Kittu is a Down Syndrome child….DS kids are very affectionate and loving children, not difficult to handle (mostly) , docile, non aggressive but very obstinate and egoistic…..Kittu is no different. Today she is a changed person, but we have gone through times when all we ever spoke was how to mellow her down. Once she decided something until we gave in she would not give up….stubbornness personified.There are always some good days and some bad ones. Life isn’t all about a joyous ride…It can be a roller coaster ride too. Ours is no different. Today also we have our bit of stress when she just decides to put her foot down,it puts us in a fix. So we have to be careful how we deal with the situation without creating a scene, specially if we are in company of others. Me, as a mother has found her way of dealing with Kittu…”NEGOTIATION”. so if she has a demand which is not justified, I negotiate with her and we come to a common consensus. Her demands are then met but the way I want . I think each parent can develop their own strategy to deal with tough situations. We go through this with normal children also…so why single out kids with special needs. ..
Between my husband and me there’s a mutual understanding. We deal with the situation in a way in which if one parent is strict, the other is a bit lenient. That way the child is able to reason out and understand our point of view too. Though as parents we aim at the same result…The way we deal is different. And I have noticed it does make a difference.
In school there are times when she has acted stubborn and there is no way they would punish the kids. But with Kittu…they found a solution which is literal torture for her…
Problem: Stubborn behaviour
Solution: Make her miss her tiffin time
And then we have a round of drama when she returns home. How she was kept back from having her tiffin in the break. But gradually that helped her to give in and mellow down. It’s fun sometimes how we can use the favorites of our child as a weapon against them 😊
I remember in one of my conversations with Sr. Gaitonde, she mentioned , ” If your child is throwing a tantrum, lying on the floor and screaming, even if people gather around and you feel embarrassed, please don’t give in. These kids are very smart. They know how and when they can emotionally blackmail their parents.” Those lines stuck to me and I decided to abide by the suggestion given by Sister. And believe me…gradually it did make a difference. Kittu started understanding that no matter what…my mother will not give in…then starts a round of negotiation and we zero down on a solution which suits us both. I am grateful to Sister for showing us the right path whenever we have faced problems. Her inputs have bailed us out on many occasions. She is our guiding light and a source of inspiration.
I think each child is unique with their unique qualities. We have to deal with them in a way best decided upon by the parent. No hard and fast rules of bringing up a special child….just don’t treat them any differently…do as you would do to any other child. They are very sensitive, I have seen it with Kittu. They can sense when you are on the brink of breaking down and they give in…..sweet surrender. All that we need is a bit of patience and a lot of understanding. ….understanding the need of the hour. We as parents are responsible for the ultimate behavior of the child…give in to their demands , always and spoil them or have patience and deal with them in a way they will understand. ..so happy parenting….your child is what you make him….