Wednesday, March 2, 2011

3-2-11 Spread the Word to End the Word

"Your so Retarded" or  "Oh I'm such a retard"

Have you caught yourself saying the above words before?? I have... before I had my children.  I never really had anyone challenge me on the words.. I never really used them thinking of someone with special needs when I said them.  I just used the word simply because other people did and it got a laugh.

Now that I have children with special needs, yes I said "children with special needs", it really does mean something else to me and it really does hurt when I hear people use is.  To this day I still have family members using this word.  I have asked them to stop and they tell me that they are not using it to offend me or the boys, but... it does.  What does the word mean?

–verb (used with object)
1. to make slow; delay the development or progress of (an action, process, etc.); hinder or impede.
–verb (used without object) be delayed.
3a slowing down, diminution, or hindrance, as in a machine.
4.Slang: Disparaging .
a mentally retarded  person.
ba person who is stupid, obtuse, or ineffective in some way: a hopeless social retard.
The above words do hurt.  My boys have PDD Autism, my boys have Down Syndrome, my boys are non-verbal, my boys are delayed..
BUT my boys ARE NOT STUPID.  My boys are 5, they sign over 400 words, they read over 100 words, they are writing their name, they are spreading their love to anyone and everyone they come in contact with.  They don't care if you are in a wheelchair, if your obese, if you have no money, if own a million dollar mansion.  They know unconditional love, they show unconditional love, they TEACH unconditional love.  That sure does not sound like someone who's stupid to me.  
Today take the pledge to not say the "r" word anymore.  If you catch yourself doing it, make a mental note not to do it again.  When I hear my childrens friends say that word the first thing I do is ask them if they know what that word means.  ALL of them have said NO.  When I point to the twins and tell them that they are making fun of those boys they all stand their with their mouths wide open and say they are sorry.  I'm not trying to make them feel bad, I'm trying to teach them... and by doing that I hope to change their language forever.  I can't do this alone, and I hope other parents will step in and ask their children not to use this word.


1 comment:

Molly O'Bryon-Welpott said...

Great post Stacy!
One thing positive I can say is that I think it is going away from our kids vocabulary, at least I dont hear my kids or their friends use it, I think its our generation and older. I have caught myself saying a thing is retarded, not a person. Thanks for always pursuing to make the people you touch grow:)
You are awesome and so is your family,