Parents, I have a Plea from the Bottom of my Heart

To explain, this week there were two incidents that tore me up inside. 

I met a beautiful little 4 year old who I found out is in my daughter Evangeline’s class at school.

When I asked if she knew Evie, she said with wide eyes ‘Yes! Evie just cries all the time!’

She was a sweet thing and meant no harm, but it hurt hearing that as her description of my daughter.

Then, I was told by her caregiver that when they were leaving school this week, another classmate pointed to Evie on the way out and said ‘That’s Evie, she’s a bad girl!’

Evie’s caregiver, who has become a dear friend, overheard and said to the child and the parent, “Actually, Evie is not bad, she’s autistic.” 

The parent was quick to correct the child after that, which I’m grateful for.

Parents, I have a plea from the bottom of my heart.

I beg you to take some time to talk to your little ones about kids who are different.

The ones who visibly have special needs but also kids like Evie who look perfectly ‘normal’ but behave differently in ways they don’t understand.

When an opportunity arises in the mall or at the park and there is a child melting down, struggling with behaviour or social norms, etc., talk about it with them.

Explain that some kids have bodies and brains that are different than their own and might need extra kindness and patience to learn things that they can already do.

Encourage them to not be afraid and to ask their teachers how they can be a friend. 

It’s never too early to start simple conversations about kids (and adults) who are different. 

I pray everyday that as Evangeline grows up, she finds a few true friends who are kind, who can appreciate her for all her beauty, and are tolerant as she works through challenges that are unique to her.

If you take the time to talk about these things with your own babies, you are answering my pleas and prayers, and can make a huge difference in the life of my baby, and all the beautiful, misunderstood souls like her.

Written by, Jill Kakoske

Jill Kakoske is a 31 year old mother to her 4 year old daughter who was diagnosed with Autism at 2 years 3 months of age. She is also a wife and a teacher who is passionate about advocating and educating about Autism. She loves reading, spending time with family and writing about her experiences as a mother. 

Finding Cooper’s Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you’re never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village….all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to our journey. You can also follow us on Facebook, subscribe for exclusive videos, and subscribe to our newsletter.

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Finding Cooper's Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you're never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village....all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to my page!

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