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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Labels

We didn't do any exercises today. Well, that's not exactly true. We did the breathing exercise and part of the stretching exercise. Then his nose started bleeding. I've never known a child to have nose bleeds as much as he does. They come in spurts, and sometimes he'll go months without one. But today we had to stop so he could take care of his nose. Since we didn't start until late afternoon, it was almost time to go to karate by the time his nose had stopped bleeding, so we didn't finish. He had online classes this morning, then lunch, so we got a late start. He did get his music/patch time in between his classes. I think it's going to take us a while to build up to two hours with that.

Since I started this journey, I've been thinking about labels. I'm a wanna-be unschooler and many unschoolers have a problem with putting labels on children. I do, too, in a way. I've been pondering this, though, and I agree with what a friend said recently: "She asked me if I ever had him tested and my response was no, I didn't want to label him. That was only a partially true response, cause in my head I give him labels all the time." What my friend and I (and I suspect most others with a labeling issue) want is to avoid our children being put in a "box" and having others decide what they are capable of or allowed to do because of a label. Or how we as parents should treat the children. We've all heard of the schools that try to make the parents put their ADHD child on drugs. (BTW, I understand it's illegal for the school personnel to tell you your child needs drugs.)

But a label doesn't have to be a bad thing. It can help you connect with others in a similar situation so you can learn coping strategies and maybe even ways to alleviate or cure the condition. And it certainly doesn't define your child. My son is the same smart, funny, sweet, loud, cautious, protective kid he always has been. He didn't suddenly become Asperger Boy because we have a diagnosis. The diagnosis just puts some pieces together for us and gives a direction to look for help. Because every parent needs help. It's just a matter of what we need help with.

And if we refuse to label our children, where should we draw the line? I think I shall label my son Smart, Funny, Sweet, Loud, Cautious, Protective Boy. Would that be okay?

P.S. Because of something I wrote recently, a certain friend may feel this is directed toward her. It's not. I've been thinking about this for some time and decided to write about it tonight because I didn't have anything else to write.

2 comments:

Colleen said...

Hey You quoted me on your blog! I feel so blessed. LOL. The more I read about your experiences with Jeffrey the more I see my son. I think they would be great friends. Too bad I live on the other side of the world.

Amanda said...

I did! I kept meaning to tell you and I forgot. I think our sons and Stephanie's son would be an awesome trio. We already know that two of them get along together...I think I've said this before... Now I sound like one of those old ladies who keep repeating herself...

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