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Autism - Support Across the Spectrum Autism - Support Across the Spectrum

Would/Do you use ever use this?

Posted by on Mar. 19, 2014 at 8:30 AM
  • 7 Replies

As moms of special needs kids I think we often fear being judged. At one point in time most of us have had that,"don't judge me, you don't know my life" type of mentality. Well, we are leaving for spring break Friday and we have chosen venues that the entire family could enjoy and partake in. There is a bit of walking involved which is not a problem for our 'Special K' but he sometimes will snatch away. For example, we went to the circus a couple of months ago and I averted my attention for only a moment to put my pullover on and by the time it passed over my face and I put my arms thru he had taken off. He was wondering in the mist of the crowd and even though it was only seconds it was the most terrifying moment ever. That was the first and only time something like that has ever happened but I refuse to let it happen again. We have decided to break his tether backpack out again for this mini vacation so that we can all enjoy ourselves stress free or at least as stress free as vacationing with special needs kids can be. Are we doing the right thing by using his tether? Do you view them as inhumane or as human "leashes"? Should we fear the daunting stares of others or should we just have our, "don't judge me, you don't know my life" mentality and enjoy our weekend? 

by on Mar. 19, 2014 at 8:30 AM
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Replies (1-7):
Momof4AEMW
by Gold Member on Mar. 19, 2014 at 9:15 AM

I never judge anyone using the tether/leash as kids can be runners and there are safety issues at hand.  We had them for rare occasion I took my triplets out alone and couldn't risk one running off and having the other 2 with me to chase the 1st, or 2 running in different directions, etc.  They did not work well for us because of my kids more so than the leash itself, and we didn't use them much.  Strollers just were easier for me.  I wish there was a more humane looking item for parents to use that did not make us look like we were 'walking' our children like pets, yet safety, especially in crowded unknown places, is a must!!!  I don't know the age of your child, and if he'd be ok just holding hands for an alternative if you're worried about 'the looks.'  Or maybe link/tie something to each of your belt loops that keeps you connected.  I've just learned to not let looks get to me regardless of the situation,.  As you stated, people just do not know my/your life and have no way to understand.  I would do whatever you feel comfortable with and will allow you all to enjoy your family vacation.  Who cares what strangers you pass think, you'll never see them again anyway.  Enjoy your trip, and your child.  The rest does not matter!  Have a great trip!!

SamMom912
by Gold Member on Mar. 19, 2014 at 9:32 AM

Safety first. 

When Sam was little I for sure used a "leash". I would take him in crowded Laguardia or JFK airport alone... And hey, he is my kid, and I need to feel secure about his saftey and keeping him close. 

he is 7 now, and not really a runner. I can say to him... I need to put my coat on, hold my leg... Or stand outside this stall so I can see your feet- Or I bring him him and face him toward the wall (no peeking!) lol

But sweetie, this is YOUR child who you are dojng whats best for him and your family... Whatever gets you through a tough time, you do it! 

NiyasMom1
by Bronze Member on Mar. 19, 2014 at 11:42 AM
My DD is still young so the stroller still works well for her but when she outgrows it I will definitely use whatever is necessary to keep her safe and to keep me from losing my mind worrying. She's a runner also, and what other people think or how they look at it is irrelevant. Enjoy your vacation momma, Safety and peace of mind are priceless!
Charizma77
by Carissa on Mar. 19, 2014 at 12:04 PM

We never used them but I would never judge anyone for using them. Safety first! Don't worry about what others think, I kow plenty of families who have or do use them.

Rosebud27aj
by Amanda on Mar. 19, 2014 at 12:09 PM

You know, I was one who would never use a leash. But with my youngest, he's a runner and has taken off a few times. Never got hurt, but close enough for me to get one. We do have one now. And it has been great for him. Gives a little more freedom for him too, while still being safe.

LiliM
by on Mar. 19, 2014 at 2:03 PM

I used a harness with both my spectrum and NT kid.

Both were runners, and wanted to be on their own.  In large crowsds, that wasn't possible.  I got a TON of crap for it.

Biggest comment - "he's not a DOG!"

Me - "Please leave my child be. This is for his safety, and please look at him - does he look tormented in any way?"

Often, they would mutter and roll eyes and not answer and walk away.  A few actually had the nerve to ask my kids if they liked the harness.

My aspie kid once said, "I love it.  It means I can walk away from Mommy but not get lost." And he beamed at the old biddy in my business.

Roll your eyes right back at people, and ignore them if that's too much effort.  Your kiddo is safe.  That's what's important.

TXCatLady
by Member on Mar. 19, 2014 at 2:30 PM

No judgement here...never have had to use one but a few times it might have helped...My guy is 5 and I make him hold my hand a lot....

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