Alright. I’m riled up.
I know… I know…
But bear with me on this one. (or these few…)
So, in class last week our assignment was to respond to this question:
“If you HAD to have a child with a disability, what disability would you choose and why?”
That’s a pretty loaded question…
First of all, isn’t that taboo, politically incorrect, or at the very least just jinxing yourself?
Nope. That’s the question. Come back with your thoughtful answer.
(Now, before you start asking other questions such as, “Is it my first child?” “Am I married?” “Do I have a good job/any money?” Just get those questions out of your mind. You don’t get to ask them… just answer the original question.)
Initially what I thought about while making this decision were two things:
What disability could I have the most effect on?
What disability do I think I could offer the most as a parent for?
Naturally, I thought of a behavior disorder first. What I believe most about behavior disorders is that they can often be somewhat controlled given the most accommodating environment. Not to sound overconfident here, but I do know that I have a high interest in behavior disorders, and I also know that I have made many connections with children suffering from behavior disorders… connections that I feel are pretty beneficial. I think that as a parent I would be able to use some of those success strategies in my own home and possibly enhance the life of a child with a behavior disorder.
And then my mind got the best of me and I kept going… I went on to think about the students that I have worked with in my years of working with disabled children… and I thought about the situations that many of them are in, and in the most drastic of those situations how would I be of any benefit to that child? Basically thinking, (of specific students) and wondering if they were mine, what I would do differently.
(You can go ahead and save the judgment lecture… you know the one, about how I am not a parent… blah, blah. You know the line… “Some people do crafts…”)
Back to thinking like a parent, long story short, I thought about how having a behavior disorder is often times in correlation with having another disability, which also got me thinking about having a child with autism. As I mentioned in a previous blog, I work with a student with pretty severe autism, and she most definitely has a long, hard road ahead of her. But, ultimately do I think I could offer something to a child with autism? Yeah. I know I could. Do I know that it would ultimately benefit my life having a child with autism? Yeah, I am pretty sure of that.
Now, fast forward to class tonite… We have to “share” what disability we chose.
Hold on! What the fuck are you talking about? ADHD? Dyslexia? Seriously? Well, people go on to say, “I was just thinking about what would be least invasive for my child.” Or, “I was just thinking about what I could actually deal with as a parent.”
Alright, I’ll give you thinking about what is least invasive for you child. Call me selfish, I was thinking about what disability I could have an effect on to help my child. But, what you can deal with as a parent? Really? First of all, is ADHD a disability? Hmmm… And what kind of disability can you deal with? Are you here in this class to become a special education teacher? Because that might cause some serious conflicts of what you can “deal with” as well.
And this is what I hear in return, “Well, you aren’t a parent… so obviously you would have a different outlook than us.”
Hmmm… I’ll just leave this one blank and let you guess how I responded to that.
And just when I thought I was going to blow, this is what I hear from the guy who showed up 47 minutes late to class:
I would choose to have a child with Down Syndrome, because you know… they all are just so happy all the time!”
Yeah, and that’s the rant of the next blog… being a graduate student having to sit in class with undergraduate fuckwits who are just looking for an “easy major.”
(Go back to your crafts… I am most certainly judging now!)