Thursday, April 16, 2009

Flashback Friday Things That Begin With R

This post is written for Flashback Friday over at My Tiny Kingdom. Link on the right side of this page.

In our family we have a real understanding of the big R word--retarded. It was the hardest word for me to get comfortable with after Walker was born. There had been quite a step up from “Mongolian Idiot” to “Downs Syndrome”, but deep down, I knew that whatever they called it, it was difficult to get through life with it.

For more thoughts on the current terminology go to .

I’m not sure when the first time I heard perfectly normal kids call each other “retard”, but I think it was when Sarah was in Junior High School in the 80’s. One of my proudest moments as a mother was when she told me she had confronted her friends about using the word, explaining that it was hurtful. I think it made different people out of her friends, several of whom now work with “Special Populations”. I’m glad she had enough self confidence to be able to sound off without worrying about losing friends.

I hope things have improved with mainstreaming and the educational advances made for those with special needs. The comment made by Barack Obama, however unintentional, making light of the talents of those who participate in Special Olympics gave me pause though.

I hope that everyone who reads this will pass it on to a friend who might share it with their children. Words can hurt. Even if they don’t break your bones…they hurt.

1 comment:

Elizabeth Saffell said...

Not a word allowed in our house!! You taught me well Aunt Janie. Kids are mean, I will pass this on. Love you, Elizabeth

PS - look at those muscles on little walker!! wow!