Tuesday, October 05, 2010
I have said many times how thankful we are for the school my children attend. I have said how great they have been in accommodating Aiden's Autism & ADHD. I have said how much we love the teachers and how much we respect all they do every day for our kids. And I mean it. I honestly can't express just how thankful I am that my children can attend a wonderful school.
But apparently I have not communicated that effectively to the school because I am pretty sure I have become one of "those" parents in their minds.
Part of having a child with special needs is learning to advocate on behalf of your child. Really all parents have to do that for their children, special needs or not... but it becomes more pronounced when you have a kid with "issues".
Doug and I attend a support group for parents of autistic kids and we had group last night... coincidentally the topic up for discussion happened to be advocating for our kids. We got to hear how other parents deal with this too and how stressful it can be on both the parent side and the teacher side.
At one point Doug said that he wondered why it always seemed to be an "us vs. them" scenario. Why can't it just be us all working together for the good of the kid?
I think in our case that really is what is going on- I believe that the teachers and school want what is best for Aiden and I know we do. But we are having an issue with communication. Obviously.
I honestly don't know what we are doing so wrong or why the teacher's assume we are angry with them just because we want to talk to them. I can only assume that they are so used to parents being angry with them that they go in to each meeting with their backs up already. Which is tragic really. They shouldn't be made to feel that way.
The thing is I'm not angry. I just want to talk. I just want to help.
And I don't like leaving the school feeling like my presence had made the lives of the teachers more difficult.
It just makes me sad.
Aiden's counsellor has set up a meeting at the school for next week with the teacher, the special needs coordinator, the occupational therapist, us and her... I feel nervous. It seems everytime we attempt to meet with them it makes them like us less. I just want it to go well and for them to know we just want to support them.