I thought I was pretty careful in how I put the list of requests together. I started with the ones that were definitely going to be agreed to and put the big-ticket items at the end. That way, mommy would hear all kinds of yeses and/or alternative ideas before getting into the tense parts. I thought by the end, we could have enough in place that the tense parts wouldn't be as devastating, maybe she could see how it might work and how they are trying to work with her instead of completely ignoring everything she had to say. Maybe she could feel comfortable enough with the team listening to her and acknowledging her concerns to be able to see their points when they did disagree, or maybe by then they would see that she had enough valid concerns to warrant looking into at least one of them. We went out of order. In the end, it was just barely looking almost promising before the shit hit the fan.
There are some things that professionals just can't say to parents. There are trigger words or phrases that will just shut the whole conversation down or turn it into a bar room brawl (this one was more #2). Not everything is a parenting issue. period. Our children are not "normal" or "typical" and we just don't care what a stranger walking into our child's classroom would think any more than we care what they think at Wal-Mart or the pizza place. Not all disabilities are visible. Don't trivialize our children's disabilities to reassure us that they aren't "that bad." We need straight truth. At least acknowledge that our child does have difficulties in certain areas relating to their disabilities (I would like to take a second to thank my Goofy One's area coordinator for stopping the conversation just to reassure us that just because people were saying he's doing better in certain areas, it doesn't mean that he's not still struggling. Thank you.) and compare their progress to their own. I don't care what a typically developing kid in your class is doing. Would you compare your typically developing student to a delayed student in your class while talking to their parent? "My autistic kid screams just like James. We don't think a thing of it. The kids are used to it." Would you tell the parent of a typically developing student that when he is seated in a class of special needs children that a stranger walking into the class wouldn't be able to tell which one is typical? Why would you think it's ok to say it to us? My kid is not broken, I couldn't give a shit less if he can pass for normal.
|#Perfect. Both of them.|
So, that meeting didn't go well. The sister is no longer enrolled in school. We'll do what we can do and try again next year.