The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Columns

November 16, 2013

Walk a mile in a special-needs kid's shoes

Editor’s note: The Daily Star is departing this one time from our policy of requiring authors of commentaries to identify themselves. The reason is so as not to expose children’s identities in what we feel is an important message for the benefit of all special-needs children and their families. 

I spent all day after our appointment today feeling upset. I was distracted wondering why your interactions today, and previous interactions with “A” have bothered me so much. I am very well aware that “A” can be hard to handle, I am her mother, after all. After we left the shop and I sat in my car feeling angry, confused and upset.

First I was upset with “A” for not behaving, but then the more I thought about it the more I came to realize that I was not upset with “A,” I was offended and saddened with how you treated her today, and have treated in the past. You see, knowing that you are not a “kid person” (it’s not hard to tell), I could see that “Z” was on the verge of an epic meltdown and I desperately wanted to avoid that from happening in your shop. 

Just the thought of the glares and looks I would receive was enough to make the decision to take “Z” out of the building. I truly thought that “A” would be OK in there by herself waiting for her appointment for a few minutes while I got “Z” under control. I realize now that that was a big mistake on my part.

All that being said, what you don’t know is that we spent all morning at the doctor’s office because “A” has been having severe headaches daily for the past two weeks. What you don’t know is that “A” has been diagnosed by a child psychiatrist with ADHD, obsessive-compulsive disorder and an anxiety disorder that apparently was elevated after I left the shop, and that is why she was standing in the window — she was looking for me. 

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