Labeling Kids

            I have encountered parents who are baffled by a child. The things they relayed to me gave me a pretty good idea that perhaps their child struggled with a learning disability and would need some extra help. I would suggest the possibility to them and that perhaps the child should be tested. It surprised me to receive the response, “I don’t want my kid to be labeled.” Yes, no parent wants to put a label on their child, but I the think the alternative is far worse. I’ll tell you why.

No parent wants their kid to be diagnosed with a disease. However, if the disease can become terminal untreated, the sooner the correct diagnosis is made, and treatment applied the better it is for the child. If a condition exists such as dyslexia or ADHD, things will always be better for the child if a true understanding of your child is brought to light.

There are strategies for helping these kids. It would be unfair to allow a child to languish behind his peers and struggle with feelings of inferiority when he could be taught compensation or coping skills.

It is my feeling that is always better to know who or what the enemy is. There is free testing out there in most counties. Contact the Child Find people in your school district. In my county they test kids in private or homeschools for free as well.

A Diamond in the Rough,

Nancy

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4 thoughts on “Labeling Kids

  1. myrhee4 says:

    I have two younger brothers with Down’s syndrome. When my younger brother Levi was born, (the other, Eric, was adopted) I remember my mom telling me one very particular incident. When Levi was almost two she took him to the grocery store. A lady was joyed by the sight of a young, cute baby and asked how old he was. When my mom told the lady his age, her complexion quickly changed to disgust at the fact that the child was lacking development for his age.
    Down’s syndrome isn’t exactly a disability that can go undiagnosed so my parents were forced to put the “label” on my brother. But I can say that him being different didn’t ruin our family, it enriched it! My parents adopted my brother Eric so Levi would have a companion to grow up with. Both of them have participated in many school activities like choir, band, FFA, 4-H, home-ec class etc. My parents also started a business to help adults with special needs find jobs in the community.
    I have to say, my parents took my brother’s disability and made it a possibility…A possibility to reach out and find more families like ours, and a possibility to prove that categorizing, though threatening, is not a life sentence.
    I have to say I am proud to be the big sister of my “disabled” siblings. My little brothers have shown that they can be involved in “standard” classrooms and they can have “normal” friends. In that case, I don’t say they have a disability, I say they have the ability to take the labels thrown at them and prove to others they can do it.

  2. Your right the alternative is much worse, I have been a special education paraprofessional for over 9 years, more times than not we’ve seem students come to us behind because a parents and /or guardians are afraid of labels. In contrast, labels can be damaging as well the most important thing to know make sure to find license help so that the right diagnosis is made.

    Great topic, I will be following and look forward to more posts.

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