*Encouragement is the best medicine to give someone. If I were to pick any gift to have in helping others, that would be the one*

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Aspergers Kids Longing for Acceptance

My son came home excitedly last week and showed me a note from the special needs director.

Chaz said, "Oh mom, can I please be in the class with Mr. D next year?  It's a class with kids of all ages and I really want to go."

I was confused about what class he's talking about.  Then it dawned on me that he's talking about being in a special needs class.  My heart sank.

Charles (left) with his brother and dad
He's done so well in a regular classroom and getting A's and B's.  Why on earth would he need to go back to a special needs classroom?  Why is this teacher talking to him about it when I've heard nothing about it first? That last time he was in a special needs room he regressed big time.  Aspergers kids can sometimes copy the behavior of other kids.  When Chaz is around younger kids, he acts younger.  When he's around kids his age or older he acts more mature.  This could affect his learning.  If he's getting good grades, why does he need to get extra help?  Of course there are different levels of special needs rooms and this sounds higher functioning than the one he was in before.

I brought Chaz with me on an errand to talk about it some more without the other kids around.  I asked him:

"Chaz, why do you want to be in this special needs classroom when you're doing so well in a regular classroom?"

He said:"Mom, because the kids in the special needs room love me and I love them."

Then I realized it was about acceptance.  He may be getting good grades in his classroom but he has very little friends if any at all.  He said that whenever he passes the special needs room, the kids are all excited to see him.  This wasn't about the grades, it was about the need for friends and acceptance.

I have a lot to think about.


Marti said...

I know the feeling. My son is mainstream in two classes and the others he is in the emotional support (special needs room). I would absolutely love to see him in all mainstream as his grades are also very awesome. The same issue lies here with my son in the Mainstream rooms - the kids will NOT interact with him and accept him for the bright boy he is just because he can be ''strange'' in their words. My son is much more accepted in the special needs room. The work he does in there is exactly like his twin brother gets in mainstream but he is given that extra TLC which not only supports him with his difficulties but helps tremendously with his self esteem. My son is in the 7th grade and will continue in the emotional support for 8th grade also with just two classes in the mainstream. I wish you the best in the decision you make for Chaz.

Virginia (Jenny) said...

I am considering now after reading some comments and yours also, Marti. Thank you so much for your comment. :)

Accidental Expert said...

My son moved to a school for kids who "learn differently" two years ago. It was the best thing we did. He is in an environment where he is accepted and not bullied. The kids genuinely like him. There is tons to be said for acceptance.

Virginia (Jenny) said...

Thank you, Accidental Expert, for the input. It definitely helps to get people's opinion and experience. :)

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