Most days I look around, and everyone around me seems normal and quite sensible. Then along comes a day and a couple of experiences that turns everything on its head and leaves me feeling like the world isn’t as right as I believed.
I had one of those days yesterday.
It started off normally—got the kids to school, drove into the Mabel’s Labels office, and started clearing out my inbox. It was there I found a comment notification on a blog post I wrote some time ago. In celebration of Autism Awareness Month, www.modernmom.com had re-posted an old blog of mine in which I shared some insights about loving a child with autism.
There it was, sitting in my inbox, staring at me. The comment. And this is what it said:
“No offence, Julie, but nobody wants a child like yours. Nobody. People do want a healthy child. Not a child like yours.”
The comment was both irrelevant and mean—and also very wrong. Many people happily welcome children with disabilities and have a very happy and fulfilling family life.
As I continued to reel from that insensitivity, I came to an article that someone had forwarded to me. It told the story of a 16-year-old girl who was placed for adoption by her parents because she is gay. Yes, you heard me—it said they put their child up for adoption because she is gay.
Thankfully, the gay adoption story was a hoax; but that fact didn’t make me feel any better. I had just been on the receiving end of a very real and similar attitude in a blog comment. I know that mindset exists—which is why it was so frighteningly believable.
Can someone remind me that I can believe in the good in our world? Tell me something funny. Tell me something human. Tell me a story about the time you wanted to put your kid at the curb after he did something that made you crazy, but you didn’t because you love him anyway.
Please, remind me that we’re all in this together.