have other benefits? As far as offering advice and judgment on situations I know nothing about - I keep my mouth shut. You;re right. If I haven't had to live thru something then I don't understand. I'm one of those women mentioned above with an uncomplicated, easy pregnancy. I have been fortunate to have a reamarkably easy physical pregnancy. And let me tell you I never forget that fact or forget to give thanks for it. However what I have to endure is overwhelming cycles of severe depression. I get judged on that all the time if I try to explain it. No one gets that this is a condition related to my pregnancy. i t was not there prior. This was a planned pg so even that doesn't factor in. Because I have been critisized for 'being blue' ( not an accurate description) I would never place judgement on anyone else.

sigh - let me put my soapbox away and go back to being a quiet member here, lol. Thanks for letting me add my .02
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Old 01-06-2007, 11:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Nice to meet you, keljo05! I also understand the hesitancy to post on the boards with any real frequency (except here, of course!). I've been a member for a long time, but have a small post count because I find that a lot of times, I can't jump into a conversation that is so negative. If I limited myself to friendships with people only like me, I'd be a lonely, close-minded individual. I learn a lot from people who walk in shoes that are not like mine, and I value their experiences.

Especially in relation to having a child w/SN, I find that many of the deeply held tenets of NFL/AP just can't work for me. I will not risk dd's life or well-being to uphold an ideal. In different circumstances, with a healthy, typical child, I might have the freedom to make other choices. But the fact of the matter is, like so many of us here, I often have to sacrifice choice for reality.
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Old 01-06-2007, 11:23 PM
 
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Thank you for posting! We ALL need reminders that we really can't judge unless we've been in someone else's position before. It's great to offer advice & suggestions in a supportive way but nothing in life is black and white. And/but just like IRL everyone feels differently about that.


Personally, I just stay away or stay quiet in certain areas. I'd say we all need to toughen up a little bit but that sounds too cynical.

So, no advice here but just know you're not alone and people often speak from ignorance or blind passion.
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Old 01-06-2007, 11:35 PM
 
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I've seen this behavior over and over again in several boards on here
I've also seen it on just about every other mommy site there is.
Sad how women act when you get them all together.

I'm never in this forum because I don't belong in the SN group, but just happend to see the title and say hey! Someone else feels the same!
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Old 01-07-2007, 12:07 AM
 
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I think how a person feels about being here depends a bit on how much you personalize negative commentary.

Over time I've gotten better at ignoring unpleasant stuff and focusing more on what's helpful and useful for me - of which there is much! I used to be a lot more inclined to react to comments that were challenging. Just the sheer size of this community means that you're going to run into widely varying opinions. Now I'm much more likely to just write off the person's opposing viewpoint and get back on track talking about what I like.

It's a little bit simplistic, but I think that the reality is that in a lot of situations if you look for adversaries, you'll find them. If you look for friendship, you'll find that instead.
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Old 01-07-2007, 12:28 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Finch View Post
I say it all the time, and I'll say it again, having a special needs child has made me much much MUCH less judgemental. It's easy to say "why don't you just..." when you've never walked in that person's shoes. A lesson I had to learn the hard way.
I'm very much with you on this. But also want to say, this became true for me just becoming a parent, SN or not. I have friends with only typically developing children who agree. When you have children, you learn that everything is not just about you and your opinions and ideals. It's about this separate little person who has his/her own will and unique needs. I think if a person remains so judgmental of other people's parenting choices after having children, it's a character flaw, plain and simple.

Before I knew my DS1 was SN I posted in support of a mom looking for help with a gentle approach to helping her baby sleep through the night. My DS1 was a horrible sleeper as a baby (then DS2 came along and I learned what horrible sleeping really is ) I had done what I felt was a gentle approach to sleep learning with my DS, so I posted my experience. I got seriously judged for that. I later found out the person who had been so terribly judgmental - and I mean really raked me over the coals for it - had two babies who slept through the night on their own within four weeks of being born! Um, hello! She had no idea what it was like to be desperately sleep-deprived or for her children to be sleep-deprived and need help. The audacity astounded me. So it's not just SN issues, although obviously these are bigger and lead to more needs for creative approaches to gentle, natural parenting.

I don't go anywhere but here anymore. And I love you guys
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Old 01-07-2007, 12:29 AM
 
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Originally Posted by inezyv View Post
Now, when I hear about a kid going through surgery it is all I can do not to appear in the hospital myself. I think about the little kid who just went through brain surgery on this board every day. My world is different. I wish my eyes never had to have been opened in this way... I wish there were a way my eyes could have been opened without having to see children suffer.
Beautifully said - and I feel the same.
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Old 01-07-2007, 12:49 AM
 
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There is stuff I do b/c of my son's autism that I would never do otherwise. But, I do what's best for my SON, not for the random faceless people in cyberspace. Maybe I've got a tough skin, I don't know. If you know you're doing what's best for your family- screw it if someone tells you you're garbage. YOU KNOW YOU'RE NOT!! WE know you're not. THEY don't know what you live through and most of us wouldn't wish our bad days on anyone, but they also don't know the joys of our good days.

AP isn't about a checklist of what you must or must not do, it's about being an attached, in tune PARENT for your child and that's what we're all doing.

Hang in there and don't let a few bad apples spoil the bunch~

Michelle -mom to Katlyn 4/00 , Jake 3/02, and Seth 5/04
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Old 01-07-2007, 12:50 AM
 
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I've felt this at times, and wondered if it was just me. I've experienced it IRL too. It's an interesting dichotomy, because I've felt like some who judge others over x, y, z are the same ones who can get all riled up in indignation over "How dare someone judge me over x, y, and z?" if that makes sense. I don't know how to make people understand that just because their life choices are right for them don't make them right for everybody, so mostly I try to ignore it. Although sometimes it makes me want to say, "Wow, you win at motherhood." as if there were such a thing.
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Old 01-07-2007, 01:03 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Finch View Post
I say it all the time, and I'll say it again, having a special needs child has made me much much MUCH less judgemental. It's easy to say "why don't you just..." when you've never walked in that person's shoes. A lesson I had to learn the hard way.
Very very true. I can think back to when I was pregnant with Owen or when he was a baby saying I would never do XYZ and how bad XYZ was. Now.... haha.... boy, if I knew then what I know why I'd have shut my mouth One thing that really stands out is the use of "harnesses". I used to swear up and down those things were evil and, ya know, what kind of parent can't keep track of their child? And then my son got older and I got a bit wiser (and kicked myself in the a$$ for having talked down about those lifesavers). You will now find me defending the use of them all over this board

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There is stuff I do b/c of my son's autism that I would never do otherwise. But, I do what's best for my SON, not for the random faceless people in cyberspace. Maybe I've got a tough skin, I don't know. If you know you're doing what's best for your family- screw it if someone tells you you're garbage. YOU KNOW YOU'RE NOT!! WE know you're not. THEY don't know what you live through and most of us wouldn't wish our bad days on anyone, but they also don't know the joys of our good days.

AP isn't about a checklist of what you must or must not do, it's about being an attached, in tune PARENT for your child and that's what we're all doing.

Hang in there and don't let a few bad apples spoil the bunch~
Ditto this whole post. If most other MDC mamas were to peek into my day there's a good chance they would be horrified by what they saw. Just because they don't understand what it's like to live in my shoes. Take for example- getting ready to leave the house. Yeah, MDC moms say all the time to give plenty of warning, let the child choose what to wear, let the child help get dressed, blah blah blah. But none of that actually WORKS for Owen. What does work is gathering everything I'm going to need, holding him down and wrestling with him while dressing him. By the end he's screaming, I'm worn out and on the verge of tears, but he's dressed. Success! Repeat in 12 hours when it's time for bed I think a lot of people get into the mindset that it worked for them so surely it will work for everyone.

Steph, DH Jason (1-1-11), DS Owen (10-3-03) and DS Kai (10-13-11)

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Old 01-07-2007, 01:10 AM
 
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Having a special needs child just generally makes a parent more sensitive imo.

This is a great thread and so many things that have been said ITA with - - especially about the part about being narrow-minded, judgemental and unenlightened before becoming a special needs mom.

When I first joined MDC I remember a post about someone complaining about a boy they saw in a stroller in a mall who was <gasp> watching a dvd! <gasp> while the mom was shopping.

I responded to that post saying, gee, I'm really sorry for that kid who doesn't get a chance to interact w/people or his surroundings.

I was sitting in total judgement and not realizing that that boy could've had SID or any number of other things that may have been alleviated by the simple use of a dvd for 1/2 hour or whatever.

I'm sorry that I used to feel that way, but I feel blessed to have my SN dd who has enlightened me in more ways than one!
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Old 01-07-2007, 02:35 AM
 
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Thank you for your post. I can relate to much of it!

I've been around awhile, but as you can see by my post count, I don't post much. I've posted in this forum a time or two but mostly I just read. I'm a learning mama!
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:23 AM
 
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yeah, there are somethings I just dont post out loud.

I choose to not wrestle and debate the fact that my 18 month old no longer nurses. He drinks medical food. My milk made him scream and cry and fail to grow, no matter what i eliminated from my diet, and believe me I was commited to CLW.

He drinks 35 cal/oz medical food without pain!! Praise God for medical food!

My little guy has developmental issues, and we are getting used to the comments.

I am so sorry you've felt unwelcome at MDC.

I think I was fortunate b/c I had a strong base at MDC before I had my ds, and we didnt know he would have issues until he was a few months old. So I had a good DDC that I bonded with, and they walked me through his hhard months of FTT and struggles.
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