I would like to clarify a few things for you, in no particular order.
1. Just because D. has special needs does not mean that he has special permission to act like a jerk. Do not make excuses for him or allow bad behavior to continue unchecked because "he can't help it." You are not helping him -- or me -- when you allow him to grab things from other children, shove fistfuls of bread into his mouth, or generally behave in ways you would not allow any other child to behave.
2. You might think, in light of the above, that just because I have a kid with special needs does not mean that I have special permission to act like a bitch. You would be wrong. In fact, I do have that right, and I exercise it pretty much all the time. I am not actually a very nice person. This is not something I am really making any effort to change, so if you don't like me, I am OK with that.
3. There is a difference between D. acting like a jerk and D. doing something that he really cannot help, and it would be really great if you could learn the difference. For example, yanking candy out of a toddler's hand and eating it? Acting like a jerk. Not acceptable. Lying down on the floor because he is tired, showing you a trash can 47 times, or inadvertently spitting on you when he talks? While these behaviors may annoy you, they are really not D's fault, and if you reprimand him for any of them, prepare to face my wrath.
4. I do not want, need, or appreciate your pity. My kid is awesome, and if you can't see that, then you suck. Do I sound bitter? Well, you know what? Maybe I am a little bit bitter, but not for the reasons you think. Also not something I'm making any effort to change. If you cock your head to the side and ask me "How ARE you?" Every. Time. We. Meet., I may have to kill you. If you really don't know how I do it, then you should either be offering to help or shutting up. Frankly, I think D. is a lot easier (and way more fun) than your obnoxious kids.
5. "I don't know how you deal with him" is not an acceptable statement to make about anyone's child, ever, for any reason.
6. Despite your vast knowledge of my child, acquired over the few minutes you have actually spent with him, my husband and I feel that we are slightly more qualified to parent him than you are. If we feel he needs to be disciplined for a specific action, we most likely have a reason for it. It is rare that we stick our disabled child in a time-out because we enjoy doing so.
Thank you for your time and attention.
Saturday, February 20, 2010