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Explaining Disabilities to your Child

DD and I went to a mall yesterday and came across two separate people with disabilities on two separate occasions. Both were in wheelchairs that were being pushed by another and both at least appeared to be non-verbal. They were making loud noises and looking around with seemingly very little neck control.

6-1/2 year old DD asked me after each one "What is wrong with him/her, Mommy?"

I quite honestly had no idea of what to say and stumbled around my words until, thankfully, her mind got onto something else.

How do you answer this question?


Asked by AllAboutKeeley at 5:22 PM on Aug. 8, 2012 in General Parenting

Level 33 (59,731 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (4)
  • All kids are made different. Some are good at art, some are good at sports, some are good at music. Some need glasses to help them see and some need wheels to help them move. No matter what, they are people and have feelings, so we treat everyone as nice as we can.

    Answer by layh41407 at 5:59 PM on Aug. 8, 2012

  • I tell them that sometimes people's brains can't control what their bodies want to do and that while they may be really smart and know a lot of things in their brain, they can't always make their bodies do what they want them to, like walking or talking or throwing a ball.

    Answer by QuinnMae at 6:12 PM on Aug. 8, 2012

  • Well honey God didnt creat everyone the same and he/she is a very special person and every has a different light she/he is just like you or me ....I mean thats a tough on I dont know have not had to explain that yet and would love advice too?

    Answer by supgrl87 at 5:28 PM on Aug. 8, 2012

  • When I know what the disability is, I explain it to my kids and tell them how it can happen - at least as far as my knowledge of it goes. If I don't know what the disability is, then I just tell them that I don't know what disability they have, but that some people are disabled and it doesn't make them any less of a person, or make them any less hurt if someone talks about them. My kids have always been pretty good about being compassionate and not staring and waiting until someone has moved out of hearing before they ask me what's wrong with the person.

    Answer by wendythewriter at 6:30 PM on Aug. 8, 2012