Saturday, April 14, 2018

Succeeding "In the Real World"

To be honest, I don't read a lot of blogs written by parents of "special needs" children because I was that kid and my daughter was that kid and I like my blood pressure the way it is. I like this particular post because "Whether or not you tell your child they have a disability does not affect whether or not they are disabled." I subscribe to the social model of disability: disability is caused by the way society is organised, rather than by a person's impairment or difference (Scope). Starting as a myasthenic, I've watched this be true from the inside for almost 30 years.

Secure knowledge about oneself is one of the tools that kids need to succeed "in the real world". I realized I was different from my peers in preschool. Different in intensely painful and isolating ways. In unspeakable by me and unidentifiable by adults ways. No one knew to look for autism in people socialized as girls in the 1980s, so my differences were chalked up in mile high neon letters to be tragic, rotten character flaws that I could totally stop having if only I tried hard enough. Truly, most people didn't think I a) cared or b) was actually trying really, really, really (really) hard not to suck at being human. Frankly, had I known my differences were neurological instead, there would have been fewer suicide attempts.

*Edited because it always deserves to be said: My mom could see my magic the whole time, and for that I am grateful. ❤️