Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The severity question...

I got this question a few times right after Logan was born, but even then, I found it irritating.
I took Devin to a new children's dentist today and somehow we got into a discussion about Logan and Down syndrome. I plan to take Logan to this dentist from now on, but he has not met him yet. Of course, he referred to Logan as a Downs child (and he said it repeatedly!), but it got even worse than that. He asked me "what is the severity of Logan's downs?" Seriously??!!! I just sat there stunned and then I told him there is no way to know that at this point.
Has anyone else had this question? Does it bother you? I just feel like people want to judge our kids before they have a chance to show their full potential. How does anyone know what a child is capable of shortly after they are born! I am expecting to learn about Logan over his entire lifetime. Who knows what he will be doing 5, 10 or 30 years from now. I believe the possibilities are endless and judging any child with DS so early in their life is completely unfair and would be harmful to their potential.
I am sick of meeting new doctors who claim to have experience with children with DS who seem so care so much, but then they let me down with the way they talk about our kids. I think I need to carry around a brochure to pass out to every doctor I come in contact with, that explains people first language!

8 comments:

Heidi said...

That's awful! I haven't been asked the severity question but many people have referred to Joel as a Down's child. It drives me CRAZY!!

sara p said...

i have been asked that, never by a dr. though:( that sucks. sorry to be so blunt but it does, i don't understand why people would think anyone would know or even have the answer to that. why do they think its okay to ask about max like that and not for my lilly? i mean i don't know what the future holds for either of them... again that really sucks.

ABandCsMom said...

That burns me up. What is the deal with dentists anyway? We just had a real crazy visit with a pediatric dentist back the end of Aug.

I have never been asked that question by anyone. I think if a medical professional were to ask me that...I'd likely slap them silly!

Mindy said...

I'm right there with you! I hate the "Downs" ref....No He is NOT a "Down's child"!!!! His name is Jonas and yes, he does have DOWN Syndrome. Grrr....

Michelle said...

Well that's crap - did you ask him how severe his ignorance was?

Okay, I know you wouldn't say such a thing, but sometimes I'm tempted to, you know? Really - medical professionals should be at the frontline of people first language.

datri said...

Um, yeah, that would be a bit annoying. I did have Kayla's pediatrician ask if we were certain she really had autism (in addition to DS) or if she was "just really mentally retarded". Ugh! And yeah, we still see him, because although he is completely ignorant developmentally about DS he does know a lot about the medical issues (leukemia, thyroid, AAI, etc.).

Katie said...

Yep, I get that all the time and it annoys the crap out of me! I even get it from family and I am tired of hearing people says "Downs." How do they expect us to predict the future? I wish I had some smart-butt response back. Hmmm, let me think and come up with one. =)

Laura said...

Yep, I still get the severity question - even though my Ryan is now 10 years old! It is annoying, but after all this time, I've learned that people are just ignorant.....they are not trying to be rude, they just don't understand that either you have DS or you don't.

I just switched dentists for myself and while I was showing pictures of my kiddos to the office staff, they all insisted that my Ryan only had a "touch" of Down's! LOL

I no longer get annoyed, I now find these moments are a perfect time to educate people. Not in a preachy way, just in a way to help them understand better what people with Down Syndrome are like. I must admit, before my son was born, I too was ignorant about people with DS - I knew nothing and probably assumed the same thing as everyone else.

So anyway, I didn't mean to write a novel here, I just wanted to let you know that while it is an annoying occurrence , it is also a great opportunity to help educate others about how awesome our kids are! :)