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There is a lot that goes into taking care of a disabled child and I don’t have to be a parent to know that it’s hard work because as a disabled person, I know how hard life is and what my parents had to do get me the life I have now and I appreciate that. Disability does not affect parents of disabled child to as much as it affects actual disabled people because you will never be able to fully understand what something is going through without experiencing it. I don’t know any parent who would consider themselves heroic but sometimes it can be portrayed that way in the media and people without disabled children will praise disabled parents solely based on the fact their child has a disability. I would say that I look to my parents because I wouldn’t be the person I am today without them but I wouldn’t go as far as calling them a hero or putting them on any type of pedestal because my disability exists and it can be harmful to give disabled parents these types of labels or have that kind of attitude. In this post I am going to talk about what disabled people mean when they say their parents are not hero’s.”.
It does not mean that I don’t appreciate you – When disabled people say that their parents are not hero’s sometimes it can misunderstood as not appreciating our parents, but it doesn’t mean that at all. I appreciate everything that my parents do for me because I don’t think I could ever deal with all the emotional battles that come with raising a disabled child without breaking down but even though I don’t put you on pedestal that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate you. I don’t think parents get enough support because far too often parents of disabled children are struggling to get their child services and it’s sad that parents have to spend of half their days fighting with insurance companies because it shouldn’t be that way. When I say that my parents are not hero’s it does not mean I don’t appreciate all the hard work that goes into raising a disabled children because parents should get as much as appreciation as actual disabled people but all it means is that you are not a better human for your child existing.
It’s the wrong term– I think parents of disabled children should get some recognition because there is a lot of tears associated with raising a disabled child but labeling them as a “hero” is not the right term and it can make some disabled people feel bad about themselves when you act like you are a better human because of disability. I don’t know what a more appropriate term would be but I do know that to disabled people it can sound like your are praising yourself for raising a disabled child and you shouldn’t have that kind of attitude towards anyone. Parents of disabled children go through a lot but you are not a hero solely based on the fact you allow your child to exist and if want to call yourself that you need to be doing it for different reasons and use a different term. I do look up to disabled parents but not in the sense that you allow me to live and if I was going to call you a “hero” (which I wouldn’t) it would for entirely different reasons because many disabled people would consider that ableist.
My disability isn’t what makes you a better person- I look up to my parents because they are the reason I have the independence I do today but the reason I see my parents as role models but it has nothing to do with my disability itself and I look up to them because of all the times they had to fight for me where I would have given up if I had to do it alone. My disability itself is not what makes my parent’s good people because my disability could not have been totally prevented and it’s how they react to it that makes me see them as a role model. When you call parents of disabled children “hero’s” it makes disabled people sound like we are charity cases and that is not okay because my disability should not be used to favor abled-bodied people.
Disabled parents should be given more support, and the problem isn’t that we don’t look up to our parents but it’s that the media portrays parents as being saints or not being able to handle their children which is not true at all. Disabled parents are some of the strongest people I know and have great handle of their children because you have to be on top of things all the time when your child is constantly struggling. When disabled people say that their parents are not hero’s it does not mean we don’t appreciate you because my disability has made me have even more appreciation for all the things people do for me but parenting me does not automatically make you a hero. . I think disabled parents don’t get enough appreciation for all the hard work that goes into raising a disabled child, but it can be damaging when society puts parents on a pedestal solely based on the fact their child because it’s not my disability that makes you good person and it’s how you react to it. I am not a parent of a disabled child, nor will I ever be, and these are my opinions as a disabled person but if you are a parent and can add something please comment below.
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