Special care for special ones

Thursday July 12, 2012

http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/7/12/focus/11646312&sec=focus

MY heart goes out to a dear friend who is facing a predicament over the education of her two-year-old son with special needs.

Being a young parent, my friend goes the extra mile for her son, educating herself on his special needs, accepting his specialness with an open mind, albeit with a heavy heart.

I stress the word “special” for a reason – these individuals definitely deserve the utmost attention, care and support, not to mention sensitivity from all those involved in their development years.

After doing a lot of research, my friend found a centre for special needs children near her home, which was quite convenient as she also had to ferry a five-year-old daughter to school.

However, to her horror, she got a call a few months back saying that her son was a “nuisance”, as he was always crying and wailing all the time.

According to the head of the school, the boy wouldn’t stop crying, so she said that “either: a) something is wrong with him or b) something is wrong with the parents and their parenting skills!”

I was flabbergasted on hearing this. My friend was already suffering in silence over her son’s special needs and she didn’t want pity for her or her son.

Oddly enough, her son doesn’t throw tantrums at home and that was why my friend was caught by surprise when she was told that he was a “pest” at the centre.

She pulled him out from the centre.

She recently found another centre, a bit further from her home and so far things have turned out well.

What got me riled up was how unprofessional and unethical the principal was, putting all the blame on the young boy and the family.

I have an aunt who has been involved in educating kids with special needs for many years, and despite being faced with constant screams, tantrums, threats, kicks and punches from these young individuals, never once has she complained about them.

As such, I have the highest respect for her and for other educators of special needs’ children.

I feel that my friend should have been given support, encouragement, and information on how to raise her young boy.

NAZREEN
Bandar Kinrara, Selangor