It wasn’t a decision we made, it just kind of happened. Poss asked and we couldn’t lie. She wanted to know why she was visiting all the doctors. Other kids didn’t have to visit doctors or miss school to go to therapists. Why was she? She wanted to know and we couldn’t lie to her.
After talking to her Paediatrician (the wise woman she is) we told Poss. We explained it was just a different way of thinking. Not better, not worse. Just different. We gave it a name, Aspergers.
We got a book called “All Cats have Aspergers” and another one called “Whoever you are” and we read them together. We kept it age appropriate. We made a book together similar to the cat book, but with pictures of Poss and how it affects her.
She asked some questions, mainly about why she had to go to all those doctors. And that was that. Over time she has asked more and we have answered what we can. We talk about it together and ask the therapists the questions we can’t answer.
Sometimes there are tears, not all of them are mine and not all of them sad.
We didn’t think it was a big deal. Telling the rest of the family and friends was harder. It honestly never occurred to us to NOT tell her, more just when and how.
When we spoke to her Paediatrician that day, she likened it to having asthma or an allergic condition. Of course you would tell your child. They need to know how to manage their environment to ensure they excel in whatever situation they are in and keep themselves safe from harm.
It’s risk management. It’s helping her to know herself. It helps us have honest real conversations with our girl.
That sounded right to me.
A teacher once called our approach irresponsible. Although this is the same teacher that refused to read her files or even be polite to her therapists or Paediatrician as she doesn’t believe Poss has Aspergers. So she doesn’t have a lot of creditability in our household.
We now know that other parents make a different choice. I guess that’s what is right for their kids, their families. But this is what works for us.
I’m curious. Have you told your kids? Would you?