What does it feel like to hear "retard" or "retarded" when someone you love is mentally, emotionally, or physically delayed or takes more time and energy to learn and express him/herself?
I am putting together a short picture video to show what our children with Down syndrome are capable of, what they look like (yes, sounds shallow, but many are concerned about this part and I admit I was - I didn't want Calvin to look like he has Ds), and how we feel about them.
If you would like to participate, please email a photo or 2 of your child doing something (being read to or reading to someone, riding a bike, laughing, crying - you get the idea, anything really). My address is firstname.lastname@example.org
I am hoping to have the video together in the next couple of weeks. I already have a couple dozen and would love more!
I have been waiting for a good time to post about disability slurs and I think it is now. We have the Buddy Walk coming up in September and October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month. Also, the movie "Change Up" makes a negative reference to 'retarded' and Down syndrome. So, as you can imagine, many in the Down syndrome community are not sitting back.
Why? Are we over reacting? Not in the least. If we sit back and keep quiet (do not advocate) we will be the ones whom allow society to continue painting an untrue picture of disabilities and what impact they have on their family and friends.
Many of my fears can be credited to the way society (and I am a part of that, so I will take my part and be responsible for it) presents individuals with disabilities. I believe we can change that.