I rarely have moments anymore where I get fueled by the ignorance of others in relation to autism or developmental disabilities. I like to think that rather than outright ignorance, some people just aren’t at a point in their life to deal with facts, reality, and common sense. It is easier to blame or to fall victim for the latest “trends”.
My moment of fuel came when it was assumed that my girl wasn’t taught to read or to do math. A moment when this person voiced an opinion that alluded to the people in her school setting didn’t try. A moment of blame.
Rather than defend the school I simply listened and when I could get a word in, I planted seeds that reading irrelevant books and reciting math facts really isn’t functional in the world of independence. However, reading recipes, bus schedules, menus and giving the correct amount of money at a store, seems to me to be way more important that rattling of meaningless facts.
Of course she was given years of direct instruction on reading and math. She experienced years of splintered skills and inconsistent test scores. What is not inconsistent is that she cannot count change and has a minimal concept of time. She carries around books all the time, but cannot read beyond a second grade level. To assume that she was not taught, in my opinion, is once again placing blame on something that just is.
Every once in while I get reminded of why I am her mom; to be grounded in reality, to continuously work on acceptance, to be the best voice for her that I can be, and to always work on practicing tolerance and peace.