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10 Things You Should Never Say to a Mother of a Child with Down Syndrome.

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In a well-meaning effort to support fellow women, sometimes we get it wrong—and this is often the case around the subject of Down syndrome. According to Shari Bottego, president of the Down Syndrome Association of Central New York, “The words that people use can help all individuals lead complete and enriching lives.” When it comes to mothers of children with Down syndrome, here are some helpful ways to avoid saying the wrong thing.

1.Nothing.

The worst thing you can say is absolutely nothing. There is always a lot to be curious about with children, and this should be no exception. Anna Greventis, mother of Lulu, 10, says that people will compliment her daughter on her abilities, and then when they discover she has Down syndrome they just stop talking. “I usually have no issue with answering questions as long as they are specific to DS.” Education is the key to understanding, so choosing to keep quiet in order to avoid hurt feelings is not always useful. Women often appreciate the effort to reach out.

2. “You only get given what you can handle.”

It’s a mistake to take it for granted that a mother of a kid with special needs views herself as having a special burden that doesn’t apply to other people. Lots of people have adversity in their lives—a family member with substance-abuse issues or a life-threatening illness—saying this doesn’t add comfort or “further the cause; it is just a generic answer to an uncomfortable social situation,” Greventis states. Instead of highlighting what could be perceived as a struggle, it might be more helpful to hear what the mother really is having issues with, it might be the huge pile of laundry on the couch.

3. “He/she is God’s gift.”

Well, wouldn’t all children be? This can be taken either way. The general pitfall to avoid is the assumption that their child is somehow more blessed than “normal.” Greventis explains that when people say this she finds it “annoying because it is relegating her to some ‘thing’ that I really need God’s help about.” Meg Keilbach, mother of Will, 7, on the other hand says “WE AGREE!! Will has brought a new perspective to our lives. After having three girls you take things for granted. With Will we treasure every achievement! And for that we thank God daily.”

4. “I could never handle what you handle.”

Women like to show their admiration for other strong women. When one woman mentions to another “I could never handle what you do” it can suggest that they had a choice in the matter. “Yes you would,” might be her response. “It is your child and you would do anything to improve their life. Anything,” Keilbach says. We all know the superpowers moms have, and, like all mothers, women who happen to have a child with Down syndrome think of themselves as mothers first with the same enormous capacity to give that we all have.

5. The “R” word.
“The R-word is often used in front of me when people don’t know.” Greventis goes on, “then you are put in the uncomfortable position of having to ask them to please not use the word and explain why.” Mothers of children with Down syndrome find this term offensive as it generalizes their child’s abilities. “Each person has his or her own unique strengths capabilities and talents,” Bottego states, referring to the language guidelines put out by the Down Syndrome Society of Rhode Island.

6. “Did you get genetic testing?”

When mothers hear this, they might feel judged about what options they should or shouldn’t have chosen. “My mother’s good friend reminded me that I ‘still had time to abort.’ I was horrified! We really stopped telling people after that,” Keilbach says. Also, asking someone to second-guess their living child’s existence or question their choices isn’t fair. Embracing their current situation is better than reflecting on the past.

7. ‘Downs kid’

“I guess you can say this is the first thing you should never say to a mother,” states Bottego. The correct name for the diagnosis is Down syndrome. There is no “s” after Down and each person should be considered as a person first—one who also happens to have Down syndrome. Therefore they would be considered an adult with Down syndrome or a child with Down syndrome or the mother of a child with Down syndrome.

8. “Everything happens for a reason.”

Again Greventis refers to this as an old “adage.” Women might not find this particularly useful when they may not believe there is a reason for their circumstances. Rather, like the rest of us, they are simply living their life in the best way they can with what they have. Mothers of children with Down syndrome often feel that they don’t need to find a special reason for their child having Down syndrome because it downplays the importance of feeling that their life is as full of ups and downs as the next person.

9. “I’m so sorry.”

A mom might not necessarily be sad. This statement could be met with a response such as “what are you sorry for?” To imply pity suggests there is something wrong with having a child with Down syndrome when a lot of mothers embrace their situation and enjoy their children like all mothers do. A better comment might be, “How is that for you?” It’s important to welcome their child as much as any other. How about “Congratulations!”

10. “He/she looks so normal.”

Which kid is really “normal”? This concept is something many mothers face all the time. Mothers who have kids who are “different,” might have embraced this difference and think of it as something special. Mothers who have kids with Down syndrome love the special facial and physical features of their children, and don’t think of them as something to be downplayed. Keilbach suggests, “Instead, why don’t you ask about the latest book he is reading or what’s his favorite sport? Does he enjoy second grade? You know, the things that you will ask the other mother in the office.” There are all types of ways we can discuss our children and it is important to consider Down syndrome as yet another variation. It’s more helpful to show interest in the kid—and what he or she likes to do—than to point out (or minimize) any physical differences.

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Fedex Driver Shovels Snow Off Woman’s Porch When He Learns Her Husband Recently Died

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Leigh Anne’s husband had just passed away after fighting cancer for seven months at the age of 42. This left her with three young children to raise on her own as a single mother and widow.

In the middle of winter, after a pretty nasty snowstorm, the cold had deflated her tyres. Leigh Anne tried putting air back in her tires but found it too hard to remove the cap on her tyres, meaning she could not be able to refill them. Luckily she noticed Brian making a nearby call.

Brian is a friendly local delivery driver with FedEx who she had seen around her neighborhood and had even delivered a few packages to Leigh Anne a couple of times before.

Brian was happy and kind enough to help out with her tyres. As the two were chatting, Brian got to learn of Leigh Anne’s heartbroken state and her husband’s recent death.

Read also: Young Man Pushes Disabled Stranger UPHILL For A Mile To Get Her Home After Wheelchair Breaks Down

Brian knew he had to do something to help her out. There was enough pain and stress in her life already, and there was just a small something he could do to make things a little better for her.

After helping Leigh Anne fix her car tyres and helping her back into her house, the FedEx driver quickly grabbed a shovel and got to work. He had noticed all the snow covering her porch and decided to help.

The doorbell camera captured Brian’s act of kindness, as he shovelled the snow off Leigh Anne’s porch and pathway to help her out. “Doorbell cameras don’t only catch people stealing packages,” Leigh Anne wrote on Facebook.

Brian’s kindness and thoughtfulness melted the hearts of thousands who saw the footage after it was shared on social media. God bless this man.

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Framed Photo Of Lord’s Prayer Stops Bullet Fired Into Home

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An elderly Kansas woman says it’s a miracle that she and her husband are alive after a bullet was fired into her home, all thanks to a framed photo of the Lord’s Prayer that saved them both.

Constance Effie said she had just sat down to watch some television in the living room of her Kansas City home when she heard an explosion-like sound. Her husband was also home at the time.

A framed photo of the Lord’s Prayer saved Effie and her husband

A framed photo of the Lord’s Prayer saved Effie and her husband

“All of a sudden ‘boom.’ I thought I was in a war zone because that was the loudest noise I ever heard,” Effie told WDAF.

The seventy year old woman said she then realized that someone had opened fire outside, leading to one of the bullets flying into her house. But instead of hitting her, the bullet hit a framed photo of the Lord’s Prayer that was hanging only two feet above her head.

Read also: Woman Finds Newborn Buried Alive While Out Jogging, 20 Years Later Their Reunion Will Bring You To Tears.

“We looked all around and didn’t see a hole anywhere. I thought, ‘Look, that picture, the glass is all broken,'” she said. “It hit [the picture] and fell down behind [the couch]. But if it didn’t have the metal, it probably would’ve come on in and hit one of us.”

Effie believes God blocked the bullet from hurting them. She said the next day she had to be taken to the hospital where doctors told her that she had suffered a minor heart attack because of the scary ordeal.

Effie believes God blocked the bullet from hurting them.

Effie believes God blocked the bullet from hurting them.

“I was afraid after the near-death incident. I kept thinking I don’t want any more shooting,” Effie said, adding she constantly hears gunshots in her neighborhood. “The doctors said it looked like it was a stress heart attack but that it was a small one.”

“We’re lucky to be alive, and we’re happy,” Effie said. “We just hope and pray they understand not to do this anymore.”

Kansas City police are still investigating the shooting and have not identified the suspects yet.

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Kind-Hearted Mom Packs Son Extra Lunch To Feed Classmate In Need

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Kind-Hearted Mom Packs Son Extra Lunch To Feed Classmate In Need

One day as Josette Duran was packing her son lunch, he asked her to add an extra snack for his school lunch. The mom was quite surprised as she thought she was packing him plenty of food for the day.

However, when he explained why he wanted the extra snack, she was heartbroken. The extra snack he was asking for was for a boy at his school. Dylan explained to his mother how the young boy only brought a fruit cup for lunch every single day and he didn’t think he had enough cash to buy lunch at the school, either.

 One day as Josette Duran was packing her son lunch, he asked her to add an extra snack for his school lunch.


One day as Josette Duran was packing her son lunch, he asked her to add an extra snack for his school lunch.

Josette who lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico, recalled how the conversation with her son went.

Dylan: Mama can you make me TWO lunches today?

Mom: Are you not getting full, boo?

Dylan: Yes Mom, it’s for this boy. He only eats a fruit cup for lunch. Can you make him lunch too? I don’t think he has lunch money.

Dylan had noticed the boy sitting alone every single lunchtime with just a fruit cup for his lunch and had felt the need to help him the only way he knew how. Instead of adding just extra snack as Dylan had requested, Josette began making two school lunches every day. One for Dylan and one for his new friend.

Read also: Mom Brings 4 Month Old On Flight Then Stuns People When She Begins Handing Out “Baggies” To Passengers

Later on she found out that the young boy’s mother had recently lost her job. Josette said that the story hit close to her heart as only a few years ago, she and Dylan had been in a similar position. So she knew that she had to help.

“A few years ago, me and my son were homeless. I was living in my car and I was washing him in bathrooms. And we didn’t have food.” Josette revealed.

Instead of adding just extra snack as Dylan had requested, Josette began making two school lunches every day. One for Dylan and one for his new friend.

Instead of adding just extra snack as Dylan had requested, Josette began making two school lunches every day. One for Dylan and one for his new friend.

Josette had already gotten used to her routine of packing two lunches for Dylan when she received a phone call from the school principal asking her to go to the school. It turned out that the little boy’s mother had figured out what Josette had been doing and wanted to express her gratitude.

Watch the video below to see the result of Josette’s actions. Be sure to have the tissues close by:

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