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Specials Needs that Are Less Obvious

Anonymous
Posted by Anonymous
  • 57 Replies

I saw a post earlier about special needs children as it relates to physical handicaps and obvious medical special needs in children. The poster was discussing judgment from the public, etc. and it got me to thinking, "What about the children whose special needs are so much less obvious"?

My son for example has autism and language processing disorder. If you go up and talk to him in public for more than five minutes, you'll notice right away. However, if you don't actually speak with him, you don't. I have people openly glare at him (and me) angrily, come up to me to discuss parenting discipline tactics, utter mean words under their breath about how I should "tame that little spoiled brat", and so on.

We were in the grocery store just a couple of days ago when he was having one of his meltdowns. And when I say "meltdowns" people automatically think "brat". But in actuality, he has strong sensory problems. He was upset about a tag in the back of his shirt that was irritating him, then the loudspeaker was too loud. The wheels of the grocery cart were squeaky. May sound trivial to you guys, but to my son, it actually is sensory overload and he cries, yells, and sometimes literally falls to the floor until I correct the issue.

So back to the grocery store delimma, during his meltdown he cut off this random stranger, and her reaction was strange. I expected the same old, "control your kid glare" or sigh, but instead she said, "That's just life mama, chill out", as if my problems are trivial. I'd call this an "under reaction" (as opposed to the common overreaction) where another parent has NO freaking idea what they've just encountered and are treating the parent like they're being mean.

Either way, parents of special needs children that are not obvious, can you please give me some advice on how to deal with the way other people handle my child? 

Posted by Anonymous on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:07 PM
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Replies (1-10):
krissy920
by Gold Member on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:09 PM

you have to ignore them

weirdkids
by Gold Member on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:36 PM

i ignore it honestly. when i do take little man out and he has a meltdown, it usually isnt too bad unless its a resturant. something about the differnt smells set him off. (weird though, he loves yankee candle and that place stinks lol) for that, i tip well lol weve had some store episodes but mostly because he doesnt like sitting in the cart. i ignore the looks most of the time and i have only had someone say something to me twice. the first woman was middle aged. told me i need to control my child better. i told her "by all means, please feel free to show me how its done" she squatted down on his level and attempted to talk to him in baby talk and he looked at her like she was stupid and started freaking out and climbed up my leg lol then another woman very loudly said "what is wrong with that mother that she cant control her child?''  i turned and told her, whats wrong is that im shopping with my autistic son and he didnt like her lol

Anonymous
by Anonymous - Original Poster on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:38 PM

OMG you TOLD that one lady, good for you! What did she say in response, if you don't mind me asking? 


Quoting weirdkids:

i ignore it honestly. when i do take little man out and he has a meltdown, it usually isnt too bad unless its a resturant. something about the differnt smells set him off. (weird though, he loves yankee candle and that place stinks lol) for that, i tip well lol weve had some store episodes but mostly because he doesnt like sitting in the cart. i ignore the looks most of the time and i have only had someone say something to me twice. the first woman was middle aged. told me i need to control my child better. i told her "by all means, please feel free to show me how its done" she squatted down on his level and attempted to talk to him in baby talk and he looked at her like she was stupid and started freaking out and climbed up my leg lol then another woman very loudly said "what is wrong with that mother that she cant control her child?''  i turned and told her, whats wrong is that im shopping with my autistic son and he didnt like her lol



Rileyscute
by on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:39 PM
1 mom liked this

I don't notice other people, and don't care if they notice me or my son

missamanda86
by Silver Member on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:40 PM

I think the best way is just to ignore their ignorance. You cant educate ignorant people, and IMO by judging just by appearance, that is ignorant. You are doing the best you can :)

weirdkids
by Gold Member on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:41 PM


well he didnt help matters much because he stuck his tounge out at her as i was saying it and the look on her face was classic which made him crack up. all in all she kind of resolved the issue lol she was horrified that not only did i say that but my 2yo backed me up lol

Quoting Anonymous:

OMG you TOLD that one lady, good for you! What did she say in response, if you don't mind me asking? 


Quoting weirdkids:

i ignore it honestly. when i do take little man out and he has a meltdown, it usually isnt too bad unless its a resturant. something about the differnt smells set him off. (weird though, he loves yankee candle and that place stinks lol) for that, i tip well lol weve had some store episodes but mostly because he doesnt like sitting in the cart. i ignore the looks most of the time and i have only had someone say something to me twice. the first woman was middle aged. told me i need to control my child better. i told her "by all means, please feel free to show me how its done" she squatted down on his level and attempted to talk to him in baby talk and he looked at her like she was stupid and started freaking out and climbed up my leg lol then another woman very loudly said "what is wrong with that mother that she cant control her child?''  i turned and told her, whats wrong is that im shopping with my autistic son and he didnt like her lol





mariesmama
by on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:41 PM

my 3 yr old has motor dyspraxia and spd she's a very intelligent,social little girl

weezer_cookie
by Platinum Member on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:44 PM
I shop in my own little world with my DD. idgaf what other people say or do. I ignore them completely.

She has two significant chromosomal deletions. You can't tell by looking at her. But if you talk with her you can tell within about a minute that she isn't a "typical" five year old.
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Sekirei
by LoKitty on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:44 PM

My son has Aspergers. It is really not noticable unless he speaks or gets excited. It's almost like talking to a 4 yr old.. he will be 7 this year. Certain pitches in sound bother him and he tends to just start crying. He doesn't like new people, unless he has his space gigi (blanket) or his whale with him. He loves showing those off. 

His meltdowns are more hiding and crying, the screaming ones have stopped, thank the gods. He also spaces out if there are too many people in an area.. completely shuts down

I have learned to ignore.. I have had too. I figure if they are going to judge me on something my son can't control, then they are not worth my breath to explain anyway. 

Anonymous
by Anonymous on Feb. 20, 2013 at 1:45 PM

i smile.

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