Friday, July 17, 2009

Summer school update...When is compliance not good?

I got some info from his bus driver this morning about someone who brought him out to the bus yesterday afternoon. She said that the woman was older and very impatient with Stephen. She made him drag his bag of precious (and expensive!!) Mother Goose and Nursery Rhyme books to the bus. I was seeing red. I immediately called his summer school teacher and discussed my displeasure with this info and how upset I was about him biting and it being a cry for help.

To her credit, his teacher sounds nice and sincere. I believe what she says to me. I have been around the block a gazillion times and usually know BS when I hear it. She listened to me and even said she would make sure that she was the one to get him on and off the bus. She also said she would keep closer tabs on him. And, she said she would give me a call after he left school to touch base. She not only wrote a very detailed note in his home/school log but also called me like she said she would. I am a woman of my word and that scores big points with me when someone does what they say they will do.

He had a great day today : ) He wasn't allowed to watch Charlotte's Web tonight, which is his usual routine. He got a little upset but when he saw Daddy wasn't going to back down he went upstairs and got on his computer and looked at his books. Olivia seemed to be less afraid and even got him one of the many Popsicles he had tonight. He acted like our lovable Stephen.

Love really is unconditional. We all need at least one person in this world who sees the good in us under all our bad behavior, mistakes and shortcomings. I am that person for my son.

I have been through a lot of rough stuff in my life and I truly believe if it were not for God's forgiveness and unconditional love that I would not be here today. I think God is constantly guiding us through life and we are always exactly where we need to be. Stephen is on a rough path through life but he makes positive steps everyday. God and I see who he can be if he is given the unconditional love he needs to grow.

I know other people think that children should never get upset and protest against what adults want them to do. However, I truly believe that 100% compliance in a child sets them up to be victims. Especially children who are non-verbal or mostly non-verbal and have cognitive deficits. I'm glad my son gets upset when he doesn't like something. That is a normal reaction. We all need to have self-preservation skills. I don't want him to do EVERYTHING EVERY ADULT tells him to do. We have told our daughter a million times to listen to her gut and if something happens that she doesn't like that she tells us. She actually is going through a phase right now where she says,"I don't like that" when something happens or is happening that she doesn't like. I don't want my children to be victims. I want them to be fighters and survivors.

Do you worry that your child is being molded at school to be too compliant (hate that phrase, very ABA)? Do you see your children's behavior issues as a form of communication? How do you encourage your child to stand up for themselves and protect themselves?

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